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Single photon detection at visible and x-ray wavelengths with Nb–Al superconducting tunnel junctions

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7 Author(s)
Verhoeve, P. ; Astrophysics Division, Space Science Department of the European Space Agency, Estec, P.O. Box 299, 2200 AG Noordwijk, The Netherlands ; Rando, N. ; Peacock, A. ; van Dordrecht, A.
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Photon counting experiments at wavelengths ranging from near infrared to x-ray with niobium based superconducting tunnel junctions with aluminum trapping layers are presented. Single photons can be detected up to a wavelength of 1 μm. The response in the ultraviolet to near-infrared region is characterized by a good energy linearity (≪2.5%), a capability to handle event rates up to ∼3 kHz, and moderate energy resolving power (E/ΔE≈7 for E=4 eV). The x-ray response at 6 keV is characterized by anomalously high signals compared to the low energy response, a severe energy nonlinearity and a relatively poor energy resolution of ∼140 eV, full width at half maximum. © 1998 American Institute of Physics.

Published in:

Journal of Applied Physics  (Volume:83 ,  Issue: 11 )