Ultra-compact CMOS endoscopy camera recognised with award

November 06, 2015 // By Graham Prophet
CMOSIS, maker of advanced CMOS image sensor solutions, has received the "Deutscher Innovationspreis für Ausserklinische Intensivpflege" (German Innovation Award for Non-Clinical Intensive Care). The prestigious award recognises the significant progress in endoscope-based catheter technology for outpatient care achieved by the ultra-small NanEye CMOS camera.

Central to the CMOSIS NanEye 2D camera is its extremely small image sensor developed at CMOSIS's Awaiba Lda. facility in Funchal, Madeira and CMOSIS Germany GmbH in Nuremberg, Germany. The 1 x 1 mm² sensor offers a resolution of 250 x 250 pixels at a 3 µm pitch. As a SoC (System-on-a-Chip), the NanEye 2D camera is housed in a 1 x 1 x 1.8 mm cube, accommodating; the chip-scale packaged sensor, developed in cooperation with Fraunhofer IZM Berlin, plus the lens mounted in front of it. The NanEye 2D camera head offers self-timed readout, 10-bit A/D conversion and serial image data transmission via LVDS.

In its targeted medical applications, the NanEye 2D enables a user to build miniaturised endoscopes with a camera placed at the tips of catheters to realise crisp live view images at a high frame rate of 44 fps during for example bronchial, lung or stomach intubation for intensive-care diagnosis and treatment such as injections or suctions.

"With our advanced CMOS technology, we are able to develop extremely small-size cameras - at a low cost enabling real-time visualisation with disposable catheters for outpatient intensive care," says Stephan Voltz, CEO of CMOSIS GmbH in Nuremberg, Germany. "This is important for everyday use as well as in emergency situations where there is no clinical sterilisation apparatus available." High-resolution visualisation via smartphone-type portable video monitors makes it easier for the caregivers to provide the proper treatment on location. "Our low-cost NanEye 2D camera setup includes the cabling of the endoscope tip integrated in the catheter."

Of special importance and a key factor of the innovation, says Voltz, is the fact that the NanEye 2D camera replaces the costly fibre optic cable with its 5,000 single fibres by a simple minimal-diameter four-wire connection with low energy dissipation, which needs no special shielding to meet prevailing EMC norms. Cabling of up to 3 metres in length is possible without any additional