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13 May 2015 Linear mode photon counting from visible to MWIR with HgCdTe avalanche photodiode focal plane arrays
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Results of characterization data on linear mode photon counting (LMPC) HgCdTe electron-initiated avalanche photodiode (e-APD)focal plane arrays (FPA) are presented that reveal an improved understanding and the growing maturity of the technology. The first successful 2x8 LMPC FPA was fabricated in 2010 [1]. Since then a process validation lot of 2x8 arrays was fabricated. Five arrays from this lot were characterized that replicated the previous 2x8 LMPC array performance. In addition, it was unambiguously verified that readout integrated circuit (ROIC) glow was responsible for most of the false event rate (FER) of the 2010 array. The application of a single layer metal blocking layer between the ROIC and the detector array and optimization of the ROIC biases reduced the FER by an order of magnitude. Photon detection efficiencies (PDEs) of greater than 50% were routinely demonstrated across 5 arrays, with one array reaching a PDE of 70%. High resolution pixel-surface spot scans were performed and the junction diameters of the diodes were measured. The junction diameter was decreased from 31 μm to 25 μm resulting in a 2x increase in E-APD gain from 470 on the 2010 array to 1100 on one of the 2013 FPAs. Mean single photon signal to noise ratios of >12 were demonstrated at excess noise factors of 1.2-1.3. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) performed measurements on the delivered FPA that verified the PDE and FER data.
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William Sullivan III, Jeffrey Beck, Richard Scritchfield, Mark Skokan, Pradip Mitra, Xiaoli Sun, James Abshire, Darren Carpenter, and Barry Lane "Linear mode photon counting from visible to MWIR with HgCdTe avalanche photodiode focal plane arrays", Proc. SPIE 9492, Advanced Photon Counting Techniques IX, 94920T (13 May 2015);

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