The use of avalanche photodiodes for the detection of soft x rays

J. R. Palmer, G. R. Morrison
1992 Review of Scientific Instruments  
Avalanche photodiodes (APDs) offer an attractive alternative to the gas flow proportional counter (GFPC) for the counting of individual soft x-ray photons. They are reasonably efficient detectors and have the capability of handling higher count rates than a GFPC. With the advent of intense monochromatic x-ray beams from synchrotron radiation sources, the ability to handle high count rates is becoming more important than the need for any energy resolution. Another attraction of using solid-state
more » ... detectors is the possibility of multielement fabrication of devices: configured detector arrays can then be considered for a number of applications. For example, in the scanning transmission x-ray microscope such a detector system allows much more sophisticated imaging techniques, such as differential phase contrast imaging with a quadrant APD array. In this paper we compare results for several commercially available APDs used as photon counters with a GFPC over the energy range 200-700 eV. APDs operated in the Geiger mode with a simple passive circuit to quench the avalanche current pulses can achieve count rates of the order of lo6 S -', and this can be greatly improved upon with the use of an active quenching circuit.
doi:10.1063/1.1142620 fatcat:fb4dotqilzd5hix45es4r4b54e