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High Speed Room Temperature Single Photon Counters

Award Information

Department of Defense
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2011 / STTR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
NuCrypt LLC
1840 Oak Ave., Suite 212S Evanston, IL -
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2011
Title: High Speed Room Temperature Single Photon Counters
Agency / Branch: DOD / ARMY
Contract: W911NF-11-C-0248
Award Amount: $99,997.00


Detecting light at the single photon level is a fundamental measurement function that is useful in a wide variety of applications, including such diverse fields as biological spectroscopy, laser ranging, and quantum communications. Avalanche photodiode (APD) based single photon detectors (SPDs) are very convenient in that they are small solid state devices that don"t require cryogenic cooling. Si-based APD devices have high performance for<1 micron wavelengths. III-V material APDs are sensitive to the telecom bands (1.3 and 1.5 micron), but generally have inferior performance. Recently methods of high speed gating of III-V APDs has lead to dramatic improvements in their speed. We propose to optimize the III-V APD performance for high speed (GHz) gated operation by appropriate electronic control and system optimization. The use of nonlinear frequency conversion can allow for higher performance Si detectors to measure telecom wave-bands. The nonlinear interaction can add extra noise however. We will build a model for the noise processes and validate it with experimental measurements. The high speed performance of the Si detector will also be optimized. The feasibility of combining appropriate up-conversion with such high speed Si APDs for building low-noise multi-GHz detectors will be evaluated.

Principal Investigator:

Gregory S. Kanter
VP Engineering
(847) 733-8750

Business Contact:

Prem Kumar
Manager / CEO
(847) 275-8996
Small Business Information at Submission:

NuCrypt LLC
1840 Oak Ave., Suite 212S Evanston, IL 60201-

EIN/Tax ID: 061695087
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Research Institution Information:
Northwestern University
633 Clark Street
Evanston, IL 60208-1110
Contact: Susan G. Ross
Contact Phone: (847) 491-3003