Camera supports synchrotron beam diagnostics

JANUARY 31--At the Diamond Light Source, a scientific facility being built in South Oxfordshire, UK (www.diamond.ac.uk), beam diagnostics will be performed with a compact digital camera.

Jan 31st, 2007

JANUARY 31--At the Diamond Light Source, a scientific facility being built in South Oxfordshire, UK (www.diamond.ac.uk), beam diagnostics will be performed with a compact digital camera. The camera, a Flea from Point Grey Research (Vancouver, BC, Canada; www.ptgrey.com), is an IEEE 1394 camera designed to fit spaces as small as 30 x 31 mm and comes with a 1/3-in. Sony CCD and a 12-bit analog-to-digital converter.

The Diamond Light Source is a synchrotron that will ultimately host up to 40 research stations, or beamlines, supporting the life, physical, and environmental sciences. These beamlines will be used by scientists and engineers for research and development.

To support its beam-diagnostic system, Diamond needed a compact camera that could be controlled remotely (gain and exposure), offered good performance (low noise), and provided a digital readout so that images could be viewed on any computer within the control system. Trigger synchronization offered by digital cameras was also critical.

"The Flea has found a broad range of applications in beam diagnostics due to its good performance and wide range on parameters such as exposure and gain," said Guenther Rehm, head of beam diagnostics at Diamond Light Source.

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