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2 February 2004 HgCdTe and silicon detectors and FPAs for remote sensing applications
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Photon detectors and focal plane arrays (FPAs) are fabricated from HgCdTe and silicon in many varieties. With appropriate choices for bandgap in HgCdTe, detector architecture, dopants, and operating temperature, HgCdTe and silicon can cover the spectral range from ultraviolet to the very-long-wavelength infrared (VLWIR), exhibit high internal gain to allow photon counting over this broad spectral range, and can be made in large array formats for imaging. DRS makes HgCdTe and silicon detectors and FPAs with unique architectures for a variety of applications. Detector characteristics of High Density Vertically Integrated Photodiode (HDVIP) HdCdTe detectors as well as Focal Plane Arrays (FPAs) are presented in this paper. MWIR[λc(78 K) = 5 μm] HDVIP detectors RoA performance was measured to within a factor or two or three of theoretical. In addition, 256 x 256 detector arrays were fabricated. Initial measurements had seven out of ten FPAs having operabilities greater than 99.45% with the best 256 x 256 array having only two inoperable pixels. LWIR [λc(78K)~10 μm] 640 X 480 arrays and a variety of single color linear arrays have also been fabricated. In addition, two-color arrays have been fabricated. DRS has explored HgCdTe avalanche photo diodes (APDs) in the λc = 2.2 μm to 5 μm range. The λc = 5 μm APDs have greater than 200 DC gain values at 8 Volts bias. Large-format to 10242 Arsenic-doped (Si:As, λc ~ 28 μm), Blocked-Impurity-Band (BIB) detectors have been developed for a variety of pixel formats and have been optimized for low, moderate, and high infrared backgrounds. Antimony-doped silicon (Si:Sb) BIB arrays having response to wavelengths > 40 μm have also been demonstrated. Avalanche processes in Si:As at low temperatures (~ 8 K) have led to two unique solid-state photon-counting detectors adapted to infrared and visible wavelengths. The infrared device is the solid-state photomultiplier (SSPM). A related device optimized for the visible spectral region is the visible-light photon counter (VLPC). The VLPC is a nearly ideal device for detection of small bunches of photons with excellent time resolution. Finally, DRS makes imaging arrays of pin-diodes utilizing the intrinsic silicon photoresponse to provide high performance over the 0.4-1.0 μm spectral range operating near room temperature. pin-diode arrays are particularly attractive as an alternative to charge-coupled devices (CCDs) for space applications where radiation hardening is needed. In addition, wire grid micropolarizers have been demonstrated and two color doped silicon detectors using diffractive microlenses are being developed. Precision alignment of sensor chips with respect to a base mounting plate has been demonstrated to be within 2 μm. A similar technique is also utilized to align single large detectors for sounder applications in focal plane arrays (FPAs). FPAs for space applications with the associated cold and warm electronics and packaging/cables have been fabricated.
© (2004) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Arvind I. D'Souza, Maryn G. Stapelbroek, and James E. Robinson "HgCdTe and silicon detectors and FPAs for remote sensing applications", Proc. SPIE 5234, Sensors, Systems, and Next-Generation Satellites VII, (2 February 2004);


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