IDEAS develops integrated circuits for space based instruments and applications. The following field are covered:

Radiation Monitoring Instruments in Space

The natural radiation in space threatens satellites, materials, and astronauts. The radiation environment depends on mission trajectories and varies with solar activity. Space missions need instruments for radiation alert and forecast to protect sensitive parts and to achieve the mission goals. The radiation monitoring instruments must be small, light-weight and low power. IDEAS has designed integrated circuits for space radiation monitors that meet the requirements in terms of performance and budgets. The integration of functions on one monolithic die enables to further reduce the size and weight and cost. Integrated circuits from IDEAS make small and low power space radiation monitors.

Space Based Instruments for Fundamental Physics

Fundamental physics in space aims at understanding the formation of the universe. The study of matter and antimatter in cosmic rays, gamma-ray bursts, evidence for dark matter and dark energy. The instrumentation requirements depend on mission details, and they often mandate radiation tolerance, low power, and extreme temperatures. Integrated circuits from IDEAS are flying in low Earth orbit on the International Space Stations (ISS), in Moon orbit (CHANDRAYAAN mission), in Sun orbit (STEREO mission), on various x-ray and gamma ray missions (AGILE, ASTRO-H, FOXSI), and interplanetary missions to Jupiter (JUICE) and Mercury (BeppiColombo). IDEAS ASICs help to discover and understand the formation of the universe.
  • VATA450 in ASTRO-H SGD by Tajima et al., Soft Gamma-ray Detector for the ASTRO-H Mission, arXiv:1010.4997v1 [astro-ph.IM] 24 Oct 2010,
  • VATA451 in FOXSI by Ishikawa et al., Fine-Pitch Semiconductor Detector for the FOXSI Mission, Nuclear Science, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:58 ,  Issue: 4), 2011, DOI:10.1109/TNS.2011.2154342
  • VATA453 in Shih et al., The Gamma-Ray Imager/Polarimeter for Solar flares (GRIPS) , Proc. SPIE 8443, Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2012: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray, 84434H (September 7, 2012); doi:10.1117/12.926450;
  • VATA461 in ASTRO-H HXI by Watanabe et al.,  The Si/CdTe semiconductor Compton camera of the ASTRO-H Soft Gamma-ray Detector (SGD), Nucl. Instr. Meth. C Volume 765, 21 November 2014, Pages 192–201, doi:10.1016/j.nima.2014.05.127
  • XA182 in SWIFT (suceeded by IDE4184) by Barthelmy, "Burst Alert Telescope (BAT) on the Swift MIDEX mission", Proc. SPIE 4140, X-Ray and Gamma-Ray Instrumentation for Astronomy XI, 50 (December 13, 2000); doi:10.1117/12.409149;
  • IDE4184 type ASIC in ASIM aboard ISS, Cenkeramaddi et al., Low-energy CZT detector array for the ASIM mission, Instrumentation and Measurement Technology Conference (I2MTC), 2012 IEEE International,
  • VA32HDR9 ASIC (succeeded by IDE1140) in AMS-1 and AMS-2 by Alcaraz et al., The alpha magnetic spectrometer silicon tracker: Performance results with protons and helium nuclei, Nucl. Instr. Meth. A, Volume 593, Issue 3 , 11 August 2008, Pages 376–398, doi:10.1016/j.nima.2008.05.015
  • IDE3160 in DAMPE by Zhang et al., Design of a high dynamic range photomultiplier base board for the BGO ECAL of DAMPE, Nucl. Instr. Meth. A, 21 April 2015, Pages 21–26,
  • IDE4281 in Meier et al., Development of an ASIC for the Readout of CdTe Radiation Detectors in Space, Proc. IEEE Nuclear Science Symposium, 2013.
  • IDE3380 SIPHRA for the readout of photon detectors, such as photomultiplier tubes (PMTs), silicon photomultipliers (SiPMs), and multi-pixel photon counters (MPPCs).
  • IDE3381 APOCAT for high-rate, high-resolution x-ray and gamma-ray spectroscopy with scintillators and PMTs or SiPMs.

Space Based Imaging for Science and Earth Observation

Future science and Earth observation missions will use large array image sensors to acquire high resolution images with a large field of view. The applications in space require high spectral sensitivity, very low noise and special environmental durability.  While science missions record a low photon flux at long exposure time and relatively slow readout speed, the Earth observation requires shorter exposure time and higher readout speed. The imaging sensors can be of various types, for example, charge coupled devices (CCD), depleted field effect transitors (DEPFET), and monolithic or hybrid CMOS image sensors. All types need  auxiliary electronics that provides regulated power, analogue and digital controls, and digitization of the image data. IDEAS has developed an integrated circuit  that interfaces to hybrid image sensors. This circuit combines the functions needed for the image sensor, that is, regulated power, analog and digital control, and high-speed digitization of the image data. IDEAS ASICs for large array image sensors support the next generation of hybrid image sensors for Science and Earth observations.
  • NIRCA in Paahlsson et al., Preliminary validation results of an ASIC for the readout and control of near-infrared large array detectors, Proc. SPIE 9451, Infrared Technology and Applications XLI, 94512J (4 June 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2180439
  • NIRCA in Meier et al., Development of an ASIC for the readout and control of near-infrared large array detectors, Proc. SPIE 9154, High Energy, Optical, and Infrared Detectors for Astronomy VI, 915421 (23 July 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2055839
  • IDE8420 NIRCA MkII, an ASIC for reading out infrared focal plane arrays for Earth observation from space

Complete Space Instruments

IDEAS has developed the Norwegian Radiation Monitor (NORM) for measuring energetic charged particle radiation in space. The instrument is a fully space qualified system that can be tailored to specific needs. IDEAS can assist its customers in developing a space grade system based on IDEAS integrated circuits with expertise in circuit design, providing development kits and software and other services.