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Proceedings Paper

Wide-band imaging for enhanced day and night vision
Author(s): Conor Rafferty; Clifford King; Bryan Ackland; Jason Sproul; Ingvar Aberg; Jay O'Neill; T. S. Sriram; Corbin Godek; Analisa Lattes; Seth Pappas; Arnie Buck; Vasilije Jovanovic
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Paper Abstract

Visible-band cameras using silicon imagers provide excellent video under daylight conditions, but become blind at night. The night sky provides illumination from 1-2 μm which cannot be detected with a silicon sensor. Adding short-wave infrared detectors to a CMOS imager would enable a camera which can be used day or night. A germanium-enhanced CMOS imager (TriWave®) has been developed with broadband sensitivity from 0.4 μm to 1.6 μm. A 744 x 576 format imager with 10 μm pixel pitch provides a large field of view without incurring a size and weight penalty in the optics. The small pixel size is achieved by integrating a germanium photodetector into a mainstream CMOS process. A sensitive analog signal chain provides a noise floor of 5 electrons. The imagers are hermetically packaged with a thermo-electric cooler in a windowed metal package 5 cm3 in volume. A compact (<650 cm3) camera core has been designed around the imager. Camera functions implemented include correlated double sampling, dark frame subtraction and non-uniformity corrections. In field tests, videos recorded with different filters in daylight show useful fog and haze penetration over long distances. Under clear moonless conditions, short-wave infrared (SWIR) images recorded with TriWave make visible individuals that cannot be seen in videos recorded simultaneously using an EMCCD. Band-filtered videos confirm that the night-sky illumination is dominated by wavelengths above 1200 nm.

Paper Details

Date Published: 3 May 2010
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 7660, Infrared Technology and Applications XXXVI, 76600M (3 May 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.850514
Show Author Affiliations
Conor Rafferty, NoblePeak Vision (United States)
Clifford King, NoblePeak Vision (United States)
Bryan Ackland, NoblePeak Vision (United States)
Jason Sproul, NoblePeak Vision (United States)
Ingvar Aberg, NoblePeak Vision (United States)
Jay O'Neill, NoblePeak Vision (United States)
T. S. Sriram, NoblePeak Vision (United States)
Corbin Godek, NoblePeak Vision (United States)
Analisa Lattes, NoblePeak Vision (United States)
Seth Pappas, NoblePeak Vision (United States)
Arnie Buck, NoblePeak Vision (United States)
Vasilije Jovanovic, NoblePeak Vision (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7660:
Infrared Technology and Applications XXXVI
Bjørn F. Andresen; Gabor F. Fulop; Paul R. Norton, Editor(s)

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