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effects of ionizing radiation on cryogenic infrared detectorsThe Diffuse Infrared Background Experiment (DIRBE) is one of three experiments to be carried aboard the Cosmic Background Explorer (COBE) satellite scheduled to be launched by NASA on a Delta rocket in 1989. The DIRBE is a cryogenic absolute photometer operating in a liquid helium dewar at 1.5 K. Photometric stability is a principal requirement for achieving the scientific objectives of this experiment. The Infrared Astronomy Satellite (IRAS), launched in 1983, which used detectors similar to those in DIRBE, revealed substantial changes in detector responsivity following exposure to ionizing radiation encountered on passage through the South Atlantic Anomaly (SAA). Since the COBE will use the same 900 Km sun-synchronous orbit as IRAS, ionizing radiation-induced performance changes in the detectors were a major concern. Here, ionizing radiation tests carried out on all the DIRBE photodetectors are reported. Responsivity changes following exposure to gamma rays, protons, and alpha particle are discussed. The detector performance was monitored following a simulated entire mission life dose. In addition, the response of the detectors to individual particle interactions was measured. The InSb photovoltaic detectors and the Blocked Impurity Band (BIB) detectors revealed no significant change in responsivity following radiation exposure. The Ge:Ga detectors show large effects which were greatly reduced by proper thermal annealing.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Moseley, S. H.
(NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD, United States)
Silverberg, R. F.
(NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD, United States)
Lakew, B.
(SAR Corp. Lanham, MD, United States)
Date Acquired
August 14, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1989
Subject Category
Meeting Information
Cryogenic Optical Systems and Instruments III(San Diego, CA)
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