Panasonic Developed Low Cost IR Camera Lens Molding Technology

Panasonic Developed Low Cost IR Camera Lens Molding Technology

Panasonic has announced to develop a new far-infrared lens molding technology. The company will start the mass production of the far-infrared aspherical lenses that will not be cost-effective. But also will improve the lenses and performance of the sensors.

According to the blogpost by the company, the new lenses will be made of chalcogenide glass, that has “excellent far-infrared transmission characteristics.

To keep the low-cost in mind, the lenses will be developed using new glass molding and processing technologies. As of which, the company will also be able to develop variety of other lenses like “diffractive lens”, which will be “world’s first highly hermetic frame-integrated lens without using adhesive“.

What Led To The Need Of New far-infrared lens molding technology?

In past few years, the demand of IR sensors have seen a seen a huge growth. Owing to the popularity of the autonomous driving technologies that requires these sensors. Reason being their capability for heat detection and monitoring. These sensors are able to detect people and animals even at night which is not possible with the normal light cameras.
Thus, the far-infrared sensors need to be more pixelated, however they need to cost effective for mass production.

To make them cost effective, generally low-cost silicon are being commonly used for IR sensors. However, they does not have high-pixel count, reason being its low transmittance. Thus, the germanium spherical lenses are widely being used that has high transmittance.

But with the increase of pixel count, the aberration effect of the spherical lens also gets more visible. To further reduce this effect, requires the combination of more spherical lenses and aspherical lens. As a result, it no longer remains cost effective and size of the lenses also increases.

Panasonic To Use New Glass Molding Technology For Low-Cost Production Of Aspherical lenses

To overcome the above shortcomings, the company has developed a new glass molding technology. This will not only be helpful in low-cost productions but also yield high performance aspherical lenses. These lenses will be suitable for manufacturing far-infrared optical systems.

What is the New Glass Molding And Processing technology?

The pre-processing of the conventional glass molding needs grinding and polishing of the glass before the molding. The cutting of the glass to attain the pre-determined shape results in large amounts of disposal of the material. As well as this requires longer processing time in grinding and polishing which results in higher costs.

So, the company has developed a new pre-processing technology that does not require grinding and polishing. This significantly reduces the cost and time.

The new molding technology uses chalcogenide glass that has excellent transmission of far-infrared. Thus, using it as a lens material will be helpful in making high performing sensors and cameras. As the molding process does not require the adhesive to fit the glass into the lens barrel. This has drastically reduced the chances of the contamination of glass.

New Glass Molding And Processing technology
New Glass Molding And Processing technology (Image: Panasonic)

By utilizing this new technology, Panasonic will be working on the enhancement of the far-infrared lenses modules. Further using different prototypes which will help the mass production of the lenses required to make far-infrared sensors and cameras.



Nupur is a tech writer at TechGeekSpace. She loves exploring latest tech, gadgets and have been writing on various topics related to technology, software, Gadgets, Windows, Mac, Internet, Android, and the latest tips and tricks.

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