Sensor provides 1D ToF distance measurement

January 08, 2019 //By Peter Clarke
Sensor provides 1D ToF distance measurement
The TMF8701 from AMS AG (Premstaetten, Austria) uses optical time-of-flight to measure distance and provide proximity detection and is particularly designed as an improvement for smartphones.

Supplied in a 2.2mm by 3.6mm by 1.0mm package, the TMF8701 sensor fits in a narrow smartphone bezel and provides some immunity to interference from ambient light, and a controlled field of view.

The TMF8701 integrates a VCSEL infrared emitter, multiple SPAD (single photon avalanche photodiode) light detectors, time-to-digital converter, and a histogram processing core. The device implements all histogram-based presence detection, distance measurement and proximity sensing algorithms on-chip.

The module achieves accuracy of +/-5 percent when measuring distance in the range 20 to 60cm in normal lighting conditions. Even in bright sunlight (100klux), +/-5 percent accuracy is maintained at a range of up to 35cm. The TMF8701 draws 940microamps in proximity sensing mode when sampling at 10Hz.

The time-of-flight sensor is in mass production with unit pricing at $2.60 in an order quantity of 5,000 units.

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