Nuvoton Technology launches new 3D TOF Sensor with integrated distance calculation circuit

"TOF Sensor for Enhanced Object Detection and Safety Applications"

Nuvoton launches new 3D TOF Sensor with integrated distance calculation circuit

Kyoto, Japan, JULY 1, 2024 - Nuvoton Technology Corporation Japan (NTCJ) is set to begin mass production of a 1/4-inch VGA (640x480 pixel) resolution 3D Time-of-Flight (TOF*1) sensor in July 2024. This sensor is poised to revolutionize people and objects recognition in various indoor and outdoor environments. This capability has been achieved through NTCJ's unique pixel design technology and distance calculation/Image Signal Processor (ISP*2) technology.

 

Key Highlights:

  1. Capable of accurate distance measurement even in environments with up to 100,000 lux (ambient light intensity equivalent to sunlight), where conventional image sensors will suffer overexposure.
  2. Significantly reduces motion blur that can cause measurement errors in moving subjects by completing image capture and distance calculation within a single frame, ensuring accurate distance measurement.
  3. Equipped with an integrated distance calculation circuit and a signal correction ISP (which reduces the processing load on backend system processor), Nuvoton’s new TOF sensor outputs distance (3D) images at up to 120 frames per second (fps) without delay, along with IR (2D) images for enhanced recognition accuracy.
  4. Equipped with safety mechanism and in compliance with ASIL B*3 contribute to the realization of functional safety of the automotive sensing systems.
  5. Contributes to the efficiency of sensing system evaluation and development by utilizing the accompanying reference circuits, Software Development Kit (SDK*4), and sample software for detection/recognition for the system processor.

 

Product details:

https://www.nuvoton.com/products/image-sensors/3d-tof-sensors/kw330-series/

 

With the increasing number of sensors in vehicles to ensure the safety of drivers and passengers, coupled with the growing demand for more accurate sensing capabilities due to stricter safety regulations and the rise of autonomous vehicles, there has been a clear need for advancements in sensor technology. Traditional 2D image sensors cannot capture depth information and are easily affected by ambient light (low lighting conditions), making it difficult to recognize people and objects accurately.

Nuvoton’s new 3D TOF sensor addresses these challenges by providing precise recognition of the position and shape of people and objects in any environment, contributing to the enhancement of safety, security, and efficiency. This is applicable in various sectors not limited to automotive, but also in consumer sector for applications such as smart door locks and industrial sector for applications such as cargo dimension measurement in logistics.

 

Features:

  1. High Accuracy in Bright Ambient Lighting Conditions: Leveraging Nuvoton’s proprietary CMOS image sensor pixel technology and CCD memory technology, the new TOF sensor achieves accurate distance sensing by simultaneously controlling pulse light sources and acquiring background light signals. The sensor integrates four types of imaging signals, a significant advancement from the existing three-type version, and effectively removes interference from sunlight and other external light sources, ensuring precise distance measurement up to 20 meters under various ambient lighting conditions. 

    *Varies depending on the number of lights on the light source and the viewing angle of the light source

 

  1. Real-Time Distance Imaging for Moving Subjects: With four embedded memories within each pixel, Nuvoton’s new TOF sensor outputs distance images in a single frame. This innovative design significantly reduces motion blur and measurement errors in moving objects by capturing and calculating distance from four types of imaging signals within one frame. This feature is particularly suited for applications requiring dynamic object detection and recognition, such as obstacle detection for Autonomous Mobile Robots (AMR) and airbag intensity control in vehicles.

 

  1. Integrated Distance Calculation Circuit for Fast and Accurate Sensing: Nuvoton’s new TOF sensor is equipped with an integrated distance calculation circuit and a signal correction ISP (for noise removal etc.), enabling it to output high-speed, high-precision distance (3D) images at up to 120 fps without delay. This eliminates the need for distance calculation by the system processor, reducing the processing overhead and enabling faster sensing systems. Additionally, the sensor can simultaneously output 3D and 2D(IR) images, useful for applications requiring both high precision and recognition/authentication functions.

 

  1. Enhanced Safety with Built-In Safety Mechanisms: Nuvoton’s new TOF sensor is equipped with safety mechanisms capable of detecting internal failures and notifying the system processor to transit to a safe state. The sensor's adherence to ASIL B standards, as assessed and verified by third-party institutions, underscores Nuvoton’s commitment to contributing to the rapid deployment of safe automotive sensing systems.

 

  1. Streamlined Development with Reference Circuit and SDK: To facilitate quick development of camera modules using Nuvoton’s new TOF sensor, we offer reference circuits and SDK. These resources are designed to reduce the TOF camera development time and effort. In addition, reference circuits tailored for specific applications and sample software for object detection/recognition are available for evaluation on system processors.

 

 

Typical Applications:

Occupant Monitoring, Smart Door Lock, XR Headset,

Luggage/Cargo Measurement, Autonomous Mobile Robot.

 

Product name:

3D TOF Sensor with Integrated distance calculation circuit

KW33000A1T, KW33000A1K, KW33000ARA

 

Specification:

 図_TOFスペックE

 

Product Appearance:

 図_TOF_PKGE

 

Volume Availability: July 2024

 

 

Reference Figure:

                      図_1E

 

 図_2E

 

 図_3E

                   図_4E

 

*1. TOF (Time of Flight) Sensor: A sensor that measures the distance to an object by emitting light towards it and using the time difference between the emission and the detection of the reflected light by the sensor.

*2. ISP (Image Signal Processor): Semiconductor device that converts electrical signals sent from an image sensor into image data.

*3. ASIL (Automotive Safety Integrity Level): Risk classification scheme defined by the ISO 26262. - Functional Safety for Road Vehicles standard. Based on the severity of hazards, the levels are classified into four categories (A to D), with D being the most stringent and A being the least.

*4. SDK (Software Development Kit): Packaged set of programs, APIs, documentation, and sample code necessary for software development.

 

About Nuvoton Technology Corporation Japan (NTCJ)

Nuvoton Technology Corporation Japan (NTCJ) joined Nuvoton Group in 2020. As a dedicated global semiconductor manufacturer, NTCJ provides technology and various products cultivated over 60 years since its establishment, and solutions that optimally combine them. We value relationships with our customers and partners, and by providing added value that exceeds expectations, we are working as a global solution company that solves various issues in society, industry, and people's lives. For more information, please visit https://www.nuvoton.co.jp/en/.

 

Media contact:

Corporate Strategy Office, Nuvoton Technology Corporation Japan

NTCJ_PR@nuvoton.com

 

Technical contact:

Semiconductor Support System

https://nuvoton.co.jp/semi-spt/general/?lang=en

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Learn more
OK