Sunday, September 26, 2021

Galaxycore 12-inch BSI Facility to Start Production in 2 Years

Laoyaoba: Galaxycore says on the investor interaction platform that the company's 12-inch CIS BSI facility construction is progressing smoothly, and the main building has been capped on August 16. The company expects to start the production in 2 years. The fab capacity is 20,000 wafers per month.

In 2018, 2019 and 2020, the gross profit margin of Galaxycore's CMOS sensors was 25.32%, 27.50% and 28.54%, respectively which is similar to or even higher than that of its competitors. Galaxycore is confident in the competitiveness of its new high-end products in development now.

Saturday, September 25, 2021

Open Letter from Junichi Nakamura, New President of the International Image Sensor Society

Open Letter from the New President

Dear all,

This time, I was elected as a new President of International Image Sensor Society (IISS) by the IISS Board of Directors at the Board meeting just after the 2021 International Image Sensor Workshop (IISW) closure. It is my great pleasure and honor to serve as President of IISS and I will try my best to improve services of IISS/IISW.

As was mentioned at the very beginning of the 2021 IISW by Johannes Solhusvik, the General Chair of the 2021 IISW, the key concept of the IISW is to provide an opportunity to exchange the latest progress in image sensor and related R&D activities to the top image sensor technologists in the world in an informal atmosphere. This concept was conceived by Eric Fossum, the Founder of this series of workshop, at the very first workshop in 1986 (named “IEEE Workshop on CCDs”), and has been realized and enhanced by the three former Presidents of IISS, Eric, Nobukazu Teranishi and Albert. This will be kept in the future workshop.

With the retirement of Eric, Nobu and Albert from the Board, the Board of Directors has invited three very strong image sensor technologists to the Board, namely, Boyd Fowler (OmniVision, USA), Robert Henderson (University of Edinburgh, UK) and Yusuke Oike (Sony, Japan). Please join me in welcoming them to the Board of IISS.

Finally, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the three Co-Founders/former Presidents of IISS for their enthusiasm to “bring the imaging community to a higher level”. The IISS Directors will inherit this spirit. I hope Eric, Nobu and Albert can continue giving us any suggestions and insights as members of the newly established Governance Advisory Committee.

Best regards,

Junichi Nakamura
President of IISS
CTO of Brillnics Inc.

STA Founder Dick Bredthauer Passed Away

As posted in CCD-World mailing list, Semiconductor Technology Associates, Inc. founder Dick Bredthauer passed away.

Dr. Richard Bredthauer was involved in the design and fabrication of a large variety of scientific imaging CCDs from 1975 to 2016. He managed CCD development at Lockheed Martin, Loral, Ford Aerospace, and Rockwell.  He designed the original 9k x 9k imager while at Lockheed Martin, and his CCDs included notable instruments such as Hubble’s WFPC2, all of the visible imagers on Cassini, the stereo camera in Mars Pathfinder, and most recently the lightning imager for GOES-R. In 2016, his son Dr. Greg Bredthauer became president of STA and took over daily operations.

Thanks to GM for the pointer!

Friday, September 24, 2021

Open Letter from Albert Theuwissen


Dear all,

Yesterday (Thursday 23/09/2021) the International Image Sensor Workshop 2021 came to an end. Immediately after the workshop closure we had a meeting with the Board of Directors of the International Image Sensor Society. In that meeting Eric Fossum, Nobukazu Teranishi and Albert Theuwissen (the three co-founders of IISS) announced their retirement from the Board. The retired members will set up a Government Advisory Committee (without any voting rights anymore), but they will be no longer directly involved in the organization of the IISW.

If I speak for myself : it was a great honour and even a greater pleasure for me to work for and to work with Eric, Nobu and all other Board members. This is a group of people that constantly tries to bring the imaging community to a higher level. Imaging has given and still gives me a lot of joy, motivation, strength in my professional live and last but not least also in my private life it brought us a nice piece of bread on our table. So for me it was very normal to give something back to our imaging community by means of my activities in IISS.

Over the years I learned a lot from my involvement in IISS, about how to work with various cultures, how to work with world-level top-experts in the field and how to work with individuals that all have a strong character (otherwise they would not have climbed up to the level where they now are). And very often the cooperation with my Board colleagues put myself in front of the mirror which led to some self-reflection.

I wish IISS and all Board members all the best in the coming future. It is now up to the next generation to manage IISS and I am more than confident that the next generation will succeed. But if needed, they always can count on me for advice.

Best regards from Belgium.

Albert, former president of IISS.


IDQ Photon Sensors - from Mobile Phones to Space Launchers

Física Exactas UBA publishes a presentation "Quantum technologies for mobile phones and space launchers" by Félix Bussières ID Quantique SA, Switzerland:

Galaxycore Evaluates its 32MP Sensor Engineering Samples

DailyEconomicNews: In line with its intentions to penetrate mid- to high-end CIS market, Galaxycore announces at the investor interactive platform on September 24: "Dear investors, hello. The company's high-end pixel research and development is progressing smoothly, and the CMOS image sensor with 32 million pixels and above has entered the stage of internal evaluation of engineering samples. Thank you for your attention!"

Smartsens Announces Three BSI Global Shutter Sensors

CoreIntelligenceSmartSens launches three new SmartGS-2 series image sensors-SC350HGS / SC650HGS / SC950HGS with 3MP to 9MP resolutions aimed to industrial cameras for intelligent applications. the QE of the three products reaches 90% at 520nm.

Samples of the three sensors are available now, and mass production is expected to start in Q4 2021.

Thursday, September 23, 2021

Excess Noise Reduction in APDs

IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics publishes a paper "Evolution of Low-Noise Avalanche Photodetectors" by Joe C. Campbell from University of Virginia.

"This paper reviews materials and structural approaches that have been developed to reduce the excess noise in avalanche photodiodes and increase the gain-bandwidth product."

"It has been shown for a wide range of materials including InP, GaAs, In1-xAlxAs, Si, AlxGa1-xAs, SiC, GaP, and GaInP that reducing the thickness of the multiplication layer, usually to submicron dimensions, results in lower excess noise. This is contrary to expectations based on the local-field model and points to its inadequacy when the non-local nature of impact ionization becomes significant."

Assorted Videos: Trinamix, Vision Research, Immervision, Teledyne-e2v, Cepton

Trinamix expands its multispectral 3D imaging applications with smartphone behind OLED face recognition and driver monitoring:

Vision Research promotes its fast BSI sensors:

Immervision publishes its SPIE Optical Systems Design International Symposium presentation on freeform lenses in consumer applications:

Teledyne-e2v promotes its linescan sensors:

Autosens publishes interviews with Cepton:

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

SPADs in Globalfoundries' 55nm BCD Process

It appears that Globalfoundries becomes a viable option for SPAD-based sensors. At least, three Globalfoundries' employees are co-authors of the following paper:

IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics publishes a paper "Engineering Breakdown Probability Profile for PDP and DCR Optimization in a SPAD Fabricated in a Standard 55nm BCD Process" by Francesco Gramuglia, Pouyan Keshavarzian, Ekin Kizilkan, Claudio Bruschini, Shyue Seng Tan, Michelle Tng, Elgin Quek, Myung-Jae Lee, and Edoardo Charbon from EPFL (Switzerland), Globalfoundries (Singapore), KIST (Korea).

"In this paper, we present SPADs based on DPW/BNW junctions in a standard Bipolar-CMOS-DMOS (BCD) technology with results comparable to the state-of-the-art in terms of sensitivity and noise in a deep sub-micron process. Technology CAD (TCAD) simulations demonstrate the improved PDP with the simple addition of a single existing implant, which allows for an engineered performance without modifications to the process. The result is an 8.8 μm diameter SPAD exhibiting ~2.6 cps/μm^2 DCR at 20°C with 7 V excess bias. The improved structure obtains a PDP of 62 % and ~4.2 % at 530 nm and 940 nm, respectively. Afterpulsing probability is ~0.97 % and the timing response is 52 ps FWHM when measured with integrated passive quench/active recharge circuitry at 3V excess bias."

PAM4 in Image Sensor-based Communication

PAM4 signalling has been adopted in many recent high speed interfaces, such as PCIe 6.0, MIPI A-PHY, Auto-Serdes, and many others. In the following OSA paper, PAM4 is being proposed for image sensor based communication:

"PAM4 rolling-shutter demodulation using a pixel-per-symbol labeling neural network for optical camera communications" by Yun-Shen Lin, Chi-Wai Chow, Yang Liu, Yun-Han Chang, Kun-Hsien Lin, Yi-Chang Wang, and Yi-Yuan Chen from National Yang Ming Chiao Tung University, National Chiao Tung University, and Industrial Technology Research Institute, Taiwan, with Philips Hong Kong.

"The typical optical camera communication (OCC) modulation scheme is based on binary intensity modulation. To increase the transmission data rate, multi-level modulation format is highly desirable. In this work, we bring forward and demonstrate a rolling shutter 4-level pulse amplitude modulation (PAM4) demodulation scheme for OCC systems using pixel-per-symbol labeling neural network (PPSL-NN) for the first time up to the authors’ knowledge. A bit-rate distance product of 28.8 kbit/s • m per color is achieved. The proposed scheme is to calculate and re-sample the pixel-per-symbol (PPS) to make sure the same number of pixels in each PAM4 symbol is corresponding to a label for the neural network. Experiment results reveal that the proposed scheme can efficiently demodulate high speed PAM4 signal in the rolling shutter OCC pattern."