May 21, 2014

Extra-thin infrared camera for low-cost surveillance applications


We designed a cheap broadband uncooled microimager operating in the long-wavelength infrared range using only one lens at a minimal cost for the manufacturing process. The approach is based on thin optics where the device volume is small and therefore inexpensive materials can be used because some absorption can be tolerated. We have used a Fresnel lens on a thin silicon substrate. Up to now, Fresnel lenses have not been used for broadband imaging because of their chromatic properties. However, working in a relatively high diffraction order can significantly reduce chromatism. A prototype has been made for short range or indoor low-cost surveillance applications like people counting, and experimental images are presented.