Thursday, November 14, 2019

Sony Stacked Sensor Tutorial

IEEE Solid-State Circuits Society publishes a short tutorial "Circuit Configurations on stacked CMOS Image Sensor" presented at 2019 VLSI Conference by Yusuke Oike, Deputy Senior General Manager and Distinguished Engineer at Sony:

Espros Demos 65m ToF Imaging at Night

Espros ToF imagers show a remarkable range of 65m in absence of sunlight:

TowerJazz Q3 2019 Earnings Call

SeekingAlpha: TowerJazz updates on its image sensor business during its quarterly earnings call:

"Looking at our sensor business, we have new projects in the pipeline with large customers on our 65-nanometre global shutter platform that we expect will materialize towards the end of next year. While sales of the existing products are still growing. Although soft year-to-date, the industrial sensor market is beginning to recover and we’ve received double digit growth through 2020.

Our recent announcement of a wafer stacking backside illumination flow connecting a top thin BSI imaging wafer to a bottom CMOS wafer on our 65 nanometers, 300-millimeter technology has generated much interest. We’re in various engagements with significant customers for projects using this technology and the time of flight market mainly for face recognition.

We also continue our work with multiple customers on optical fingerprint solutions for under OLED and under LCD displays as well as we are seeing good adoption of our stitch single die, 300-millimeter substrate x-ray sensors.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Quantum and Classical Images Separation

Science Magazine publishes a paper "Quantum image distillation" by Hugo Defienne, Matthew Reichert, Jason W. Fleischer, and Daniele Faccio from University of Glasgow, UK, and Princeton University, USA. The same paper has already been published in

"Imaging with quantum states of light promises advantages over classical approaches in terms of resolution, signal-to-noise ratio, and sensitivity. However, quantum detectors are particularly sensitive sources of classical noise that can reduce or cancel any quantum advantage in the final result. Without operating in the single-photon counting regime, we experimentally demonstrate distillation of a quantum image from measured data composed of a superposition of both quantum and classical light. We measure the image of an object formed under quantum illumination (correlated photons) that is mixed with another image produced by classical light (uncorrelated photons) with the same spectrum and polarization, and we demonstrate near-perfect separation of the two superimposed images by intensity correlation measurements. This work provides a method to mix and distinguish information carried by quantum and classical light, which may be useful for quantum imaging, communications, and security."

PMD Demos its Multipath Reduction Approach

IEEE Sensor publishes PMD and Seigen University demo video on ToF multipath distortions reduction:

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Teledyne e2v Re-Announces 1.3MP ToF Sensor

Eight months after the first announcement, Teledyne e2v announces one more time its Bora ToF CMOS sensor for 3D detection and distance measurement in industrial applications, including vision guided robotics, logistics and surveillance.

Based on a 10µm pixel design and incorporating a resolution of 1280 x 1024 pixels, the Bora image sensor offers a unique on-chip gated global shutter mode with gating times of up to 42ns at 30fps in a four-phase operation.

The Bora sensor comes with an evaluation kit, comprised of a compact 1-inch optical format calibrated module, which includes a light source for near infrared illumination. It also includes optics targeted at performing the ToF imaging at short-range distances to 5m or mid-range distances to 10m, while capturing real-time 3D information at a full resolution of 1.3MP.

Ha Lan Do Thu, Marketing Manager for 3D imaging at Teledyne e2v says, “We are very pleased to announce our newest Time-of-Flight sensor, which provides customers with true 1.3MP depth resolution at more than 30 fps. The sensor uniquely achieves excellent precision and accuracy in 3D measurements and is highly flexible, handling both short- and long-range capture over 10 meters and in outdoor conditions.

Omnivision Unveils VGA GS Sensor with Lightguide

PRNewswire: OmniVision announces a 3um pixel OV7251-2B global shutter sensor with shutter efficiency of 99.96% for machine vision applications. The cost-effective OV7251-2B achieves that by adding a new lightguide feature that improves the angular response of light capture for better system-level optical performance.

"We are improving on our widely deployed family of global shutter VGA sensors by providing a drop-in replacement for our prior generation sensor that offers an even better level of shutter efficiency with no design changes required," said Devang Patel, senior staff marketing manager for the security and emerging segments at OmniVision. "Additionally, our new lightguide feature improves the family's capture capabilities with better light confinement for higher system level optical performance."

Monday, November 11, 2019

Ink for Image Sensor Printing

University of Toronto publishes an ACS paper "Stable Colloidal Quantum Dot Inks Enable Inkjet-Printed High-Sensitivity Infrared Photodetectors" by Rafal Sliz, Marc Lejay, James Z. Fan, Min-Jae Choi, Sachin Kinge, Sjoerd Hoogland, Tapio Fabritius, F. Pelayo García de Arquer, and Edward H. Sargent.

"Colloidal quantum dots (CQDs) have recently gained attention as materials for manufacturing optoelectronic devices in view of their tunable light absorption and emission properties and compatibility with low-temperature thin-film manufacture. The realization of CQD inkjet-printed infrared photodetectors has thus far been hindered by incompatibility between the chemical processes that produce state-of-the-art CQD solution-exchanged inks and the requirements of ink formulations for inkjet materials processing.

We fabricate inkjet-printed photodetectors exhibiting the highest specific detectivities reported to date (above 1012 Jones across the IR) in an inkjet-printed quantum dot film. As a patternable CMOS-compatible process, the work offers routes to integrated sensing devices and systems.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

TechInsights Pixel Zoo

Recently, Techinsights published a number of pixel pictures from its reverse engineering reports.

Samsung S5K2P7SQ ISOCELL Fast 16MP 30fps sensor with 1.12um pixel:

Sony IMX307 STARVIS 2.1MP sensor with 2.9um pixels:

Sony IMX402 ToF sensor:

Sony IMX410 full-frame sensor from Sony A7 III mirrorless camera:

Sony IMX250MZR Global Shutter polarization-sensitive CIS with 3.45um pixels:

SmartSens SC130GS Global Shutter CIS:

SK Hynix Hi-1332 CIS from Huawei RNE-AL00 front-facing camera module:

SiOnyx XQE-1310 IR-enhanced sensor:

ON Semiconductor AR0521 5.1MP sensor with 2.2um pixels:

OmniVision OS05A20 (OMN-OSE523) 5MP IR-enhanced Nyxel sensor with 2um pixels:

Sony 12 MP CIS from iPhone XS Max Rear-Facing Wide-Angle Camera:

Contamination at Samsung 8" Giheung Fab

BusinessKorea reports that Samsung foundry was affected by defects at its Giheung fab that manufactures 90nm image sensors among other products. "The defects were caused by the use of contaminated equipment on an 8-inch wafer line located in Samsung Electronics' Giheung Plant in Korea. A Samsung Electronics official acknowledged that defective products were found, but said that the process has already been normalized and that the damage is estimated at billions of Korean won.

However, some experts say that the damage may be much more than estimated by Samsung Electronics. "I understand that Samsung has not calculated the exact amount of the damage yet," said an industry insider. "The loss can be much larger than the company’s estimate.