Light sensor provides design flexibility for gesture applications

30th March 2017
Mick Elliott

The Optoelectronics group of Vishay Intertechnology has introduced a new fully integrated Automotive Grade proximity and ambient light sensor for gesture recognition. Featuring Filtron technology, the Vishay Semiconductors VCNL4035X01 combines photo detectors for proximity and ambient light, a signal conditioning IC, a 16-bit ADC, and a driver for up to three external IREDs in one compact 4 mm by 2.36 mm by 0.75 mm surface-mount package.

The AEC-Q101 qualified sensor features an interrupt function and supports I²C bus communication interface for portable electronics and smart home, industrial, and automotive applications.

The device can be implemented to provide gesture recognition in consumer electronics such as notebooks and tablets; presence detection for display activation in printers, copiers, and automobiles; collision avoidance in toys and robots; and lighting control in offices, corridors, and public buildings.

All the circuitry needed for these applications is included in one compact device to save PCB space, while its utilisation of external emitters for gesture applications provides greater design flexibility.

A programmable interrupt function allows both high and low thresholds to be set to reduce the overall power consumption within an application. The function can be programmed to trigger both the ambient light and proximity sensor.

The sensor's Filtron technology enables ambient light spectral sensitivity close to that of the human eye while offering excellent background light cancellation capabilities.

The device's high sensitivity allows for high object detection distances up to 500mm.

The VCNL4035X01's built-in ambient light photo diode offers detection from 0.004 lx to 4.2 klx, allowing the device to operate in applications with dark or high transparency lens designs.

The sensor offers high accuracy of ± 10%, fluorescent light flicker immunity, and excellent temperature compensation from -40°C to +105°C.

The VCNL4035X01's proximity sensor uses intelligent cancellation to eliminate cross-talk, while a smart persistence scheme ensures fast response time when an object is detected.

The device has a supply voltage range of 2.5V to 3.6V and I²C bus voltage range from 1.8V to 5V. Offered in a lead (Pb)-free 8-pin QFN package, the sensor is RoHS-compliant, halogen-free, and Vishay Green.

Samples and production quantities of the new VCNL4035X01 are available now, with lead times of eight to 12 weeks for large orders.

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