Tel Aviv University’s (TAU) Ramot Momentum Fund has unveiled this week its breakthrough ‘Unispectral’ SmartCam Technology at the MWC15 Barcelona Mobile World Congress. Unispectral is being funded by the Technology Innovation Momentum Fund of TAU’s Ramot tech transfer arm, whose lead investors are India’s Tata Group and Singapore’s Temasek Holdings. Another key investor is the SanDisk Corporation, with the balance of the investments provided by angel investors, primarily from South Africa, US and India. Shlomo Nimrodi, CEO of Momentum Fund and Ramot, commented: “The Momentum Fund represents an innovative approach for early stage innovations utilizing a for-profit investment mechanism with the support of strategic partners.”
Unispectral‘s Superior Imaging TechnologyTAU’s Unispectral technology aims to break the image quality bottleneck by replacing the Bayer color filter array with a tunable spectral filter and complementary image fusion IP-core. The technology, backed by multiple patents, is compatible with compact camera modules and common computational platforms. The solution includes a reference design of the optical component and SW library.
The Unispectral SmartCam[caption id="attachment_5463" align="aligncenter" width="440"] Unispectral Pioneering Mobile Hyperspectral Imaging by Ramot at Tel Aviv University. Photo Credit: DaMa Studio[/caption] The Unispectral solution also provides hyperspectral imaging capabilities to any camera. Hyperspectral sensors look at objects using a vast portion of the electromagnetic spectrum, enabling a wide range of applications such as astronomy, agriculture, biomedical imaging, mineralogy, physics, and surveillance, as well as smartphone cameras, wearables, and IoT. Unispectral cameras include an additional optical component that replaces the Bayer color filter array and IP-core, suitable for heterogeneous computational platforms. The solution is integrated with common hardware, such as rolling shutter image sensors and a plastic injected lens. The component was designed for compact camera modules with small form-factor, low power consumption and high frame rate support.
Unispectral‘s BenefitsMuch as the human eye sees visible light in three bands (red, green, and blue), spectral imaging divides the spectrum into many more bands. This technique of dividing images into bands can be extended beyond the visible. Unispectral cameras offer 2x more light captured, 2x resolution and improved dynamic range compared to standard compact cameras. Thus, Unispectral cameras achieve image quality improvement by utilizing common components. Furthermore, each camera is transformed into a smart camera, enabling multiple M-health applications that used to require stand alone spectroscopes.
Unispectral‘s Value Proposition
- Superior low light performance, capturing 2x light compared to standard cameras
- Hyperspectral imaging capabilities
- enabling spectroscopic applications in any standard color camera
- Design meets mobile camera module standards and requirements
- Better noise handling performance and SNR
- Stabilized image
- Improved dynamic range
- High speed component, supports over 1,200 fps
- Compatible with standard components, heterogeneous computational platforms and standard module assembly procedures
- Low cost solution, suitable for mass production
- Small form factor
- Power efficient
- Extended spectral range, suitable for VIS-NIR imaging
- Reduced pixel cross-talk