Cryogenic Bolometers

All bolometers may do the same job – measure infrared radiation – but they are not all alike. There are different bolometers for different spectral ranges; there are high resolution, standard, general purpose, and far IR bolometers; there are composite, silicon, hot electron, and germanium bolometers and photodetectors.

All of these bolometers are uniquely equipped to perform specialized functions for many scientific and industrial purposes. Bolometers that are used to identify a variety of organic or polymeric materials will not be the same type used by NASA to measure the temperature of the moon or by airport security or the military to detect concealed weapons at stand-off range.

Factors that distinguish one type of bolometer from another include:

  • Spectral response
  • Operating temperature
  • Electrical sensitivity
  • Noise equivalent power [W/Hz(1/2)]
  • Noise Vn[nV/Hz(1/2)]
  • Frequency response (Optimum Chopping Frequency)
  • Liquid cryogen cooling
  • Cryogen-free cooling

With all the types of bolometers available, how do you know which meets your requirements?

You could research the subject ad infinitum and hope you get it right, or you could go straight to a company that has been a leader in the field for more than 50 years with a client list reading like a Who’s Who in science and technology.

Globally Respected Bolometer Manufacturer

IRLabs specializes in producing highly sensitive instruments and has manufactured thousands of infrared detection systems for clients around the globe. Their reputation for customizing instruments to user specifications is unequaled.

IRLabs has been around for a long time. The genesis of the company came in 1961 with Dr. Frank Low’s invention of the high-frequency Ga-doped Ge Bolometer. He went on to start IRLabs in 1967. Within a year the company had provided the Kitt Observatory in Arizona with a dual Ga-doped Ge. By the 1970s IRLabs was contributing to the first airborne telescopes making far-infrared observations of Jupiter, Saturn and Venus.

For more than five decades IRLabs has manufactured customized systems for clients doing research in the fields of astrophysics, plasma physics, particle physics, and quantum physics as well as many private industrial clients.

Customizing Bolometers for Your Unique Requirements

If you are unsure of the right infrared detector for your work, IRLabs can guide you through the selection process or work with you to create a system designed to meet your exact requirements.

IRLabs has an excellent track record for manufacturing customized bolometers for use by scientific organizations in FTIR spectroscopy, high magnetic field research, terahertz research, molecular beam physics, and IR astronomy.

They can advise you if their standard bolometer will fit your needs; if you could benefit from a cost-saving cryogen-free bolometer; or if your best option is to go with a customized configuration such as increased work height, dual detectors, filter positions and coupling optics.

IRLabs Expertise

IRLabs has built its reputation on meeting the needs of clients with the most demanding specifications. Trusted by researchers and engineers at NASA, Texas Instruments, MIT, Toshiba, the Smithsonian Institute, and a host of other organizations and industries, IRLabs overcomes the unique challenges inherent to each operation and delivers bolometer systems that perform exactly as needed. Their expertise in solving problems has made them a go-to.

If you need help acquiring a bolometer system to suit your requirements, contact IRLabs and put their vast expertise to work for you.


By Published On: October 16th, 2023Categories: Blog

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