A new generation of high-performance uncooled detector arrays, with 17 and 25 μm pitch, improved sensitivity, and
extended spectral response were developed recently by SCD. This development brings the uncooled infrared technology
very close to the performance of traditional second generation cooled LWIR detectors, and enables a new range of
applications. We demonstrate the use of our Very High Sensitivity (VHS) 25 μm pitch detector with F/2.4, for long
range observation systems. We also present the new Wide-Band (WB) detector, where the detector absorption is tuned to
both the MWIR and LWIR bands, which is optimal for use in some applications such as situation awareness.
Furthermore, in this work we present our 17 μm pitch new family of detectors with different array formats (QVGA,
VGA and XGA). These detectors are targeting a wide range of applications, from medium-performance with low Size,
Weight and Power (SWaP) applications, up to high-performance imaging applications.
The market demand for low SWaP (Size, Weight and Power) uncooled engines keeps growing. Low SWaP is especially
critical in battery-operated applications such as goggles and Thermal Weapon Sights. A new approach for the design of
the engines was implemented by SCD to optimize size and power consumption at system level.
The new approach described in the paper, consists of:
1. A modular hardware design that allows the user to define the exact level of integration needed for his system
2. An "open architecture" based on the OMAP<sup>TM</sup>530 DSP that allows the integrator to take advantage of unused
hardware (FPGA) and software (DSP) resources, for implementation of additional algorithms or functionality.
The approach was successfully implemented on the first generation of 25μm pitch BIRD detectors, and more recently on
the new, 640 x480, 17 μm pitch detector.
Over the last decade SCD has established a state of the art VO<sub>x</sub> μ-Bolometer product line. Due to its overall advantages
this technology is penetrating a large range of systems. In addition to a large variety of detectors, SCD has also recently
introduced modular video engines with an open architecture.
In this paper we will describe the versatile applications supported by the products based on 17μm pitch: Low SWaP
short range systems, mid range systems based on VGA arrays and high-end systems that will utilize the XGA format.
These latter systems have the potential to compete with cooled 2<sup>nd</sup> Gen scanning LWIR arrays, as will be demonstrated
by TRM3 system level calculations.
Proc. SPIE. 7834, Electro-Optical and Infrared Systems: Technology and Applications VII
KEYWORDS: Video, Sensors, Single crystal X-ray diffraction, Digital signal processing, Video processing, Image processing, Infrared imaging, Detection and tracking algorithms, Nonuniformity corrections, Analog electronics
SCD's new 17μm pitch VGA VOx μ-Bolometer detector was introduced in April 2010. Due to their overall size, weight
and power advantages, 17μm pitch uncooled detectors are currently being considered for next generation systems such
as thermal weapon sights (TWS), driver vision enhancers (DVE) and digitally fused goggles (DENVG). In this paper we
describe a new video engine developed at SCD to support the new 17μm pitch VGA detector. First, the modular design
concept of the hardware for the new video engine is described. This is followed by a description of the software design
concept, including features that emphasize the open architecture and the provision for a customer to add on his own
algorithms and software. The detector and the engine are on low rate production these days. Full production is planned
SCD has developed a High Performance Detector Dewar Cooler (DDC) called “Piccolo” for IR detection in the MWIR, which has low power consumption, low weight and low cost. The DDC characteristics are optimized for handheld camera applications. The Piccolo DDC is based on the advanced “Blue Fairy” Focal Plane Processor (FPP) which is bonded to a 320x256 element InSb FPA. The Blue Fairy FPP is used in a special mode of operation for very low power consumption of less than 25mW. A special dewar has been developed for the Piccolo which has a low heat load of less than 140mW. A new cooler designed for low power consumption and low weight is integrated into the dewar. This results in a total power consumption for the DDC at an ambient temperature of 23°C of below 5W. The total weight of the whole DDC is less than 400gr. All the components of the Piccolo were designed for low cost production while keeping the high performance and reliability standards of all SCD detectors.