Micro Photon Devices (MPD) is a dynamic production and engineering company founded in 2004 as spin-off of Politecnico di Milano and Microgate Srl; the former provides the efforts and expertise of a research group at Politecnico di Milano, led by Prof. Sergio Cova, the latter represents the industrial partner with a well-consolidated development and production activities in the fields of Adaptive Optics, Professional Timing, Training and Sport and Medical Rehab.

Over the past 40 years, Prof. Cova and his team have made many contributions in the field of photon counting detectors, circuits and applications – including:

  • Design and production of Single Photon Counting Avalanche Diodes, “SPAD”, fabricated either using custom Silicon, standard CMOS or InGaAs/InP technologies
  • Active Quenching IC development

The mission of MPD is the production of photon counting devices based on the technologies developed at Politecnico di Milano, accompanying this with the product engineering and production experiences gained over the years by Microgate Srl.

Besides Micro Photon Devices products range, the company is also available to develop custom designs for specific applications related to photon counting detection technology, taking advantage of its own expertise covering the whole engineering and production flow, including prototyping, components procurement, system integration, testing and shipping. Through Microgate, MPD have access to expertise in the design and engineering of hard-real-time and real-time control systems. In hardware, the key competences cover the high speed logic design including high speed communication, large FPGAs and DSPs, and analog design of acquisition and power control electronics. The software capabilities cover real-time control implementation both in FPGAs, DSPs and standard CPUs, as well as middleware and user interfaces. Concerning the control aspects, Microgate skill covers multi-physics simulation of complex systems including large state-space models, using both Matlab and Comsol platforms.

MPD has electronic and mechanics workshops for prototypes realization, ISO-7 clean room for system integration, climatic chamber, electronic and mechanical workshops and dedicated test stands for detection efficiency and timing accuracy measurement, Cadence device design and simulation SW tools.

To effectively market and distribute our modules and technologies, MPD has signed agreement with local distributors to form a network that covers 5 continents; supplying customers like NASA, Hewlett-Packard, Novartis and MIT (just to name few), operating in biomedical, industrial and astrophysical applications.