Over the past few years, a new type of High Operating Temperature (HOT) photon detector has been developed at SCD, which operates in the blue part of the MWIR atmospheric window (3.4 - 4.2 μm). This window is generally more transparent than the red part of the MWIR window (4.4 - 4.9 μm), and thus is especially useful for mid and long range applications. The detector has an InAsSb active layer and is based on the new "XBn" device concept, which eliminates Generation-Recombination dark current and enables operation at temperatures of 150K or higher, while maintaining excellent image quality. Such high operating temperatures reduce the cooling requirements of Focal Plane Array (FPA) detectors dramatically, and allow the use of a smaller closed-cycle Stirling cooler. As a result, the complete Integrated Detector Cooler Assembly (IDCA) has about 60% lower power consumption and a much longer lifetime compared with IDCAs based on standard InSb detectors and coolers operating at 77K.
In this work we present a new large format IDCA designed for 150K operation. The 15 μm pitch 1280×1024 FPA is based on SCD's XBn technology and digital Hercules ROIC. The FPA is housed in a robust Dewar and is integrated with Ricor's K508N Stirling cryo-cooler. The IDCA has a weight of ~750 gram and its power consumption is ~ 5.5 W at a frame rate of 100Hz. The Mean Time to Failure (MTTF) of the IDCA is more than 20,000 hours, greatly facilitating 24/7 operation.
We describe key electro-optical performance parameters of the new detector.
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