Camera Design and Performance of the Prototype Schwarzschild-Couder Telescope for the Cherenkov Telescope Array
July 22, 2019
The Schwarzschild-Couder Telescope (SCT) is a candidate technology for a medium-sized telescope within the Cherenkov Telescope Array, the next generation ground based observatory for very high energy gamma ray astronomy. The SCT uses a novel two-mirror design and is expected to yield improvements in field of view and image resolution compared to traditional Cherenkov telescopes based on single-mirror-dish optics.
To match the improved optical resolution, challenging requirements of high channel count and density at low power consumption have to be overcome by the camera. The prototype camera, currently commissioned and tested on the prototype SCT, has been developed based on millimeter scale SiPM pixels and a custom high density digitizer ASIC, TARGET, to provide 1600 pixels spanning a 2.7 degree field of view while being able to sample nanosecond photon pulses. It is mechanically designed to allow for an upgrade to 11,328 pixels covering a field of view of 8 degrees and demonstrating the full potential of the technology. The camera was installed on the telescope in 2018. We will present its design and performance including first light data.
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