Low cost IR Sensors are needed for a variety of Military and commercial applications such as low cost thermal imagers and the ability to detect and defeat threats such as mortar fire on ground vehicles. SiGe based IR Focal Planes offers a low cost alternative for developing near IR sensors that will not require any cooling and can operate in the NIR band. The attractive features of SiGe based IRFPA's will take advantage of Silicon based technology, that can promise small feature size and compatibility with the Silicon CMOS circuit for signal processing. Magnolia will collaborate with MIT to conduct feasibility study of an infrared sensor based on SiGe material system and its ability to detect photons emitted by a warm and a variety of hot body. We will conduct simulations to compare the sensitivity of the SiGe detector at its peak wavelength of 1.3 micron to InSb and HgCdTe based IR Focal Plane arrays at a peak wavelength of 4 microns. We will evaluate various device designs for SiGe detectors to simulate and model the performance for low dark current and high quantum efficiency and hence higher SiGe sensor performance. We plan to test SiGe test devices for their electrical and optical properties at room temperature. Based on this analysis and results, a focal plane array design will be selected for implementation in the Phase II effort. The Phase II effort will be focused on building the 2-D SiGe focal plane arrays with high quantum efficiency and low leakage current. Magnolia will also collaborate with BAE systems, iRobot and FLIR Systems for their systems applications.
Dr. Yash R. Puri
Co-Founder, Executive VP and CFO