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How fast is fast? Sampling microsecond

dynamics with a 2000 fps camera

LAMBDA cameras are capable of taking 2,000 fps continuously without time gap in between images, making them the fastest large format imaging cameras currently available. But is this the limit? How fast can LAMBDA go, what are the quickest dynamics you could image? To answer these questions, we need to recall one of the unique features of the chip. The Medipix3RX chip has two counters in each pixel, which can either be combined for a dynamic range of 24 bits or used in continuous read/write mode, where one counter is being used for counting while the other one is read out. Switching the counters is easy and happens in much less than 1 microsecond. In continuous read/write mode reading the detector out takes 0.5 ms, for any integration time larger than this the camera can image continuously, without time gaps in between frames. However the illumination time can be selected by the user to be any value all the way down to less than a 1 microsecond, at which point the shaping time of the preamplifier limits further reduction of the illumination time. Choosing a shutter time shorter than 500 microseconds will not give you more than 2 frames every millisecond (since the detector still needs to be read), but will allow you to have very brief counting periods. These extremely brief counting periods can be advantageous for certain types of applications. One example would be XPCS, where a long counting time would smear out the coherent properties of the system, resulting in reduced contrast. Another example are certain pump-probe experiments where a repeatable quick response of the system is externally triggered. Sweeping the delay between system and camera trigger the entire response dynamics can be sampled down to the microsecond level. To recap: LAMBDA cameras are sensitive to dynamics on the microsecond time scale and able to sample them 2 kHz frequency, making them an excellent choice for a large class of XPCS and pump- probe type experiments.
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