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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Commercialization of Micro-fabrication of Antenna-Coupled Transition Edge Sensor Bolometer Detectors for Studies of the Cosmic Microwave Background


We report on the development of commercially fabricated multichroic antenna-coupled transition edge sensor (TES) bolometer arrays for cosmic microwave background (CMB) polarimetry experiments. CMB polarimetry experiments have deployed instruments in stages. Stage II experiments deployed with O(1000) detectors and reported successful detection of B-mode (divergence-free) polarization pattern in the CMB. Stage III experiments have recently started observing with O(10,000) detectors with wider frequency coverage. A concept for a stage IV experiment, CMB-S4, is emerging to make a definitive measurement of CMB polarization from the ground with O(400,000) detectors. The orders of magnitude increase in detector count for CMB-S4 require a new approach in detector fabrication to increase fabrication throughput and reduce the cost. We report on collaborative efforts with two commercial micro-fabrication foundries to fabricate antenna-coupled TES bolometer detectors. The detector design is based on the sinuous antenna-coupled dichroic detector from the POLARBEAR-2 experiment. The TES bolometers showed the expected I–V response, and the RF performance agrees with the simulation. We will discuss the motivation, design consideration, fabrication processes, test results, and how industrial detector fabrication could be a path to fabricate hundreds of detector wafers for future CMB polarimetry experiments.

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