A Multi-Channel Digitizing Front End with Timing and Amplitude Readout

Award Information
Agency: Department of Energy
Branch: N/A
Contract: DE-FG02-06ER86278
Agency Tracking Number: 81127T06-I
Amount: $99,925.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Awards Year: 2006
Solicitation Year: 2006
Solicitation Topic Code: 47
Solicitation Number: DE-FG01-05ER05-28
Small Business Information
19221 IH 45 South, Suite 530, Conroe, TX, 77385
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Kevin Champaigne
 (281) 292-9903
Business Contact
 Mary Pate
Title: Ms.
Phone: (281) 292-9903
Email: pate@invocon.com
Research Institution
 University of Houston
 Thomas L Boozer
 4800 Calhoun
Houston, TX, 77204
 (713) 743-9240
 Nonprofit college or university
In the last two decades, particle detectors developed for nuclear physics experimental research have increasingly demanded higher channel count, and better amplitude and timing resolution. To meet these requirements, the electronic readout of most new designs have attempted to implement distributed signal processing, in order to reduce overall system cost and increase the speed of data processing and storage. Now, highly integrated, multi-functional, application specific integrated circuits (ASICs) are needed to provide the necessary reduction in size, cost per channel, and power consumption, without sacrifices in system performance. In this project, a multiple channel, mixed-signal-digitizer ASIC ¿ which is capable of simultaneously performing both time-to-digital conversion, with sub-nanosecond resolution, and analog-to-digital conversion, with 10 bit resolution for eight input channels ¿ will be designed, fabricated, and tested. The ASIC will have multiple levels of latency buffers on the chip ¿ which will allow the conversion data to be temporally stored with zero-compression readout, following either a self-trigger event or an external trigger. Phase I will determine the optimum system configuration, in terms of system performance and the features necessary to meet the widest range of potential applications. The feasibility of implementing the desired integrated system concept will then be verified through preliminary ASIC design, analysis, and simulation. Commercial Applications And Other Benefits as described by the Applicant: Beyond the potential direct applications in nuclear physics, the proposed circuit should be applicable to a wide range of medical imaging applications, particularly the newly emerging area of Positron Emission Tomography (PET). Because the resolution would be sufficient to support time-of-flight analysis, the exposure time would be drastically reduced, thereby improving the resolution of PET scans. In addition, this ASIC design would be a good approach for portable handheld instruments, such as avalanche photo diodes (APD), GEM, and silicon Compton spectrometers.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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