, Volume 104, Issue 3, pp 673-678
Date: 31 May 2011

Intrinsic timing jitter of superconducting nanowire single-photon detectors

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We report on an experimental investigation of the timing jitter (TJ) in a fiber-coupled detection system based on a superconducting nanowire single-photon detector (SNSPD). We used a picosecond pulsed laser and fiber delay lines to generate subsequent optical pulsed pairs in each period and measured the TJ between the pulses. Because only the interval time between two pulses in each period was interested, we did not need to know the absolute time of every pulse. Therefore, the TJ from laser and trigger signal can be removed. In order to estimate the intrinsic TJ of SNSPD, we analyzed the TJ caused by time distribution of optical pulse, electronic components, readout noise, kinetic inductance and dispersion in fiber channel. Finally, we obtained the intrinsic TJs for two kinds of detectors considering these impacts.