A dual-band millimeter-wave kinetic inductance camera for the iram 30 m telescope

A. Monfardini, A. Benoit, A. Bideaud, L. Swenson, A. Cruciani, P. Camus, C. Hoffmann, F. X. Désert, S. Doyle, P. Ade, P. Mauskopf, C. Tucker, M. Roesch, S. Leclercq, K. F. Schuster, A. Endo, A. Baryshev, J. J.A. Baselmans, L. Ferrari, S. J.C. YatesO. Bourrion, J. MacIas-Perez, C. Vescovi, M. Calvo, C. Giordano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

137 Scopus citations


The Néel IRAM KIDs Array (NIKA) is a fully integrated measurement system based on kinetic inductance detectors (KIDs) currently being developed for millimeter wave astronomy. The instrument includes dual-band optics allowing simultaneous imaging at 150 GHz and 220 GHz. The imaging sensors consist of two spatially separated arrays of KIDs. The first array, mounted on the 150 GHz branch, is composed of 144 lumped-element KIDs. The second array (220 GHz) consists of 256 antenna-coupled KIDs. Each of the arrays is sensitive to a single polarization; the band splitting is achieved by using a grid polarizer. The optics and sensors are mounted in a custom dilution cryostat, with an operating temperature of 70 mK. Electronic readout is realized using frequency multiplexing and a transmission line geometry consisting of a coaxial cable connected in series with the sensor array and a low-noise 4 K amplifier. The dual-band NIKA was successfully tested in 2010 October at the Institute for Millimetric Radio Astronomy (IRAM) 30 m telescope at Pico Veleta, Spain, performing in-line with laboratory predictions. An optical NEP was then calculated to be around 2 × 10-16 W Hz-1/2 (at 1 Hz) while under a background loading of approximately 4 pW pixel-1. This improvement in comparison with a preliminary run (2009) verifies that NIKA is approaching the target sensitivity for photon-noise limited ground-based detectors. Taking advantage of the larger arrays and increased sensitivity, a number of scientifically relevant faint and extended objects were then imaged including the Galactic Center SgrB2 (FIR1), the radio galaxy Cygnus A, and the NGC1068 Seyfert galaxy. These targets were all observed simultaneously in the 150 GHz and 220 GHz atmospheric windows.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number24
JournalAstrophysical Journal, Supplement Series
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • instrumentation: detectors
  • radio continuum: galaxies
  • radio continuum: general
  • submillimeter: galaxies
  • submillimeter: general
  • techniques: miscellaneous

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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