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February 19, 2020
Sony Semiconductor Solutions Corporation
Tokyo, Japan—Sony Corporation and Prophesee S.A. today announced they have jointly developed a stacked event-based vision sensor with the industry's smallest*1 4.86μm pixel size and the industry's highest*1 124dB (or more) HDR performance. The new sensor and its performance results were announced at the International Solid-State Circuits Conference (ISSCC) held in San Francisco in the United States, starting on February 16, 2020.
The new stacked event-based vision sensor detects changes in the luminance of each pixel asynchronously and outputs data including coordinates and time only for the pixels where a change is detected, thereby enabling high efficiency, high speed, low latency data output. This vision sensor achieves high resolution, high speed, and high time resolution despite its small size and low power consumption. This accomplishment was made possible by combining technical features of Sony's stacked CMOS image sensor, resulting in small pixel size and excellent low light performance that are achieved by the use of Cu-Cu connection*2, with Prophesee's Metavision® event-based vision sensing technologies leading to fast pixel response, high temporal resolution and high throughput data readout. The newly developed sensor is suitable for various machine vision applications, such as detecting fast moving objects in a wide range of environments and conditions.
While a frame-based sensor outputs entire images at fixed intervals according to the frame rate, an event-based sensor selects pixel data asynchronously using a row selection arbiter circuit*4. By adding time information at 1μs precision to the pixel address where a change in luminance has occurred, event data readout with high time resolution is ensured. Furthermore, a high output event rate of 1.066Geps*5 has been achieved by efficiently compressing the event data, i.e. luminance change polarity, time, and x/y coordinate information for each event.
|Process technology||90nm BI CIS on 40nm CMOS|
|Power supply voltage||2.5, 1.1(V)|
|Pixel size||4.86 x 4.86(µm2)|
|Max event rate||1066(MEPS)|
|Contrast sensitivity NCT||15.7(% contrast)|
Prophesee develops the world's most advanced neuromorphic vision systems. The company's Event-Based approach to machine vision allows for significant reductions of power, latency and data processing requirements as compared to traditional frame-based vision systems.
Prophesee's sensors and algorithms are designed to mimic the way biological eyes and brains work - with the goal to significantly improve performance, power and data efficiency of artificial vision systems in areas such as autonomous vehicles, industrial automation, IoT, security and surveillance, and AR/VR.