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3D Sensing description
ams is the only company that offers infrared illumination solutions for all these 3D camera platforms. Based on our state-of-the art Vertical Cavity Surface Emitting Laser (VCSEL) technology and our optical design and packaging capabilities, we provide unique solutions for all 3D sensing cameras: dot-pattern illuminators for structured light cameras as well as texture enhancement for stereo cameras, and a wide range of flood illuminators for ToF and video capture.
We complement our VCSEL illuminators with software and system-level components to assist in the deployment of 3D cameras. Our solutions are used in a variety of consumer electronic platforms such as face recognition applications for mobile devices, gesture and people recognition for home systems, robotics navigation, and Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems (ADAS) for automotive.
Structured Light Illumination
In a structured light camera, the infrared illuminator plays a critical role for 3D sensing: it projects a pre-determined, or “encoded,” pattern onto the scene, which can be “decoded” by specific algorithms to extract depth information over the entire image. PARSENN is a structured light illuminator developed by ams AG. It employs a proprietary illuminator architecture to produce a high-quality 30k-dot infrared pattern at 940nm that is ideal for front-facing mobile platforms aiming to perform 3D capture for face authentication applications. ams AG also develops the software algorithms and environment required for application development.
PARSENN is an illuminator module for structured light 3D applications. It projects a randomly distributed dot pattern that can be used in 3D sensing applications such as face authentication in mobile phones. The operating principle of PARSENN is based on a proprietary method using diffractive optical elements (DOEs) and a regular VCSEL laser layout. The PARSENN structured light projector produces a pattern of 30k dots at 940nm, which is suitable for indoor and outdoor operations.
A time-of-flight camera requires a uniform, high-frequency modulated infrared light to be projected onto the scene. The time-of-flight sensor is carefully synchronized with the illuminator and utilizes the light that is reflected by objects in the scene to determine the distance to these objects. The TARA family of flood-illuminators is designed for a great variety of time-of-flight cameras: from TARASLIM, which is optimized for bezel-less mobile platforms performing face recognition tasks, to TARA2000, which addresses wide-angle gesture-sensing and head-tracking applications in various market segments such as home robotics and automotive.
The TARA2000 module is specifically designed for open-space monochromatic infrared high power uniform illumination. The ultra-compact modules are assembled with ams' state-of-the-art opto-electronics component manufacturing processes and are reflow solderable These modules, using laser illumination, allow improved efficiency, reduced footprint, and overall improved system performance. TARA2000 is an automotive-compliant product and can be used in conjunction with automotive 3D sensing cameras for a variety of applications including Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). The TARA2000 modules produce 2W optical output power (CW) at either 850nm or 940nm. Two options of illumination profiles are offered: 78ºx51º and 102ºx80º FWHM.
The PMSON flood illuminator creates a flat-top infrared illumination pattern for applications in time-of-flight cameras and video light enhancement applications. Based on fast, efficient VCSEL technology, the PMSON devices are optimized to deliver best-in-class performance in 3D sensing applications on a variety of platforms such as mobile, IoT and robotics. The PMSON modules produce 1W optical output power (CW) at 940nm and are offered with either 60ºx45º or 80ºx60º FWHM field of illumination.
Most stereoscopic imaging platforms use two cameras at different angles to capture images. Image-processing software identifies common features in both images and extract distance information following a triangulation method. A common issue in stereoscopic imaging is encountered when the scene lacks features (non-textured surfaces such as walls) which causes the 3D information to become incomplete or inaccurate. Furthermore, the search for features in the images often results in high computational load. ams AG has developed a unique, proprietary solution to effectively address these issues: the BELICE infrared illuminator is the most compact dot-projector for stereoscopic imaging available on the market today. It produces a very high-contrast dot pattern that stereo-matching algorithms can use to solve low-texture issues and achieve high-accuracy depth maps. The presence of the infrared pattern also reduces considerably the computational load required by the software, as it offers many features for matching the left and right images. BELICE enables stereoscopic imaging to be implemented on a variety of platforms, from robotics to mobile devices.
BELICE is a proprietary infrared dot-pattern illuminator for stereoscropic imaging platforms. It produces a very high-contrast dot pattern that stereo-matching algorithms can use to address low-texture situations and achieve high-accuracy depth maps. An additional benefit of the dot pattern is a reduction of the computational load required to perform the depth calculation. The BELICE dot-pattern illuminator is provided in a miniature package that is compatible with standard lead-free reflow processes. As such, it can be successfully used onboard of a great variety of 3D sensing platforms, from mobile to IoT to robotics. A pair of BELICE-SD emitters produce approximately 10k dots at 850nm. A 940nm version is currently under development.