ams (SIX: AMS), a leading worldwide supplier of high-performance sensor solutions, today introduces the CSG family of image sensors, enabling manufacturers to develop industrial vision equipment which achieves higher resolution at very high frame rates. The new CSG14K and CSG8K sensors, supplied in – respectively – a standard 1” or a 1/1.1” optical format, allow factory operators to increase throughput while improving quality, providing for better detection of defects in high-speed inspection applications.
The CSG14K is a global shutter image sensor that combines sharp resolution of 13.8Mpixels with high-speed operation: in 10-bit mode at full resolution, the sensor can capture images at an impressive maximum rate of 140 frames/s (fps), and at 93.6fps in 12-bit mode. The CSG8K achieves even higher speeds of 231fps in 10-bit and 155fps in 12-bit mode at its full resolution of 8Mpixels. Both products are global shutter sensors which perform true Correlated Double Sampling (true-CDS) to capture sharp images of fast-moving objects with no motion artefacts.
This combination of high speed and high resolution in a standard format makes the CSG image sensors ideal for use in applications in the industrial, security and Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) markets, and in broadcast video. In an industrial application such as PCB assembly, the CSG sensors’ increased image quality and frame rate allow an Automated Optical Inspection (AOI) camera to spot defects, such as a missing or incorrectly applied electronic component, faster and more reliably than before.
Extremely versatile, the sensors can operate in six modes, which include a binning mode. When operating in line scan or windowing mode, the effective frame rate can be much higher than the nominal rate specified at full resolution.
Peter Vandersteegen, Marketing Manager of the CMOS Image Sensors business line at ams, said: “AOI is a vital part of the quality control process in modern factories. By delivering a fast frame rate and higher resolution, the CSG image sensors provide a simple way for industrial camera manufacturers to upgrade the performance of their products, and to enable their customers to raise throughput, productivity and quality – all in a standard optical format.”
High performance in all conditions
The CSG family sensors offer outstanding image quality even in challenging conditions. They are the first products to gain the benefits of a pixel design which is notable for its low noise and high sensitivity, plus high dynamic range and the ability to operate the sensor in HDR mode. These characteristics enable the CSG14K and CSG8K global shutter sensors to produce sharp and detailed images even when operating in dim light.
The CSG sensors feature a sub-LVDS data interface like that of the ams CMV family of image sensors. Both sensors are supplied in a 20mm x 22mm LGA package, share the same footprint and pinout, and are software-compatible. The CSG14K has a 1:1 aspect ratio, and is ideal for use in C-mount, 29mm x 29mm industrial cameras. The CSG8K has a 16:9 aspect ratio, suitable for video.
Because the sensors share a common hardware platform and common interface, it is easy for camera manufacturers to build multiple product variants on a single hardware design, enabling them to satisfy easily and at low development cost different customer preferences for speed, resolution and aspect ratio.