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In this paper we develop a kinetic model for the analysis of semiconductor superlattices, accounting for quantum effects. The model consists of a Boltzmann-Poisson type system of equations with simplified Bhatnagar-Gross-Krook collisions, obtained from the general time-dependent Schrodinger-Poisson model using Wigner functions. This system for superlattice transport is supplemented by the quantum mechanical part of the model based on the Ben-Daniel-Duke form of the Schrodinger equation for a cylindrical superlattice of finite radius. The resulting energy spectrum is used to characterize the Fermi-Dirac distribution that appears in the Bhatnagar-Gross-Krook collision, thereby coupling the quantum mechanical and kinetic parts of the model. The kinetic model uses the dispersion relation obtained by the generalized Kronig-Penney method, and allows us to estimate radii of quantum wire superlattices that have the same miniband widths as in experiments. It also allows us to determine more accurately the time-dependent characteristics of superlattices, in particular their current density. Results, for several experimentally grown superlattices, are discussed in the context of self-sustained coherent oscillations of the current density which are important in an increasing range of current and potential applications.
condensed matter: electrical; magnetic and optical surfaces; interfaces and thin films; nanoscale science and low-d systems