Hamamatsu Photonics have expanded and improved on their range of semi-conductor detectors, featuring photon counting capability, with the introduction of the brand new S12576-050 and S12577-050 multi-pixel photon counter devices (MPPC).
These new devices utilise a Geiger-mode avalanche photodiode structure for ultra-low-level light detection, and a two-stage thermoelectric cooler, operating down to -25degC. The inclusion of a TE cooler reduces the MPPC dark count to 1/20 of that seen at room temperature, equating to 5cps typ. for the S12576-050 and 50cps typ. for the S12577-050. The MPPC is easily connected to an external circuit for simple operation and is operated from a low-voltage power supply (approximately 65V). Hamamatsu also offer a temperature controller which maintains a constant temperature within the thermoelectrically cooled package.
S12576-050 and S12577-050 are 1×1mm and 3×3mm devices respectively, with 400 and 3600 pixels. Each pixel contains a quenching resistor so that simultaneous photon events can be counted separately, and with a high degree of accuracy. The devices feature typical high gain values of 1.25E6, comparable with that achievable from a conventional photomultiplier tube.
S12576-050 and S12577-050 are suitable for a variety of applications, including positron emission tomography, high-energy physics, DNA sequencing, fluorescence measurement, nuclear medicine, point of care systems, drug discovery, medical diagnostic equipment and environmental analysis.