Developments in IR uncooled detector technology

February 2005 Perimeter Security, Alarms & Intruder Detection

Uncooled infrared detector technology is moving rapidly with the latest developments from the French company, Ulis. Uncooled detectors are widely used in low-cost security, fire fighting, military, predictive maintenance and thermography applications. The uncooled detector has previously only been available for use in the 8 to 12 µ thermal imaging band and detector formats have typically been ¼ TV with up to 384 x 288 pixels with 35 or 45 µ pixel pitch.

Ulis has released two unique products this year, the first being a ¼ TV format detector that can operate from 2 to 16 µ, covering both the 3 to 5 (MWIR) and 8 to 12 (LWIR) micron atmospheric transmission bands. Both of these bands can be used for thermal imaging and cooled military imaging systems based on the MWIR are manufactured by Denel Optronic Systems and are found to have a better performance than the traditional LWIR systems.

The second Ulis product is a full TV format (640 x 480 pixels) detector array for use in the LWIR spectral band. The pixel pitch in this case has been reduced to 25 µ to make the detector even more compact. Although such detectors have been manufactured in the USA export was restricted through export licence requirements.

Ulis technology is based on a unique resistive amorphous silicon bolometer which enables a 100% compatibility with standard CMOS silicon processes, making it simple and best suited for low cost and high yield manufacturability. The Ulis range of focal plane arrays require no cryogenic cooler, chopper or scanner.

Examples of imagery obtained with ¼ TV format Ulis detectors can be found in the October 2004 issue of High Tech Security Solutions in an article entitled: 'Thermal imaging as part of a total security solution'. This can be viewed on line at the Technews website www.technews.co.za

For more information contact Measuring Instruments Technology, 012 348 0569, ceo@measureit.co.za





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