A CMOS TDI image sensor for Earth observation

Rushton, Joseph E.; Stefanov, Konstantin D.; Holland, Andrew D.; Endicott, James; Mayer, Frederic and Barbier, Frederic (2015). A CMOS TDI image sensor for Earth observation. In: Proceedings of SPIE, SPIE, 9616.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2187952


Time Delay and Integration (TDI) is used to increase the Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) in image sensors when imaging fast moving objects. One important TDI application is in Earth observation from space. In order to operate in the space radiation environment, the effect that radiation damage has on the performance of the image sensors must be understood. This work looks at prototype TDI sensor pixel designs, produced by e2v technologies. The sensor is a CCD-like charge transfer device, allowing in-pixel charge summation, produced on a CMOS process. The use of a CMOS process allows potential advantages such as lower power consumption, smaller pixels, higher line rate and extra on-chip functionality which can simplify system design. CMOS also allows a dedicated output amplifier per column allowing fewer charge transfers and helping to facilitate higher line rates than CCDs. In this work the effect on the pixels of radiation damage from high energy protons, at doses relevant to a low Earth orbit mission, is presented. This includes the resulting changes in Charge Transfer inefficiency (CTI) and dark signal.

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