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Electroplated bismuth absorbers for planar NTD-Ge sensor arrays applied to hard x-ray detection in astrophysics

  • Autori: Ferruggia Bonura, S.; Gulli, D.; Barbera, M.; Collura, A.; Sciortino, L.; Spoto, D.; Todaro, M.; Puccio, E.; Montinaro, N.; Varisco, S.; Santamaria, M.; Di Franco, F.; Maniscalco, A.; Zaffora, A.; Botta, L.; Lo Cicero, U.
  • Anno di pubblicazione: 2018
  • Tipologia: Proceedings (TIPOLOGIA NON ATTIVA)
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Single sensors or small arrays of manually assembled neutron transmutation doped germanium (NTD-Ge) based microcalorimeters have been widely used as high energy-resolution detectors from infrared to hard X-rays. Several planar technological processes were developed in the last years aimed at the fabrication of NTD-Ge arrays, specifically designed to produce soft X-ray detectors. One of these processes consists in the fabrication of the absorbers. In order to absorb efficiently hard X-ray photons, the absorber has to be properly designed and a suitable material has to be employed. Bismuth offers interesting properties in terms of absorbing capability, of low heat capacity (needed to obtain high energy resolution) and deposition technical feasibility, moreover, it has already been used as absorber for other types of microcalorimeters. Here we present the electroplating process we adopted to grow bismuth absorbers for fabricating planar microcalorimeter arrays for hard X-rays detection. The process was specifically tuned to grow uniform Bi films with thickness up to ∼ 70 μm. This work is part of a feasibility study for a stratospheric balloon borne experiment that would observe hard X-rays (20-100 keV) from solar corona.