Thin CMOS VGA imager consumes low power

SMaL Camera Technologies Inc. (Cambridge, MA; www.smalcamera.com), a developer of low-power CMOS imagers and intelligent cameras, has unveiled its SCT-00VC single-chip CMOS image sensor that features the company�s Autobrite technology. This technology allows the imager to adjust its dynamic range to provide quality images of scenes that are bright enough to saturate other standard imagers.

SMaL Camera Technologies Inc. (Cambridge, MA; www.smalcamera.com), a developer of low-power CMOS imagers and intelligent cameras, has unveiled its SCT-00VC single-chip CMOS image sensor that features the company�s Autobrite technology. This technology allows the imager to adjust its dynamic range to provide quality images of scenes that are bright enough to saturate other standard imagers.

"Most CMOS imagers boast low cost and compact size, but the SCT-00VC CMOS imager goes further," says Charles G. Sodini, company president. "Our imager is based on a proprietary brightness-adaptive pixel. Coupled with our proprietary algorithms, the imager permits the design of cameras that adapt to a variety of lighting conditions. The Autobrite technology captures the dark details of a scene while ensuring that the bright regions never saturate. In addition to this advantage, the VGA imager consumes just 30 mW at 60 frames/s."

Harry S. Lee, company vice president of technology, adds, "Coupled with our imager design is an optics design that allows us to build an extremely thin camera. For example, we are featuring our CMOS imager in a 0.2-in. thin digital still camera called the Ultra-Pocket camera. The compact size demonstrates how easily the technology could be re-packaged in PDAs, cellular phones, PC cameras, security systems, video cameras, toys, and other applications."

The SCT-00VC's VGA imager is a 642 x 482-pixel array in a 1/3-in. format. It provides low fixed-pattern noise and a variable frame rate up to 60 frames/s for capturing still or full-motion video. Available in color or monochrome, it also features on-chip programmable digital gain, correlated double sampling, timing, and 12-bit analog-to-digital converters.

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