Linearity and high signal-to-noise performance of the STIS CCD

Ronald L. Gilliland, Paul Goudfrooij, Randy A. Kimble

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


On-orbit data characteristics of the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) CCD aboard the Hubble Space Telescope have been explored with early calibrations in a number of limiting conditions. At a gain of 4 e- DN-1, STIS CCD data show excellent linearity at high count levels, even for extreme oversaturation of individual central pixels. At low count levels we interpret a position- and intensity-dependent nonlinearity in terms of charge transfer (in)efficiency in the parallel clocking direction and provide a simple model that accounts for this. A short time series of spectra was acquired at short-exposure times and high signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) on the binary system a Cen A and B enabling the shutter repeatability to be quantified at 0.0002 s. A direct demonstration of near-Poisson-limited time series with S/N > 3000 is shown.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1009-1020
Number of pages12
JournalPublications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific
Issue number762
StatePublished - Aug 1999

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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