Superconducting nanowires are widely used as sensitive single photon detectors with wide spectral coverage and high timing resolution. We describe a demonstration of an array of dc-biased superconducting nanowire single photon detectors read out with a microwave multiplexing circuit. In this design, each individual nanowire is part of a resonant LC circuit where the inductance is dominated by the kinetic inductance of the nanowire. The circuit also contains two parallel plate capacitors, one of them is in parallel with the inductor and the other is coupled to a microwave transmission line that carries the signals to a cryogenic low-noise amplifier. All of the nanowires are connected via resistors to a single dc bias line that enables the nanowires to be current biased close to their critical current. When a photon hits a nanowire, it creates a normal hotspot that produces a voltage pulse across the LC circuit. This pulse rings down at the resonant frequency of the LC circuit over a time period that is fixed by the quality factor. We present measurements of an array of these devices and an evaluation of their performance in terms of frequency and time response.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering