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The Rising Demand for Avalanche Photodiodes in Healthcare Devices

   October 6, 2022

In recent years, there has been a growing demand for diagnostic devices in the healthcare sector. A photodiode is majorly used in medical instruments to measure oxygen concentration in blood. Avalanche photodiodes (APDs) are silicon-based solid-state detectors that convert photons into charged currents. They provide a compact, robust, magnetic field insensitive solution for light and x-ray detections with 100 and fast response time gains. Due to this, APDs are extensively used in the healthcare sector. In this sector, APDs are useful due to their several benefits, including fast response time, high performance, and longer life.

Optics has affected people's lives by changing the practice of medicine and offering new approaches to major health problems, such as the treatment of heart disease, cancer, kidney stones, knee injuries, and eye diseases. The increasing use of optics and fiber optics has introduced less invasive ways of treating disease by replacing open surgery with minimally invasive therapies. Optics has enabled laser surgery, optical diagnostic techniques, and visualization of the body's interior. Avalanche photodiodes are integrated with the optical machines used during surgeries. These are also used for medical diagnostic and therapeutic applications such as guidance, diagnostic, surgical-assist systems, and specialty fiber-optic applications.

Various healthcare providers use APD in healthcare devices to diagnose and monitor patients and employ immediate clinical management. Some leading companies have started developing various avalanche photodiodes for the healthcare sector. For instance, in June 2022, Hamamatsu Photonics K.K. (Japan) developed a silicon-based avalanche photodiode (APD) for X‐ray timing measurements. APD detector has a property for fast counting up to 108 counts per second using its output width, shorter than several nanoseconds.

The sensors used in medical applications are expected to offer low power consumption, reduce overall system power, increase battery life, and integrate maximum functionalities within a small footprint. For instance, First Sensor AG (Germany) develops and manufactures avalanche photodiodes for different wavelengths subdivided into detector series, namely, Serie 8, Serie 9, and Serie 10. Moreover, the developments in organic APDs to develop compact, wearable medicine sensors further fuel the market demand. Such factors help deploy the demand for avalanche photodiodes in healthcare devices during the forecast period.

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