Proton irradiation of EMCCDs
This paper describes the irradiation of 95 electron multiplication charge coupled devices (EMCCDs) at the Paul Scherrer Institut (PSI) in Switzerland, to investigate the effects of proton irradiation on the operational characteristics of CCDs featuring electron multiplication technology for space use. This work was carried out in support of the CCD development for the radial velocity spectrometer (RVS) instrument of the European Space Agency's cornerstone Gaia mission. Previous proton irradiations of EMCCDs, have shown the technology to be radiation hard to ∼10 × the required six-year Gaia lifetime proton fluence, with no device failures or unexpected operational changes. The purpose of the study described in this paper was to further investigate the statistical probability of device failure as a result of radiation damage, the large number of devices and high proton fluence used, making the study equivalent to testing ∼50 complete RVS CCD focal planes to the expected end of life proton dose. An outline of the earlier EMCCD proton irradiations is given, followed by a detailed description of the proton irradiation and characterization of the 95 devices used in this latest study. © 2006 IEEE.
Smith, DR; Ingley, R; Holland, AD
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