Room-temperature mid-infrared single-photon spectral imaging
Scientists at DTU Fotonik, Technical University of Denmark, have demonstrated a novel, low-noise, field-deployable mid-infrared spectral imaging system that works at room temperature.
Published this week in Nature Photonics, Dam and co-workers use upconversion spectroscopy to image gas emissions in the 2.8-5um region onto a standard CCD camera, resulting in 2D real-time spectral imaging. An MgO:PPLN crystal is used in the upconversion process to convert incoherent mid-infrared light to ~800nm. The room temperature dark noise is measured to be 0.2 photons/spatial element/second, a billion times lower than cryogenically cooled InSb cameras that are used in Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. The authors use this single-photon-sensitive mid-infrared camera to idenitify the spatial distrutions of soot, hydrocarbons (C–H), water vapour and CO2 from a butane flame.
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