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Proceedings Paper

Hard x-ray and gamma-ray imaging and spectroscopy using scintillators coupled to silicon drift detectors
Author(s): P. Lechner; R. Eckhard; C. Fiorini; A. Gola; A. Longoni; A. Niculae; R. Peloso; H. Soltau; L. Strüder
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Paper Abstract

Silicon Drift Detectors (SDDs) are used as low-capacitance photon detectors for the optical light emitted by scintillators. The scintillator crystal is directly coupled to the SDD entrance window. The entrance window's transmittance can be optimized for the scintillator characteristic by deposition of a wavelength-selective anti-reflective coating. Compared to conventional photomultiplier tubes the SDD readout offers improved energy resolution and avoids the practical problems of incompatibility with magnetic fields, instrument volume and requirement of high voltage. A compact imaging spectrometer for hard X-rays and γ-rays has been developed by coupling a large area (29 × 26 mm2) monolithic SDD array with 77 hexagonal cells to a single non-structured CsI-scintillator of equal size. The scintillation light generated by the absorption of an energetic photon is seen by a number of detector cells and the position of the photon interaction is reconstructed by the centroid method. The measured spatial resolution of the system (≤ 500 μm) is considerably smaller than the SDD cell size (3.2 mm) and in the order required at the focal plane of high energy missions. The energy information is obtained by summing the detector cell signals. Compared to direct converting pixelated detectors, e.g. CdTe with equal position resolution the scintillator-SDD combination requires a considerably lower number of readout channels. In addition it has the advantages of comprehensive material experience, existing technologies, proven long term stability, and practically unlimited availability of high quality material.

Paper Details

Date Published: 22 July 2008
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 7021, High Energy, Optical, and Infrared Detectors for Astronomy III, 702111 (22 July 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.788803
Show Author Affiliations
P. Lechner, MPI Halbleiterlabor (Germany)
PNSensor GmbH (Germany)
R. Eckhard, MPI Halbleiterlabor (Germany)
PNSensor GmbH (Germany)
C. Fiorini, Politecnico di Milano (Italy)
INFN, Sezione di Milano (Italy)
A. Gola, Politecnico di Milano (Italy)
INFN, Sezione di Milano (Italy)
A. Longoni, Politecnico di Milano (Italy)
INFN, Sezione di Milano (Italy)
A. Niculae, MPI Halbleiterlabor (Germany)
PNSensor GmbH (Germany)
R. Peloso, Politecnico di Milano (Italy)
INFN, Sezione di Milano (Italy)
H. Soltau, MPI Halbleiterlabor (Germany)
PNSensor GmbH (Germany)
L. Strüder, MPI Halbleiterlabor (Germany)
MPI für extraterrestrische Physik (Germany)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7021:
High Energy, Optical, and Infrared Detectors for Astronomy III
David A. Dorn; Andrew D. Holland, Editor(s)

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