26 September 2013 Opaque gallium nitride photocathodes in UV imaging detectors with microchannel plates
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Abstract
The optimization and performance of opaque Galium Nitride (GaN) photocathodes deposited directly on novel Microchannel Plates (MCPs) are presented in this paper. The novel borosilicate glass MCPs, which are manufactured with the help of Atomic Layer Deposition, can withstand higher temperatures enabling direct deposition of GaN films on their surfaces. The quantum efficiency of MBE-grown GaN photocathodes of various thickness and buffer layers was studied in the spectral range of ~200-400 nm for the films grown on different surface layers (such as Al2O3 or buffer AlN layer) in order to determine the optimal opaque photocathode configuration. The MCPs with the GaN photocathodes were activated with surface cesiation in order to achieve the negative Electron Affinity for the efficient photon detection. The opaque photocathodes enable substantial broadening of the spectral sensitivity range compared to the semitransparent configuration when the photocathodes are deposited on the input window. The design of currently processed sealed tube event counting detector with an opaque GaN photocathode are also described in this paper. Our experiments demonstrate that although there is still development work required the detection quantum efficiencies exceeding 20% level should be achievable in 200-400 nm range and <50% in 100-200 nm range for the event counting MCP detectors with high spatial resolution (better than 50 μm) and timing resolution of <100 ps and very low background levels of only few events cm-2 s-1.
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Anton S. Tremsin, Jeffrey S. Hull, Oswald H. W. Siegmund, Jason B. McPhate, John V. Vallerga, Amir M. Dabiran, Anil Mane, Jeff Elam, "Opaque gallium nitride photocathodes in UV imaging detectors with microchannel plates", Proc. SPIE 8859, UV, X-Ray, and Gamma-Ray Space Instrumentation for Astronomy XVIII, 88590X (26 September 2013); doi: 10.1117/12.2025185; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2025185
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