Time-of-flight IC reduces power consumption

21st October 2015
Caroline Hayes

Pulse amplitude signal measurement is used for object detection in the ISL29501 sensor. Intersil’s Andrew Cowell told a Eurasia press conference in California that the technology overcomes the problems encountered by conventional time-of-flight ICs which use amplitude changes.

It operates independently of the subject moving or the light changing to make accurate measurements and independently of light, adds Cowell.

The sensor is in a 24-lead TQFN package and measures 4x5x1mm, suitable for battery-powered mobile devices, such as multiple sensor appliances like robotic cleaners, the auto-focus features in smartphones, for inventory management in vending machines as well as white goods and gaming for presence detection.

The sensor operates at distances between 0.2m and 2m and in lighting conditions above 20,000 lux, rather than the conventional 0.1 to 1.5m and 2,000 lux, Cowell told the press conference. The power consumption is 20mW, plus programmable current levels. An on-chip emitter DAC with programmable current up to 255mA allows the current level to be selected to drive the external IR LED or laser to detection and power budget. A reference design is also available. It has the IC sensor, emitter and photodiode, GUI software and user’s guide.

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