An update on the SCUBA-2 project

Michael D. Audley, Wayne S. Holland, Trevor Hodson, Michael MacIntosh, Ian Robson, Kent D. Irwin, Gene Hilton, William D. Duncan, Carl Reintsema, Anthony J. Walton, William Parkes, Peter A. R. Ade, Ian Walker, Mike Fich, Jan Kycia, Mark Halpern, David A. Naylor, George Mitchell, Pierre Bastien

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


SCUBA-2, which replaces SCUBA (the Submillimeter Common User Bolometer Array) on the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope (JCMT) in 2006, is a large-format bolometer array for submillimeter astronomy. Unlike previous detectors which have used discrete bolometers, SCUBA-2 has two dc-coupled, monolithic, filled arrays with a total of ~10,000 bolometers. It will offer simultaneous imaging of a 50 sq-arcmin field of view at wavelengths of 850 and 450 microns. SCUBA-2 is expected to have a huge impact on the study of galaxy formation and evolution in the early Universe as well as star and planet formation in our own Galaxy. Mapping the sky to the same S/N up to 1000 times faster than SCUBA, it will also act as a pathfinder for the new submillimeter interferometers such as ALMA. SCUBA-2's absorber-coupled pixels use superconducting transition edge sensors operating at 120 mK for performance limited by the sky background photon noise. The monolithic silicon detector arrays are deep-etched by the Bosch process to isolate the pixels on silicon nitride membranes. Electrical connections are made through indium bump bonds to a SQUID time-domain multiplexer (MUX). We give an overview of the SCUBA-2 system and an update on its status, and describe some of the technological innovations that make this unique instrument possible.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of SPIE Volume 5498
Subtitle of host publicationMillimeter and Submillimeter Detectors for Astronomy II
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2004


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  • SCUBA-2

    Walton, A., Gundlach, A., Stevenson, T. & Terry, J.



    Project: Research

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