Bay Photonics delivers first packaged SPADs for AIRQKD consortium

Bay Photonics delivers first packaged SPADs for AIRQKD consortium

Bay Photonics have packaged and shipped the first Single Photon Avalanche Photodiode (SPAD) prototypes for the Innovate UK AIRQKD consortium. A SPAD is a semiconductor based device capable of detecting very low levels of light down to the level of individual photons. SPAD detectors can be used in quantum computing, LIDAR, free space optical communications, and other low light level applications.

To ensure optimum performance, the SPAD detectors need to be kept cool, and Bay Photonics have been developing packaging solutions providing precise environmental control of the semiconductor chip in hermetically sealed, thermally controlled, TO8 packages. Bay Photonics have demonstrated stable temperature performance below -45C in a relatively simple package with good efficiency.

The AIRQKD project, funded by Innovate UK, aims to develop free space ultra-secure communications networks by exploiting quantum key distribution (QKD). The aims of the project are not only to develop the systems and application layers, but also to develop the quantum components required as basic building blocks, including single photon emitters (SPEs) as well as single photon detectors (SPADs).

Bay Photonics are providing component packaging and manufacturing expertise. Bay have recently taken delivery of a projection welder which will provide automated hermetic sealing of the SPADs in a controlled atmosphere to ensure highly reliable and efficient operation. Investment in this capital equipment will ensure that the UK maintains critical manufacturing capability to produce key quantum componentry.

About Bay Photonics – Bay Photonics have been providing photonic packaging solutions since 2007 and have experience in hermetic packaging of photonic components such as laser die, detectors, and PICS. Bay are also experts in development and building small, robustly packaged micro-optic and optical fiber based photonic modules and lasers. Bay Photonics are located within the Electronics & Photonics Innovation Centre (EPIC), Paignton, Devon

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