Engineering 101

Image sensor enables new functionality for industrial camera design

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ON Semiconductor has announced its X-Class image sensor platform, which allows a single camera design to support not only multiple product resolutions but also different pixel functionality.

The first devices in the new platform are the 12MP XGS 12,000 and 4k/UHD resolution XGS 8,000 image sensors, which provide high-performance imaging capabilities for applications such as machine vision, intelligent transportation systems, and broadcast imaging.

The X-Class image sensor platform enables a new dimension in camera design by supporting multiple CMOS pixel architectures within the same image sensor frame. This allows a single camera design not only to support multiple product resolutions, but also different pixel functionality, such as larger pixels that trade resolution at a given optical format for higher imaging sensitivity, designs optimized for low noise operation to increase dynamic range, and more. By supporting these different pixel architectures through a common high bandwidth, low power interface, camera manufacturers can leverage existing parts inventory and accelerate time to market for new camera designs.

The initial devices in the X-Class family, the XGS 12,000 and XGS 8,000, are based on the first pixel architecture to be deployed in this platform – an advanced 3.2µm global shutter CMOS pixel that features superior imaging performance, high image uniformity, and low noise. The XGS 12,000 provides 12MP (4,096×3,072 pixel) resolution in a one-inch optical format to supply the imaging detail and performance needed for modern machine vision and inspection applications.

The device is planned to be available in two speed grades – one that fully utilizes 10GigE interfaces by providing full resolution speeds up to 90fps, and a lower price version providing 27fps at full resolution that aligns with the bandwidth available from USB 3.0 computer interfaces. The XGS 8.000 provides 4k/UHD (4.096×2.160 pixels) resolution in a 1/1.1″ optical format and is also planned to be available in two speed grades (130 and 75fps), making the device ideal for broadcast applications.

The package dimensions of both devices combine with a low thermal profile enabled by the low-voltage, low-power architecture of the X-Class interface to make them fully compatible with compact 29x29mm2 camera designs.

“As the needs of industrial imaging applications such as machine vision inspection and industrial automation continue to advance, the design and performance of the image sensors targeting this growing market must continue to evolve,” said Herb Erhardt, Vice President and General Manager, Industrial Solutions Division, Image Sensor Group at ON Semiconductor. “With the X-Class platform and devices based on the new XGS pixel, end users have access to the performance and imaging capabilities they need for these applications, while camera manufacturers have the flexibility they require to develop next-generation camera designs for their customers both today and in the future.”

The XGS 1,2000 and XGS 8,000 will begin sampling in the 2Q2018, with production availability scheduled for the 3Q2018. Both devices will be available in 163-pin LGA packages in monochrome and color configurations. Additional devices based on the 3.2µm XGS pixel as well as products based on other pixel architectures are planned for the X-Class family in the future.

To help customers in the development of new camera designs incorporating the new image sensors, ON Semiconductor offers evaluation kits that support full device evaluation including still image and video capture, and region of interest readout. Other custom test functions can also be configured. Customers can purchase an evaluation kit or enquire about an on-site demonstration of X-Class devices by contacting their local ON Semiconductor sales representative.

Source XGS 8000, ON Semiconductor XGS 12000, ON Semiconductor

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