We report on the development of a novel FPGA-based time-to-digital converter and its implementation in a detection chain that records the coordinates of single particles along three dimensions. The detector is composed of micro-channel plates mounted on top of a cross delay line and connected to fast electronics. We demonstrate continuous recording of the timing signals from the cross delay line at rates up to 4.1 × 106 s−1 and three-dimensional reconstruction of the coordinates up to 3.2 × 106 particles per second. From the imaging of a calibrated structure we measure the in-plane resolution of the detector to be 140(20) μm at a flux of 3 × 105 particles per second. In addition, we analyze a method to estimate the resolution without placing any structure under vacuum, a significant practical improvement. While we use UV photons here, the results of this work apply to the detection of other kinds of particles.

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