Norton Equivalent Circuit for Pulsed Photoconductive Antennas-Part I: Theoretical Model

Alessandro Garufo*, Giorgio Carluccio, Nuria Llombart Juan, Andrea Neto

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)
135 Downloads (Pure)


A novel equivalent circuit for pulsed photoconductive sources is introduced for describing the coupling between the photoconductive gap and the antenna. The proposed circuit effectively describes the mechanism of feeding the antenna by the semiconductor when this latter is illuminated by a laser operating in a pulsed mode. Starting from the classical continuity equation, which models the free carriers' density with respect to the laser power pump and the semiconductor features, a Norton equivalent circuit in the frequency domain is derived. According to the Norton theorem, the equivalent source representation is decoupled from the antenna. In particular, for photoconductive antennas (PCAs), the Norton circuit takes into account of the electrical and optical properties of the semiconductor material, the features of the laser excitation, as well as the geometrical dimensions of the gap. The presence of the electrodes around the gap is part of the antenna and, therefore, it is taken into account in the antenna impedance. The proposed circuit allows the analysis of the coupling between the photoconductive source and the antenna, providing a tool to analyze and design PCAs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1635-1645
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Antennas and Propagation
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • Equivalent circuit
  • photoconductivity
  • terahertz (THz) photoconductive antenna (PCA)
  • THz radiated power
  • THz source
  • THz technology


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