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Microwave Kinetic Inductance Detectors

Abstract: Microwave Kinetic Inductance Detectors, or MKIDs, have proven to be a powerful cryogenic detector technology due to their sensitivity and the ease with which they can be multiplexed into large arrays. A MKID is an energy sensor based on a photon-variable superconducting inductance in a lithographed microresonator, and is capable of functioning as a photon detector across the electromagnetic spectrum as well as a particle detector. I will describe the first successful effort to create a photon-counting, energy-resolving ultraviolet, optical, and near infrared MKID focal plane array. These new Optical Lumped Element (OLE) MKID arrays have significant advantages over semiconductor detectors like charge coupled devices (CCDs). They can count individual photons with essentially no false counts and determine the energy and arrival time of every photon with good quantum efficiency. I will show how these capabilities enable powerful new astrophysical instruments. I will also discuss our work on X-ray MKIDs, which could have potential applications at light sources as well as in X-ray astronomy.
Speaker: Dr. Ben Mazin - UC Santa Barbara
Speaker Bio: Ben Mazin attended Yale University, graduating in 1997. After Yale, he attended the California Institute of Technology, graduating with a doctorate in Astrophysics in August, 2004. After a short post-doc, he went to work as a scientist at JPL in March, 2005. He joined the faculty at the University of California, Santa Barbara in September, 2008, where he leads a lab dedicated to the development of optical/UV/X-ray Microwave Kinetic Inductance Detectors (MKIDs) and astronomical instrumentation for time and energy resolved studies. He was awarded the Presidential Early Career
Poster Link: Poster