Hot-electron bolometer terahertz mixers for the Herschel Space Observatory
Journal article, 2008

We report on low noise terahertz mixers (1.4–1.9 THz) developed for the heterodyne spectrometer onboard the Herschel Space Observatory. The mixers employ double slot antenna integrated superconducting hot-electron bolometers (HEBs) made of thin NbN films. The mixer performance was characterized in terms of detection sensitivity across the entire rf band by using a Fourier transform spectrometer (from 0.5 to 2.5 THz, with 30 GHz resolution) and also by measuring the mixer noise temperature at a limited number of discrete frequencies. The lowest mixer noise temperature recorded was 750 K (double sideband (DSB)) at 1.6 THz and 950 K DSB at 1.9 THz local oscillator (LO) frequencies. Averaged across the intermediate frequency band of 2.4–4.8 GHz,the mixer noise temperature was 1100 K DSB at 1.6 THz and 1450 K DSB at 1.9 THz LO frequencies. The HEB heterodyne receiver stability has been analyzed and compared to the HEB stability in the direct detection mode. The optimal local oscillator power was determined and found to be in a 200–500 nW range.

NbN

HIFI

HEB

terahertz

Allan variance

mixers

bolometer

Herschel

Author

Serguei Cherednichenko

Chalmers, Applied Physics, Physical Electronics

Vladimir Drakinskiy

Chalmers, Applied Physics, Physical Electronics

Therese Berg

Chalmers, Microtechnology and Nanoscience (MC2), Microwave Electronics

Pourya Khosropanah

Chalmers, Microtechnology and Nanoscience (MC2), Microwave Electronics

Erik Kollberg

Chalmers, Applied Physics, Physical Electronics

Review of Scientific Instruments

0034-6748 (ISSN)

Vol. 79 034501 034501-1 to 034501-10-

Subject Categories

Atom and Molecular Physics and Optics

Other Electrical Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information Engineering

Condensed Matter Physics

DOI

10.1063/1.2890099

More information

Created

10/7/2017