Imaging systems are widespread observation tools used to fulfill various functions such as recognition, detection and
identification. These devices such as CMOS and CCD can be damaged by laser. It is very important to study the damage
mechanism of CMOS and CCD. Previous studies focused on the interference and damage of CCD. There were only a
few researches on the interaction of CMOS and the laser.
In this paper, using a 60ns, 1064 nm single-pulse laser to radiate the front illuminated CMOS detector, the typical
experiment phenomena were observed and the corresponding energy density thresholds were measured. According to the
experiment phenomena, hard damage process of CMOS can be divided into 3 stages. Based on the structure and working
principle of CMOS, studying the damage mechanism of 3 stages by theoretical analysis, point damage was caused by the
increase in leakage current due to structural defects resulting from thermal effects, half black line damage and black lines
cross damage were caused by signal interruption due to that the device circuit fuses were cut. Enhancing the laser energy
density, the damaged area expanded. Even if the laser energy density reached 1.95 J/cm<sup>2</sup>, black lines has covered most of
the detector pixels, the detector still not completely lapsed, the undamaged area can imaging due to that pixels of CMOS
were separated with each other. Experiments on CMOS by laser pulses at the wavelength of 1064 nm and the pulse
duration in 25ps was carried out, then the thresholds with different pulse durations were measured and compared.
Experiments on CMOS by fs pulsed laser at the frequency of 1 Hz, 10 Hz and 1000 Hz were carried out, respectively, the
results showed that a high-repetition-rate laser was easier to damage CMOS compared to single-shot laser.