Single electron response achieved!

We have recently demonstrated, for the first time, single-electron response with a 675 um-thick skipper CCD fabricated on high-resistivity silicon. This is the first techonolgical milestone of the DAMIC-M program.

The extremely low noise of the skipper CCD will allow us to reach unprecedently low energy thresholds with DAMIC-M for an increase in sensitivity by several orders of magnitude in the search for light dark matter particles.

The prototype 1kx6k CCD was designed by Berkeley Lab and packaged at the University of Washington (UW). The data acquisition system and interface electronics were also developed at UW with the support of CENPA technical staff.

Left: 1kx6k DAMIC-M development CCD packaged at the University of Washington. Right: Distribution of pixel values in a CCD image, demonstrating a noise level of 0.07 e- RMS, which allows the device to resolve single charges per pixel.