Saturday, April 21, 2018

Stretchcam

Columbia University, Northwest University and University of Tokio publish a paper "Stretchcam: Zooming Using Thin, Elastic Optics" by Daniel C. Sims, Oliver Cossairt, Yonghao Yu, Shree K. Nayar:

"Stretchcam is a thin camera with a lens capable of zooming with small actuations. In our design, an elastic lens array is placed on top of a sparse, rigid array of pixels. This lens array is then stretched using a small mechanical motion in order to change the field of view of the system. We present in this paper the characterization of such a system and simulations which demonstrate the capabilities of stretchcam. We follow this with the presentation of images captured from a prototype device of the proposed design. Our prototype system is able to achieve 1.5 times zoom when the scene is only 300 mm away with only a 3% change of the lens array's original length."

Friday, April 20, 2018

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Leonardo DRS Launches 10um Pixel Thermal Camera

PRNewswire: The pixel race goes on in microbolometric sensors. Leonardo DRS launches of its Tenum 640 thermal imager, the first uncooled 10um pixel thermal camera core for OEMs.

The Tenum 640 thermal camera module combines small pixel structure with its sensitive vanadium oxide micro-bolometer sensor and a 640 x 512 array. It provides exceptional LWIR imaging at up to 60fps. The high-resolution LWIR camera core features image contrast enhancement, called "ICE™ ", 24-bit RGB and YUV (4,2,2), at sensitivity less than 50 mK NETD.

"The Tenum 640 represents the most advanced, uncooled and cost-effective infrared sensor design available to OEM's today," said Shawn Black, VP and GM of the Leonardo DRS EO&IS business unit. "Our market-leading innovative technologies, such as the Tenum 640, continue to enable greater affordability while delivering uncompromising thermal imaging performance for our customers."

Face Recognition Startup Raises $600m on $3b Valuation

Bloomberg, Teslarati: A 3 year-old Chinese startup SenseTime raises $600m from Alibaba Group, Singaporean state firm Temasek Holdings, retailer Suning.com, and other investors at a valuation of more than $3b ($4.5b, according to Reuters), becoming the world’s most valuable face recognition startup. By the way, the second largest Chinese facial-recognition start-up Megvii has raised $460m last year.

The Qualcomm-backed company specializes in systems that analyse faces and images on an enormous scale. SenseTime turned profitable in 2017 and wants to grow its workforce to 2,000 by the end of this year. With the latest financing deal, SenseTime has doubled its valuation in a few months.


Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Corephotonics Signs Broad Agreement with Oppo

OPPO, one of the largest smartphone manufacturers in China, signs a strategic licensing agreement with Corephotonics, the licensor of dual camera technologies. Under the agreement, OPPO will collaborate with Corephotonics on developing its smartphone camera roadmap – supporting high optical zoom factors, accurate depth mapping, digital bokeh and other advanced features, all involving innovations in optics, mechanics, computational photography, deep learning and other fields.

Mobile photography is a key focus of OPPO, and we have always been eager to forge strong partnerships with leading suppliers like Corephotonics,” said Dr. King, OPPO’s Hardware Director. “Corephotonics’ dual cameras with wide-angled and telephoto lenses, along with the periscope-style construction, optical image stabilization and image fusion technology, edge mobile photography even closer to what digital cameras are capable of doing.

OPPO has the most impressive record of innovation in the field of smartphone imaging,” affirmed David Mendlovic, CEO of Corephotonics. “We are proud to be working closely with the OPPO teams on their next generation camera technologies. This strategic agreement is a major validation of the benefits that our camera designs and imaging algorithms have on the future of mobile photography.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

LargeSense Unveils 4K Video-Capable Medium Format Camera

PRNewswire: LargeSense LLC launches the LS911, said to be the first medium format 8x10 digital camera for sale. Everything in this announcement looks, well, impressively large:

  • 9x11-inch-large digital sensor. The company tends to refer to it as 8x10 as that is the closest format that people search for.
  • 75 micron pixel size
  • 12MP resolution
  • Live view for easy focusing
  • Video modes (all progressive):
    - Up to 26fps: Full sensor scan 3888 x 3072 and optional crop sizes: 3840 × 2160, 3840 x 1600, 1920 x 1080.
    - Up to 70fps with pixel 2x2 pixel binning: Full frame: 1944 x 1536
  • 14 bit ADC
  • The US price is $106,000, available now

The LS911 sensor uses a rolling shutter. Rolling shutters can produce distortions, but the LS911 is said to handle it well, as shown in the test video:



Anitoa Ultra-low Light Bio-optical Sensor in Volume Production

PRNewswire: Anitoa, a Menlo Park CA startup since 2012, announces the volume production of its Ultra-low-light CMOS bio-optical sensor, ULS24. Capable of 3x10-6 lux low-light detection, Anitoa ULS24 is said to be "the world's most sensitive image sensor manufactured with proven low-cost CMOS image sensor (CIS) process technology."

Until now, molecular testing such as DNA or RNA, and immunoassay testing (e.g. ELISA) rely on traditional bulky and expensive Photon Multiplier Tube (PMT) or cooled CCD technologies. "Following the trend of CMOS image sensors replacing CCDs in consumer cameras, many customers are exploring this CMOS Bio-optical sensor to replace CCD or PMT designs for new products," says Anitoa SVP Yuping Chung. With Anitoa ULS24 now in volume production, it's low-light sensitivity is said to rival PMTs and CCDs used in molecular and immunoassay testing devices. ULS24 achieves this high level of sensitivity through the innovation of temperature compensated dark current management algorithm.

Cadence Presents Tensilica Vision Q6 DSP

Cadence announces the Tensilica Vision Q6 DSP, its latest DSP for embedded vision and AI built on a new, faster processor architecture. The fifth-generation Vision Q6 DSP offers 1.5X greater vision and AI performance than its predecessor, the Vision P6 DSP, and 1.25X better power efficiency at the Vision P6 DSP’s peak performance. The Vision Q6 DSP is targeted for embedded vision and on-device AI applications in the smartphone, surveillance camera, automotive, augmented reality (AR)/virtual reality (VR), drone and robotics markets.

NIT Announces HDR Sensor with LED Flicker Mitigation

NIT presents its NSC 1701 HDR Global Shutter CMOS sensor featuring a new Light Flicker Mitigation mode and a 12b digital output.
  • 1280 x 1024 Pixels Resolution 
  • 6.8┬Ám Pixel Pitch 
  • On Chip 12 bits ADC 
  • 1.3 MP
  • Light Flicker Mitigation
  • Color or Monochrome
The NSC1701 sensor is aimed to industrial and emerging embedded applications and to the automotive market with its new flicker mitigation mode. The engineering samples are available now and the mass production planned for June 2018.