Tuesday, November 17, 2015

ON Semi Announces New CCD for Astrophotography and Scientific Imaging

ON Semiconductor announces a new 16.2MP CCD for astrophotography and scientific imaging application. The KAF-16200 APS-H (34.6 mm diagonal) CCD is said to provide best in class image uniformity and dark current, and uses 6.0µm pixels with a transparent gate electrode for high sensitivity, high DR, and integrated overexposure protection.

This new image sensor targets opportunities directly identified by our camera manufacturing customers,” said Herb Erhardt, VP and GM, Industrial and Security Division, Image Sensor Group at ON Semiconductor, “The KAF-16200 provides a 2x increase in resolution compared to our current device addressing this segment, without sacrificing the CCD-level image quality required for these applications. This is another example of ON Semiconductor’s ability to leverage a broad technology base to provide the highest quality image sensor devices regardless of the underlying technology.

The KAF-16200 is available in both monochrome and color configurations.


  1. KAF-16200 is very close to 6 years old Eos 1D Mk IV CMos sensor :
    Sensor Size..: APS-H 5:4 --- APS-H 3:2
    Pixel Size.....: 6.0 µm --- 5.7 µm
    MaxSat Capa: 41 ke- --- 48 ke-
    Read Noise...: 14 e- --- 16 e-
    Green QE.....: 40 % --- 44 %
    Frame Rate..: 1.2 fps --- 10.0 fps
    Output Formt: 16 bit ? --- 14 bit
    interesting to remember Canon's Huge improvements on CMos sensors from ~2000 to ~2005...

  2. The major difference is that people can buy the ON sensor and ON will provide development support.

    1. Then why is On quietly laying off staff in the Silicon Valley office?

    2. Because this sensor came from New York State office.

  3. Now I see why the trend is to CMOS. 14e noise, 1.2fps, max QE 40%. Wow!

    1. Sony CMOS sensors are entering deep space astrophotography right now, but they can't compete with bigger CCDs as there still aren't any good big mono CMOS sensor with good performance. CMOSIS CMV at +1 or +2 generation could be a viable alternative quite likely.

      Coolem IMX224 or IMX174 show good performance, but still on long exposures they have apparent amp glow in bottom right corner while Sony CCDs will just have uniform noise without noticeable amp glow and with no random horizontal lines (vertical FPN can be removed with bias/dark frame, just like amp glow).

    2. Sony is no longer interested in CCDs :(

  4. It could be argued that "there still aren't any good big mono CMOS with good performance" is either not completely accurate or may not be so in the near future.

    Some time back, Vladimir posted about a 1024x1024 CMOS camera with 15um pixels with decent QE, low noise and 1kFPS.

    Lately, a new large format CMOS camera was announced for TEM applications. I am guessing that is probably a monochromatic CMOS sensor, since there is not much color information from a phosphor.

    There was even an interesting whisper of a 2k x 2k 15um CMOS camera for super resolution microscopy at the Neuroscince Chicago this year.

    Large format high performance mono CMOS may be coming sooner than we think.

    1. Price is essential - it would have to be a mass made sensor.

    2. Price is always essential. For both parties in the transaction.

      What is the price for the new ON-Semi KAF-16200? It has an imaging area of 27mm X 34.6mm.

      that is about the same area as the 2k x 2k 15um device.

  5. KAF means Kodak Patents (not new technology, but 'new' as in "created" recently).

    For those less technologically inclined (not planning on installing the sensor in their eyesocket) there's a ready rolled solution:

    Price (not including tax) http://www.qhyccd.com/IC16200A.html

    QHY16200A with OAG expected to be USD 3999
    IC16200A with OAG expected to be USD 4499

    Do your own Search and you might discover a couple of other 'Astronomy-Cam' Builders offering this Chip. That URL is neither affiliated nor personally recommended by me, just a Link for Specs. and a price example (for much more than just the Sensor).

    There are (old) Links for Astronomy Sensors on my YT Channel, I think you used to be able to buy this same Sensor from Kodak just before they went (for an arm, an eye, and 6 legs). Now it's low cost considering the volume and the semi-pro / pro (with no dough) usage.


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