Saturday, January 09, 2010

New Tool that simulates CMOS and CCD Image Sensors

I received this PR from Albert Theuwissen. I'm posting it here in full as I'm unable to find any other source of it in the Net:

Image Engineering
Press Release - Issue: 08.01.2010

New Tool that simulates CMOS and CCD Image Sensors

Harvest Imaging bvba, Bree, Belgium managed by Albert Theuwissen and Image Engineering Dietmar Wueller, Frechen, Germany, announce that both companies have signed a cooperation contract to develop a software tool that simulates the behaviour of image sensors. The new tool is intended to help camera manufacturers and system integrators to select the best sensor for their specific application.

Frechen (Germany), the 8th of January 2010. Today Harvest Imaging bvba, Bree, Belgium managed by Albert Theuwissen and Image Engineering Dietmar Wueller, Frechen, Germany, signed a cooperation contract to develop a new software tool. “This tool will be a milestone for manufacturers and system integrators to specify the best sensors for different applications”, so Dietmar Wueller, CEO and CTO of Image Engineering.

The characteristic sensor data like imager geometry, quantum efficiency, dark current, temperature etc. is entered into the simulation. A virtual sensor with these characteristics is created and exposed to virtual photons generating an image captured with that sensor. This kind of simulation generates real images that provide visual information about the impact of specific parameters on the final image quality. Until now selecting a sensor for an application was based on the experience of the system integrator to interpret the technical specs of a sensor. “With the new tool this experience can be converted into images without even having the sensor,” explains Albert Theuwissen, CEO of Harvest Imaging. “This will help engineers to learn faster, to improve the sensor quality by focusing on the right parameters and to find the right sensor much quicker than today.”

Both cooperating companies are confident that an application like this leads to a standardized set of technical specs for all sensors on the market and will both strengthen their efforts to get in this direction.

The new sensor simulation software tool will be available within the next 12 month and sold through Image Engineering and its worldwide reseller network.

About Harvest Imaging bvba
After retirement from DALSA and Philips, Albert Theuwissen founded Harvest Imaging in 2007. The company is focusing on training, teaching, advising and consulting in the field of solid-state imaging systems. Harvest Imaging offers public courses as well as tailored in-house training. In 2010 a new course based on hands-on measurements on commercially available cameras will be introduced. This will be the very first course ever in the field of digital imaging offering the participants hands-on experience. The consulting activities focus on assisting imaging engineers in their daily work: specifying their sensor or camera, designing an imager or camera, evaluation of imagers or cameras, qualification of their system, organizing and chairing technical review meetings, selection of design houses, selection of wafer fabs, etc.

Harvest Imaging is a world leading company in providing technical know-how in the field of digital imaging.

About Image Engineering
Since 1997 Image Engineering is the leading independent testlab for image capture devices in the world, covering still and video devices. On a regular basis Digital Still Cameras are tested for the German photographic magazines Color Foto and c’t as well as for a lot of manufacturers including Fujifilm, Leica, Olympus, Panasonic, Ricoh, Sony. Cell Phone cameras are tested for carriers like Vodafone and numerous cell phone manufacturers. Occasionally camcorders, video cameras, broadcast cameras, and scanners are tested for magazines as well as manufacturers and finally cameras for all kinds of applications like security, automotive, machine vision, and remote sensing have been tested over the past years for various companies. Since 2006 when „Esser Test Charts“ was bought, Image Engineering has become the leading supplier for test equipment in the area of digital capture devices. The majority of the more than 260 different test charts is designed for video and broadcast applications.

Image Engineering is active in a variety of standardization activities among which are ISO TC42 (Photography), SMPTE (Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers), CPIQ (Cell Phone Image Quality), and EMVA (European Machine Vision Association).

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