The Photon Force PF32 Single Photon Counting Camera range has such precise timing that you can watch light as it travels.

With a time resolution of 55 picoseconds, the PF32 SPAD array camera range from Photon Force can easily capture processes that occur in the nanosecond time regime.

Observing light-in-flight and plasma creation in the air

Researchers from Heriot-Watt University and the University of Glasgow used the PF32 camera to capture both light-in-flight and plasma creation in the air.  Discussed further in the paper ‘Single-photon sensitive light-in-flight imaging’, the research process provided two key videos.

Capturing light-in-flight

The Photon Force PF32 camera was used to detect individual photons scattered by molecules in the air. The data was then interpolated to increase the resolution and overlaid on a background photograph.

Capturing plasma creation

To capture plasma creation in the air, the process was filmed with two different optical bandpass filters; one to record the laser and one to record the plasma generation.

Analysing laser pulse dynamics in optical fibres

Heriot-Watt University, the University of Glasgow and the University of Southampton teamed up to use the PF32 SPAD array camera to analyse laser pulse dynamics in optical fibres.

By placing different spectral bandpass filters in front of the sensor, the PF32 recorded supercontinuum generation in photon crystal fibre, as detailed in the paper ‘Observations of laser pulse propagation in optical fibres with a s SPAD camera’.

Optical fibres video

In this video, all the results from the different pass bands are combined, demonstrating that there is a delay between the red and blue components. Through analysis of this data, the researchers were able to measure the group index of different wavelength bands at a standoff distance of one metre, without direct access to the fibre.