24 July 2014 Performance verification and system integration tests of the pulse shape processor for the soft x-ray spectrometer onboard ASTRO-H
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Abstract
The soft X-ray spectrometer (SXS) aboard ASTRO-H is equipped with dedicated digital signal processing units called pulse shape processors (PSPs). The X-ray microcalorimeter system SXS has 36 sensor pixels, which are operated at 50 mK to measure heat input of X-ray photons and realize an energy resolution of 7 eV FWHM in the range 0.3–12.0 keV. Front-end signal processing electronics are used to filter and amplify the electrical pulse output from the sensor and for analog-to-digital conversion. The digitized pulses from the 36 pixels are multiplexed and are sent to the PSP over low-voltage differential signaling lines. Each of two identical PSP units consists of an FPGA board, which assists the hardware logic, and two CPU boards, which assist the onboard software. The FPGA board triggers at every pixel event and stores the triggering information as a pulse waveform in the installed memory. The CPU boards read the event data to evaluate pulse heights by an optimal filtering algorithm. The evaluated X-ray photon data (including the pixel ID, energy, and arrival time information) are transferred to the satellite data recorder along with event quality information. The PSP units have been developed and tested with the engineering model (EM) and the flight model. Utilizing the EM PSP, we successfully verified the entire hardware system and the basic software design of the PSPs, including their communication capability and signal processing performance. In this paper, we show the key metrics of the EM test, such as accuracy and synchronicity of sampling clocks, event grading capability, and resultant energy resolution.
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Sawako Takeda, Makoto S. Tashiro, Yoshitaka Ishisaki, Masahiro Tsujimoto, Hiromi Seta, Yuya Shimoda, Sunao Yamaguchi, Sho Uehara, Yukikatsu Terada, Ryuichi Fujimoto, Kazuhisa Mitsuda, "Performance verification and system integration tests of the pulse shape processor for the soft x-ray spectrometer onboard ASTRO-H", Proc. SPIE 9144, Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2014: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray, 91445B (24 July 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2055899; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2055899
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