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Next generation ultra-wide dynamic range x-ray Mixed-Mode Pixel Array Detector

Award Information
Agency: Department of Energy
Branch: N/A
Contract: DE-SC0021504
Agency Tracking Number: 0000264111
Amount: $1,150,000.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: C51-22a
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: 2021
Award Year: 2022
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2022-04-04
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2024-04-03
Small Business Information
78 Schuyler Baldwin Drive
Fairport, NY 14450-9100
United States
DUNS: 167029235
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Benjamin Martin
 (585) 278-1168
Business Contact
 Mark Katafiaz
Phone: (585) 278-1168
Research Institution
 Cornell University
373 Pine Tree Road
Ithaca, NY 14850-2820
United States

 Nonprofit College or University

Synchrotron light sources and x-ray free electron lasers are now generating shorter pulses with more intense light than ever before possible. The capabilities of these new sources grant unprecedented access into the workings of the natural world. Current x-ray detectors cannot accommodate the large dynamic range of collected x-rays in modern scattering experiments. Scientists are unable to answer fundamental questions largely due to this gap between synchrotron and x-ray detector technology. The proposed program will advance the development of a next-generation wide dynamic range x-ray mixed- mode pixel array detector. The first-generation of this mixed-mode detector was commercialized and has demonstrated single x-ray sensitivity with a dynamic range greater than 107 photons/pixel with a frame rate of 1.1 kHz. This program enhances this existing technology by developing a new application specific integrated circuit (ASIC) with a ten-fold frame rate increase. In Phase I, the small business and collaborating university evaluated existing laboratory level ASIC technology and defined characteristics and design principles required for layout of a commercial product. This includes elements like radiation hardness and number of wirebonds. Phase I defined characteristics that will enable the ASIC to be packaged into a sensor with commercial vendors and maintain form factor with the first-generation commercial system mechanical and electrical components to expedite testing and bringing the technology to the market. The small business has also begun identifying elements of existing first-generation electronics that may require improvements to manage the enhanced second-generation performance features.In the proposed Phase II work, layout of a 16x16-pixel ASIC will be done in parallel with development of a test electronics setup to evaluate performance. After evaluation, a second small scale layout with design revisions will take place to further fine tune the ASIC. Repeat small scale testing has proven to weed out any potential design bugs while significantly mitigating risk in final, full 128x128-pixel layout. Testing will validate single photon detection ability, 10 kHz frame rate, and full well capacity of pixels. These are critical elements for advancing the detector technology to match existing synchrotron capabilities. A next generation, robust and commercially supported detector with the increased performance specifications will enable new x-ray scattering experiments to take full advantage of upgraded light sources. This will lead to higher resolution and sharper contrast diffraction patterns, and higher resolution structure determination. These advances will provide the user community with unparalleled resolution of data sets with even larger dynamic ranges, drastically improving scientist’s ability to collect data, and allow greater insight into materials.

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

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