25 May 2011 Noise-equivalent power characterization of an uncooled microbolometer-based THz imaging camera
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Abstract
A THz camera based on an uncooled microbolometer 160X120 pixel array with nominal pitch of 52 μm has been developed at INO and initial transmission and reflection images showed promise. In the present paper, the characterization of both standard infrared and THz-optimized uncooled microbolometer pixel arrays are presented at both infrared and THz wavelengths. Measurements in the THz region has been performed using non-uniform low-power quantum-cascade laser (QCL) and uniform high-power far-infrared laser (FIR laser) beams at 3 THz and 4.25 and 2.54 THz, respectively. A measurement comparison has been achieved in the infrared using a blackbody radiation. Different methods for noise-equivalent power (NEP) measurements have been investigated. These characterization methods are promising especially for non-uniform laser beams irradiated on pixel arrays. The NEP results obtained from the different methods are in good agreement independent of the method used in the experiments. The results show a high sensitivity of the THz-optimized pixel array in the THz region. Large beam area reflection imaging of obscured materials at 2.54 THz have been performed at video rates of 30 frames per second using the THz-optimized pixel array equipped with a semi-custom fast THz objective, proving that the INO THz camera provides a promising solution for stand-alone imaging systems.
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Martin Bolduc, Martin Bolduc, Marc Terroux, Marc Terroux, Bruno Tremblay, Bruno Tremblay, Linda Marchese, Linda Marchese, Eric Savard, Eric Savard, Michel Doucet, Michel Doucet, Hassane Oulachgar, Hassane Oulachgar, Christine Alain, Christine Alain, Hubert Jerominek, Hubert Jerominek, Alain Bergeron, Alain Bergeron, } "Noise-equivalent power characterization of an uncooled microbolometer-based THz imaging camera", Proc. SPIE 8023, Terahertz Physics, Devices, and Systems V: Advance Applications in Industry and Defense, 80230C (25 May 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.883507; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.883507
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