ATI unveils NIR solid-state photomultiplier with gain of greater than 200,000

August 29, 2008--Amplification Technologies Inc. (ATI; New York, NY) has developed--and is introducing as a commercial product--a near-infrared (NIR) version of its Discrete Amplification Photon Detector (DAPD) technology which, in its pre-existing version, spans the visible spectrum.

August 29, 2008--Amplification Technologies Inc. (ATI; New York, NY) has developed--and is introducing as a commercial product--a near-infrared (NIR) version of its discrete amplification photon detector (DAPD) which, in its pre-existing version, spans the visible spectrum. The new NIR version will be well-suited for use in night-vision equipment, lidar, industrial and scientific instrumentation, and noninvasive monitoring, as well as spectroscopy, astronomy, optical communications, quantum cryptography, and other military, defense, and aerospace applications.

According to ATI, the solid-state devices have capabilities that far exceed other solid-state photodetectors in the NIR range, providing a gain of greater than 200,000, and can be used for single-photon counting applications without requiring external quenching (reset) circuits that introduce delay. They are also small, rugged, and inexpensive.

Device samples are expected to be available from ATI in TO8 or chip-on-submount (COS) packages in the fourth quarter of 2008. The development work was primarily funded by Phase II of a NASA SBIR grant.

"NASA needs high-efficiency and high-bandwidth single-photon counting devices in the 1000 to 1600 nm wavelength region, and the new device from Amplification Technologies is the easiest to operate photon-counting detector with good performance that we have seen in that wavelength range," said William Farr, manager of the Optical Communication Technology program at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (Pasadena, CA). "Our early tests with the device show great promise. This is a significant breakthrough for free-space optical communications and other near-infrared photon-counting applications."

ATI says its DAPD technology has specifications that are comparable to or better than photomultiplier vacuum-tube devices. The company's visible-spectrum version is based on silicon; its new NIR version is based on the indium gallium arsenide/indium phosphide (InGaAs/InP) material system.

In other news about the company, ATI continues to make progress in meeting the conditions for its pending merger with Powersafe Technology Inc. (Valley Stream, NY) and expects that it will be consummated in the next several weeks.

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