This paper describes the inherent advantages of IR uncooled imagers in general, and the SCC500 in particular, for homeland defense. The SCC500 is a small, lightweight, low power, high performance uncooled imager that began production shipments in the spring of 2003. Key technologies described are dynamic range control, contrast enhancement and electronic zoom. Availability of these advanced features in production products are also described.
BAE SYSTEMS produces hundreds of low cost, high performance, uncooled IR imagers each month for use in commercial and military applications. The production process of each imager includes several steps that begin at the wafer level and end at an in-camera test. Each step is critical to end yield improvement by detecting failure at various stages in the production flow. Both automated test equipment and an integrated database system are essential at each phase to efficiently build and automatically configure cameras for each customer. This paper discusses the process and tools used to reliably test and ship uncooled thermal imagers in addition to specific methods and calculation techniques for characterizing key performance parameters such as Responsivity, Noise Equivalent Temperature Difference, and Operability.
A new 4th generation MicroIR architecture is introduced as the latest in the highly successful Standard Camera Core (SCC) series by BAE SYSTEMS to offer an infrared imaging engine with greatly reduced size, weight, power, and cost. The advanced SCC500 architecture provides great flexibility in configuration to include multiple resolutions, an industry standard Real Time Operating System (RTOS) for customer specific software application plug-ins, and a highly modular construction for unique physical and interface options. These microbolometer based camera cores offer outstanding and reliable performance over an extended operating temperature range to meet the demanding requirements of real-world environments. A highly integrated lens and shutter is included in the new SCC500 product enabling easy, drop-in camera designs for quick time-to-market product introductions.