Optoelectronics

Back-side illumination results in crisper, sharper images

2nd December 2014
Barney Scott

Utilising advanced Back-Side Illuminated (BSI) pixel technology and 65nm copper process technology to offer outstanding image quality and energy efficiency, Samsung has announced a 28MP APS-C CMOS image sensor for digital cameras. Currently in mass production, the S5KVB2 is designed into Samsung’s compact system camera, the NX1.

By using 65nm low-power copper process as well as fine design technology, the imager satisfies the requirements for power efficiency and noiseless high quality imaging in high-end compact system camera formats.

The S5KVB2 is the industry’s first APS-C sensor to adopt BSI pixel technology to offer superior light absorption. The BSI structure moves the metal layers to the rear side of the photodiode to reduce the loss of light. Applying BSI pixels, Samsung’s latest imager improves the light sensitivity of each pixel and increases light absorption in peripheral areas by approximately 30%, resulting in crisper, sharper images compared to a conventional Front-Side Illumination (FSI) pixel-based imager.

By moving the position of the photo diode, the sensor’s metal wiring layout is better optimised for faster continuous speed. As a result, the S5KVB2 offers 30fps video recording at Ultra HD resolution, being capable of delivering excellent video quality on a camera.

Based on the finer ICs and the use of copper, Samsung’s advanced 65nm low-power copper process enables power consumption to be reduced dramatically compared to an imager based on a previous process technology. As a result, the S5KVB2 imager reduces thermal emissions and decreases random noise significantly.

“To satisfy the increasing market need for high-end image sensors in digital cameras, Samsung has introduced this imager, which features excellent higher resolution, superior image quality, and faster shooting speed with low power consumption,” said Kyushik Hong, Vice President of System LSI Marketing, Samsung. “Based on its leadership in CMOS imaging technologies, Samsung will continue to address trends in camera sensor markets.”

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