- Integrated Electronics
- System Development
- Facilities & Infrastructure
Application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs) are the enabling technology for many complex detector systems. For decades, we have been developing low‐noise, low-power, and mixed-signal ASICs for particle detectors, high-resolution x-ray and gamma-ray spectrometers, and high-rate photon counters and imagers. A particular focus of our group is microelectronics for extreme environments, including radiation and cryogenics.
The Signal Processing and Electronics Group covers all aspects of detector system and electronic readout chain design and development. Our strength comes from the proximity with which we work alongside Division detector scientists, application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) designers, and data acquisition (DAQ) engineers to fulfill the unique requirements that our electronics must satisfy. This integrated approach is critical for modern instrumentation systems, in which the specifications for different aspects are deeply interlinked.
As detector systems have grown in speed, density, and complexity, our DAQ and control systems have taken advantage of powerful industry developments in microelectronic components, standards, and protocols, depending heavily on the use of state-of-the-art nanometer-scale field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs).
The Computer-Aided Design (CAD) and Printed Circuit Board (PCB) Design Group assists scientists and engineers in the design of complex multilayer PCBs, including those that serve as detector elements. Through these collaborations, we move preliminary designs to mature production-ready packages for manufacturing. Our PCBs are used in a range of technologies, from medical imagers and x-ray synchrotron beam position monitors to particle detector readouts and backend electronics.
The assembly of complex microelectronics requires specialized high-density interconnects. Our High-Density Interconnect Laboratory (HDIL) has a multitude of tools for designing and fabricating interconnections—including computer-aided design software and high-tech interconnect equipment—for large international experiments in photon science and particle physics. We also support prototyping and process development for projects in the conceptual stage, with some projects leading to commercial applications.