Photodiode front ends are by no means glamorous. Living between the detector and the signal processing system, they're supposed to turn a photocurrent into a buffered, filtered electronic replica while preserving the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR). Nobody notices them until they stop doing their jobs.Your optical system may be a thing of great beauty, but a badly designed front end can sink those precious photoelectrons deep in Johnson noise. My unscientific sampling suggests that unfortunately a great many front ends are badly designed: the usual mistake is to trade SNR for speed without a fight. This article will describe techniques for building fast front ends without sacrificing SNR.

© 2001 Optical Society of America

PDF Article

Cited By

You do not have subscription access to this journal. Cited by links are available to subscribers only. You may subscribe either as an Optica member, or as an authorized user of your institution.

Contact your librarian or system administrator
Login to access Optica Member Subscription