In this paper we present the progress made at SRON in the read-out of GSFC x-ray transition-edge sensor (TES) micro-calorimeters in the frequency domain. The experiments reported so far, whose aim was to demonstrate an energy resolution of 2eV at 6 keV with a TES acting as a modulator, were carried out at frequencies below 700 kHz using a standard flux locked loop (FLL) SQUID read-out scheme. The TES read-out suffered from the use of sub-optimal circuit components, large parasitic inductances, low quality factor resonators and poor magnetic field shielding. We have developed a novel experimental set-up, which allows us to test several read-out schemes in a single cryogenic run. In this set-up, the TES pixels are coupled via superconducting transformers to 18 high-Q lithographic LC filters with resonant frequencies ranging between 2 and 5 MHz. The signal is amplified by a two-stage SQUID current sensor and baseband feedback is used to overcome the limited SQUID dynamic range. We study the single pixel performance as a function of TES bias frequency, voltage and perpendicular magnetic field.
Electronics and Electrical Engineering
Applied Superconductivity Conference; 7-11 Oct. 2012; Portland, OR; United States