An in-situ movable calibration source for cryogenic particle detectors

N. Mast, M. Fritts, D. J. Sincavage, P. Cushman, V. Mandic

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


A prototype device capable of moving a radioactive calibration source to multiple positions was operated at millikelvin temperatures using a modified commercial stepper motor. It was developed as an in-situ calibration strategy for cryogenic dark matter detectors. Data taken by scanning a calibration source across multiple radial positions of a prototype dark matter detector demonstrated its functionality. Construction, heat load, and operation of the device are discussed, as is the effect of the motor on the detector operation. A sample dataset taken over multiple positions of a SuperCDMS detector is presented as an example of the utility of such a device.

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors would like to thank the SuperCDMS collaboration for providing the detector and electronics. We also thank Jake Nelson and Gabriel Spahn for their help with lab operations. This work was supported by DOE grant DE-SC0012294 .

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Elsevier B.V.


  • Calibration
  • Cryogenic
  • Germanium
  • Ionization
  • Phonon
  • Stepper motor


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