The revolutionary dim light sensor harnesses graphene properties to detect broad spectrum light, including infrared, in a cheap and energy efficient manner.
1,000 times more sensitive than sensors found in today’s cameras, this new graphene-based sensor is supposed to operate with 10 times less energy. Researches also consider that it will be cheaper to produce and easier to integrate into a variety of optical devices, as it was intended for all types of cameras from the start.
How does a dim light sensor made of graphene capture light?
Professor Wang Qijie from Nanyang Technological University says that the honeycomb arrangement of the graphene atom structure and its high electrical conductivity make this material the perfect choice for a light sensor.
Pure graphene is the first material to meet the requirements of the ideal broad-spectrum, high photosensitive camera sensor.
The sheets of graphene nanostructures trap light particles (photons) for a longer time than normal CMOS or CCD sensors. In this way, the electrical signal gets much stronger. Actually, the so-called “trapped electrons” are the key to a sharper image.
Graphene sensor is expected to be released soon on the market
The inventor expects a revolution on the digital consumer market. His graphene-based dim light sensor is suited for all types of cameras, from high-end DSLRs to infrared and satellite imaging.
Communication industries seem to be able to take advantage of this breakthrough too, even if Professor Wang Qijie has yet to tell us more about it.
Researchers had in mind from the start that it will turn hard for manufacturers to replace the standard CMOS sensor with this new one. That way the end result is now easy to integrate into existing models or those still to come.
Standard light sensors are expected to disappear from the market soon, as the graphene one would be cheaper to be put into mass production and it will consume less energy. And dim light conditions will not be a problem anymore.
Fine-tuning and further improvements are just around the corner
The team of scientists working in this project announced that the dim light sensor is in the final stages of development.
Already patented, the invention is under constant improvement. Scientists still have some optimizations to do in regard to the response speed. Additional efforts are also made towards turning the sensor into a commercial product, perfectly compatible with various devices on the market.