Smaller camera designs help automakers add cameras without affecting styling and reduce system cost
ON Semiconductor, driving energy efficient innovations, continues to make major advances within the rapidly growing automotive imaging sector with the announcement of two new highly integrated 1.0 Megapixel (Mp) CMOS image sensing products. The new parts provide a complete solution with the image sensor and processing functionality integrated within a low power system-on-chip (SoC) that simplifies and speeds adoption in applications such as rear and surround view cameras. PCB real estate savings of greater than 30 per cent can be achieved compared to conventional solutions comprised of discrete sensor and processor components. This helps designers to implement camera solutions without impacting vehicle styling or aesthetics.
The number of cameras and other image sensing technologies utilised on passenger vehicles continues to increase rapidly. Industry analyst predictions suggest annual shipments of cameras for use in cars will easily surpass 80 million units by 2020. Sensors that support the progression towards full autonomous driving represent one area of application, whilst imaging devices such as the AS0140 and AS0142 can be used to improve driver comfort, convenience and safety through a growing range of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). Integrated sensors can provide vehicle designers with easy-to-implement solutions that support comprehensive and clear views of the vehicle surroundings for drivers.
The AS0140 and AS0142 are both 1/4-inch format devices capable of supporting 45 fps throughput at full resolution or 60 fps at 720p. Key features include distortion correction, multi-colour overlays and both analogue (NTSC) and digital (Ethernet) interfaces. Both SoC devices achieve enhanced image quality by making use of the adaptive local tone mapping (ALTM) in order to eliminate artefacts that impinge on the acquisition process. Dynamic range of 93 decibels (dB) allows new devices to operate effectively in both high and low light applications. The AS0140 and AS0142 provide multi-camera synchronisation support which increases their value to automotive design engineers as the number of cameras installed on vehicles continues to rise.
“These devices provide engineers with complete SoC camera solutions, that combine low power operation and high dynamic range with minimal impact in relation to PCB footprint and overall bill-of-materials cost,” states Ross Jatou, vice president and general manager of the Automotive Imaging Solutions Division at ON Semiconductor. “This means that they are able to meet the imaging demands of car manufacturers from both a logistical and performance perspective. Most current solutions still rely on inefficient discrete arrangements with a separate image sensor and image processor, or are SoCs with relatively limited functionality.”
Both new devices exhibit class-leading power efficiency; when running at 30 fps in high dynamic range (HDR) mode, they consume just 530 milliwatts (mW). Operating temperature range is -40°C to +105°C, enhancing suitability for use in automotive environments. Engineering samples are available now. The AS0140 will be in production in 4Q17, and AS0142 will be in production in 1Q18.