Panasonic Develops High-Sensitivity MOS Sensor

May 19, 2011 | Zoltan Arva-Toth | Accessories | Comment | |
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Panasonic has developed a new-generation 1/2.33” type 14-megapixel MOS image sensor boasting best-in-class sensitivity for low noise. Intended for use in digicams, camcorders and camera phones, the new sensor provides a sensitivity of 3050 el/lx/sec/?m2, while the new light-focusing structure employed “significantly expands the incident light angle, ensuring uniform and high picture quality” and enables the production of slimmer cameras, the company says. Mass production is scheduled to start in December.

Panasonic Press Release

Panasonic Develops New High Picture Quality MOS Image Sensor with Industry’s Highest Sensitivity*1

Panasonic’s new MOS image sensor technologies enable to make digital cameras, camcorders as well as cameras incorporated in smartphones and other mobile terminals slimmer with higher sensitivity and improved picture quality.

Osaka, Japan - Panasonic Corporation has successfully developed high sensitivity and high picture quality technologies for new MOS image sensors by improving the sensitivity of the company’s ?Maicovicon┬«*2 MOS image sensor and suppressing uneven color and brightness, which may be an issue for low-profile cameras, thereby ensuring more uniform image quality. Using these technologies, Panasonic will start mass production of a new MOS image sensor (MN34110) for digital cameras, a diagonal 7.7 mm (1/2.33-inch type) sensor with 14 megapixel effective resolution, in December 2011 and continues to develop various types.

Current high-sensitivity MOS image sensors suppress unevenness in brightness. CCDs have low color-mixing characteristics that suppress color unevenness. The rapidly expanding market for digital cameras with higher image quality and a slimmer body has resulted in greater demand for a stable supply of image sensors that offer both high sensitivity and uniform picture quality.

Panasonic has achieved both MOS image sensor’s high sensitivity and uniform picture quality using the new MOS image sensor technologies, enabling digital cameras and camcorders as well as cameras incorporated in smartphones and other mobile terminals to be slimmer with higher sensitivity and improved picture quality.

The new MOS image sensor has the following features:
The fine process technologies provide a sensitivity of 3050 el/lx/sec/?m2, the industry’s highest*1 as a MOS image sensor.
The new light-focusing structure significantly expands the incident light angle, ensuring uniform and high picture quality, as well as produces a slimmer camera.
The simple manufacturing process is based on the current MOS image sensor structure, ensuring a stable supply.
The new MOS image sensor has been created using the following Panasonic technologies:
The 32 and 45 nm (nanometers) leading-edge semiconductor process technologies lower the wiring layer profile, expand the opening area, and increase the photo diode volume.
The low color-mixing characteristics are enhanced by light-focusing structure design technologies that use a three-dimensional wave optics design to minimize light leakage at the structural boundaries.
Image sensor mass-production technologies allow stable production of MOS image sensors with high picture-quality.

*1: Based on Panasonic’s data as of May 12, 2011
*2: ?Maicovicon is a registered trademark of Panasonic Corporation.

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