we re-checked the electronic noise level for each PDH loop and also checked how the noise level rises with a shot noise limited light source (halogen bulb) using the exact same setup as we use daily.
Before we had only checked the individual parts, e.g. the shot noise limit of our RF-PD, not including the rest of our setup (mixer, LO or filter stages). This was just to confirm that nothing is broken and our PDs are still OK.
Measurements were taken right after the mixer / LP-filter, but still connected to PDH servo. This is OUT1 of the common path of the TTFSS-box and the input on the front of our ACAV PDH servo. We blocked the laser and adjusted the power of the bulb and measured the electronic noise floor using the SR785. The dark noise spectrum is the one already shown in the last noise budget. Below the plots of noise level, measured around 500Hz (100 avgs, wide marker) vs different photocurrents of the PDs. DC impedance is 2kOhms, regular DC level for RCAV is 1.7V and 1.47V for ACAV. RF-impedance is the same as measured some time ago for those diodes. Data in folder 4/11/2012 on svn.
Conclusion: New measurements agree very well with the old measurements. So our PDs still work fine and there is no excess noise in our readout we missed.