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28 June 2006 Thermal and deadtime effects in APD pulse detectors: a unified model
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Avalanche photodiodes offer many advantages for photon counting in the visible and near IR. However, as with all pulse counting systems, finite response times result in missed pulses as signal levels are increased. Further, APDs build up a pulse by accelerating electrons through large potential drops before being quenched which can result in significant heating with increasing signal levels and subsequent loss of quantum efficiency. Both these effects, heating and deadtime, result in a significantly non-linear response at high signal levels. We report here a combination of simple models of the thermal behavior of the detectors and the finite nature of counting electronics that allows us to account for these efects. We also demonstrate a simple method for measuring off line the parameters of this model. With a relatively few free parameters we are able to restore linearity very close to detector saturation. A silver lining is that the combined loss of quantum efficiency (heating) and detected pulses (deadtime) provides a factor of two gain in incoming signal levels before saturation.
© (2006) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
D. M. Peterson, D. Mozurkewich, and C. A. Hummel "Thermal and deadtime effects in APD pulse detectors: a unified model", Proc. SPIE 6268, Advances in Stellar Interferometry, 62681O (28 June 2006);


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