Pelican Imaging announced that it has developed the first prototype array camera for mobile devices. Pelican Imaging has developed a computational camera array architecture and IP with 12 pending patent applications in array optics, sensors and image reconstruction algorithms. Pelican’s camera improves upon image and video quality while allowing for thinner smartphones. New applications are also enabled by introducing features such as 3-D depth, gesture control, and the ability for users to interact with the image before and after capturing the shot.
The company also announced its Technical Advisory Board members: Dr. Marc Levoy, Dr. Shree K. Nayar and Dr. Bedabrata Pain.
“What Pelican has developed represents a paradigm shift in imaging and video that has the potential to overcome many of the inherent limitations of mobile cameras,” said Dr. Shree Nayar, professor at Columbia University.
Dr. Marc Levoy, professor at Stanford University commented, “Pelican’s technology has the potential to upset the traditional tradeoff between the sensitivity and resolution of a camera and its thickness. It also brings new capabilities to cameras, including post-capture focusing, foveal imaging and programmable frame rates. We have been investigating these aspects of computational photography in our laboratory at Stanford for a number of years, through the Stanford Multi-Camera Array, which is big, slow and expensive. Pelican’s solution is small, fast and inexpensive – which makes it a very exciting technology.”
“Pelican's architecture relaxes key pixel design constraints, thereby enhancing pixel performance beyond those in legacy cameras. I am equally excited about its potential for early and cost-effective adoption of new sensor technologies. The next generation of mini- and micro-cameras is upon us,” said Dr. Bedabrata Pain, CEO of Edict Inc.
From the company site it looks like Pelican's idea is to use many small lenses instead of a big one (something similar to Newport Imaging?):
Also, there is a nice article about Pelican's approach at Gigaom.
Thanks to OG for sending me the info!