ToF Chipset plus evaluation kit facilitate 3D vision designs

January 18, 2017 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Time-of-flight (ToF) vision solutions add the third dimension to photographic 2D images. Melexis has developed a chipset capable of ToF image capturing; it is accompanied by an evaluation kit that simplifies the development of working automotive solutions.

Representing a complete ToF sensor and control solution, the chipset supports QVGA resolution and offers unsurpassed sunlight robustness and up to -40°C to +105°C temperature range operation. Using the evaluation kit, designers can test this automotive-qualified chipset and start developing their own custom hardware and application software.

The chipset brings together the company’s MLX75023 1/3-inch optical format ToF sensor and the MLX75123, a companion IC that controls the sensor and illumination unit and delivers data to a host processor. Together the devices can minimize the component count and reduce the size of 3D ToF cameras. Designed for maximum flexibility, the modular EVK75123 QVGA evaluation kit combines a sensor board featuring the chipset, an illumination module, an interface board and a processor module.

The MLX75023 sensor has QVGA (320 x 240 pixel) resolution and industry-leading background light rejection capabilities of up to 120klux. This IC can provide raw data output in less than 1.5 ms, giving it unsurpassed capacity to track rapid movement. The MLX75123 control chip has 12‐bit parallel camera interface and I2C connectivity and 4 integrated high-speed analog-to-digital converters (ADC). Integrated functions include diagnostics and support for region‐of‐interest, configurable timing, image flipping, statistics and switching modulation frequencies.

 

As the MLX75023 and MLX75123 have respective footprints of just 7mm x 7mm and 6.6mm x 5.5mm, they require minimal board real estate. The operational robustness of this chipset makes it suited to designs for automotive, surveillance and smart buildings, as well as industrial applications including machine vision, robotics and factory automation. Operating temperature range is ‐20°C to +85°C as standard, with an elevated -40°C to +105°C option also available. High-temperature capabilities mean that, unlike alternative solutions, the need for active cooling can be minimized. This leads to a reduction in noise, as well as enabling further cost and space savings in relation to thermal management. 

 

Consisting of four vertically stacked PCBs - sensor board, illumination board, interface board and processor board