Automotive camera module reference design fits on single PCB

17th September 2018
Lanna Cooper

OmniVision Technologies has announced its high definition automotive camera module reference design, developed with collaboration from Leopard Imaging and featuring technology from Texas Instruments. The compact design includes OmniVision’s OX01B40 image sensor plus Image Signal Processor (ISP) System-in-Package (SiP), as well as TI’s DS90UB933-Q1 or DS90UB935-Q1 serialiser chip and TPS65000-Q1 Power Management Integrated Circuit (PMIC).

All four components are AEC-Q100 Grade 2 qualified, with an operating range of -40°C to +105°C. The reference design can be integrated directly into vehicles as a low cost solution with the fastest time to market, or the design can serve as a starter kit for Tier-1s and OEMs who want to create their own camera modules.

The new reference design was created to assist customers in designing automotive viewing cameras, especially rearview cameras or surround-view cameras, where small size, low power consumption, low thermal output, and image quality are critical.

This is the first automotive camera module to incorporate all its components on a single Printed Circuit Board (PCB). Existing modules stack at least two PCBs for the image sensor and ISP, respectively, and usually a third for the power ICs.

“As the transition from analogue to HD digital cameras in automotive applications moves into the mainstream, our joint reference design meets the need for cameras that are as small and unobtrusive as possible while providing accurate images in all lighting conditions,” said Bill Pu, President at Leopard Imaging. “The compact, low power components from TI and OmniVision allowed us to achieve our goal of a single-board design.”

OmniVision’s OX01B40 SiP combines a high performance 1392x976-resolution colour CMOS image sensor and an ISP. It supports streaming video of up to 60fps and consumes less than 400mW of power.

Built on OmniVision’s 2.8-micron OmniBSI-2 Deep Well pixel technology, the OX01B40 delivers low light sensitivity and 120dB High Dynamic Range (HDR) performance for contrast and for resilience to rapidly changing lighting conditions ranging from darkness to bright sunlight.

“The OX01B40 is perfectly suited for this application,” said Andy Hanvey, Director of Automotive Marketing at OmniVision. “Because of its small size and industry-leading low power consumption, it can enable smaller camera modules with lower thermal output, and its HDR minimises motion artifacts.”

Handling the power needs in the design, TI’s TPS65000-Q1 single-chip PMIC combines low dropout regulators with a step-down converter that can operate in forced PWM mode or auto PWM-PFM mode, depending on load, to maximise efficiency.

This reference design also offers the choice of either parallel CMOS (DS90UB933-Q1) or MIPI CSI-2 (DS90UB935-Q1) FPD-Link serialisers, both of which support communication with high speed image sensors and are for customers designing high resolution, compact camera modules with 1-MP cameras streaming at up to 60fps.

The DS90UB935-Q1 also removes the need for an oscillator in the camera module, minimising cost and space while providing reliability.

“Through this design, automotive engineers can quickly take advantage of the combined knowledge and expertise from OmniVision, Leopard and TI to implement cost effective, high performance viewing cameras,” said Hannes Estl, General Manager of Automotive ADAS at TI.

“TI’s power supply and serialiser chips enable the high density and small solution size that help realise this very compact 1-MP camera module design.”

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