Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
Alessandri C., Abusleme A., Guzmán D., Passalacqua I., Álvarez-Fontecilla E. and Guarini M. (2016)

Optimal CCD readout by digital correlated double sampling

Revista : Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Volumen : 455
Número : 2
Páginas : 1443-1450
Tipo de publicación : ISI Ir a publicación


Digital correlated double sampling (DCDS), a readout technique for charge-coupled devices (CCD), is gaining popularity in astronomical applications. By using an oversampling ADC and a digital filter, a DCDS system can achieve a better performance than traditional analogue readout techniques at the expense of a more complex system analysis. Several attempts to analyse and optimize a DCDS system have been reported, but most of the work presented in the literature has been experimental. Some approximate analytical tools have been presented for independent parameters of the system, but the overall performance and trade-offs have not been yet modelled. Furthermore, there is disagreement among experimental results that cannot be explained by the analytical tools available. In this work, a theoretical analysis of a generic DCDS readout system is presented, including key aspects such as the signal conditioning stage, the ADC resolution, the sampling frequency and the digital filter implementation. By using a time-domain noise model, the effect of the digital filter is properly modelled as a discrete-time process, thus avoiding the imprecision of continuous-time approximations that have been used so far. As a result, an accurate, closed-form expression for the signal-to-noise ratio at the output of the readout system is reached. This expression can be easily optimized in order to meet a set of specifications for a given CCD, thus providing a systematic design methodology for an optimal readout system. Simulated results are presented to validate the theory, obtained with both time- and frequency-domain noise generation models for completeness.