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Development of an Active Pixel Sensor Vertex Detector. H. Matis, F. Bieser, G. Rai, F. Retiere, S. Wurzel, H. Wieman, E. Yamamato, LBNL S. Kleinfelder, K. Singh, UCI H. Bichel, U. Washington. STAR Needs a Thin Vertex Detector to Measure Charm at RHIC. High precision - ~4 µm resolution

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Development of an active pixel sensor vertex detector

Development of an Active Pixel Sensor Vertex Detector

H. Matis, F. Bieser, G. Rai, F. Retiere, S. Wurzel, H. Wieman, E. Yamamato, LBNL

S. Kleinfelder, K. Singh, UCI

H. Bichel, U. Washington

Star needs a thin vertex detector to measure charm at rhic
STAR Needs a Thin Vertex Detector to Measure Charm at RHIC

  • High precision - ~4 µm resolution

  • Low mass - 1 GeV/c particles - need low multiple scattering

  • Medium radiation environment - 50 krad/y - @ 40x RHIC luminosity

80 µm

40 µm

160 µm

320 µm

640 µm

H. Matis ([email protected])

Active pixel sensor aps attractive technology
Active Pixel Sensor (APS) – Attractive Technology

  • Has same advantages of CCDs

    • Small pixels

    • Can thin wafers

  • Plus

    • Standard CMOS process

    • More radiation resistant

    • Low power

    • Put extra circuits on chip

  • Minus

    • New Technology

    • Lots to learn

H. Matis ([email protected])

Epitaxial sensor medium
Epitaxial Sensor Medium

  • High-resistivity epitaxial silicon used as a sensor

  • Higher doped P bulk reflects and confines electrons

  • Slower, more lateral diffusion and recombination

  • 100% fill factor achieved

H. Matis ([email protected])

Cmos aps with epitaxial sensor
CMOS APS with Epitaxial Sensor

H. Matis ([email protected])

Three example cmos pixel circuits
Three Example CMOS Pixel Circuits

  • Passive Pixel Sensor (PPS, left)

  • Active Pixel Sensor (APS, middle)

  • APS with sample and hold / shutter (right)

H. Matis ([email protected])

Epi 1 prototype epi aps imager
EPI-1” Prototype Epi / APS Imager

  • 0.25 µm CMOS

  • 128 x 128 array

  • 4 pixel variants

  • 20 x 20 µm pixels

  • 8-10 µm Epi

  • Fabbed at TSMC

H. Matis ([email protected])

4 configurations
4 Configurations

  • 4 variants:

    • Small pickup

    • 4x small pickups

    • Small pickup + direct injection

    • Large pickup + Direct injection

H. Matis ([email protected])

Aps pixel quadrants
APS Pixel Quadrants

H. Matis ([email protected])

Sr 90 electron source
Sr90 Electron Source

  • Quadrant of 64 x 64 pixels with (left) and without (right) Sr90 source applied.

H. Matis ([email protected])

1 5 gev electron source als
1.5 GeV electron source (ALS)

  • Quadrant with (left) and without (right) electron source applied.

H. Matis ([email protected])

Energy spectrum of 1 5 gev electrons
Energy spectrum of 1.5 GeV electrons

  • Circles are measured points, dotted line shows calculated result for 8 µm epitaxial layer.

H. Matis ([email protected])

Version ii 16 different configurations
Version II - 16 different configurations

  • Row 1 - Pixels with one to four distributed diodes.

  • Increase in charge collected within one pixel

    • Less charge diffusion to neighboring pixels

    • But lower gain due to increased capacitance

H. Matis ([email protected])

Sample fe55 spectra
Sample Fe55 Spectra

1638 electrons

H. Matis ([email protected])

Speed matters
Speed Matters

  • Output of ADC

  • Currently reading a pixel with 500 kHz clock - limited by external ADC

  • Easily could read at 1 MHz

  • Need 250 ms to read out 1000 x 1000 chip with 4 channels at this speed

  • Working to improve speed for next generation

1 µs/division

H. Matis ([email protected])

Total collected charge fe 55
Total Collected Charge (Fe-55)

H. Matis ([email protected])

Signal to noise fe 55
Signal to Noise (Fe-55)

H. Matis ([email protected])

Diode topology vs collected charge
Diode Topology vs.. Collected Charge

  • Normalized charge plots.

  • More diodes yields greater percentage of charge collected

H. Matis ([email protected])

Diode topology vs signal to noise
Diode Topology vs. Signal to Noise

  • More diodes reduces S/N except for the single pixel case (no summation of neighboring pixels)

H. Matis ([email protected])

Other configurations rows 2 4
Other Configurations - Rows 2-4

Row 2 - Same as Row 1

except larger output transistor

Row 3 - Centered pixel

1 small pickup

2 medium well pickup

3 large well pickup

4 large diffusion

Row 4 - Sample and Hold

1 small well pickup

2 medium well pickup

3 large diffusion

4 large diffusion

H. Matis ([email protected])

S n all sectors
S/N All Sectors

Row 1

Row 2

Row 3

Row 4

H. Matis ([email protected])

Charge diffusion
Charge Diffusion

  • Increasing number of diode collection points increases collection with lower signal

  • Sample and Hold collects charge in few pixels but much lower signal

Row 1 - 1 diode

Row 1 - 4 diode

Row 4 -

Sample and Hold

H. Matis ([email protected])

Radiation hardness
Radiation Hardness

  • CCDs show radiation effects ~ krad

  • 3 year RHIC design luminosity - 3.5 krad or 1 x 1011 55 MeV p’s/cm

  • 3 year RHIC II at 40x design - 140 krad

  • Expose unpowered chips to 55 MeV p’s at 88” cyclotron

H. Matis ([email protected])

Pre Radiation

Post Radiation

1012 protons at 55 MeV

Equivalent to 3 years

at RHIC at 40x current


H. Matis ([email protected])

30 y @ RHIC II

1.5  1011 protons, 55 MeV

Equivalent to 0.5 y @ 40x current

Luminosity of RHIC (RHIC II)

9 y @ RHIC II

3 y @ RHIC II

1.5 y @ RHIC II


H. Matis ([email protected])

Mrad exposure
> Mrad exposure

H. Matis ([email protected])

Signal loss to radiation
Signal Loss to Radiation

  • Signal does decrease with radiation dose

  • Noise increases

  • Small change in radiation region of our interest

  • Significant Mrad effects

H. Matis ([email protected])

Thinned silicon
Thinned Silicon

  • CCD detector thin to epi layer (with backing)

  • Testing 50 µm and 100 µm wafers

  • 50 µm wafer can be stretched to >1 kg (limit is our stain gauge)

  • Build mechanical support easy to replace modules - beam accident


H. Matis ([email protected])

Mechanical configuration
Mechanical Configuration

H. Matis ([email protected])

Summary and conclusions
Summary and Conclusions

  • A CMOS active pixel sensor array using an epitaxial silicon sensor has been designed and tested.

    • Two 128 by 128 pixel arrays were fabricated

    • Both used a standard digital 0.25 micron CMOS technology

    • Both used 8-10 micron epitaxial silicon sensors

  • Variety of pixel topologies and circuits were tested.

  • Optimum performance in sparse-event environment was obtained by simplest, highest gain pixel circuits.

  • Tested with 1.5 GeV electrons and Fe-55 X-rays

  • Obtained 13 electrons RMS noise and an SNR for single Fe-55 X-rays (5.9 keV) of greater than 30.

  • Standard digital CMOS APS can resolve individual gamma rays and minimum-ionizing charged particles.

  • CMOS technology appropriate to radiation environment of RHIC.

H. Matis ([email protected])


  • Must fully understand noise sources – improve signal to noise. Reduce charge diffusion

  • New faster chip in 0.5 µm process ready soon. Larger epi layer

  • Increase speed of chip

    • 1000 x 1000 array with four parallel channels - 50 ns readout  12.5 ms cycle time

  • Mechanical Prototyping. Fixture ready in a week.

  • Great promise of APS technology at RHIC

H. Matis ([email protected])