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- Offer Profile
An SME Focused on Photon-CountingPhoton Force is a recent
startup in the image sensing community, building on the EC FP6 Funded
Megaframe project and over a decade of successful research experience in
time-resolved imaging from the CMOS Sensors & Systems Group at the
University of Edinburgh. Our mission is to provide innovative, high quality,
and accurate sensor technology to facilitate research, with an initial focus
on the biomedical field. Until now, single photon detection and timing
capabilities have only been available as separate, bulky, and low-throughput
pieces of equipment. Our products help speed up the research process by
streamlining these features into a single, simple unit, easily integrated
into your existing lab setup.
PF32 Time-Correlated Single-Photon Counting Camera
- 32×32 Time Correlated Single Photon Counting (TCSPC)
- Fully digital photon counting and timestamping (no analogue readout
- Wavelength response available on request.
- In-pixel dual mode electronics:
- 55 ps resolution 10-bit Time to Digital Converter (TDC)
time-stamping (1,023 time bins).
- 7-bit photon counting.
- Pipelined operation: simultaneous data acquisition and readout (no
inter-frame dead time).
- Up to 300k frames/s transfer to PC via USB3 (dependent on mode and
bit-depth of data).
- Instrument response function ~ 150 ps.
- Programmable region of interest (permits higher frame rate for
subset of pixels).
- Flexible readout timing (permits higher frame rate for reduced
number of counter/TDC bits).
- External laser synchronisation input to provide TDC stop signal.
- Laser synchronisation output (for laser as slave operation).
- Single 5V power supply (included).
- Precision-machined aluminium enclosure (CS-Mount for lenses).
Showcase of the PF32's Impact
- The PF32 system has been used in a wide range of research
- Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging
- Tracking Hidden Objects
- Imaging through Scattering Media
- Imaging Light in Flight
Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging
- No more scanning: time-resolved measurements with an
array of single-photon detectors.
FLIM and FRET imaging traditionally use scanning systems to form an
image of the sample under test. With the PF32, however, an image is formed
without the need for scanning thanks to the 32 x 32 array of SPAD detectors
in the sensor. The following video is an excerpt from S. Poland’s paper,
although this took advantage of scanning the array for a further increase in
speed and resolution.
The left shows intensity, the middle is lifetime, and the right is a
combination of both.
Tracking Hidden Objects
- Single-photon sensitivity captures triple-scattered
light, and 55 ps timing resolution enables accurate locating of hidden
Researchers at the University of Glasgow and Heriot-Watt University
(Edinburgh, Scotland) used the PF32 to capture photons that had interacted
with an object hidden from direct line-of-sight. The top figure shows the
experimental setup, whilst the video shows tracking of the object at 3
Imaging through Scattering Media
- Using time-resolved data to predict an object’s form
behind a scattering medium, or ballistic photons to image through tissue.
Researchers at MIT have used deep learning on time resolved data from the
PF32 camera in order to predict an object’s form behind a scattering
surface. The figure below shows (a) the training of the computer neural
network (CNN) and (b) the physical setup of the pulsed laser and PF32
By analysing (a) the time-resolved data from the PF32 of an unknown object
form, the authors were able to (b) predict the classification of the toy’s
pose with a high degree of accuracy as shown the figure below.
Imaging Light in Flight
- The PF32 has such precise
timing precision that you
can watch light as it
that occur in the nanosecond
time-regime is no problem
for the PF32’s 55 ps time
resolution. In the video
below, researchers from
Heriot-Watt University and
the University of Glasgow
have captured light in
flight – individual photons
scattered by molecules in
the air were detected by the
PF32 camera. The data was
then interpolated to
increase the resolution and
overlaid on a background
In the same paper, they use
a similar method to capture
plasma creation in air. This
time the process was filmed
with two different optical
bandpass filters, one to
record the laser, and one to
record the plasma
generation. Analysis of the
exponential lifetime decay
of the plasma shows the
results are consistent with
previously reported values.
Quoting the paper: “It is
important to note that the
technique described here
allows to characterize the
plasma dynamics without the
need to introduce any
agents, which would severely
alter the plasma formation