New sensor views objects in 3D

ifm efector is launching a new 3D image sensor that the company calls a breakthrough in 3D technology. The sensor uses a combination of time-of -flight distance measurement, photonic mixing device technology, and an integrated smart pixel array to view objects in three dimensions. Based on Phontonic Mixer Device (PMD) technology, the sensors capture a complete three-dimensional image in real t...

By Control Engineering Staff May 1, 2009

ifm efector is launching a new 3D image sensor that the company calls a breakthrough in 3D technology. The sensor uses a combination of time-of -flight distance measurement, photonic mixing device technology, and an integrated smart pixel array to view objects in three dimensions.

Based on Phontonic Mixer Device (PMD) technology, the sensors capture a complete three-dimensional image in real time. Time-of-flight measures the time it takes a pulse from an active light source to return to the receiver. A pixel array collects all active light and each pixel divides the photons into two sections for evaluation. imf and PMD Tech partnered in 2002 to develop the technology, which had been patented in 1996.

Future applications include a range of automotive systems, including pre-crash sensing, blind-spot detection, passenger out-of-position detection and more. More-imminent industrial applications include palletizing/de-palletizing and other packaging applications.

www.ifm.com