Share Email Print
cover

Proceedings Paper

Characterization of a photon counting EMCCD for space-based high contrast imaging spectroscopy of extrasolar planets
Author(s): Ashlee N. Wilkins; Michael W. McElwain; Timothy J. Norton; Bernie J. Rauscher; Johannes F. Rothe; Michael Malatesta; George M. Hilton; James R. Bubeck; Carol A. Grady; Don J. Lindler
Format Member Price Non-Member Price
PDF $14.40 $18.00

Paper Abstract

We present the progress of characterization of a low-noise, photon counting Electron Multiplying Charged Coupled Device (EMCCD) operating in optical wavelengths and demonstrate possible solutions to the problems of Clock-Induced Charge (CIC) and other trapped charge through sub-bandgap illumination. Such a detector will be vital to the feasibility of future space-based direct imaging and spectroscopy missions for exoplanet characterization, and is scheduled to y on-board the AFTA-WFIRST mission. The 512×512 EMCCD is an e2v detector housed and clocked by a Nüvü Cameras controller. Through a multiplication gain register, this detector produces as many as 5000 electrons for a single, incident-photon-induced photoelectron produced in the detector, enabling single photon counting operation with read noise and dark current orders of magnitude below that of standard CCDs. With the extremely high contrasts (Earth-to-Sun flux ratio is ~ 10-10) and extremely faint targets (an Earth analog would measure 28th - 30th magnitude or fainter), a photon-counting EMCCD is absolutely necessary to measure the signatures of habitability on an Earth-like exoplanet within the timescale of a mission's lifetime, and we discuss the concept of operations for an EMCCD making such measurements.

Paper Details

Date Published: 23 July 2014
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 9154, High Energy, Optical, and Infrared Detectors for Astronomy VI, 91540C (23 July 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2055346
Show Author Affiliations
Ashlee N. Wilkins, Univ. of Maryland, College Park (United States)
Michael W. McElwain, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Timothy J. Norton, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Univ. of Maryland, Baltimore County (United States)
Bernie J. Rauscher, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Johannes F. Rothe, Universities Space Research Association (United States)
Michael Malatesta, The Univ. of Oklahoma (United States)
George M. Hilton, Univ. of Maryland, College Park (United States)
NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
James R. Bubeck, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Adnet Systems (United States)
Carol A. Grady, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Eureka Scientific, Inc. (United States)
Don J. Lindler, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9154:
High Energy, Optical, and Infrared Detectors for Astronomy VI
Andrew D. Holland; James Beletic, Editor(s)

© SPIE. Terms of Use
Back to Top