Small direct ToF module delivers high accuracy

September 26, 2019 //By Julien Happich
ToF module
Measuring 2.2- x 3.6- x 1.0-mm, the TMF8801 direct time-of-flight (ToF) module released by ams supports accurate measurements from 2 cm up to 2.5 m while being more than 30% smaller than competing ToF sensors.

Even when placed below dirty or smudged cover glass, the device maintains high accuracy thanks to its on-chip histogram processing. By integrating a VCSEL infrared emitter, multiple SPAD (single photon avalanche photo-diode) light detectors, time-to-digital converter, and on-chip microcontroller for processing histograms, the TMF8801 ToF module delivers superior ToF performance. Compared to distance averaging employed with an indirect ToF system, the direct ToF time measurement methodology used in the TMF8801 delivers higher accuracy true-distance measurements.

The small size and low power consumption of the TMF8801 is also well suited for fast-ranging collision avoidance detection used in autonomous vacuum cleaners, and industrial robotics. For display-based products such as mobile computing, the sensor can be used for user presence detection to automatically wake up or put the system into a low-power sleep mode based on the presence or absence of a user.

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