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Proceedings Paper

Progress in the development of Mo/Au transition-edge sensors for x-ray spectroscopy
Author(s): Caroline Kilbourn Stahle; Regis P. Brekosky; Enectali Figueroa-Feliciano; Fred M. Finkbeiner; John D. Gygax; Mary J. Li; Mark A. Lindeman; Frederick Scott Porter; Nilesh Tralshawala
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Paper Abstract

X-ray microcalorimeters using transition-edge sensors (TES) show great promise for use in astronomical x-ray spectroscopy. We have obtained very high energy resolution (2.8 eV at 1.5 keV and 3.7 eV at 3.3 keV) in a large, isolated TES pixel using a Mo/Au proximity-effect bilayer on a silicon nitride membrane. We will discuss the performance and our characterization of that device. In order to be truly suitable for use behind an x-ray telescope, however, such devices need to be arrayed with a pixel size and focal-plane coverage commensurate with the telescope focal length and spatial resolution. Since this requires fitting the TES and its thermal link, a critical component of each calorimeter pixel, into a far more compact geometry than has previously been investigated, we must study the fundamental scaling laws in pixel optimization. We have designed a photolithography mask that will allow us to probe the range in thermal conductance that can be obtained by perforating the nitride membrane in a narrow perimeter around the sensor. This mask will also show the effects of reducing the TES area. Though we have not yet tested devices of the compact designs, we will present our progress in several of the key processing steps and discuss the parameter space of our intended investigations.

Paper Details

Date Published: 13 December 2000
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 4140, X-Ray and Gamma-Ray Instrumentation for Astronomy XI, (13 December 2000); doi: 10.1117/12.409131
Show Author Affiliations
Caroline Kilbourn Stahle, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Regis P. Brekosky, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. and Swales Aerospace (United States)
Enectali Figueroa-Feliciano, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. and Stanford Univ. (United States)
Fred M. Finkbeiner, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. and Univ. of Maryland (United States)
John D. Gygax, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. and Swales Aerospace (United States)
Mary J. Li, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. and Raytheon ITSS (United States)
Mark A. Lindeman, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. and National Academy of Sciences (United States)
Frederick Scott Porter, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Nilesh Tralshawala, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. and Raytheon ITSS (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4140:
X-Ray and Gamma-Ray Instrumentation for Astronomy XI
Kathryn A. Flanagan; Oswald H. W. Siegmund, Editor(s)

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