Wednesday, September 11, 2013

SiOnyx Shows 1mlux Imaging

Vision System Design: SiOnyx has shown its IR sensors at this year's SPIE Defense and Security Symposium in Baltimore, MD:

Comparison at below 1 mLux for a Best in Class CCD (left)
and SiOnyx XQE-1310 1.3MP 10um pixel imager (right).

According to Dr. Martin Pralle, VP of Business Development at SiOnyx, all the XQE sensors feature a 72dB native DR and an on-chip HDR feature that allows up to 120dB DR to be achieved. To date, the company has not yet openly published the spectral characteristics of these devices but, Pralle says. All Pralle would say was that at approximately 1064nm, the devices exhibited a QE approximately ten times that of standard CMOS image sensors. For night-vision applications, the US Army recently tested the SiOnyx XQE-1310 sensor in its labs and confirmed imaging at 1 mLux (1×10-4 Ft-candles).


  1. Looks nice but wondering what the illuminant is? Is it night sky at 1 mlux? It is sort of silly to talk about lux and 1064 nm wavelength photons in the same paragraph since you could image at 0 lux at 1064 nm. But I assume there is no such trickery like the old Sony camcorder advertisements that used an IR illuminator for night time imaging.
    Wonder also what the sensor temperature is? Then there is frame rate, F#, pixel pitch etc etc all needed before one could really judge the performance level of these sensors. I am sure SiOnyx understands that, so I wonder why they hide all this data? Why is an NDA required to get the spectral response? What are they worried about?

  2. The commonly used light source for night vision is 2800K black body which, associated with the 850nm cutoff wavelenght of most of photocathode, gives a good spectral agreement with starlight sky. But this light source is largely favorable to CMOS based devices because of the much longer cutoff wavelength.This is also misleading for the light level higher than starlight sky, because moon lit sky has no such large NIR component. This means that a CMOS device can see target at 1/4 moon level inside a night vision lab may can not see at real 1/4 moon outside.

    But we have no idea to juge their performance. The impression is great !

    -yang ni


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