Tuesday, April 07, 2015

Caltech 3D Imager Promises 15um Depth Resoluteion at 0.5m Distance

Caltech presents its paper "Nanophotonic coherent imager" by Firooz Aflatouni, Behrooz Abiri, Angad Rekhi, and Ali Hajimiri published in Optics Express. The 4 x 4 pixel imager is utilizes a coherent LIDAR principle and is said to be able to resolve 15um depth difference at 0.5m distance.

"By having an array of tiny LIDARs on our coherent imager, we can simultaneously image different parts of an object or a scene without the need for any mechanical movements within the imager. By coupling, confining, and processing the reflected light in small pipes on a silicon chip, we were able to scale each LIDAR element down to just a couple of hundred microns in size—small enough that we can form an array of 16 of these coherent detectors on an active area of 300 microns by 300 microns," says Ali Hajimiri. In the future, Hajimiri says, that the current array of 16 pixels could also be easily scaled up to hundreds of thousands.

Thanks to TKL for the pointer!

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