ON Semiconductor’s PYTHON 480 sensor allows drones to avoid collisions

Jan. 26, 2017
Taufkirchen, Germany. In the near future, drones will offer reliable parcel services. Already, elaborate vision systems control robots, and whole production lines are managed automatically by algorithm-driven cameras. Image sensors are the starting point of numerous forward-looking applications. ON Semiconductor’s new PYTHON 480 sensor, available from imaging specialist FRAMOS, is small and power-effective vs. the PYTHON 500. The new sensor follows ON Semiconductor’s PYTHON standards for cost-effective, high-performance industrial imaging. The PYTHON 480 sensor demonstrates its benefits to best advantage in industrial automation, robot vision, and barcode scanner applications as well as collision-avoidance control of drones.

The 1/3.6-inch SVGA CMOS image sensor with its large, highly sensitive 4.8-µm pixels enables the capture of moving objects without any artifacts with single-digit noise performance. It provides a high SVGA frame rate of 120 fps with a compact CSP package and a small footprint. This allows a very small camera design and significant power saving, as well a battery-powered mobile operation. These features are especially suitable for eyes of robots, surveillance systems, and unmanned aerial vehicles. Up to four regions of interest can be programmed, achieving higher frame rates for special focused areas. A separate synchronization channel containing payload information is provided to facilitate the image reconstruction at the receiving end. The device provides a high speed serial or parallel CMOS output.

Sibel Yorulmaz-Cokugur, ON Semiconductor’s line manager at FRAMOS, explains the 480 sensor’s unique features and customer applications benefits: “The 480 has improved image and recognition quality. The highly sensitive pixels support low-noise ‘pipelined’ and ‘triggered’ global shutter readout modes. Furthermore, the correlated double sampling (CDS) support in global shutter mode results in reduced noise and increased dynamic range. A high level of programmability allows the reconfiguration of integration time and gain-parameters by on-chip programmable gain-amplifiers and 10-bit A/D converters without any visible image artifact. Optionally, the on-chip automatic exposure control loop (AEC) controls these parameters dynamically. The image’s black level is either calibrated automatically, or adjusted by adding a user-programmable offset.”

Engineering samples of the PYTHON 480 will be available in monochrome and Bayer color configurations in early 2017. Industry and product experts at FRAMOS are available to support customers in integrating these new sensors in their applications and projects. In addition, FRAMOS also provides services such as development support, customizations, and logistics.

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