19 March 2014 Amorphous selenium direct detection CMOS digital x-ray imager with 25 micron pixel pitch
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Abstract
We have developed a high resolution amorphous selenium (a-Se) direct detection imager using a large-area compatible back-end fabrication process on top of a CMOS active pixel sensor having 25 micron pixel pitch. Integration of a-Se with CMOS technology requires overcoming CMOS/a-Se interfacial strain, which initiates nucleation of crystalline selenium and results in high detector dark currents. A CMOS-compatible polyimide buffer layer was used to planarize the backplane and provide a low stress and thermally stable surface for a-Se. The buffer layer inhibits crystallization and provides detector stability that is not only a performance factor but also critical for favorable long term cost-benefit considerations in the application of CMOS digital x-ray imagers in medical practice. The detector structure is comprised of a polyimide (PI) buffer layer, the a-Se layer, and a gold (Au) top electrode. The PI layer is applied by spin-coating and is patterned using dry etching to open the backplane bond pads for wire bonding. Thermal evaporation is used to deposit the a-Se and Au layers, and the detector is operated in hole collection mode (i.e. a positive bias on the Au top electrode). High resolution a-Se diagnostic systems typically use 70 to 100 μm pixel pitch and have a pre-sampling modulation transfer function (MTF) that is significantly limited by the pixel aperture. Our results confirm that, for a densely integrated 25 μm pixel pitch CMOS array, the MTF approaches the fundamental material limit, i.e. where the MTF begins to be limited by the a-Se material properties and not the pixel aperture. Preliminary images demonstrating high spatial resolution have been obtained from a frst prototype imager.
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Christopher C. Scott, Shiva Abbaszadeh, Sina Ghanbarzadeh, Gary Allan, Michael Farrier, Ian A. Cunningham, Karim S. Karim, "Amorphous selenium direct detection CMOS digital x-ray imager with 25 micron pixel pitch", Proc. SPIE 9033, Medical Imaging 2014: Physics of Medical Imaging, 90331G (19 March 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2043770; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2043770
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