Articles

51 items found

Silicon photomultipliers (SiPM): the ultimate photosensor?

  • 2017/06/02

Today, many types of photosensors are capable of detecting the arrival of a single photon. But silicon photomultipliers (SiPM) are the only possibility when image sensing with single-photon resolution, exact time-of-arrival determination, a high dynamic range, low power consumption, and digital output in a single-chip solution are required.

First demonstration of multi-color 3-D in vivo imaging using an ultra-compact Compton camera

  • 2017/05/23

In the field of nuclear medicine, a team led by researchers at Waseda University has developed an ultra-compact Compton camera that incorporates a Hamamatsu silicon photomultplier array to perform fast 3-D in vivo imaging with multiple types of radioactive tracers. A 3-D color image of a live mouse was captured in just 2 hours.

Researchers develop a low-cost setup for the C12880MA

  • 2017/05/09

At Food + Future CoLabs, researchers assembled a low-cost spectroscopy system by using open source software to integrate the C12880MA with an Arduino microcontroller.

Signal-to-noise ratio in microscope cameras

  • 2017/05/02

This article presents an equation for calculating signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) in microscope cameras, along with commentary on various aspects of this equation (quantum efficiency, photon shot noise, read noise, dark noise). We also explain why RMS read noise is the more relevant specification in scientific CMOS (sCMOS) cameras than median read noise. Finally, some considerations on contrast-to-noise ratio are also provided.

Technical note: Multi-Pixel Photon Counters

  • 2017/03/22

This is an extensive guide to the Multi-Pixel Photon Counter (MPPC) silicon photomultipliers. Topics covered include the MPPC’s operating principle, its performance parameters, and how to measure characteristics such as gain, breakdown voltage, photon detection efficiency, and linearity. Also included is a detector selection case study where, for a given set of measurement conditions, the signal-to-noise ratio and linearity of an avalanche photodiode and an MPPC are calculated and compared.

Technical notes: distance sensors

  • 2017/03/22

Hamamatsu offers a variety of photodetectors for measuring distance with light. The documents on this page offer an overview of these various devices, as well as more in-depth information on particular devices: photo IC for rangefinders, photosensors with front-end IC, and distance-measuring image sensors.

Measuring beer color with a micro-spectrometer

  • 2017/03/21

Color measurement using a spectrometer is a quality control process in paint, food, and textile industries used to ensure accurate results and reduce observer perception error. It can also be used to verify beer type. A researcher at MIT created a compact device and wireless process to detect beer type by using Hamamatsu’s micro-spectrometer in reflection mode and sending the data to a mobile app.

Technical note: image sensor product selection

  • 2017/02/22

This technical note provides an overview of generalized methods for selection of image sensor products (NMOS, CMOS, CCD, InGaAs) for a broad range of applications. A primary objective is to describe methods that could be used for any application as long as certain basic pieces of information are available about the target application.

Quantitative evaluation of the accuracy and variance of individual pixels in a scientific CMOS (sCMOS) camera for computational imaging

  • 2017/02/21

In scientific CMOS (sCMOS) cameras, the charge to voltage conversion is separate for each pixel and each column has independent amplifiers and analog to digital converters, and pixel-to-pixel variation in quantum efficiency is possible. The raw output from the sensor, includes pixel-to-pixel variability in the read noise, gain, offset and dark current. Unless corrected, inaccuracies and noise can introduce artifacts in computational imaging, such as localization microscopy. We measured the distributions and spatial maps of individual camera pixel offset, dark current, read noise, linearity, photoresponse non-uniformity (PRNU) and variance distributions for a Hamamatsu ORCA-Flash4.0 V3 sCMOS camera.

Technical note: head-on PMT product selection

  • 2017/02/21

This technical note describes general methods for selection of head-on PMT products for a broad range of applications. These methods are meant to serve as early indicators of what product(s) to begin considering for evaluation based on “back-of-the-envelope” calculations.

A technical guide to silicon photomultipliers (SiPM)

  • 2017/01/25

This compilation of technical notes provides descriptions on various aspects of silicon photomultipliers, including how they work, their basic structure, and characteristics such as photon detection efficiency, gain, breakdown voltage, and optical crosstalk. Links to related articles are also provided.

Silicon photomultipliers: theory & practice

  • 2017/01/24

Due to its high internal gain, the SiPM is becoming a popular choice of a photodetector in applications where even single photons must be detected. In this video, Slawomir Piatek provides explanations of how a SiPM functions, its key optoelectronic characteristics, and the pros and cons of the device with various applications.

Effects of temperature on the performance of a silicon photomultiplier (SiPM)

  • 2017/01/04

This technical note summarizes the present understanding of how changes in temperature affect the key opto-electronic characteristics of a silicon photomultiplier (SiPM). It relies on published results in peer-reviewed articles and is organized into semi-autonomous sections, each discussing a particular characteristic such as breakdown voltage, photon detection efficiency, signal shape, and dark count rate.

Effects of temperature on dark count rates in a silicon photomultiplier (SiPM)

  • 2017/01/03

In any solid state detector, an increase in dark counts will adversely affect signal-to-noise ratio. This technical note describes the sources of dark counts in a silicon photomultiplier (SiPM), and provides examples of how dark counts vary under different operating conditions.

Low light detection: PMT vs. SiPM

  • 2016/12/15

Photomultiplier tubes (PMT) and silicon photomultipliers (SiPM) are both photodetectors with very high internal gain, but the devices are very different. In this video, Slawomir Piatek discusses the principles of operation of each device, compares their major optoelectronic characteristics, and describes application where one device would be favored over the other.

Effects of temperature on the gain of a SiPM

  • 2016/12/08

Many applications require the stability of a photodetector's gain with respect to temperature changes. This technical note discusses the origin of the gain-temperature dependence in a SiPM and methods that the practitioner can use to correct for it.

Characterization of three high-efficiency and blue-sensitive SiPM

  • 2016/11/02

Researchers at Georgia Tech have made an in-depth comparative study of silicon photomultipliers from Hamamatsu and two other manufacturers. This peer-reviewed paper describes testing of photon detection efficiency (PDE), dependence of SiPM response on angle of incidence, breakdown voltage, optical crosstalk, afterpulsing, and other parameters.

Glossary of silicon photomultiplier (SiPM) terms

  • 2016/11/02

A silicon photomultiplier is a relatively new photonic device with unique features and characteristics. This page has an alphabetized glossary of the key technical terms used in describing all aspects of SiPMs.

Frequently asked questions about Multi-Pixel Photon Counters

  • 2016/11/02

Silicon photomultipliers from Hamamatsu are called Multi-Pixel Photon Counters (MPPC). How do MPPCs work? What are some of their most important optical and electrical characteristics? In this article, we answer these and other frequently asked questions.

Line array sensor comparison

  • 2016/10/14

This report summarizes the results from a third party evaluation of Hamamatsu S11639/S11639-01 CMOS linear image sensors, Sony ILX511B CCD sensor, and Toshiba TCD1205 CCD sensor. The parameters evaluated include readout noise, dark current, dynamic range, linearity, spectral response, cross talk, and sensitivity.

Ultra-portable, wireless smartphone spectrometer for rapid, non-destructive testing of fruit ripeness

  • 2016/10/07

Is this fruit ripe? This is a question for everyone from culinary masters to those just looking for a snack. Now there is research utilizing Hamamatsu products that shows people may one day hold the answer in the palm of their hand. The spectral data was generated utilizing the UV fluorescence of chlorophyll. Evidence suggests that chlorophyll is successful at identifying photosynthetic activity. This platform is not currently practical for measurement; however, there were positive correlations to penetrometer tests. Cost, size, and complexity have too long stood in the way of instant readings. Hamamatsu is proud to be part of this step forward in real-time, portable sensing.

Application note: A beverage analyzer demo based on NIR spectroscopy

  • 2016/07/02

This article discusses the general principle of near-infrared (NIR) spectroscopy, and describes a beverage analyzer designed to differentiate between sugar-sweetened and artificially sweetened beverages using NIR spectroscopy. The beverage analyzer (built for demo purposes only) is composed of a Hamamatsu NIR mini-spectrometer and other components.

Guide to detector selection

  • 2016/06/21

Choosing a detector requires evaluating many operating parameters and desired outcomes. This introductory article provides a series of guideposts that will help lead the way to the right one.

Do you need libraries?

  • 2016/06/14

This article introduces the types of spectroscopic measurements that can be made at different spectral regions from UV to mid-infrared, and discusses when it is (and is not) necessary to use a spectral library for sample analysis.

CMOS sensors for spectroscopy and industrial applications

  • 2016/06/02

This overview introduces CMOS image sensors that are suitable for spectroscopy and industrial applications, and includes product recommendations.

What must be specified to achieve a valid spectroscopic measurement?

  • 2016/05/03

In this overview, Prof. Alex Scheeline describes several factors that must be considered when choosing an instrument for spectroscopy: which wavelength range and resolution are appropriate to the type of sample to be measured, how much light is available, how to separate the light, which type of detector to use, etc.

Photomultiplier tubes detect neutrinos changing identities

  • 2016/04/01

This article discusses the role photomultiplier tubes have played in observing neutrino oscillation in Nobel Prize-winning experiments.

The WITS$ guide to selecting a photodetector

  • 2016/03/02

The process of selecting an appropriate photodetector among a photomultiplier tube (PMT), photodiode (PD), avalanche photodiode (APD), and silicon photomultiplier (SiPM) may seem taxing and confusing. This article provides qualitative and quantitative guidance to the selection process based on the WITS$ approach: Wavelength, Intensity, Time characteristics, Spatial characteristics, and cost ($).

Choosing spectrometers fit for purpose

  • 2016/01/26

In this recorded presentation, Prof. Alexander Scheeline explains "why one size doesn't fit all" when it comes to choosing a system for dispersive optical spectroscopy. There are a number of trade-offs to consider when choosing or designing a spectroscopy system. [Video length: 54 minutes]

QCL primer: history, characteristics, applications

  • 2016/01/02

This article is a brief overview of how the QCL (quantum cascade laser) works and how their versatility makes them useful for mid-IR applications.

Advances in CMOS image sensors open doors to many applications

  • 2015/09/02

This article explains the differences in CMOS and CCD technologies, as well as the key characteristics of recent CMOS devices.

Simulation software for camera selection

  • 2015/07/02

It can be difficult to determine the best imaging system to meet various needs; laboratory conditions and suitable image quality requirements are among numerous factors to consider. As far as the camera piece of this puzzle goes, there is a way to simplify the search for the right device -- namely, by using simulation software. In this article, the usefulness of simulation software is illustrated by examples from one particular camera simulator developed by Hamamatsu Photonics.

Dissecting camera specifications: a field guide for biologists

  • 2015/06/02

One of Hamamatsu's goals is to facilitate scientific discovery by helping biologists focus on their main interest: biology. In this article we discuss the influence that different camera specifications have on imaging, so that biological researchers can make the most effective use of their microscope camera, whether it's using a new scientific CMOS camera for lightsheet microscopy of zebrafish brains or an interline CCD camera to track morphological changes in yeast.

CCD vs. EM-CCD vs. CMOS: which camera technology is right for me?

  • 2015/05/26

The low noise and high quantum efficiency of scientific CMOS (sCMOS) technology gives biologists the freedom to do more types of experiments using a single camera. But the technology is fundamentally different from older CCD and EM-CCD technology, and requires the use of different metrics to understand how to compare the technologies and choose the right camera for your experiments.

Lightsheet microscopy: better results enabled by innovative use of cameras

  • 2015/05/21

Scientific cameras are evolving at a fast pace and this presents scientists with previously unavailable imaging capabilities. In this recorded presentation, Keith Bennett discusses camera technologies from CCD to EMCCD to sCMOS with practical insights into how their unique characteristics fit into the rapidly advancing field of lightsheet microscopy. [Video length: 55 minutes]

Measuring distance with light

  • 2015/04/02

This overview article describes various methods of measuring distance with light including geometrical, time of flight (TOF), and interferometry.

W-VIEW GEMINI image splitting optics

  • 2015/03/03

With the W-VIEW GEMINI image splitting optics, you can simultaneously capture two images of different wavelengths with the same camera. When used in conjunction with a sCMOS camera, it enables high-speed ratiometric imaging and other multiple fluorescence applications. A series of videos by Hamamatsu's Jim Sims shows you how this optical device works and what its advantages are.

Cameras for 3D imaging

  • 2014/11/02

This article describes a 3D camera with a CMOS imaging array where each pixel is a photonic mixer device (PMD).

Opto-Semiconductor Handbook: solid state photodetectors

  • 2014/09/01

Hamamatsu offers a variety of solid state photodetectors, including photodiodes (many different types), silicon photomultipliers, photo ICs, infrared detectors, and position-sensitive detectors. Details about each type of detector are covered in the Opto-Semiconductor Handbook, along with notes about the technology used to manufacture these detectors and a glossary of terms related to solid state photodetectors.

Opto-Semiconductor Handbook: distance measurement

  • 2014/09/01

Hamamatsu has developed image sensors that can be used in combination with a pulsed light source to measure the distance to a target object. Some details about the structure of this device and how it works are provided in the Opto-Semiconductor Handbook.

Opto-Semiconductor Handbook: image sensors

  • 2014/09/01

Hamamatsu makes a wide variety of image sensors: CCDs, CMOS sensors, NMOS sensors, InGaAs image sensors for infrared applications, distance-measuring image sensors, X-ray sensors, and more. Details of these device are given in the Opto-Semiconductor Handbook, which also includes information about the technologies used by Hamamatsu to manufacture image sensors, as well as a glossary of relevant terms.

Back-thinned CCDs for dispersive Raman spectrometers

  • 2014/04/02

This article is a basic introduction to back-thinned CCDs that are suitable for use in dispersive Raman spectrometers.

Choosing a camera for scientific imaging

  • 2014/02/02

This article presents five basic principles for choosing and using a scientific camera. Just like any other tool, having a bit of insight into how scientific imaging cameras work in the context of the project at hand--from the simplest brightfield application to the most complex computational imaging project--can be very useful.

Measuring the electrical and optical properties of the MPPC silicon photomultiplier

  • 2014/02/02

Understanding the operation of an MPPC together with its electrical, optical, and noise characteristics is crucial for the proper interpretation of scientific data obtained with this detector. This article is a literature review of the methods employed in characterizing MPPCs.

Physics and operation of the MPPC silicon photomultiplier

  • 2014/02/02

The Multi-Pixel Photon Counter is becoming a popular choice of a photodetector in application where even single photons must be detected. Understanding how this detector operates and how its optical and electrical characteristics change with respect to the parameters of an experiment is critical for the proper interpretation of scientific data. This article is a review of the physics behind the operation of the detector and its basic optical and electrical characteristics.

Synchronization and triggering with the ORCA-Flash4.0 scientific CMOS camera

  • 2013/10/02

Scientific CMOS cameras have changed what is possible when imaging fast microscopic events. This article discusses several common microscopy situations and how to configure the ORCA-Flash4.0 camera to get the best image quality and fastest frame rates possible.

What is the Micro PMT?

  • 2013/05/02

This article describes the Micro PMT, a tiny device that supports the development of portable versions of photosensing instruments that rely on PMTs.

TDI imaging: an efficient AOI and AXI tool

  • 2012/03/02

As a result of heightened requirements for quality, integrity and reliability of electronic products, the role of wafer auditing and nondestructive testing of printed circuit boards and electronic assemblies has grown at an unprecedented rate. Optical and x-ray cameras have become the most efficient and reliable tools for nondestructive testing. This article discusses how cameras based on the time delay integration (TDI) imaging method can significantly improve spatial resolution while providing high signal-to-noise ratio for AOI (automated optical inspection) and AXI (automated x-ray inspection) systems.

What is an MPPC?

  • 2008/08/01

An overview of Multi-Pixel Photon Counters, which are Hamamatsu's silicon photomultipliers (SiPM). Essentially, these devices are geiger-mode avalanche photodiode arrays that can distinguish between multiple-photon and single-photon events.

What is a Hybrid Photodetector?

  • 2008/03/02

This article describes the hybrid photodetector (HPD), a photodetector that combines PMT and semiconductor diode technologies.

Photomultiplier Tube Handbook (all chapters)

  • 2007/08/01

This technical handbook offers comprehensive information on the features of various types of PMTs, the physical principles that underlie their operation, the methods by which PMTs are to be operated, and numerous characteristics such as spectral response, luminous sensitivity, collection efficiency and gain, time characteristics, linearity, uniformity, noise characteristics, and more. Information on photon counting and scintillation counting is also included.

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