Sony has released the 1/1.55 type, 5.4-effective-megapixel IMX490 CMOS image sensor for automotive cameras.
The new image sensor simultaneously achieves HDR and LED flicker mitigation functions at the industry’s highest 5.4-effective-megapixels (2880 pixels wide by 1860 pixels high). This makes it possible to capture a wider angle of view while maintaining the same resolution as with existing lower resolution sensors, enabling the sensor to recognize traffic conditions and objects such as obstacles, signs, and traffic signals across a broader field.
Sony has also improved the saturation illuminance through a proprietary pixel structure and exposure method. When using the HDR imaging and LED flicker mitigation functions at the same time, this offers a wide 120dB dynamic range, about three times higher than that of the company's previous product. This means highlight oversaturation can be mitigated, even in situations where 100,000 lux sunlight is directly reflecting off a light-colored car in the front, and the like, thereby capturing the subject more accurately even under road conditions where there is a dramatic lighting contrast such as when entering and exiting a tunnel.
Moreover, this method prevents motion artifacts that occur when capturing moving subjects compared with other HDR technologies.
In addition to these benefits, Sony claims that the new product improves the sensitivity characteristics by about 15% compared to that of the previous generation product, improving the capability to recognize pedestrians and obstacles even in low illuminance conditions of 0.1 lux, the equivalent of moonlight.
The sensor is scheduled to meet the AEC-Q100 Grade 2 reliability standards for automobile electronic components for mass production. Sony has also introduced a development process compliant with ISO 26262 functional safety standards for automobiles to ensure that design quality meets the functional safety requirements for automotive applications, thereby supporting functional safety level ASIL D for fault detection, notification and control. Moreover, the new sensor has security functions to protect the output image from tampering.
Sony will begin shipping samples of the new sensor in March 2019. Sample price is 15,000 JPY, excluding tax.Key Specifications
|Number of effective pixels||2896 (H) × 1876 (V), approx. 5.4 megapixels|
|Image size||Diagonal 10.36mm (type 1/1.55)|
|Unit cell size||3.0μm (H) × 3.0μm (V)|
|Frame rate||Full pixel||AD10bit 40fps, AD12bit 30fps|
|Sensitivity (F5.6 standard value, 1/30 second storage time)||2,280mV (green pixel)|
|Dynamic range (EMVA 1288 standard)||120dB (140dB when prioritizing dynamic range)|
|Interface||MIPI CSI-2 serial output (4 lane / 2 lane)|
|Package||124pin plastic BGA|
|Package size||15.35mm x 11.68mm|