Thomson-CSF Frame-Transfer Charge-Coupled-Device Imagers: Design And Evaluation At Very Low Flux Level
A slow-scan, cooled CCD camera system, similar to that used for astronomical observations, was constructed at Toulouse Observatory and used for testing CCD chips. Several devices were tested extensively. This paper describes the design and performance of some Thomson-CSF solid-state area-array CCD sensors. These sensors use a frame-transfer organization adapted to operate in a double-interlaced-field readout mode with a memory zone (sensor TH 7861) or adapted to operate in a single-field mode without a memory zone (sensors TH 7882, TH 7883, TH 7884). We briefly describe the system and the evaluation of the photometric performance of these chips, including quantum efficiency, readout noise, transfer efficiency, linearity, dark current, and field uniformity. Some projected developments of Thomson-CSF chips for scientific applications, such as the TH X31156 (1024 X1024 pixels) and the buttable TH 7882 (TH X31157), are also presented.