Spatiotemporal dynamics of electron-hole pairs locally excited in a silicon-on-insulator structure by indirect interband absorption are studied by measuring differential transmission caused by free-carrier absorption of a probe pulse tuned below the bandgap, with 200-fs temporal and 3-micrometer spatial resolution. From sample temperatures of 250 K to 400 K, the ambipolar diffusivity decreases, and is similar to reported values of bulk silicon. Cooling the sample from 250 K to 90 K, a decrease of ambipolar diffusivity is observed, indicating important influences of defects and residual stress on carrier diffusion. No detectable density dependence of ambipolar diffusivity is observed.
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