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Proceedings Paper

Experimental characterization of mm-wave detection by a micro-array of Golay cells
Author(s): Douglas R. Denison; Michael E. Knotts; Michael E. McConney; Vladimir V. Tsukruk
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Paper Abstract

We present experimental results for an uncooled imaging focal plane array technology that consists of a polymer/metal/polymer layered membrane suspended over a micro-fabricated array of cavities. The device operation is Golay-like (heating of air in the cavity causes a detectable deflection of the membrane proportional to incident EM power), but potentially offers both greater sensitivity and more read-out options (optical or electrical) than a traditional Golay cell through tailoring of the membrane properties. The membrane is formed from a layer-by-layer deposition of polymer with one or more monolayers of gold nanoparticles (or other metal) that help control the membrane's elasticity and deformation-dependent optical reflectivity/electrical conductivity. Baseline capabilities of the device have been established through optical measurements of membrane deflection due to incident mm-wave radiation modulated at 30 Hz (corresponding to a video refresh rate). The device demonstrates an NEP of 300 nW/√Hz at 105 GHz for a 19-layer membrane (9 poly/1 Au/9 poly) suspended over an array of 80 μm diameter cavities (depth = 100 μm) etched in a 500 μm thick substrate of Si. Calculations of membrane sensitivity show that this NEP could be reduced to ~ 100 pW/√Hz with enlarged cavity diameters on the order of 600 μm.

Paper Details

Date Published: 29 April 2009
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 7309, Passive Millimeter-Wave Imaging Technology XII, 73090J (29 April 2009); doi: 10.1117/12.818387
Show Author Affiliations
Douglas R. Denison, Georgia Tech Research Institute (United States)
Michael E. Knotts, Georgia Tech Research Institute (United States)
Michael E. McConney, Georgia Institute of Technology (United States)
Vladimir V. Tsukruk, Georgia Institute of Technology (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7309:
Passive Millimeter-Wave Imaging Technology XII
Roger Appleby; David A. Wikner, Editor(s)

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