Thursday, June 14, 2007

Kodak Develops New Color Filter Technology?

Yahoo: Kodak said it has developed a color-filter technology that at least doubles the sensitivity to light of the image sensor in every digital camera.

"We're talking about a 2-to-4-times improvement in (light) sensitivity" - said Chris McNiffe, general manager of the photography company's image sensor business.

Reuters: Kodak's new proprietary technology adds "clear" pixels to the red, green, and blue elements that form the image sensor array, collecting a higher proportion of the light striking the sensor.

Manufacturing customers interested in the design will likely get a chance to sample it in early 2008, but McNiffe was unsure when devices using the technology would be in stores. The technology could be used at first in devices such as cell phones and eventually products made for industrial and scientific imaging.

IDC's Chute said Kodak would probably use the technology for its own cameras, hoping to gain a competitive edge. "The potential (for its success) is always there, but it's a wait-and-see thing," he said.

CNET too published an extended article with many pictures on the Kodak color filter technology.

I wonder how Kodak can claim it's new, if the idea is known for decades already. Hopefully Kodak found a way to overcome the huge crosstalk coming from the "white" pixel.

Update: EETimes, PC World, DPReview, Imaging Resource and San Jose Mercury News each published its own version of the Kodak announcement. Imaging Resource's version is the most comprehensive.

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