Photonics Dictionary

CMOS camera

A CMOS camera refers to an imaging device that employs a complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS) image sensor to capture digital images. CMOS cameras have become ubiquitous due to their low power consumption, high integration, and cost-effectiveness compared to other imaging technologies like charge-coupled device (CCD) cameras.

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The fundamental components of a CMOS camera include:

CMOS image sensor: The primary component of a CMOS camera is the CMOS image sensor, comprising an array of light-sensitive pixels. Each pixel contains a photosensitive photodiode and associated circuitry for converting light into an electrical signal.

Signal processing circuitry: CMOS cameras typically integrate signal processing circuitry directly onto the image sensor chip. This circuitry consists of amplifiers, analog-to-digital converters, and digital signal processing units to enhance image quality and execute various image processing functions.

Readout circuitry: The readout circuitry of a CMOS camera is responsible for sequentially reading out the electrical signals from each pixel and transferring them to the camera's output for further processing or storage.

Control electronics: Control electronics govern the operation of the CMOS camera, including exposure settings, white balance, gain, and triggering. They also manage communication with external devices and interfaces.

CMOS cameras offer several advantages over CCD cameras, such as lower power consumption, faster readout speeds, and the ability to integrate additional functionality onto the image sensor chip. They find application across a broad spectrum of domains, including digital photography, video recording, surveillance, medical imaging, and industrial inspection.

CMOS cameras are available in various resolutions, sizes, and configurations to cater to the diverse requirements of different applications. Their versatility, performance, and affordability have established CMOS cameras as the preferred imaging technology in both consumer and professional markets.
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