The human eye is an incredible sensor: it can, as an example, adapt to a huge variety of illumination conditions. On the other hand, conventional cameras typically are blinded by light or sudden scene intensity change. For automotive applications where a human-like vision capability is required, the image sensor Dynamic Range (DR), defined by the ratio of the maximum non-saturating signal to the minimum detectable signal, is a quality index of paramount importance.
You are here
There are wavelenghts which cannot be sensed directly by CMOS devices because, simply, silicon is transparent to that radiation. Thermal infrared radiation, from 8 to 14 micrometers of wavelength, is one of these and usually takes advantage from bolometers technology for detection. Nevertheless, CMOS is still fundamental for the readout integrated circuit and by employing on-chip signal processing it can solve or mitigate many of the drawbacks that the bolometers technology has, such as the relatively large non-uniformity and the thermal drifts due to self-heating processes.
Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging Microscopy (FLIM) is a powerful tool for the analysis of biological samples, enabling the extraction of more information by detecting not only the intensity of the fluorescence but also its lifetime.
The first developments in 3D Vision at SOI were done in the framework of the Opto3D project since year 2000, with the development of an intelligent electro-optical sensor for driving scenarios detection and object recognition . Since then, SOI investigated and developed a number of different operating principles for indirect time-of-flight imaging using CMOS technologies, from the simulation and development of the sensing device, to the integrated circuit and 3D camera system.