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Proceedings Paper

Ultra-High sensitivity APD based 3D LADAR sensors: linear mode photon counting LADAR camera for the Ultra-Sensitive Detector program
Author(s): J. Asbrock; S. Bailey; D. Baley; J. Boisvert; G. Chapman; G. Crawford; T. de Lyon; B. Drafahl; J. Edwards; E. Herrin; C. Hoyt; M. Jack; R. Kvaas; K. Liu; W. McKeag; R. Rajavel; V. Randall; S. Rengarajan; J. Riker
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Paper Abstract

Advanced LADAR receivers enable high accuracy identification of targets at ranges beyond standard EOIR sensors. Increased sensitivity of these receivers will enable reductions in laser power, hence more affordable, smaller sensors as well as much longer range of detection. Raytheon has made a recent breakthrough in LADAR architecture by combining very low noise ~ 30 electron front end amplifiers with moderate gain >60 Avalanche Photodiodes. The combination of these enables detection of laser pulse returns containing as few as one photon up to 1000s of photons. Because a lower APD gain is utilized the sensor operation differs dramatically from traditional "Geiger mode APD" LADARs. Linear mode photon counting LADAR offers advantages including: determination of intensity as well as time of arrival, nanosecond recovery times and discrimination between radiation events and signals. In our talk we will present an update of this development work: the basic amplifier and APD component performance, the front end architecture, the demonstration of single photon detection using a simple 4 × 4 SCA and the design and evaluation of critical components of a fully integrated photon counting camera under development in support of the Ultra-Sensitive Detector (USD) program sponsored by AFRL-Kirtland.

Paper Details

Date Published: 5 May 2008
PDF: 16 pages
Proc. SPIE 6940, Infrared Technology and Applications XXXIV, 69402O (5 May 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.783940
Show Author Affiliations
J. Asbrock, Raytheon Vision Systems (United States)
S. Bailey, Raytheon Vision Systems (United States)
D. Baley, Raytheon Vision Systems (United States)
J. Boisvert, Spectrolab (United States)
G. Chapman, Raytheon Vision Systems (United States)
G. Crawford, Raytheon Vision Systems (United States)
T. de Lyon, HRL Labs. LLC (United States)
B. Drafahl, Raytheon Vision Systems (United States)
J. Edwards, Raytheon Vision Systems (United States)
E. Herrin, Raytheon Vision Systems (United States)
C. Hoyt, Raytheon Vision Systems (United States)
M. Jack, Raytheon Vision Systems (United States)
R. Kvaas, Raytheon Vision Systems (United States)
K. Liu, Raytheon Vision Systems (United States)
W. McKeag, Raytheon Vision Systems (United States)
R. Rajavel, HRL Labs. LLC (United States)
V. Randall, Raytheon Vision Systems (United States)
S. Rengarajan, Spectrolab (United States)
J. Riker, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6940:
Infrared Technology and Applications XXXIV
Bjørn F. Andresen; Gabor F. Fulop; Paul R. Norton, Editor(s)

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