Ladar Single-Photon Detector Arrays: Requirements and Candidates

Ladar Single-Photon Detector Arrays: Requirements and Candidates

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Description: Photodetector User Lidar Remote Sensing, Laser Based Remote Sensing, Lidar/Ladar, Flying Spot and Flash Airborne Ladar, 3D Imaging with Flash Ladar, Exo tropospheric Ladar Imaging, High Efficiency Laser Development at NGAS, Single Photon NIR Sensor Array Development, MIT/LL NIR Geiger Mode APDs, Intevac Intensified Photodiode (IPD), Voxtel Impact Ionization Engineered APDs, RVS Single Photon, Linear Mode HgCdTe APD, MBE Based HgCdTe APDs and 3D LADAR Sensors, High Performance HgCdTe APDs.

 
Author: William Cottingame, PhD (Fellow) | Visits: 2473 | Page Views: 2734
Domain:  High Tech Category: Photo Subcategory: Image Sensors 
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Contents:
Requirements and Candidates for Ladar Single-Photon Detector Arrays
KECK Institute for Space Studies California Institute of Technology Jet Propulsion Laboratory Single-Photon Counting Detectors Large Scale Study 1st Workshop, January 25-29, 2010

William Cottingame, PhD
Approved for Public Release, Distribution Unlimited: Northrop Grumman Case 10-0139 Dated 2/17/10

NORTHROP GRUMMAN PRIVATE/PROPRIETARY LEVEL 1

Photodetector User � Lidar Remote Sensing
Eye-Safe Autonomous Aerosol Lidar

9- & 10-m CO2 Bands, Heterodyne
CALIOPE IR DIAL

1.5-m InGaAs APD
Miniature Aerosol Lidar

0.5- & 1-m Si APD, 1.5-m InGaAs APD
Mobile Backscatter Lidar Facility

248- to 351-nm Excitation, PMTs
Raman Lidar

1-m IR Enhanced Si APD 248- to 308-nm Excitation, PMTs
Fluorescence Lidar

280- to 450-nm Monochromators
UV Differential Absorption Lidar

1-m IR Enhanced Si APD
Desert Storm Lidar

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Approved for Public Release, Distribution Unlimited: Northrop Grumman Case 10-0139 Dated 2/17/10 NORTHROP GRUMMAN PRIVATE/PROPRIETARY LEVEL 1

Laser-Based Remote Sensing (Lidar/Ladar)
� Historically lidar (atmospheric measurements) has used relatively low pulse repetition frequencies (PRF), e.g., 10's to 100's Hz � Motivated by the need to overwhelm solar background and detector noise and stay within a laser's average power limit � One to at most a few analog photodetectors scanned over the interrogated atmospheric volume � Often specialized detectors ranging from the NUV to the LWIR � More recently ladar, in particular commercial airborne altimeters, has moved to the MHz PRF region to increase area coverage rates � Still a single detector element rapidly scanned over a surface area � Eye-safety is driving this approach to 1.5 m to take advantage of the higher single-pulse maximum permissible exposures (MPE)
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NORTHROP GRUMMAN PRIVATE/PROPRIETARY LEVEL 1 Approved for Public Release, Distribution Unlimited: Northrop Grumman Case 10-0139 Dated 2/17/10

Flying-Spot and Flash Airborne Ladar
� What is referred to as a "flying-spot ladar" has a single-photodetector that is rapid scanned transverse to the aircraft's flight path � Whereas "flash ladar" uses focal plane array (FPA) and slower scan rate � Motivations for flash lidar � Significantly increased area coverage rates � Reduced registration artifacts � Actual imaging; rather than point sampling
Slide taken from and with apologies to: Ken Hudnut, et al., "Ladar sensor and system capabilities and issues", Keck Workshop on Monitoring Earth Surface Changes from Space, October, 29 2009
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Artifacts

High resolution digital elevation model from commercial single-detector laser altimeter

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3D Imaging with "Flash Ladar"
� 3D image with a single laser pulse can be acquired with analog-mode APD at low altitudes and modest laser energy � 128�128 InGaAs FPA at 1.5 m � Flights for model validation and data for image processing development completed in 2008

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Approved for Public Release, Distribution Unlimited: Northrop Grumman Case 10-0139 Dated 2/17/10 NORTHROP GRUMMAN PRIVATE/PROPRIETARY LEVEL 1

Exo-tropospheric Ladar Imaging
� Significant market for a ladar imaging missions if, among other things: � Spatial resolution and geolocation requirements met � High acquisition rates at long standoff ranges achieved � Platform size, weight, and power (SWaP) limits accommodated � General assertions � without showing the detailed trades to justify them � FPA needed to meet area rate and low "data void" requirements � SWaP exceeded for applications of interest using 1.5-m lasers � Eye-safety not achievable with low PRF ladar at 1 m � Efficiency/reliability of high PRF 1-m lasers is currently a necessity � Few-photon sensitivity needed to enable use of high PRF 1-m lasers � Viability of high-area-rate space-based imaging ladar just 6 years ago "If we had some ham we could have ham and eggs; if we had eggs."
Quote from Laurel and Hardy depression era comedic film

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NORTHROP GRUMMAN PRIVATE/PROPRIETARY LEVEL 1

Approved for Public Release, Distribution Unlimited: Northrop Grumman Case 10-0139 Dated 2/17/10

High-Efficiency Laser Development at NGAS
High-Efficiency Fiber Laser

Compact Fiber Laser Demonstrator Facilitates compact, ruggedized high energy, pulsed fiber opto-mechanical assemblies Demonstrated operation at power with only a 2.5% loss (32.5% bus-plug)

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High Efficiency Fiber Amplifier Testbed Validated fiber laser efficiency advantage over conventional solid state laser systems Demonstrated 33.5% bus-plug efficiency to date

1-m, 1-ns, high PRF pulsed laser 4 fiber amplifier, ~8 mJ/pulse 40-GHz wavelength separation Spectrally combined beam >160 W (20 KHz) average power >300 W (50 KHz) average power 16"�19"�5.75" laser envelope ~50 lb. total weight Scalable to higher energies Design progressing, expected completion by Q1/2010

We have ham! � well almost

Approved for Public Release, Distribution Unlimited: Northrop Grumman Case 10-0139 Dated 2/17/10 NORTHROP GRUMMAN PRIVATE/PROPRIETARY LEVEL 1

Single-Photon NIR Sensor Array Development
� Government sponsoring 1-m Geiger-mode FPA/ROIC development at MIT LL � Aggressive development of 1- to 2-m low-noise, linear-mode FPA/ROIC at NGAS � Low ionization ratio homojunctions, e.g., k~0 for HgxCdxTe � Impact ionization engineered, I2E, III-V heterojunctions � Moderate Q.E. IR intensified photodiode, IPD, complete and >2-yr. life testing � Space qualification of single-photon sensitive lidar/ladar FPA's has been ongoing for several years
MIT/LL GM APD RVS LM APD
APD Array

INTEVAC IPD

Voxtel I2E

ROIC Array

Proof of principles lab demonstrations

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Eggs not all in one basket
NORTHROP GRUMMAN PRIVATE/PROPRIETARY LEVEL 1 Approved for Public Release, Distribution Unlimited: Northrop Grumman Case 10-0139 Dated 2/17/10

MIT/LL NIR Geiger-Mode APDs
� Many variants of the InGaAsP FPAs and readout IC (ROIC) have been produced over recent years with formats of 32�32, 32�128, and larger � Performance has been fluid as the design evolves to meet competing requirements, but top-level performance specs might be expected to be: � Probability of detection, i.e., Q.E. � probability of avalanche: ~30% � Dark counts: 10 to a few 100 kHz � Overall timing resolution: ~1 ns � Readout rate: ~20 kHz � Early variant of the technology has been transferred to Spectrolab and Princeton Lightwave � For space applications, radiation susceptibility requires management � Contact for the InGaAs APDs: Simon Verghese, Lincoln Laboratories

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NORTHROP GRUMMAN PRIVATE/PROPRIETARY LEVEL 1

Approved for Public Release, Distribution Unlimited: Northrop Grumman Case 10-0139 Dated 2/17/10

Intevac Intensified Photodiode (IPD)
� A history of severe production, operational, and shelf life limitations � During our collaboration, processes have been brought under control � Photocathode materials processing still undergoing some refinement to improve reproducibility and yield
Intevac Inc., Santa Clara, CA

� Top-level performance � Wavelength: 0.93 to 1.3 m � Q.E. 25% to 32% @ 1 m � Dark current:
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