Del Mar Photonics - Newsletter - How to choose MCP detector

Featured product

Open Microchannel Plate Detector MCP-MA25/2

Open Microchannel Plate Detector MCP-MA25/2 - now in stock!
Microchannel Plate Detectors MCP-MA series are an open MCP detectors with one or more microchannel plates and a single metal anode. They are intended for time-resolved detection and make use of high-speed response properties of the MCPs. MCP-MA detectors are designed for photons and particles detection in vacuum chambers or in the space. MCP-MA detectors are used in a variety of applications including UV, VUV and EUV spectroscopy, atomic and molecular physics, TOF mass–spectrometry of clusters and biomolecules, surface studies and space research.
MCP-MA detectors supplied as a totally assembled unit that can be easily mounted on any support substrate or directly on a vacuum flange. They also can be supplied premounted on a standard ConFlat flanges. buy online - ask for research discount!


Customer Inquiry (Del Mar Photonics answers in color)
Dear Del Mar Photonics Technical Support Staffs

This is the ultrafast laser research group in xxx. We are very interested in your MCP products and hope to get more information in detail.
We plan to construct an x-ray detection system based on the MCP/phosphor screen assembly and the Visible-NIR CCD, which will used for replacing our currently used x-ray CCD. The x-ray we want to detect is generated from a standard high-order harmonic generator.
We have included a number of questions below that we hope may be helpful in case we choose your products.

1. What’s the damage threshold of MCP for femtosecond (about 40 fs) laser beam centered at 800 nm?

You plan to detect X-ray generated by femtosecond pulses, right? Why do you need to know MCP damage threshold then?
It's important to measure this threshold in the geometry of your experiment. The threshold will be different if you direct femtosecond laser pulse straight on the MCP or if only a scattered light illuminates MCP. We can send you a piece of broken MCP for threshold studies

2. Because it is the first time for us to construct the X-ray detection system based on MCP/ MCP/phosphor screen/CCD configuration, could you give some suggestions for choosing single-stage or double-stage MCP? For example, it is better to choose MCP-IFP46 or MCP-IFP46/2?

It depend on how much signal you expect and if you plan to detect single events or just part of the partcicles (photons, elecrons, ions). Dooble stage (Chevron) and triple stage (Z-stack) MCP assemblies are used to detect single events, for example detecting from single to 10 thousand ions per pulse. In case of X-ray detection efficiency (Quantum Efficiency) of the MCP depends on the X-ray wavelength (energy). Please indicate X-ray range that you plan to detect and expected X-ray intensity (X ray photons/pulse)

3. Could you recommend us a suitable CCD camera for observing the lights give off by the phosphor screen? If it is possible, please quote us the price?

Choise of camera also depends on several factors, including required frame rate and resolution. Depending on required frame rate we must also choose the phosphor that has decay time less than time period between frames.

4. A fiber optic plate can be used for improving the transmission of the light given off by the phosphor screen. In this case what are the minimum requirements for CCD camera?

The choice of phosphor on a glass plate or on a fiber plate depends mostly on the required geometry of the set up and doesn't significuntly influence the choice of camera. Considerations discussed in 3 are more important for camera choice.

5. Besides the separated price of the parts mentioned above, could you quote us the overall price if we choose MCP-IFP46/2 for this x-ray detection system, including any necessary instruments? This may be an estimated price, because the size of the MCP, phosphor screen and vacuum flange has not been decided.

Total MCP imaging detector plus camera cost starts around 10 thousand US$ and can quickly go up if high sensitivity, large detection area, high resolution and high frame rate image detection is required.

Microchannel Plate Imaging Detector MCP-GPS-46/2-CF6"

MCP home - MCP references
MCP-GPS-46/2-CF6" Open MCP imaging detector mounted on CF6" flange - MCP-GPS and MCP-IFP imaging detectors
MCP-MA - Detecting short proton beam from a picosecond CO2 laser ionized H2 plasma
MCP-MA25/2 are used in aSPECT to study the background
MCP setup for velocity map imaging apparatus
Microchannel Plate Detector (MCP) setup for Plasma Desorption Mass Spectrometry (PDMS)
MCP detector for high resolution ion time-of-flight analysis for measuring molecular velocity distributions
MCP + phosphorous screen for imaging of XUV radiation (14eV- 160-eV) in high harmonics experiments

Microchannel Plates, Detectors and Imaging Systems - Open MCP-MA - MCP-MA applications - MCP-MA assembled - Applications
Examples of research applications:
Studies of the atomic clusters at the University of Virginia - Amber Post
Featured MCP customer: The Castleman Group at PSU

Microchannel Plate Q&A
(asked by our customers, answered by our technical support)

Q: What is the difference between your two phosphor screen mcp's. I see that one has a glass plate and the other has a fiber plate, but is there an advantage to one over the other?

A: It depends on image readout method. In case of phosphor screen on a glass plate (GPS model) image is registered with a CCD camera or visually (for example, in case of beam alignment application). When using phosphor screen on the fiber plate (IFP model) it can be transferred directly to CCD using fiber tape without additional optics.

Q: Ultimately, I would like to have a MCP with phosphor output to look at electron spatial distributions, but I will also need access to the time resolved signal. Can I pull the time resolved signal off of the phosphor screen just as if it were a metal anode? If so, are there any cautions, recommended ways of doing this, and what time resolution can I expect?

A: Phosphor screen is coated with a thin metal layer (typically Al), which is important in order to avoid charge effects and obtain uniform electric field between MCP-Out and phosphor. This metal layer act as a regular metal anode and provide a time resolved signal. Luminescent signal directly from the phosphor screen can also provide time-resolved signal, which is limited by the phosphor respond time. We offer P47 phosphor that have decay time about 80ns, which is much shorter that decay time for the most popular phosphor P20. New, faster phosphors are under development.

Q: How do you recommend making connections to your mcp's? The spot welder I have access to is rather large. How big are the connection tabs, they look quite small in the pictures? What material are they?

A: MCP housing metal is KOVAR. It’s chosen because it had thermal expansion coefficient close to glass and ceramics. Our assemblies usually supplied with stainless still wires spot-welded to the tabs.

Q: Could you tell the advantage of having a fibre optic plate against a phosphor screen, and how does one obtain an image from the plate? Can you use a fibre optic bundle to relay the image to another flange?

A: Image is registered with a CCD camera or visually (for example, in case of beam alignment application). When using phosphor screen on the fiber plate (IFP model) it can be transferred to CCD using fiber taper or relayed to another flange using optic bundle.

Q: (question received from reseller) This customer has received this detector, but it's not clear to know how to connect/supply the electrical operation condition. This customer thinks it should be 4 electrical connector, but there is 3 connector.

A: The reason we have 3 connectors (instead of 4) is the fact that we use "matched" MCP pair. That means MCPs have the same resistance and are in direct contact with each other. Matched pair needs only one voltage to be applied between MCP-In of the first MCP and MCP-Out of the second MCP. In the attached file "MCP wiring" we show one example of MCP detector wiring. Please note that only voltage difference between MCP-In, MCP-Out and Anode is important for detector operation. An absolute values of all this voltages depends on your customer set-up, type of particles to be registered (electrons, ions, photons etc.). For example MCP-In may be positive, negative or zero (ground). U (MCP-Out) = U (MCP-In) +2000V, U (Anode) = U (MCP-In) + 2200V. The values of impedance and capacitor depend on customer registration electronics. Typical values are 50Ohm and 1000pF.

Q: During unpacking, are there some warning procedures?

A: Detector should be opened carefully and placed  in the vacuum chamber as soon as possible.

Q: From your mail I understood the following: you can purchase the MCP-GPS34 assembly complete but demounted. We are interested in that  solution but I like to be sure not to receive just the two MCP's and the phosphor screen. I know very well that critical points are the correct  distance between MCP's and from screen and MCP for that reason I like to buy a tested assembly like yours.

A: An assembly consists of two main elements: MCP holder and luminescent screen. You can see 3D images of both parts in attached files. These two elements are fitted to each other in a way to provide optimum distance between Phosphor screen surface and MCP-out surface. This distance can also be further adjusted (if required) by placing a foil ring (30-100micron thick) on MCP holder before placing MCP. These assembly is designed and tested to obtain maximum spatial resolution in night-vision applications - and of course it will also work with maximum spatial resolution in other applications.

Q: Concerning the spatial resolution the value you quoted it is comprehensive >of the phosphor response ? Which kind of phosphor it is used (P11, P20 ...)?

A: Standard phosphor used is P20. Any other can be applied at customer request. Spatial resolution is limited not by the phosphor type, but the phosphor particles size. If particles are small enough, then the limiting factor is MCP channel size and pitch as well as distance/voltage between MCP and phosphor screen.

Q: We did not use the flange mounted detector received from you yet. The reason was we did not have experiments in ultra-high-vacuum, just in  vacuum of 10e-7 torr.

A: Of course it will work at this vacuum too. If you do not use it, please try to keep it in vacuum or in a dry atmosphere since the MCP glass react with a moisture.

Q: The detector worked pretty good with clusters but due to some voltage jumping (over 3kV) from power supply we lost the MCPs.

A: You should use a current limiting resistor to avoid serious damage to MCPs in case of discharge.

Q: I need you to confirm that we can also use the mcp for positive ion detection, i.e. have a large negative voltage on the front plate while the back side is on -50 to -200V and the anode on ground.

A: Yes, you can do that. However, maximum voltage difference applied between MCP-In and MCP-Out for 2 MCP assembly should not exceed 2200V (1100V per plate). For small ions 2keV is enough energy for efficient electron emission from MCP surface. However, if you plan to detect heavy ions, for example biomolecules, you need additional acceleration voltage. As you probably know most of MALDI-TOF systems accelerate ions to 20keV and higher.

Q: It is not clear to me if I have to directly supply the voltage to the anode, i.e. if I have to connect the fin of the anode to a power-supply, and extract the output signal from a T-wiring connection?

A: When applying high voltages to MCP detector electrodes including anode care should be taken to avoid unwanted discharges that can destroy MCPs. Discharges can develop in low vacuum conditions as well as in high vacuum along detector isolating surfaces if they are not clean enough or due to deposition of different materials from ion sources, pumps etc. The main approach to protect detector is to place safety resistors that will limit maximum average current in corresponding circuits. Typical resistance value of 100Kohm will limit maximum average current to 20mA at high voltages around 2kV. Signal connector should be wired to anode through a High Voltage rated (3kV) capacitor. Typical capacitance is about 1000pF.

Q: Incidentally I am confused by you web description that seems to imply that a time resolution of less than 1ns can be obtained using a simple planar metal anode. I thought one had to be careful to match the anode to the (50 Ohm) output signal cable, usually using some sort of matching cone? and Is it necessary to make an impedance adaptation of the anode? I am extracting the signals with an UHV-compatible 50Ohm coaxial cable and sending them to an amplifier and to a discriminator (pulse-mode operation).

A: For typical anode capacitance of 4pF and R=50 Ohm RC=200ps. If you are looking for time resolution in subnanosecond (0.2ns) range you should think about impedance matching (adaptation) of the anode. Creating specially shaped anodes usually does it. In most applications time resolution is limited by registration electronics and is in 1-10ns range. In this applications signal is integrated by electronics with a typical time constant much larger than RC.

Q: I read that the resistance of each MCP in my assembly is 2.0*10^8 Ohm. Does this mean that the overall resistance MCPin-MCPout in chevron assembly is 4.0*10^8Ohm?

A: Yes, an overall resistance R of the MCP assembly in chevron configuration is a sum (R1+R2) of MCP-In resistance R1 and MCP-Out resistance (R2).

Q: What is the value of the MCP-Anode capacity?

A: The capacitance is affected by three factors: the area of the plates, the distance between the plates, the dielectric constant of the material between the plates. We can estimate anode capacitance in two different ways: as single metal electrode or as a capacitor with two parallel plates (anode and MCP surface). For a single metal electrode in vacuum an estimated capacitance C is equal C=D/(9*10^11) F=1.1*D pF, where D is the size of the electrode in cm. For electrode size D=3.5cm C is about 4pF. The capacitance of a capacitor with two parallel plates in vacuum can be estimated using the formula: C = 9A/d, where C is capacitance in pF (picofarads), A is the area of one plate in m2, and d is the distance between plates in m. This estimation also gives a value about 4pF.

Q: I read that the MCP-in is supposed to be operated at ground voltage. Is it possible to apply it a slightly positive voltage, let's say +50 Volts, to induce electrons to hit the MCP?

A: In general, MCP assemblies can be operated with any electrode (MCP-in, MCP-out or anode) at a ground potential. When detecting electrons it's also possible to apply positive voltage to MCP-In electrode, keeping voltages between MCP-In MCP-Out and MCP-Out and Anode as recommended: 
Between MCP-in and MCP-out: Set this voltage according to the required gain, 700 -1000V per MCP typical, 1100 V maximum, MCP out at positive polarity.
Between MCP-out and single anode: This is normally set at about 100 - 200 V.On the other hand, one should take into account the following: Positive potential on the MCP-In electrode can result in higher noise signal from residual electrons in the vacuum chamber. Background electrons can be generated by ion pumps, external laser and UV sources, electrical discharge near high voltage electrodes etc. Adding small positive voltage (around +50V) may be not enough for efficient detection of electrons. It was experimentally shown that for better detection efficiency incoming electrons should be accelerated to about 700V.

Q: I read that the voltage MCPout-Anode is +200 Volts. Do you mean that when the MCPout is biased to +2000 Volts, the voltage induce on the anode is typically +200 Volts?

A: Recommended voltages are as follows: MCP-In = 0 (ground), MCP-Out = +2000V, Anode = +2200V For efficient detection of incoming electrons the following voltages can be used: MCP-In = +700V, MCP-Out = +2700V, Anode = +2900V

Q: Which kind of connection is set on the output anode to collect the signal? BNC, SMA, SHV coaxial?

A: Detector electrodes including anode have fins that can be connected to any standard connector.

Q: Can the whole stuff be baked? Can be operated in UHV (10^-10 Torr) without contaminating vacuum?

A: Whole MCP assembly can be baked up to 350°C. It's UHV compatible.

Q: Does MCP detector present insulator parts in the front, which can be charged by electron impacts?

A: No.

Q: Does the detector ship as an assembly?

A: We ship detector as assembly. We also can ship detector premounted on standard vacuum flanges.

Q: Do you have a typically wiring diagram for detecting positive and negative ions in a ToF? What external resistors and capacitors are recommended?

A: Typical wiring is described in the brochure. When MCP input is at a ground potential, typical wiring diagram is the same for detection positive or negative ions in ToF systems. External resistors and capacitors should match input parameters of preamplifier. Most commonly used are 50 Ohm and 1000 pF (rated up to 3kV).

Q: You don't have an electrode between the MCPs, which means that you do not ensure that you have the same potential drop over both MCPs. Is the resistance of the MCP plates so well defined that this is not a problem?

A: You are right, there is no separate electrode between MCPs in our standard assemblies. We use matched MCPs. Matched means that they have same resistance within 10% (we choose usually even less difference). We also make sure that the nominal operation voltage of two MCPs is about the same.

Q: We were thinking to remove the 3 fins that are supposed to be used for biasing the MCP and substitute them with some connectors we made. In order to attach these new connectors we were thinking to spot-weld them to the little metallic parts where the bias fins are actually connected. Anyway, this metallic part are directly connected to the MCP, so they get an electric discharge when I make the spot-weld. My question is if the spot-welding operation can somehow damage the MCP.

A: When making a spot-welding, place fins directly on the ground electrode (copper plate). In this case the current will go directly through this part without circulating around electrode. That will minimize any effects of welding current on MCP. It’s also necessary to protect MCP surface from any hot particles generated by sparks. Just place any protective screen between welding sport and MCP to prevent direct exposure of the MCP to any possible discharge erosion products.

Q: I am confused by your web description which says the MCP has diameter 24.2 or 24.8mm, thickness 0.46mm, and effective area 18mm. Presumable you mean effective diameter. Is it that the clamping ring is about 3.5mm wide, or have you allowed for other losses at the edge?

A: In fact actual effective diameter is larger than 18mm, but MCPs with diameter of 24.8mm are traditionally rated by MCP manufacturers as 18mm active diameter plates.

Q: I have looked through your web page but I was unable to spot a microchannel plate assembly associated with a metal anode that was matched to, say, a 50 Ohm transmission line. I am interested in an overall timing resolution of <100 picoseconds; 50 ps would be better. I am not interested in a position sensitive readout.

A: We do not offer assemblies with 50-100ps resolution at this time.

Q: I noticed that the bias angle is different from the plates we are using now. What are the consequences of this difference? I would guess that this would result in a loss in gain. (We use two plates in a Chevron configuration.)

A: As you probably know, the main application of MCPs is in the night vision devices. In this application typical currents are much higher than in ion-detection applications. Large bias angle (about 12-13 grad) is used to avoid an effect of ion feedback on photocathode. Ion feedback is a flow of ions spattered by electron avalanche from MCP channel wall, in the direction opposite to electron avalanche, towards MCP entrance and then onto photocathode surface. Ion feedback is negligible in ion detection applications and has no any serious effect, as there is no photocathode at all. In general, gain depends on the bias angle, but usually this dependence is not important and can be easily compensated by applied voltage. In fact gain variation in different MCP manufacturing runs is larger than gain variation due to the different bias angle. The figure in the attached file shows gain dependence for MCPs that are shipped to you. The gain of 1000 is at 760V. The gain depends exponentially on the applied voltage. Typical voltage increase necessary for 10 times increase in gain for MCP-33-10E is about 180-220V.

Q: 1st contact (front of first plate): -2,000 V > 2nd contact (back of second plate): 0 V > 3rd contact (phosphor screen): +4,500 V

A: those voltages are fine.

Q: I was also wondering about putting resistors in series with the high voltage power supplies that I use for the MCP. About 5 years ago the last  time I use a Chevron MCP I put resistors in series in order to limit the current going through the plates and to the screen. I burned out an assembly when I did not use these safety resistors. What current can my MCP handle and hence what values for safety resistors do you recommend?

A: When applying high voltages to MCP detector electrodes including anode care should be taken to avoid unwanted discharges that can destroy MCPs. Discharges can develop in low vacuum conditions as well as in high vacuum along detector isolating surfaces if they are not clear enough or due to deposition of different materials from ion sources, pumps etc. The main approach to protect detector is to place resistors that will limit maximum average current in corresponding circuits. Typical resistance value of 100Kohm will limit maximum average current to 20mA at high voltages around 2kV. Signal connector should be wired to anode through a High Voltage rated (3kV) capacitor. Typical capacitance is about 1000pF.

Q: We have a few spare MCPs in our lab. However some of them look a little bit suspicious. There are some small spots on the surface which could appear due to the long storage (what do you think about such a possibility?) or they could even be use before by somebody and just damaged by clusters or ions.

A: MCPs should be stored in a vacuum or in a dry atmosphere. When using silica gel (or similar absorber) to keep MCPs in a closed container it’s important to check humidity regularly. Silica gel absorb moisture over time and became inefficient. Even more, due to the temperature fluctuations it may be even dangerous to keep MCPs in silica gel containers for a long time. Imagine that silica gel have saturated during cold winter months. If it’s temperature increase by few degrees due to the warmer room temperature in summer – it will desorb a lot of water vapor back into the closed container creating critical atmosphere for MCP storage.

Product news and updates - Training Workshops - Featured Customer - Other News

Del Mar Photonics is your one stop source for ultrafast (femtosecond) as well as continuum wave (CW) narrow linewidth Ti:Sapphire lasers Trestles LH Ti:Sapphire laser
Trestles LH is a new series of high quality femtosecond Ti:Sapphire lasers for applications in scientific research, biological imaging, life sciences and precision material processing. Trestles LH includes integrated sealed, turn-key, cost-effective, diode-pumped solid-state (DPSS). Trestles LH lasers offer the most attractive pricing on the market combined with excellent performance and reliability. DPSS LH is a state-of-the-art laser designed for today’s applications. It combines superb performance and tremendous value for today’s market and has numerous advantages over all other DPSS lasers suitable for Ti:Sapphire pumping. Trestles LH can be customized to fit customer requirements and budget.

Reserve a spot in our Femtosecond lasers training workshop in San Diego, California. Come to learn how to build a femtosecond laser from a kit

DPSS DMP LH series lasers will pump your Ti:Sapphire laser. There are LH series lasers installed all over the world pumping all makes & models of oscillator. Anywhere from CEP-stabilized femtosecond Ti:Sapphire oscillators to ultra-narrow-linewidth CW Ti:Sapphire oscillators. With up to 10 Watts CW average power at 532nm in a TEMoo spatial mode, LH series lasers has quickly proven itself as the perfect DPSS pump laser for all types of Ti:Sapphire or dye laser.
Ideal for pumping of:

Trestles LH Ti:Sapphire laser
T&D-scan laser spectrometer based on narrow line CW Ti:Sapphire laser

Pismo pulse picker
The Pismo pulse picker systems is as a pulse gating system that lets single pulses or group of subsequent pulses from a femtosecond or picosecond pulse train pass through the system, and stops other radiation. The system is perfectly suitable for most commercial femtosecond oscillators and amplifiers. The system can pick either single pulses, shoot bursts (patterns of single pulses) or pick group of subsequent pulses (wider square-shaped HV pulse modification). HV pulse duration (i.e. gate open time) is 10 ns in the default Pismo 8/1 model, but can be customized from 3 to 1250 ns upon request or made variable. The frequency of the picked pulses starts with single shot to 1 kHz for the basic model, and goes up to 100 kHz for the most advanced one.
The Pockels cell is supplied with a control unit that is capable of synching to the optical pulse train via a built-in photodetector unit, while electric trigger signal is also accepted. Two additional delay channels are available for synching of other equipment to the pulse picker operation. Moreover, USB connectivity and LabView-compatible drivers save a great deal of your time on storing and recalling presets, and setting up some automated experimental setups. One control unit is capable of driving of up to 3 Pockels cells, and this comes handy in complex setups or contrast-improving schemes. The system can also be modified to supply two HV pulses to one Pockels cell unit, making it a 2-channel pulse picker system. This may be essential for injection/ejection purposes when building a regenerative or multipass amplifier system.
Tourmaline Yb-SS-1058/100 Femtosecond solid state laser system
The Yb-doped Tourmaline Yb-SS laser radiates at 1058±2 nm with more than 1 W of average power, and enables the user to enjoy Ti:Sapphire level power at over-micron wavelengths. This new design from Del Mar's engineers features an integrated pump diode module for greater system stability and turn-key operation. The solid bulk body of the laser ensures maximum rigidity, while self-starting design provides for easy "plug-and-play" operation.
New laser spectrometer OB' for research studies demanding fine resolution and high spectral density of radiation within UV-VIS-NIR spectral domains New laser spectrometer T&D-scan for research  that demands high resolution and high spectral density in UV-VIS-NIR spectral domains - now available with new pump option!
The T&D-scan includes a CW ultra-wide-tunable narrow-line laser, high-precision wavelength meter, an electronic control unit driven through USB interface as well as a software package. Novel advanced design of the fundamental laser component implements efficient intra-cavity frequency doubling as well as provides a state-of-the-art combined ultra-wide-tunable Ti:Sapphire & Dye laser capable of covering together a super-broad spectral range between 275 and 1100 nm. Wavelength selection components as well as the position of the non-linear crystal are precisely tuned by a closed-loop control system, which incorporates highly accurate wavelength meter.

Reserve a spot in our CW lasers training workshop in San Diego, California. Come to learn how to build a CW Ti:Sapphire laser from a kit

Femtosecond fiber laser Model Pearl-70P300 - request a quote
Femtosecond pulsed lasers are used in many fields of physics, biology, medicine and many other natural sciences and applications: material processing, multiphoton microscopy, «pump-probe» spectroscopy, parametric generation and optical frequency metrology. Femtosecond fiber lasers offer stable and steady operation without constant realignment.
The Pearl-70P300 laser comprises: a passively mode-locked fiber laser, providing pulses with repetition rate 60 MHz and having duration of 250-5000 fs, an amplifier based on Er3+ doped fiber waveguide with pumping by two laser diodes, a prism compressor for amplified pulse compression.

Near IR viewers
High performance infrared monocular viewers are designed to observe radiation emitted by infrared sources. They can be used to observe indirect radiation of IR LED's and diode lasers, Nd:YAG, Ti:Sapphire, Cr:Forsterite, dye lasers and other laser sources. IR viewers are ideal for applications involving the alignment of infrared laser beams and of optical components in near-infrared systems. Near IR viewers sensitive to laser radiation up to 2000 nm.
The light weight, compact monocular may be used as a hand-held or facemask mounted for hands free operation.

Ultraviolet viewers are designed to observe radiation emitted by UV sources.

AOTF Infrared Spectrometer
Del Mar Photonics offer a handheld infrared spectrometer based on the acousto-optic tunable filter (AOTF). This instrument is about the size and weight of a video camera, and can be battery operated. This unique, patented device is all solid-state with no moving parts. It has been sold for a wide variety of applications such as liquid fuel analysis, pharmaceutical analysis, gas monitoring and plastic analysis. Miniature AOTF infrared spectrometer uses a crystal of tellurium dioxide to scan the wavelength. Light from a light source enters the crystal, and is diffracted into specific wavelengths. These wavelengths are determined by the frequency of the electrical input to the crystal. Since there are no moving parts, the wavelength scanning can be extremely fast. In addition, specific wavelengths can be chosen by software according to the required algorithm, and therefore can be modified without changing the hardware. After the infrared radiation reflects off of the sample, it is converted into an electrical signal by the detector and analyzed by the computer. Del Mar Photonics is looking for international distributors for RAVEN - AOTF IR spectrometer for plastic identification and for variety of scientific and industrial collaborations to explore futher commercial potential of AOTF technology.
New: AOTF spectrometer to measure lactose, fat and proteins in milk

Open Microchannel Plate Detector MCP-MA25/2

Open Microchannel Plate Detector MCP-MA25/2 - now in stock!
Microchannel Plate Detectors MCP-MA series are an open MCP detectors with one or more microchannel plates and a single metal anode. They are intended for time-resolved detection and make use of high-speed response properties of the MCPs. MCP-MA detectors are designed for photons and particles detection in vacuum chambers or in the space. MCP-MA detectors are used in a variety of applications including UV, VUV and EUV spectroscopy, atomic and molecular physics, TOF mass–spectrometry of clusters and biomolecules, surface studies and space research.
MCP-MA detectors supplied as a totally assembled unit that can be easily mounted on any support substrate or directly on a vacuum flange. They also can be supplied premounted on a standard ConFlat flanges. buy online - ask for research discount!


Hummingbird EMCCD camera Hummingbird EMCCD camera
The digital Hummingbird EMCCD camera combines high sensitivity, speed and high resolution.
It uses Texas Instruments' 1MegaPixel Frame Transfer Impactron device which provides QE up to 65%.
Hummingbird comes with a standard CameraLink output.
It is the smallest and most rugged 1MP EMCCD camera in the world.
It is ideally suited for any low imaging application such as hyperspectral imaging, X-ray imaging, Astronomy and low light surveillance.
It is small, lightweight, low power and is therefore the ideal camera for OEM and integrators.
buy online
Femtosecond Transient Absorption Measurements system Hatteras Hatteras-D femtosecond  transient absorption data acquisition system
Future nanostructures and biological nanosystems will take advantage not only of the small dimensions of the objects but of the specific way of interaction between nano-objects. The interactions of building blocks within these nanosystems will be studied and optimized on the femtosecond time scale - says Sergey Egorov, President and CEO of Del Mar Photonics, Inc. Thus we put a lot of our efforts and resources into the development of new Ultrafast Dynamics Tools such as our Femtosecond Transient Absorption Measurements system Hatteras. Whether you want to create a new photovoltaic system that will efficiently convert photon energy in charge separation, or build a molecular complex that will dump photon energy into local heat to kill cancer cells, or create a new fluorescent probe for FRET microscopy, understanding of internal dynamics on femtosecond time scale is utterly important and requires advanced measurement techniques.

Reserve a spot in our Ultrafast Dynamics Tools training workshop in San Diego, California.

Beacon Femtosecond Optically Gated Fluorescence Kinetic Measurement System - request a quote  - pdf
Beacon together with Trestles Ti:sapphire oscillator, second and third harmonic generators. Femtosecond optical gating (FOG) method gives best temporal resolution in light-induced fluorescence lifetime measurements. The resolution is determined by a temporal width of femtosecond optical gate pulse and doesn't depend on the detector response function. Sum frequency generation (also called upconversion) in nonlinear optical crystal is used as a gating method in the Beacon femtosecond fluorescence kinetic measurement system. We offer Beacon-DX for operation together with Ti: sapphire femtosecond oscillators and Beacon-DA for operation together with femtosecond amplified pulses.

Reserve a spot in our Ultrafast Dynamics Tools training workshop in San Diego, California.

Del Mar Photonics adaptive optics and wavefront sensors: ShaH-0620 wavefront sensor with telescope Wavefront Sensors: ShaH Family
A family of ShaH wavefront sensors represents recent progress of Del Mar Photonics in Shack-Hartmann-based technology. The performance of Shack-Hartmann sensors greatly depends on the quality of the lenslet arrays used. Del Mar Photonics. developed a proprietary process of lenslet manufacturing, ensuring excellent quality of refractive lenslet arrays. The arrays can be AR coated on both sides without interfering with the micro-lens surface accuracy. Another advantage of the ShaH wavefront sensors is a highly optimized processing code. This makes possible real-time processing of the sensor data at the rate exceeding 1000 frames per second with a common PC. Due to utilizing low-level programming of the video GPU, it is possible to output the wavefront data with a resolution up to 512x512 pixels at a 500+ Hz frame rate. This mode is favorable for controlling modern LCOS wavefront correctors.
The family of ShaH wavefront sensors includes several prototype models, starting from low-cost ShaH-0620 suitable for teaching laboratory to a high-end high-speed model, ShaH-03500. The latter utilizes a back-illuminated EM-gain CCD sensor with cooling down to -100°C. This makes it possible to apply such a wavefront sensor in astronomy, remote sensing, etc.
Terahertz systems, set ups and components
New band pass and long pass THz optical filters based on porous silicon and metal mesh technologies.
Band pass filters with center wavelengths from 30 THz into GHz range and transmissions up to 80% or better. Standard designs
with clear aperture diameters from 12.5 to 37.5 mm.
Long pass filters with standard rejection edge wavelengths from 60 THz into GHz range. Maximum transmission up to 80% or
better, standard designs at 19.0 and 25.4 mm diameters.
Excellent thermal (from cryogenic to 600 K) and mechanical properties
THz products:
Portable Terahertz Source
THz Spectrometer kit with Antenna
THz transmission setup
THz time domain spectrometer Pacifica fs1060pca
THz time domain spectrometer Pacifica fs780pca
THz detectors: Golay cell and LiTaO3 piroelectric detectors
PCA - Photoconductive Antenna as THz photomixer
Pacifica THz Time Domain Spectrometer - Trestles Pacifica
Holographic Fourier Transform Spectrometer for THz Region
Wedge TiSapphire Multipass Amplifier System - THz pulses generation
Terahertz Spectroscopic Radar Mobile System for Detection of Concealed Explosives
Band pass filters with center wavelengths from 30 THz into GHz range
Long pass filters with standard rejection edge wavelengths from 60 THz into GHz range
Generation of THz radiation using lithium niobate
Terahertz crystals (THz): ZnTe, GaAs, GaP, LiNbO3 - Wedge ZnTe
Silicon Viewports for THz radiation
Aspheric collimating silicon lens - Aspheric focusing silicon lens

iPCA - interdigital Photoconductive Antenna for terahertz waves
Large area broadband antenna with lens array and high emitter conversion efficiency
iPCA with LT-GaAs absorber, microlens array for laser excitation wavelengths
l £  850 nm, adjusted hyperhemispherical silicon lens with a high power conversion efficiency of 0.2 mW THz power / W optical power. The iPCA can be used also as large area THz detector. The two types iPCAp and iPCAs have the same active interdigital antenna area but different contact pad directions with respect to the electrical THz field.
Interdigital Photoconductive Antenna for terahertz waves generation using femtosecond Ti:Sapphire laser

THz books
  Fifth Harmonic Generator for Nd:YAG lasers
The Fifth Harmonic Generator model LG105 is compatible with any pulsed Nd:YAG laser, and is designed to produce UV-radiation at 213 nm. The
Nd:YAG laser, equipped with LG105, is a versatile device, and in many applications can eliminate the necessity for excimer lasers. Solid state technology that does not use toxic gases and costs less gives you the advantages of both consistent, day-to-day operation and low maintenance. A high quality BBO crystal is used in the LG105 as the non-linear element, providing up to 20% conversion efficiency into 213 nm. The non-linear crystal is placed in a special cell ensuring long lifetime of BBO without any degradation or breakage. A harmonic separation system installed in LG105 provides nearly 100 % spectral purity of the output at 213 nm. The LG105 Fifth Harmonic Generator gives you not only high power output but also excellent radiation stability
IntraStage lowers the cost of test data management!

Struggling with gigabytes or terabytes of test data?
IntraStage easily transforms test data from disparate sources into web-based quality metrics and engineering intelligence you can use.

Contact us today to discuss your test management requirements and specifications of your application.

Training Workshops

Come to San Diego next summer! Attend one of our training workshops in San Diego, California during summer 2011
Del Mar Photonics has presented training workshops for customers and potential customers in the past 3 years.
Our workshops cover scientific basics, technical details and provide generous time for hands-on training.
Each workshop is a three-day seminar conducted by professional lecturer from 10am to 4pm. It includes lunch, as well as a training materials. We have also reserved two days for Q&A sessions, one-on-one system integration discussions, social networking, and San Diego sightseeing.

The following training workshops will be offered during this summer:
1. Femtosecond lasers and their applications
2. CW narrow line-width widely tunable lasers and their applications
3. Adaptive optics and wavefront sensors

4. Ultrafast (femtosecond) dynamics tools

Featured Customer

Trestles LH10-fs/CW laser system at UC Santa Cruz Center of Nanoscale Optofluidics

Del Mar Photonics offers new Trestles fs/CW laser system which can be easily switched from femtosecond mode to CW and back. Having both modes of operation in one system dramatically increase a number of applications that the laser can be used for, and makes it an ideal tool for scientific lab involved in multiple research projects.
Kaelyn Leake is a PhD student in Electrical Engineering. She graduated from Sweet Briar College with a B.S. in Engineering Sciences and Physics. Her research interests include development of nanoscale optofluidic devices and their applications. Kaelyn is the recipient of a first-year QB3 Fellowship. In this video Kaelyn talks about her experimental research in nanoscale optofluidics to be done with Trestles LH laser.

Reserve a spot in our femtosecond Ti:Sapphire training workshop in San Diego, California during summer 2011

Frequency-stabilized CW single-frequency ring Dye laser DYE-SF-007 pumped by DPSS DMPLH laser installed in the brand new group of Dr. Dajun Wang at the The Chinese University of Hong Kong.
DYE-SF-077 features exceptionally narrow generation line width, which amounts to less than 100 kHz. DYE-SF-077 sets new standard for generation line width of commercial lasers. Prior to this model, the narrowest line-width of commercial dye lasers was as broad as 500 kHz - 1 MHz. It is necessary to note that the 100-kHz line-width is achieved in DYE-SF-077 without the use of an acousto-optical modulator, which, as a rule, complicates the design and introduces additional losses. A specially designed ultra-fast PZT is used for efficient suppression of radiation frequency fluctuations in a broad frequency range. DYE-SF-077 will be used in resaerch of Ultracold polar molecules, Bose-Einstein condensate and quantum degenerate Fermi gas and High resolution spectroscopy

Other News

Optical Society of Southern California meeting at UCSD OSSC 2011-04-27
Del Mar Photonics Nd:YAG laser system at the Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León, Monterrey, Mexico
Wedge 50 Multipass Amplifier pumped with a Darwin-527-30-M DPSS Laser ordered by Hong Kong customer
New Trestles LH10-fs/CW femtosecond+CW laser ready for delivery to the University of California Santa Cruz
Trestles femtosecond Ti:Sapphire laser delivered to North Carolina State University
Del Mar Photonics sponsor IONS (International OSA Network of Students) conference IONS-NA-2 in Tucson, Arizona IONS-NA-2 website
Best talk and best poster awards at IONS-Moscow 2010 conference sponsored by Del Mar Photonics
Watch Del Mar Photonics videos!
Del Mar Photonics is now on Twitter!

Del Mar Photonics featured components

Del Mar Photonics continuously expands its components portfolio.

Solar Prisms for Concentrating Photovoltaic Systems (CPV)
Solar cells made of compound semiconductors such as gallium arsenide are very expensive. Usually very small cells are installed and various means such as mirrors, lenses, prisms, etc..are used  to concentrate sunlight on the cells. Concentration photovoltaic technology (CPV) uses the solar radiation with an efficiency of 40%, double that of conventional solar cells
Del Mar Photonics design custom Concentrating Photovoltaic Systems (CPV) and supply variety of the optical components for CPV such as solar prisms shown in the picture.

hexagonal light pipes, optical rods

Axicon Lens
Axicon lens also known as conical lens or rotationally symmetric prism is widely used in different scientific research and application. Axicon can be used to convert a parallel laser beam into a ring, to create a non diffractive Bessel beam or to focus a parallel beam into long focus depth.
Del Mar Photonics supplies axicons with cone angles range from 130° to 179.5° for use with virtually any laser radiation. We manufacture and supply axicons made from BK7 glass, fused silica and other materials.

download brochure -
request a quote
Del Mar Photonics offers optical elements made of high quality synthetically grown Rutile Titanium Dioxide crystals. Rutile (TiO2) coupling prisms
Del Mar Photonics offers optical elements made of high quality synthetically grown Rutile Titanium Dioxide crystals. Rutile’s strong birefringency, wide transmission range and good mechanical properties make it suitable for fabrication of polarizing cubes, prisms and optical isolators. Boules having high optical transmission and homogeneity are grown by proprietary method. Typical boules have 10 - 15 mm in dia. and up to 25 mm length. Optical elements sizes - from 2 x 2 x 1 mm to 12.7 x 12.7 x 12.7 mm. Laser grade polish quality is available for finished elements. So far we the largest elements that we manufactured are 12 x15 x 5 mm, in which optical axis is parallel to 15 mm edge, 5 mm is along beam path, 12 x 15 mm faces polished 20/10 S/D, one wave flatness, parallelism < 3 arc.min. (better specs. available on request).

more details - download brochure - request a quote - properties incl. refractive index

Sapphire components
Sapphire Circular Windows - Square & Rectangle - Rods
Sapphire & Ruby Rings - Sapphire & Ruby Balls - Sapphire & Ruby Nozzles
Sapphire Lenses - Ball & Seat - Special Products - Sapphire Vee & Cup Jewels
Sapphire Ceramics - Ceramic Sleeves - Ceramic Holes - Ceramic Rods
Sapphire & Ruby Orifices - Sapphire & Ruby Tubes - Sapphire Components
Sapphire Half Round Rod - Sapphire Windows - Rods & Tubes - Special Part
Sapphire Prism - Sapphire Chisel -
Sapphire Square Rod

Vacuum viewport

Del Mar Photonics offer a range of competitively priced UHV viewports , Conflat, ISO or KF including a variety of coatings to enhance performance. Del Mar Photonics viewports are manufactured using advanced techniques for control of special and critical processes, including 100 percent helium leak testing and x-ray measurements for metallization control. Windows Materials include: Fused silica, Quartz , Sapphire , MgF2, BaF2, CaF2, ZnSe, ZnS, Ge, Si, Pyrex. Standard Viewing diameters from .55" to 1.94 ".
Coating - a range of custom coatings can applied - which include
- Single QWOT
- Broad Band AR
- V coatings
- DLC (Diamond like coating)

more details - request a quote


NARROW-BAND HOLOGRAPHIC FILTERS are intended for suppression of powerful beams in research and in engineering, in particular, in laser spectroscopy, and also for protection from blinding and damaging by laser radiation various photo receiver devices and operator's eyes.

Unlike conventional interference filters, which are made by vacuum evaporation techniques, holographic filters are fabricated by recording interference patterns formed between two mutually coherent laser beams. Since all layers are recorded simultaneously within a thick stack, the optical density of the notch filter is high and its spectral bandwidth can be extremely narrow. Also, since the layering profile is sinusoidal instead of square wave, holographic notch filters are free from extraneous reflection bands and provide significantly higher laser damage thresholds.



Hydrogen Thyratrons are used in such devices as radars with different power levels, high-power pulsed technical, electrophysical, medical devices and lasers. Sophisticated design and high quality ceramic-metal envelope determines long lifetime and very accurate and reliable operation of hydrogen thyratrons under wide range of environmental conditions.
- radars
- pulsed  lasers power supplies
- medical apparatus
- electrophysical instrumentation

Triggered Three-Electrode Spark Gap Switches are ceramic-metal sealed off gas discharge trigatron-type devices with a co-axial trigger electrode. These Gas Discharge Tubes contain no mercury and, due to an advanced design, feature high reliability and a long lifetime being operating under wide range of environmental conditions.
- pulsed installation for processing materials
- installations with plasma focus
- pulse power supplies for lasers and other pulse equipment
- medical apparatus such as lithotriptors and defibrillators
- processing systems for petroleum wells


Trigger Transformers
Del Mar Photonics supply trigger transformers for triggered spark gaps and other applications. Contact us to today to discuss your application or requesta  quote.
Trigger Transformers are used to provide a fast high voltage pulse up to 30kV/µs and more. This high voltage pulse is applied to the trigger electrode to initiate switching action in the three-electrode spark gaps. Either positive or negative pulses can be obtained from all of the transformers.


We are looking forward to hear from you and help you with your optical and crystal components requirements. Need time to think about it? Drop us a line and we'll send you beautiful Del Mar Photonics mug (or two) so you can have a tea party with your colleagues and discuss your potential needs.


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Del Mar Photonics, Inc.
4119 Twilight Ridge
San Diego, CA 92130
tel: (858) 876-3133
fax: (858) 630-2376
Skype: delmarphotonics