The QSI RS 3.2 model camera employs a Kodak KAF-3200ME 3.2 megapixel Enhanced Response full-frame CCD image sensor with microlens technology. The KAF-3200ME sensor has a photoactive array of 2184W x 1472H pixels. It has excellent quantum efficiency between 350nm and 1000nm with significant enhancement at the blue end of the spectrum. Low dark current and high pixel charge capacity result in a dynamic range exceeding 77db. Micro lenses cover the surface of the CCD to focus the light through the transparent gate to further increase optical response.
The KAF-3200 has the highest Quantum Efficiency and lowest noise of any Kodak sensor making it exceptional for low-light applications where maximizing the available Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) is paramount. With peak QE of over 80% it offers many of the benefits of a back-illuminated sensor without the drawbacks or higher cost.
The high quantum efficiency, wide dynamic range and low noise performance make the QSI RS 3.2 ideally suited to a broad range of demanding imaging applications. The QSI RS 3.2 includes a 3.2mp Kodak KAF-3200ME sensor USB 2.0 High-Speed, 16-bit output Dual Read rates of 800kHz and 8MHz, Air cooling to 45C below ambient and a Mechanical shutter with shutter speeds down to 30ms (0.03 sec)
The Model RS 3.2s camera incorporates QSI's proprietary internal, even-illumination mechanical shutter in the 'mid-size' camera body configuration. The shutter is not only used for timing exposures, but can be left closed to produce 'dark frames' for subsequent image processing. Exposures can be as short as 0.03 seconds or as long as 240 minutes. The shutter is rated for more than 1 million cycles. Exposures can be fired under software control or with the use of the hardware input trigger.
Thermo-electric Cooling (TEC)
Effective cooling of the CCD image sensor is essential for long exposure imaging, especially in astronomy. Key in the compact design of the RS Series cameras is a very efficient custom 2-stage thermoelectric cooler (TEC) subsystem. Intelligent, programmable cooling fans are integrated into the rear of the camera body to remove the heat generated by the cooler. Typically, forced air cooling lowers the regulated CCD temperature by up to 45°C below ambient utilizing 85% power. Tight +/- 0.1°C temperature regulation is maintained at temperature settings of 10°C below ambient and lower. A slim liquid heat exchanger can be attached to the rear of the camera body to increase the cooling further, up to 55°C below the temperature of the circulating fluid.
The cooled CCD image sensor is positioned in a hermetically sealed environmental chamber covered with an anti-reflection coated precision optical window. The chamber is purged with an ultra dry noble gas to increase heat conduction and eliminate the possibility of frost forming inside the chamber. To extend the useful period before re-purging is required, a user-rechargeable microsieve desiccant is employed to scavenge water molecules that enter the chamber. It is located behind a sub-micron, gas-permeable membrane to prevent particulate contamination of the CCD chamber.
Deep Cooled Scientific CCD Cameras
The QSI RS Series is designed for life science and research applications from UV to NIR wavelengths.Dual read rates of up to 8 MHz with high-speed USB 2.0, deep cooling to >45C below ambient and full 16-bit output allow QSI RS Series cameras to produce high quality images with high frame rates, extremely wide dynamic range, excellent linearity and exceptionally low noise.
RS series cameras are available with no-coverglass CCDs and a fused silica window for maximum transmission across a broad spectrum of light, from as low as 240nm up to 1100nm. Electronic input and output triggers with latency as low as 5µsec allow precise exposure timing and triggering of external events such as strobes. RS 4.2 and RS 2.0 models support Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) exposure mode for flow visualization with two exposures as close together as 5µsec.
Cooling on the RS Series is achieved with a custom 2-stage TEC supporting regulated cooling to >45C below ambient, or greater than 50C with the optional Liquid Heat Exchanger.
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