Continued from Sony Develops 7.42-Mpixel Automotive Image Sensor (1)

However, the new product was developed not only for Mobileye. The specifications required by Mobileye are "commonly-required specifications," Sony said. So, the product is targeted at a wide variety of camera systems. Sony plans to start to ship samples in November 2017 and begin volume production in June 2018.

Recognition of sign located 160m away

The pixel count of the new product is 3,849 (horizontal) x 1,929 (vertical). Sony especially increased pixel count in the horizontal direction. It is about three times more than the horizontal pixel count of the company's "IMX224" high-sensitivity product (See related article).

Sony increased horizontal pixel count for two reasons. One is to make it easy to recognize more distant objects. For example, when the new image sensor is combined with a lens whose FOV (field of view) is 32°, it becomes possible to take a clear image of a sign located about 160m away.

A comparison of capability of shooting a distant object. The right image was taken with "IMX224," which is a previous product.

Another reason is to take wider-angle images. For example, car detection and collision avoidance will be added to EuroNCAP's evaluation items for automatic brake-based collision avoidance. EuroNCAP deals with vehicle assessment in Europe.

Vehicles cut across in front of the user's vehicle at a higher speed than pedestrians, requiring wider-angle image shooting. However, the wider the angle, the less the number of pixel count per shooting becomes, blurring images. Therefore, Sony increased pixel count in the horizontal direction. In consideration of the horizontal pixel count of the new product, the company expects to combine the product with a wide-angle lens having an FOV of 120°.

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