Starlight Xpress SXV-H16 CCD Camera

The Starlight Xpress SXV-H16 is a departure from the normal SX line of Sony CCD based cameras. As Sony do not manufacture a large mono chip, SX researched the available devices and decided that the Kodak KAI4021M was the best option for a new mono camera.

To reduce the negative effects of the greater Kodak dark signal, SX have used a two stage Peltier cooler for a 10 degree reduction in the CCD temperature, and a new high-speed USB2 interface circuit to greatly reduce the download time.

The fast download minimises the visibility of bias frame artefacts, such as hot columns and the top to bottom gradient that is commonly seen on such chips.

We think that the result is a highly satisfactory mono camera which overcomes the lack of suitable Sony mono devices.

Starlight Xpress SXV-H16 Features

  • Large, high resolution Kodak CCD chip, with 4,194,304 x 7.4uM square pixels in a 15.15 x 15.15mm array.
  • High sensitivity, 55% QE at peak (green light).
  • Low dark signal - Dark frames not necessary for most of the brighter deep sky objects
  • Anti-blooming with minimal effect on linearity and no lost active area
  • Built-in super high speed USB 2.0 interface for approx. 2.5 second downloads
  • Built-in autoguider interface and output - compatible with the optional dedicated external guide camera
  • Built-in dual serial ports for accessory control - directly drive filter wheels, GOTO 'scopes etc.
  • Single USB cable control for all features - get rid of that dangerous cable tangle!
  • Only ONE computer needed to control all of the devices and functions
  • Very low power consumption. Less than 1.0 amps at 12v DC - 12VA at 110v or 240v AC
  • Compact and lightweight - only 75mm in diameter x 100mm long - less than 500 grams load on the 'scope

Starlight Xpress SXV-H16

Starlight Xpress SXV-H16 Specification

  • CCD type: Kodak KAI4021M interline CCD with low dark current and vertical anti-blooming.
  • CCD Full resolution Pixel data: Pixel size: 7.4uM x 7.4uM, Image format: 2048 x 2048 pixels
  • CCD Image area: 15.15mm (Horizontal) x 15.15mm (Vertical).
  • CCD quality: Grade 2 or better - No dead columns, no dead pixels.
  • Spectral Response: QE max at 540nM (~55%), 30% at 400nM and 660nM.
  • Readout Noise: Less than 10 electrons RMS - typically only 7 electrons.
  • Full-well capacity: Greater than 40,000 e- (unbinned)
  • Anti-blooming: Overload margin greater than 100x.
  • Dark current: Dark frame saturation time greater than 10 hours. Less than 0.05 electrons/second @ + 10C ambient.
  • Data format: 16 bits.
  • System gain: 0.6 electrons per ADU
  • Computer Interface: Built-in USB 2.0 compatible interface.
  • Image download time: Typically 2.5 seconds at full resolution using USB 2.0.
  • Power requirements: 115VAC / 240VAC @ 12VA, or 12VDC @ 750mA max.
  • Cooling system: Regulated constant current cooling supply with two stage thermoelectric cooler to give a CCD temperature of approximately -40C below ambient.
  • Size: 75 x 100mm black anodised aluminium barrel with 42mm 'T2' thread at the CCD window end & input/output plugs at rear. CCD alignment screws are provided for setting the chip parallel to the focal plane.
  • Weight: approx. 400g.

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