Essential Sensors for First Hyperspectral Imaging Solar Telescope
Semi Conductor Devices (SCD) has delivered a unique SWIR sensor to the Institute for Solar Physics at Stockholm University in Sweden, the company announced on 16 November.
The sensor incorporates four large format 1920 x 1536 pixel, 10µm pitch InGaAs SWIR Focal Plane Arrays (FPA) that together provide a unique 12 Mega-pixel sensor. It will be mounted on an instrument built by the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research in Göttingen, Germany, and will later be installed on the Swedish 1m Solar telescope (SST) on the island of La Palma, Spain.
Following integration with the SCD SWIR sensors, the SST will be the first solar telescope to use hyperspectral imaging, simultaneously observing a spectrum in each pixel of an image. The unique large size and high frame-rate of the company’s SWIR sensors are essential for this imaging technique. The SST is the second largest optical solar telescope in Europe and its location on La Palma, as well as the use of adaptive mirror technology and image reconstruction techniques that correct for the blurring caused by the Earth’s atmosphere at high frame rates, enables optimal performance.
“SCD’s InGaAs sensors are in the front line of […] technology today, featuring very advanced concepts like in-pixel laser detection, very low light level operation modes or extra low floor noise for demanding scientific applications,” explained SCD CEO, Dan Slasky. “The large format FPA leverage SCD’s advanced 10 micron InGaAs pixel coupled to the digital ROIC architecture, providing […] the user [with] an effective interface to perform full 12 mega-pixel video stitching.”