First medical image sensor to combine RGB and IR slashes size and power
OmniVision Technologies has launched the first medical image sensor to combine bot infrared and RGB light, cutting the size and power of endoscopes in half and opening up disposable system designs.
The OH02A1S simultaneous white-light RGB captures and infrared monochrome captures in a single CMOS sensor. Omnivision has already launched similar RGB/IR sensors for the automotive market.
While endoscopic precancer and cancer detection procedures are performed using IR light, surgeons also need RGB light to confirm any abnormalities detected using infrared. Previously, this could only be accomplished by integrating two independent imager sensors, which resulted in endoscopes with a larger size, higher cost and higher power consumption, thereby excessively heating the tip of the endoscope.
The OH02A1S enables the designers of chip-on-tip endoscopes for cancer detection to eliminate a second image sensor, thereby overcoming the drawbacks of a two imager design. These improvements allow the development of small outer diameter (OD) endoscopes for cancer detection and diagnosis procedures such as indocyanine green (ICG), and fluorescence, chromo and virtual endoscopy.
“Until now, the need for two image sensors made the size and heat of endoscopes excessive for many areas of the body. Additionally, the added cost was too high for disposable scopes,” said Tehzeeb Gunja, director of medical marketing at OmniVision. “The OH02A1S significantly expands the number and reach of endoscopic procedures that can be performed, while reducing design complexity and making RGB-IR sensing affordable in disposable endoscopes for the first time.”
The medical image sensor allows both IR and RGB images to be captured using a single chip so a surgeon to switch between high quality RGB and IR in real time, or to display both images simultaneously on one (overlay) or two (side-by-side) monitors. Additionally, the smaller size and reduced heat allow the endoscope to reach much farther into the body than was previously possible with larger-OD, two-imager designs. Alternatively, designers can use the extra space to add more or larger illumination (fibre or LED), or a larger working channel for endoscopic tools.
The OH02A1S features the 1.4 micron PureCel pixel architecture with 4×4 binning to boost the image quality. This architecture offers high quantum efficiency for excellent low-light performance, and a high dynamic range for clarity in scenes with widely contrasting bright and dark areas. The sensor can provide 1080p (1920×1080) resolution at 60 frames per second (fps) or 720p (1280×720) at 90 fps, via a 2-lane MIPI serial output. The OH02A1S also integrates 2 kilobits of one-time programmable memory on-chip. It consumes just 90 milliwatts at full power, generating less heat for greater patient comfort.
The OH02A1S medical image sensor is available today in a 1/6-inch optical format and 3.8×2.9mm chip-scale package.
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