Palo Alto, Calif. Agilent Technologies has announced an upgraded version of its analog-output ambient light photo sensor that is geared towards the mobile, consumer, commercial and industrial product arenas. Featuring one of the smallest dimensions in the industry at 2.00 x 1.25 x 0.80 mm, the Agilent APDS-9002 sensor is supplied in a lead-free, miniature ChipLED surface-mount package.
Saving board space, the new ambient light photo sensor controls portable/handheld display backlighting and on/off control for indoor/outdoor lighting applications including electronic signs and signals. The new device offers improved performance over the previously introduced HSDL-9001 sensor, including guaranteed operation over the extended 2.4 V to 5.5 V supply voltage range and a wider temperature range of -40°C to 85°C.
"Our new ChipLED photo sensor addresses a wide range of applications including price and size-sensitive mobile phones," said Chee-Kien Lim, worldwide marketing manager for the Infrared Products Division at Agilent's Semiconductor Products Group, in a statement. "The ultra-small sensor offers improved performance and significant power savings, which is an increasingly important issue with today's battery-powered devices."
How it works: The ambient light photo sensor emulates the human eye in detecting the amount of ambient light, and provides a highly linear proportional output that is used to adjust the backlighting of the display screen or keypad, then signals the mobile phone to turn on its display backlight and keypad light if necessary. For example, if there is sufficient ambient light, designer-provided logic can turn off the backlighting to reduce battery recharges or replacements.
The company said the light sensor outperforms silicon photodiode light-detection solutions because their spectral response peaks at the same wavelength as the human eye. In addition, they perform equally well in all light conditions including natural sunlight as well as fluorescent, conventional incandescent and halogen lamps. They also offer much faster response times to changes in illumination than phototransistors, said the company.
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The APDS-9002 is priced at less than $0.50 each in moderate volumes.
Agilent Semiconductor Products, 1-800-235-0312, www.agilent.com