ISSCC: World’s first CMOS terahertz video camera presented

08.03.2012|13:28 Uhr|Ullrich Pfeiffer

THz Camera

Fig. 1 Picture of the camera housing including a silicon lens for stand-off detection. Total camera size 5x5x3cm3.

The University of Wuppertal, STMicroelectronics, and ISEN/IEMN presented the world’s first terahertz video camera fully integrated in a commercially available CMOS 65nm process technology from STMicroelectronics at the ISSCC 2012 in San Francisco in February 2012.

The design team makes use of cutting-edge CMOS circuit design to realize a THz camera module which offers real-time THz imaging between 600GHz and 1THz at room temperature with size, weight, and power consumption orders of magnitude lower than any other available THz imager today.

At the International Solid State Circuit Conference (ISSCC), which was held in San Francisco February 19-23, 2012, the University of Wuppertal, Germany, STMicroelectronics, Crolles, France, and ISEN/IEMN, Lille, France, presented their paper:

A 1kpixel CMOS Camera Chip for 25fps Real-Time THz Imaging Applications, Hani Sherry(1,2,3), Janusz Grzyb(2), Yan Zhao(2), Richard Al Hadi(2), Andreia Cathelin(1), Andreas Kaiser(3), and Ullrich Pfeiffer(2)

(1) STMicroelectronics, Crolles, France

(2) University of Wuppertal, Wuppertal, Germany

(3) ISEN/IEMN, Lille, France

The paper describes a USB-powered THz imager including all required circuitry such as 1024 THz pixel detectors, column/row decoders, global shutter reset/bias network, serialization, digitization and video streaming for more than 25 frames-per-second. The circuits expand the NMOS transistors operation beyond their cut-off frequency and demonstrate the "first real-time THz video streaming application in the CMOS history". A hands-on live demonstration of the camera operation was shown at the Academic Demonstration Session (ADS). The work has established a leadership position for the European semiconductor industry in the area of CMOS-based THz applications, such as emerging security, medical and scientific applications. This paper will soon be available on the IEEE Xplore digital Library.

For further information please contact:

STMicroelectronics – Dr. Andreia Cathelin


University of Wuppertal – Prof. Ullrich Pfeiffer


ISEN/IEMN – Prof. Andreas Kaiser


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