The design for a calorimeter for a future ILC detector poses challenges to the data acquisition
system mainly due to the large number of channels to be read out. The goal of this task is to
develop and build a DAQ system which can be used for a large variety of calorimeter readout
systems. It should be generic to provide the data acquisition for new prototype calorimeters in
general, and to serve as a basis for a common DAQ system for the international linear collider.
Within this project a suitable number of readout channels will be made available in the context
of the calorimeter development infrastructure.
In the UK, a conceptual design has been formulated for the DAQ system. One of the
underlying design considerations is to use as much as possible commodity components,
supplemented by special developments only where necessary. This will allow for ease of
scalability and simple procurement of additional pieces of equipment.
Data from the front-end electronics will be transferred, via a switch, to an off-detector receiver
which will be PCI cards in a PC farm. The switch will ensure a very high up-time of the
system, as it selects only available nodes. The system will provide a means to synchronize to
an external clock, to time the readout with the collisions in the accelerator. This requirement is
a particular challenge to meet, as it means that time critical information has to be integrated
into a by nature asynchronous system.