New Generation Time of Flight (ToF) Sensor with Advanced Multi-Zone and Multi-Object Detection Technology

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ByRajni Setia 0

VL53L5 Time-of-Flight (ToF) Laser-Ranging Sensor from STMicroelectronics

VL53L5 from STMicroelectronics is the 64-zone multi-zone Time-of-Flight (ToF) laser-ranging sensor that breaks a scene into separate areas to help an imaging system build the most detailed spatial understanding of a scene. The new sensor comprises a 940 nm Vertical Cavity Surface Emission Laser (VCSEL) light source, a System-on-Chip sensor integrating a VCSEL driver, the receiving array of Single Photon Avalanche Diodes (SPADs), and a low-power 32-bit MCU core and accelerator running sophisticated firmware.

Encompassed in a miniature module, the VL53L5 ToF sensor comprises optical elements in the receive aperture that creates 64 ranging zones, unlocking a host of new features and use cases. Packaged in a 6.4 x 3.0 x 1.5 mm module, the VL53L5 ToF sensor integrates both transmit and receive lenses into the module design and expands the Field of View (FoV) of the module to 61-degrees diagonal. This wide FoV is especially suited to detect off-center objects and ensure perfect autofocus in the corners of the image.

In the Laser Autofocus use case, the VL53L5 gathers ranging data from up-to 64 zones across the full FoV to support “Touch to Focus” and many other features. This flexibility significantly enhances smartphone/camera performance, convenience, and versatility. Further flexibility is available via the SPAD array, which can be set to favor spatial resolution, where it outputs all 64 zones at up to 15fps, or to favor maximum ranging distance, where the sensor outputs 4×4/16 zones at a frame rate of 60fps.

The VL53L5 is in mass production with millions of units already shipped to leading wireless and computer manufacturers.

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