CTA - A Compact High-Energy Camera for the Small Size 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). The Gamma-ray Cherenkov Telescope (GCT) is one option proposed for the SSTs. It is a dual-mirror optical design with a primary mirror of 4 metre in diameter.

The GCT would be equipped with the Compact High-Energy Camera (CHEC). 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 has been built and successfully tested in 2016 and 2017. A second prototype with silicon photomultipliers is being assembled and will be ready for testing in 2018.

The CHEC collaboration includes institutes from Australia, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, and the UK. DESY is coordinating the development activities of the cameras' back-end electronics, which make use of embedded systems for triggering, timing and data acquisition.