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Room temperature and TE-cooled infrared (IR) detectors from Vigo – fast, sensitive and affordable. These are the finest non-cryogenic MCT detectors in the world. Key applications include spectroscopy, gas sensing, laser metrology, rangefinders, lidar, munitions and missiles, quantum cascade and CO2 laser systems.

These detectors provide significant benefit to users:

  • Low noise
  • Fast
  • Wide bandwidth (up to  ~1 GHz)
  • No cryogenics

We offer a range of solutions to support your requirements:

  • Detectors – variety of packages and wavelengths
  • Preamplifiers and controllers and other accessories
  • Detector Sets – complete turn-key solutions available for purchase in the web store
  • OEM sensors– modules built to your specifications for embedding in your product.

Our expansive product line features infrared detectors whose sensitive wavelength range from 2 microns to 14 microns depending upon device architecture.

These devices operate entirely without liquid nitrogen or any other cryogenics yet provide performance that is only a factor of 3 to 5 less than cryogenic devices, and 10 to 1000 times better than other non-cryogenic detectors! Sensitivity of our detectors can be increased by thermoelectric (TE) cooling or using an immersion lens, or both. TE-cooled detectors must be mounted on a heat sink. Additionally, a TE-cooler power supply/controller is necessary.

The chart below is a top-level summary of the numerous detector solutions available. Refer to the catalog for specific detectors.

ProductDescriptionTE StagesWave band
Web Store
PVPhotovoltaic2, 3 or 4<3 – >10.6
2, 3 or 4<3 – >10.6
PVMPhotovoltaic2<2 – >10.6Buy
2, 3 or 4<2 – >10.6
PEMPhotoelectromagneticRT<2 – >10.6Buy
RT<2 – >10.6
PCPhotoconductive2, 3 or 4<2 - >14
2, 3 or 4<2 - >14

Note: Refer to the catalog below for specific information on each product, their optical and electrical properties, packaging options, and matched preamplifier options.

The detectors come in photoconductive and photovoltaic types. Photovoltaic detectors create a measurable voltage and current in response to photon bombardment, much like a solar cell. Photoconductive devices change resistance when photons come in. A low noise bias current must be used to measure the resistance change. Photoconductive devices tend to have somewhat higher signal (responsivity) and sometimes slightly better signal-to-noise than photovoltaic equivalents when operated at optimum frequencies. On the other hand, photoconductors exhibit excess noise at low frequencies – called 1/f or flicker noise, are often slower in frequency response, and the low noise bias circuit costs money.


Choosing a detector and, if necessary, an associated preamp and TE cooling device can be a confusing task. Please ask us for help!

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