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Milostnaya, I., Korneev, A., Tarkhov, M., Divochiy, A., Minaeva, O., Seleznev, V., et al. (2008). Superconducting single photon nanowire detectors development for IR and THz applications. J. Low Temp. Phys., 151(1-2), 591–596.
Abstract: We present our progress in the development of superconducting single-photon detectors (SSPDs) based on meander-shaped nanowires made from few-nm-thick superconducting films. The SSPDs are operated at a temperature of 2–4.2 K (well below T c ) being biased with a current very close to the nanowire critical current at the operation temperature. To date, the material of choice for SSPDs is niobium nitride (NbN). Developed NbN SSPDs are capable of single photon counting in the range from VIS to mid-IR (up to 6 μm) with a record low dark counts rate and record-high counting rate. The use of a material with a low transition temperature should shift the detectors sensitivity towards longer wavelengths. We present state-of-the art NbN SSPDs as well as the results of our recent approach to expand the developed SSPD technology by the use of superconducting materials with lower T c , such as molybdenum rhenium (MoRe). MoRe SSPDs first were made and tested; a single photon response was obtained.