Abstract

A class of experiments exemplified by a Thomson scattering experiment requires measurement of the total number of photons comprising an optical pulse. Standard photon counting techniques cannot be used when the pulses are too narrow and/or for other technical reasons. Photon count has, therefore, to be derived from the integrated pulse. This paper describes the optimization of the avalanche detector system to maximize the SNR of the integrated pulse and hence to minimize the error in the photon count determination. The effect of the detector properties and other systems parameters on the optimization of the detector system will be described.

© 1984 Optical Society of America

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