CHEC – A compact camera for the small-sized CTA telescopes
The Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA) will host 70 Small-Sized Telescopes (SSTs) in the Southern Hemisphere. The SSTs are distributed over several square kilometres and provide sensitivity in an energy range between a few TeV and 300 TeV (teraelectronvolts). One option proposed for the SSTs is a dual-mirror optical design with a primary mirror of 4 metre in diameter and secondary mirror 2 m in diameter. Two dual-mirror SST prototypes exist:
MPIK is leading the development of the Compact High-Energy Camera (CHEC) for use with the dual-mirror SSTs. The camera features a modular design and provides full waveform information for all 2048 pixels with a sampling rate of one giga-sample per second. A first prototype with multi-anode photomultiplier tubes as photosensors (CHEC-M) has been built and successfully tested on-telescope at the Observatoire de Paris. A second prototype based on silicon photomultipliers (CHEC-S) is fully assembled at the institute and under test.
The CHEC collaboration includes institutes from Australia, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, and the UK. MPIK is coordinating the project and leading the effort into full camera assembly, integration and verification.