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Proceedings Paper

High-spectral resolution high-cadence imaging x-ray microcalorimeters for solar physics
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Paper Abstract

High spectral resolution, high cadence, imaging x-ray spectroscopy has the potential to revolutionize the study of the solar corona. To that end we have been developing transition-edge-sensor (TES) based x-ray microcalorimeter arrays for future solar physics missions where imaging and high energy resolution spectroscopy will enable previously impossible studies of the dynamics and energetics of the solar corona. The characteristics of these xray microcalorimeters are significantly different from conventional microcalorimeters developed for astrophysics because they need to accommodate much higher count rates (300-1000 cps) while maintaining high energy resolution of less than 4 eV FWHM in the X-ray energy band of 0.2-10 keV. The other main difference is a smaller pixel size (less than 75 x 75 square microns) than is typical for x-ray microcalorimeters in order to provide angular resolution less than 1 arcsecond. We have achieved at energy resolution of 2.15 eV at 6 keV in a pixel with a 12 x 12 square micron TES sensor and 34 x 34 x 9.1 micron gold absorber, and a resolution of 2.30 eV at 6 keV in a pixel with a 35 x 35 micron TES and a 57 x 57 x 9.1 micron gold absorber. This performance has been achieved in pixels that are fabricated directly onto solid substrates, ie. they are not supported by silicon nitride membranes. We present the results from these detectors, the expected performance at high count-rates, and prospects for the use of this technology for future Solar missions.

Paper Details

Date Published: 29 July 2010
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 7732, Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2010: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray, 773238 (29 July 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.857783
Show Author Affiliations
Simon R. Bandler, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
CRESST, Univ. of Maryland, College Park (United States)
Catherine N. Bailey, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Jay A. Bookbinder, Harvard-Smithsonian Ctr. for Astrophysics (United States)
Edward E. DeLuca, Harvard-Smithsonian Ctr. for Astrophysics (United States)
Jay A. Chervenak, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Megan E. Eckart, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Fred M. Finkbeiner, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Wyle Information Systems Inc. (United States)
Daniel P. Kelley, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
MEI Technologies (United States)
Richard L. Kelley, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Caroline A. Kilbourne, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Frederick S. Porter, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
John E. Sadleir, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Univ. of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (United States)
Stephen J. Smith, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
CRESST, Univ. of Maryland, Baltimore County (United States)
Randall K. Smith, Harvard-Smithsonian Ctr. for Astrophysics (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7732:
Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2010: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray
Monique Arnaud; Stephen S. Murray; Tadayuki Takahashi, Editor(s)

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