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Multitone large-signal analysis of superconducting transition-edge sensors for astronomy
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View: Figures


Image of FIG. 1.
FIG. 1.

A microstrip coupled TES structure fabricated by our group at Cavendish Laboratory for 100 GHz astronomy. The MoCu superconducting bilayer (large rectangle) is thermally isolated from the heat bath by narrow and thin legs. Power from the source is coupled to a microstrip, which runs down the lower left leg, and is terminated in a resistor on the island.

Image of FIG. 2.
FIG. 2.

A TES bias circuit with its Norton equivalent circuit. is the bias current, and are the bias and stray resistances respectively and is the sum of the SQUID input inductance and any other additional stray inductance. is the Norton current with being the equivalent admittance of the circuit.

Image of FIG. 3.
FIG. 3.

The thermal circuit of the TES coupled to a heat bath at temperature . Power is fed into the device, which has heat capacitance . Power flows from the device to the heat bath through the weak thermal link .

Image of FIG. 4.
FIG. 4.

The surface of a TES derived from Eq. (9). As more current passes through the TES, the sharpness of the transition edge falls.

Image of FIG. 5.
FIG. 5.

Convergence of temperature for various guess temperatures. The TES has a solution near . For a at the critical temperature (solid line) convergence is reached in less than 20 iterations with the rest of the iterations being small adjustments to the small threshold defined for convergence. Even for a of 1 K (dashed line) the same solution is found. Thus, the presence of the sharp transition edge poses no problems for the algorithm.

Image of FIG. 6.
FIG. 6.

Convergence of temperature to the same solution as in Fig. 5 with in all cases. Here, is changed from 0.1 (solid line) to 0.5 (the line with the sharpest fall to solution). The higher the value of , the quicker convergence is reached. The smaller the value of , the finer is the search, but less prone to errors. Note, the presence of the sharp transition poses no problem for the algorithm. We adopt a value in the range of as a compromise between speed and stability.

Image of FIG. 7.
FIG. 7.

The phases of the harmonic components of the current as a function of the phase of the signal power. Solid line represents the first harmonic , dashed line represents , dotted line represents and closely-dotted line represents . The phase of each harmonic wraps around in the correct order throughout the range of phase of the signal power. This demonstrates that the small and large signal behavior is predicted correctly by the algorithm.

Image of FIG. 8.
FIG. 8.

A comparison of curves for the cases where the resistance of the superconducting bilayer is a function of temperature only, (solid line) and when the resistance is a function of both temperature and current, (dashed line). Signal power increases from zero and in steps of 1 pW for subsequent lines indicated by the direction of the arrow. The curves in the case of are less sharp, suggesting a decrease in the strength of negative electrothermal feedback.

Image of FIG. 9.
FIG. 9.

The temperature of a TES as a function of increasing signal power. In the case where the resistance of the superconducting bilayer is a function of resistance only (solid line), the negative electrothermal feedback process keeps the temperature of the bilayer almost constant. However, when resistance is a function of temperature and current (dashed line), the temperature changes throughout, even from 0 to , suggesting a weakened electrothermal feedback process.

Image of FIG. 10.
FIG. 10.

The current through a TES as a function of time for signal powers modulated at 1 Hz. For a signal power of 0.2 pW p-p (solid line), the behavior is in the small signal limit. Signal power then increases in steps of 0.4 pW p-p up to 1.8 pW p-p (dash-dotted line). The device gradually saturates, and the current wave form gets clipped as the amplitude of the signal power increases.

Image of FIG. 11.
FIG. 11.

The real and imaginary parts of the TES input impedance as a function of frequency assuming resistance is a function of temperature and current, . The impedance is calculated from 0.01 Hz to 10 kHz at various bias points. The small contour is the impedance calculated with the TES biased on the transition, with . The magnitude of the bias current increases by for each subsequently larger impedance contour, with the largest being for a bias current of . The shape of these contours resemble very closely those measured in experiments.12,13

Image of FIG. 12.
FIG. 12.

A more complicated thermal circuit simulated using the algorithm. In this case an absorber at a temperature is linked to the TES with a thermal link .

Image of FIG. 13.
FIG. 13.

The current response of a TES with the thermal circuit of Fig. 12 as a function of bias current at various frequencies. At 0.01 Hz (solid line) and are almost in phase. At 100 Hz (dashed line) and 1 kHz (dotted line), there is significant phase shift. At 10 kHz (closely-dotted horizontal line), the electrothermal time constants are far longer than the period of the applied bias current such that the device no longer responds to the modulations.

Image of FIG. 14.
FIG. 14.

(a) The current response of a TES current (solid line) as a function of time to pulses of signal power (dashed line). The pulse rate is 500 Hz. (b) The response current of the same TES subtracted from the equilibrium current response . The decay of the TES current back to the equilibrium state is a function of a single time constant in the case of the simple thermal model of Fig. 3.


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752b84549af89a08dbdd7fdb8b9568b5 journal.articlezxybnytfddd
Scitation: Multitone large-signal analysis of superconducting transition-edge sensors for astronomy