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Proceedings Paper

Photon counting camera for the NASA deep space optical communication demonstration on the PSYCHE mission
Author(s): Benjamin R. Buck; Gregory D. Allen; Erik K. Duerr; K. Alexander McIntosh; Shawn T. Moynihan; Vishwa N. Shukla; Jeffrey D. Wang
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Paper Abstract

The Photon Counting Camera (PCC) is a single-photon sensitive laser communication camera that will launch on board the NASA PSYCHE spacecraft, part of the Deep-Space Optical Communication (DSOC) technology demonstration mission. The PCC comprises a single-photon sensitive Geiger-mode Avalanche Photo Diode (GmAPD) array connected to an electronics board designed to power, configure, and read out the array. The logic on the electronics board prevents accidental damage to the array, provides health and status information about the array and provides a simple interface to the downstream data processing modules. The array and electronics board are mounted into the chassis, which provides precise alignment between the optics bench and the detector as well as a path to radiate waste heat. We discuss the current design of the camera, including the electronic, thermal, and structural design. We also discuss some of the design challenges and our roadmap to building the flight unit.

Paper Details

Date Published: 13 May 2019
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 10978, Advanced Photon Counting Techniques XIII, 1097809 (13 May 2019); doi: 10.1117/12.2520617
Show Author Affiliations
Benjamin R. Buck, MIT Lincoln Lab. (United States)
Gregory D. Allen, MIT Lincoln Lab. (United States)
Erik K. Duerr, MIT Lincoln Lab. (United States)
K. Alexander McIntosh, MIT Lincoln Lab. (United States)
Shawn T. Moynihan, MIT Lincoln Lab. (United States)
Vishwa N. Shukla, MIT Lincoln Lab. (United States)
Jeffrey D. Wang, MIT Lincoln Lab. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 10978:
Advanced Photon Counting Techniques XIII
Mark A. Itzler; Joshua C. Bienfang; K. Alex McIntosh, Editor(s)

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