2M-pixel image sensor combines ultra low light and NIR performance

October 16, 2018 //By Julien Happich
2M-pixel image sensor combines ultra low light and NIR performance
OmniVision Technologies' OS02C10 is a 2.9-micron, 2-megapixel image sensor that combines ultra-low-light (ULL) technology with OmniVision's Nyxel near-infrared (NIR) technology. The sensor works equally well in all lighting conditions. It can detect incident light in both visible and NIR wavelengths and produce precise colour and monochrome images for security applications.

Nxyel NIR technology infuses the OS02C10 with exceptional quantum efficiency (QE) of 60% at 850nm and 40% at 940nm, which is 2x to 4x better than competing devices. Such excellent QE enables the use of lower-power IR illumination in total darkness, resulting in an estimated 3x reduction in system-level power consumption. Additionally, 940nm NIR lighting cannot be detected by the human eye in dark indoor settings, while 850nm light is ideal for outdoor security cameras. The OS02C10's ability to capture crisp, clear images using undetectable 940nm NIR light means that indoor security cameras will not disturb sleeping occupants, and can be easily concealed from intruders.
The amount of NIR light that a sensor requires to capture high-quality images can be quantified with a new metric called NIR SNR1, which takes into account the QE, pixel size and read noise. The OS02C10 achieves an SNR1850nm of 23nw/cm 2 and an SNR1940nm of 31nw/cm 2, which are 2x to 4x smaller numbers compared with the leading competitors' sensors according to the manufacturer. For the designers of security cameras that operate in total darkness, this means they can reduce IR illumination to consume 2x to 4x less power compared to the competitors' sensors, for the same environment and over the same image-detection range.

OmniVision Technologies -  www.ovt.com


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