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With amplifier

Subclass of:

348 - Television

348207990 - CAMERA, SYSTEM AND DETAIL

348294000 - Solid-state image sensor

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Class / Patent application numberDescriptionNumber of patent applications / Date published
348301000 Pixel amplifiers 54
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DocumentTitleDate
20100165161PHOTOELECTRIC CONVERSION APPARATUS - A photoelectric conversion apparatus includes: a first photoelectric conversion element generating a current by photoelectric conversion; a first current amplifying element for amplifying the current generated by the first photoelectric conversion element; a first detecting unit for detecting a reverse bias voltage value of the first photoelectric conversion element; and a first setting unit for setting the reverse bias voltage value of the first photoelectric conversion element at a first normal value based on a result of the detection by the first detecting unit, wherein the first normal value is larger than a depleting voltage of the first photoelectric conversion element.07-01-2010
20090128676SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE AND CAMERA SYSTEM - A solid-state imaging device and a camera system are disclosed. The solid-state imaging device includes a pixel unit and a pixel signal readout circuit. The pixel signal readout circuit includes a plurality of comparators disposed to correspond to a pixel column array, and a plurality of counters. Each counter includes a first amplifier, a second amplifier, and a mirror circuit to from a current mirror in parallel with the second amplifier. The first amplifier includes differential transistors, initializing switches connected between gates and collectors of the differential transistors, and first and second capacitors connected to each of the gates of the differential transistors. The second amplifier includes an initializing switch and a third capacitor. The mirror circuit includes a gate input transistor whose gate is inputted with a voltage sampled by the first amplifier or a voltage sampled by the second amplifier.05-21-2009
20090195680LOW-POWER SIGNAL CHAIN FOR IMAGE SENSORS - A signal chain for an image sensor is disclosed. The signal chain includes photo sensing elements, pixel readout circuits, and an amplifier. Each pixel readout circuit receives a charge-induced signal and a reset signal from one of the photo sensing elements. The readout circuit computes a difference signal between the charge-induced signal and said reset signal. The difference signal is measured with respect to a reference signal. The amplifier is coupled to the pixel readout circuits, and configured to supply the reference signal during computation of the difference signal. Further, the amplifier amplifies the difference signal when the computation is done.08-06-2009
20100149392SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE, DRIVING METHOD THEREOF, AND IMAGING DEVICE - A solid-state imaging device according to an aspect of the present invention includes: an imaging unit which includes pixel units arranged in rows and columns; a row select unit which selects at least one row of the pixel units; column signal lines respectively provided for the columns, and transmit pixel signals from the selected at least one row of the pixel units; amplifier circuits respectively provided for the columns, and each includes an input terminal connected to a corresponding column signal line and an output terminal through which the amplifier circuit outputs an amplified pixel signal; switch circuits respectively provided for the columns, and each switches ON and OFF of a corresponding amplifier circuit; and bypass circuits respectively provided for the columns, and each allows a pixel signal to bypass from the input terminal to the output terminal of a corresponding amplifier circuit when the corresponding amplifier circuit is OFF.06-17-2010
20110194005SIGNAL READING APPARATUS AND IMAGE PICKUP SYSTEM USING THE SIGNAL READING APPARATUS - A signal reading apparatus includes first and second common signal lines from which a signal from a signal generation unit is output and first and second amplifier circuits and a switch configured to control a conductive state of the first and the second common signal lines. The signal reading apparatus includes a first signal reading method of reading a signal from the first common signal line after being amplified in the first amplifier circuit and reading a signal from the second common signal line after being amplified in the second amplifier circuit and a second signal reading method of turning ON the switch to read the signal from the first common signal line and the signal from the second common signal line individually after being amplified in the first amplifier circuit. The signal reading apparatus includes a control unit for controlling between the first and second signal reading methods.08-11-2011
20130208158PHOTOELECTRIC CONVERSION DEVICE, IMAGE CAPTURING SYSTEM, AND METHOD OF MANUFACTURING PHOTOELECTRIC CONVERSION DEVICE - A photoelectric conversion device includes a photoelectric conversion unit which is arranged in a semiconductor substrate, a charge holding portion which is arranged in the semiconductor substrate and temporarily holds a charge generated by the photoelectric conversion unit, a first transfer electrode which is arranged at a position above the semiconductor substrate to transfer a charge generated by the photoelectric conversion unit to the charge holding portion, a charge-voltage converter which is arranged in the semiconductor substrate and converts a charge into a voltage, and a second transfer electrode which is arranged at a position above the semiconductor substrate to transfer a charge held by the charge holding portion to the charge-voltage converter, and the first transfer electrode is arranged to cover the charge holding portion, and not to overlap the second transfer electrode when viewed from a direction perpendicular to the upper surface of the semiconductor substrate.08-15-2013
20100073537SOLID-STATE IMAGING APPARATUS AND METHOD OF DRIVING THE SAME - A solid-state imaging apparatus has a plurality of pixels arranged linearly along columns of N, a plurality of clamping capacitors each arranged corresponding to each column of the pixels, for accumulating the charge amplified by an amplifying unit in the pixel, a common node arranged corresponding to each set including the clamping capacitors of L (L is equal to or larger than 2, and a divisor of N), and connectable to each set including the clamping capacitors of L, a plurality of pixel selection switches each connected between the clamping capacitor and the common node, a clamping unit for clamping the common nodes to a reference potential, and a sampling and holding circuit connected to the common nodes through the clamping unit, and sampling and holding a charge corresponding to a charge of the common node.03-25-2010
20100045834SOLID-STATE IMAGING APPARATUS AND CAMERA - A solid-state imaging apparatus including a plurality of sensors that are formed on a substrate on a pixel basis and photoelectrically convert the light incident from a first surface side of the substrate, and a readout circuit that is formed on a second surface side of the substrate, which is the opposite side to the first surface side, and processes a signal from the plurality of sensors. The readout circuit includes a plurality of transistors and the transistors are disposed in a region between the pixels in an aligned manner.02-25-2010
20100045833SOLID-STATE IMAGING APPARATUS AND CAMERA - A solid-state imaging apparatus including a plurality of sensors that are formed on a substrate on a pixel basis and photoelectrically convert the light incident from a first surface side of the substrate, and a readout circuit that is formed on a second surface side of the substrate, which is the opposite side to the first surface side, and processes a signal from the plurality of sensors. The readout circuit includes a plurality of transistors and the transistors are disposed in a region between the pixels in an aligned manner.02-25-2010
20130027594IMAGE SENSORS AND METHODS WITH PIPELINED READOUT - A pipelined readout method in an image sensor includes receiving one or more signals from a pixel of a row of a pixel array into a column storage at least partially during a time that a previously sampled amplified output of the column storage that is based on signals provided by a previous pixel of a previously read out row of the pixel array is converted from analog to digital by an analog-to-digital conversion circuit. The method further includes performing, by the analog-to-digital conversion circuit, analog-to-digital conversion of a sampled amplified output of the column storage that is based on the one or more signals from the pixel at least partially during a time that the column storage receives at least one signal from a another pixel of a subsequently read out row of the pixel array.01-31-2013
20130033630IMAGING SYSTEM AND METHOD OF DRIVING THE SAME - An object of the present invention is to provide an imaging system capable of improving S/N ratio and increasing dynamic range and a method of driving the imaging system suited to the improvement and increase. An imaging system includes: a solid-state imaging device having a plurality of pixels arranged in a matrix, column amplifiers each corresponding to each of columns of the pixels and an output portion for outputting an image signal based on an amplification by the column amplifier; and a signal processing portion receiving the image signal, wherein the column amplifier amplifies a signal output from the pixel by a gain q larger than 1, and the signal processing portion multiplies, by a factor less than 1, the image signal based on the signal amplified by the gain q.02-07-2013
20100328508Method for Processing Images Arising from a Photosensitive Detector and Photosensitive Detector - The present invention relates to a method of processing images arising from a photosensitive detector of the type in particular made by techniques of depositing semiconductor materials. The method consists in correcting an image acquired (INPUT(T)) by the detector by a gain image (Gain(T)). According to the invention, an image for correcting drifting gain in terms of temperature (C(T12-30-2010
20130070136SOLID-STATE IMAGING APPARATUS, A/D CONVERTER, AND CONTROL METHOD THEREOF - In an A/D converter, a first analog signal which is input to an input terminal in a state in which the input terminal and a reference voltage line are connected via a first capacitor is converted into digital data when a reference signal is supplied to the reference signal line in a state in which the reference signal line and a first input terminal of a comparator are connected via the first capacitor. A second analog signal which is input to the input terminal in a state in which the input terminal and the reference voltage line are connected via a second capacitor is converted into digital data when the reference signal is supplied to the reference signal line in a state in which the reference signal line and the first input terminal of the comparator are connected via the second capacitor.03-21-2013
20130070135COLUMN PARALLEL READOUT IMAGE SENSORS WITH SHARED COLUMN ANALOG-TO-DIGITAL CONVERTER CIRCUITRY - Electronic devices may include image sensors having image sensor pixels arranged in rows and columns. Pixels arranged along a column may be coupled to a common column line. Two or more column lines may by coupled to a shared analog-to-digital converter circuit. The shared analog to digital converter circuit may sample and hold reset-level or image-level voltages presented on the column line. The shared analog to digital converter circuits may pre-amplify and convert the voltages to digital signals. The shared analog-to-digital converter may simultaneously sample pixel voltages for all columns in a selected row of the pixel array. The image sensor may read the converted signals out of memory for an active row in the pixel array while simultaneously sampling and holding the voltages for the next row of the pixel array.03-21-2013
20130070134Low Noise CMOS Pixel Array - An imaging array having a plurality of pixels is disclosed. Each pixel includes a photodetector that converts light to charge, a floating diffusion node, a first amplification stage connected to the floating diffusion node, and a select gate that connects the pixel to a second amplification stage. The first and second amplification stages form a current mirror. The first amplification stage includes a buried channel device. In one aspect of the present invention, the current minor has an overall voltage gain of between 0.9 and 1.1. In another aspect of the invention, the second amplification stage is shared by a plurality of pixels.03-21-2013
20110001861SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - According to one embodiment, a solid-state imaging device includes an imaging region, and a control circuit. In a first operation mode, the control circuit performs control in which signal charges of first and second photodiodes are transmitted to a floating diffusion. In a second operation mode, the control circuit performs control in which a signal charge of the second photodiode is transmitted to the floating diffusion.01-06-2011
20130050551IMAGE SENSOR AND IMAGE CAPTURING APPARATUS - An image sensor in which one unit structure includes a plurality of photo-electric conversion units, a floating diffusion, a plurality of transfer transistors which are arranged in correspondence with the plurality of photo-electric conversion units so as to transfer charges respectively converted by the plurality of photo-electric conversion units to the floating diffusion, a source-follower amplifier which outputs a voltage signal according to a charge amount of the floating diffusion, and a reset transistor which resets the plurality of photo-electric conversion units and the floating diffusion, and a plurality of unit structures are two-dimensionally arranged in a row direction and a column direction, the image sensor comprising a control unit which divides the plurality of unit structures into a plurality of groups, and controls the transfer transistors for each divided group.02-28-2013
20130088625SOLID-STATE IMAGING APPARATUS AND METHOD OF DRIVING THE SAME - A solid-state imaging apparatus includes: a plurality of pixels arranged in a matrix; a plurality of amplifier circuits each arranged correspondingly to each of columns of the pixels, for amplifying a signal from the pixel; and a current source transistor whose source is supplied with a power source voltage and which supplies the amplifier circuit with a bias current. When the current source transistor is operating in the saturation region, the gate voltage of the current source transistor that is supplied from the bias line is sampled and held. The gate voltage of the current source transistor with respect to the power source voltage is controlled to the sampled voltage, thereby suppressing variation. This suppression can, in turn, suppress occurrence of line noise and a lateral smear due to difference of drop in voltage of a power source line concerning a column circuit on each row.04-11-2013
20130088624HIGH DYNAMIC RANGE SUB-SAMPLING ARCHITECTURE - A method of implementing high dynamic range bin algorithm in an image sensor including a pixel array with a first super row having a first integration time and a second super row having a second integration time is described. The method starts by reading out image data from the first super row into a counter. Image data from the first super row is multiplied by a factor to obtain multiplied data. The factor is a ratio between the first and the second integration times. The multiplied data is then compared with a predetermined data. The image data from the second super row is readout into the counter. If the multiplied data is larger than the predetermined data, the multiplied data from the first super row is stored in the counter. If not, the image data from the second super row is stored. Other embodiments are also described.04-11-2013
20130088626SOLID-STATE IMAGE SENSOR AND MANUFACTURING METHOD THEREOF, AND CAMERA - A method of manufacturing a solid-state image sensor having a photoelectric conversion portion includes forming a silicon nitride film by a low-pressure chemical vapor deposition method using hexachlorodisilane (Si04-11-2013
20090303363APPARATUS AND METHOD FOR EXTENDING THE DYNAMIC RANGE OF A READ OUT INTEGRATED CIRCUIT OF AN IMAGE SENSOR - A read out integrated circuit includes (ROIC) an array of pixel circuits, each of which has a first charge storage element electrically connected across an amplifier, and a second charge storage element having a selectively activated electrical connection across the amplifier. First and second gain select switches are configured to control the selectively activated electrical connection so as to selectively place the second charge storage element in electrical parallel with the first charge storage element and cause both the first and said second charge storage elements to store charge in response to light detected by said associated pixel. The circuit includes gain control column lines, each gain control column line configured to control a plurality of the first gain select switches belonging to pixel circuits in an associated column of the array. The circuit also includes gain control row lines, each gain control row line configured to control a plurality of the second gain select switches belonging to pixel circuits in an associated row of the array.12-10-2009
20130057741SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE AND METHOD FOR DRIVING THE SAME - A solid-state image pickup device includes a plurality of common output lines receiving signals from a plurality of pixels, a plurality of column amplifier units amplifying the signals, a plurality of storage capacitors storing the amplified signals, a first transistor controlling electrical conduction between the output node of the column amplifier unit and the input node of a storage capacitor, a switch switching current for operating the column amplifier unit between a first current and a second current smaller than the first current, and a controller inhibiting, while the second current is flowing through the column amplifier unit, a potential at the output node of the column amplifier unit from approaching an off-state voltage supplied to a gate of the first transistor in an OFF state of the first transistor.03-07-2013
20090268069Photopumped semiconductor image amplifier with optical preamplification - One embodiment is an optical image preamplifier having an input through which a laser signal is received and amplified, said laser signal emanating from a target illuminated by a laser transmitter or generated by multiple lasercom transmitters in the field of view; the optical image preamplifier also having an output; and a focal plane array having an input operatively coupled to the output of the optical preamplifier. Embodiments of the present method and apparatus may be utilized to overcome photodetector and post-detection electronic noise to permit near quantum-limited receiver sensitivity with simple focal plane technologies. These embodiments enable ladar, wavefront sensor and multiple access lasercom systems that provide high sensitivity with the wide bandwidth and wavelength flexibility of semiconductor laser media.10-29-2009
20130063637SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE AND CAMERA SYSTEM - A solid-state image pickup device includes a pixel array unit that includes photoelectric conversion elements and in which a plurality of pixels are arranged in rows and columns that output, as pixel signals, electrical signals obtained by photoelectric conversion performed by amplifier elements to which pixel power supply voltage is supplied and that drive signal lines, a pixel power supply unit that generates the pixel power supply voltage from power supply voltage, the pixel power supply voltage being lower than the power supply voltage, and that supplies the pixel power supply voltage to the amplifier elements in the plurality of pixels, and a pixel signal read unit that reads pixel signals from the plurality of pixels.03-14-2013
20090237538SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE - A high dynamic range solid-state image pickup device is provided with a plurality of unit cells (09-24-2009
20130162874SOLID-STATE IMAGING APPARATUS - A solid-state imaging apparatus comprising a plurality of pixels generating a photoelectric conversion signal, a column amplifying unit corresponding to columns of the pixels, for outputting a first and second signals generated by amplifying the photoelectric conversion signal at a smaller first gain and larger second gain respectively, an analog to digital converter (06-27-2013
20120113305SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE AND METHOD OF RESETTING THE SAME - A solid-state image pickup device comprises for each pixel a photoelectric converter PD, an input terminal FD of a signal amplifier and a transfer switch TX for transferring an optical signal from the photoelectric converter to the input terminal. The device additionally comprises means for resetting the photoelectric converter by opening the transfer switch TX under a condition of holding the voltage of the input terminal FD to a fixed high level before storing the optical signal in the photoelectric converter PD. With this arrangement, any residual electric charge in the photoelectric converter can be eliminated without paying the cost of reducing the manufacturing yield and degrading the chip performance.05-10-2012
20130021509SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE DRIVING METHOD - Photosensitive cells each includes a photodiode (01-24-2013
20110279719SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE, METHOD OF DRIVING SAME, AND CAMERA APPARATUS - A solid-state imaging device of a three-transistor pixel configuration having no selection transistor has a problem of a non-selection hot carrier white point, which is specific to this apparatus. A bias current during a non-reading period of pixels is made to flow to a pixel associated with an immediately previous selection pixel, for example, the immediately previous selection pixel itself. As a result, dark current only for one line occurs in each pixel, and the dark current for one line itself can be reduced markedly. Consequently, defective pixels due to non-selection hot carrier white points can be virtually eliminated.11-17-2011
20110279718AMPLIFIER FOR REDUCING HORIZONTAL BAND NOISE AND DEVICES HAVING THE SAME - An amplifier is provided. The amplifier includes a differential amplifier including a tail, a current mirror connected between output terminals of the differential amplifier and a power line receiving a supply voltage, and a first switching circuit for connecting and disconnecting one of the output terminals of the differential amplifier to and from the tail in response to a first switching signal.11-17-2011
20110128426SOLID-STATE IMAGING APPARATUS - A solid-state imaging apparatus according to an embodiment includes pixels, horizontal control lines, vertical signal lines, a vertical scan circuit and a signal processing circuit; the horizontal control lines selecting the pixels in the row direction, the vertical signal lines having n lines (n is integer of 2 or larger) thereof arranged for each column so as to mutually intersect and being connected separately to pixels divided into n groups for each column, the vertical scan circuit selecting the horizontal control lines, and signal processing circuit processing pixel signals read out via the vertical signal lines simultaneously.06-02-2011
20120188427IMAGING SYSTEM WITH AUTOMATIC CONVERSION GAIN SELECTION - An image sensor may include an image pixel array. The image sensor may be provided with automatic conversion gain selection on a pixel-by-pixel basis to produce a high-dynamic-range image. Each image pixel may include a capacitor and a conversion gain transistor coupled in series between a power supply line and a floating diffusion node. The conversion gain transistor may be coupled to a control line through a gating transistor. The gating transistor may have a gate connected to a row select line. The image pixel may have an output line that is coupled to a column amplifier and a comparator. The column amplifier may generate a difference voltage based on reset and image signals. The comparator may compare the difference voltage with a predetermined threshold to determine whether to place the selected pixel in a high or low conversion gain mode.07-26-2012
20110292263PHOTOELECTRIC CONVERSION APPARATUS AND IMAGE PICKUP SYSTEM - In an auto-focusing (AF) sensor, it has been difficult to realize high-speed auto focusing and high-accuracy, auto focusing without increasing the scale of a circuit. In the present invention, a common buffer unit is provided for a plurality of memory cell units that are provided in each unit pixel.12-01-2011
20110141332SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE AND METHOD FOR DRIVING THE SAME - A solid-state image pickup device includes a plurality of common output lines receiving signals from a plurality of pixels, a plurality of column amplifier units amplifying the signals, a plurality of storage capacitors storing the amplified signals, a first transistor controlling electrical conduction between the output node of the column amplifier unit and the input node of a storage capacitor, a switch switching current for operating the column amplifier unit between a first current and a second current smaller than the first current, and a controller inhibiting, while the second current is flowing through the column amplifier unit, a potential at the output node of the column amplifier unit from approaching an off-state voltage supplied to a gate of the first transistor in an OFF state of the first transistor.06-16-2011
20100091158IMAGE PICKUP APPARATUS - In an apparatus, operation is switchable between first and second modes. In the first mode, a photoelectric conversion part and a charge storage part are released from a reset state for all pixels included in an image acquisition area to start a period, and, when a predetermined time has elapsed, the photoelectric conversion part and an overflow drain region of each pixel are turned onto end the period, and finally the charge stored in the charge storage part is transferred to the amplifier part. In the second mode, after a mechanical shutter is opened to start a period, the mechanical shutter is closed to end the period, and stored charge is transferred to the amplifier part.04-15-2010
20120188428SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE AND CAMERA SYSTEM - A solid-state imaging device and a camera system are disclosed. The solid-state imaging device includes a pixel unit and a pixel signal readout circuit. The pixel signal readout circuit includes a plurality of comparators disposed to correspond to a pixel column array, and a plurality of counters. Each counter includes a first amplifier, a second amplifier, and a mirror circuit to from a current mirror in parallel with the second amplifier. The first amplifier includes differential transistors, initializing switches connected between gates and collectors of the differential transistors, and first and second capacitors connected to each of the gates of the differential transistors. The second amplifier includes an initializing switch and a third capacitor. The mirror circuit includes a gate input transistor whose gate is inputted with a voltage sampled by the first amplifier or a voltage sampled by the second amplifier.07-26-2012
20100110248CORRELATED DOUBLE SAMPLING CIRCUIT - A correlated double sampling (CDS) circuit for sampling first and second pixel signals, which are respectively transmitted via first and second data lines, in a pixel array. The CDS circuit includes first and second sampling circuits, an amplifier circuit and a control circuit. The control circuit controls the first sampling circuit to sample a reset level and a data level of the first pixel signal in a first sampling period, and controls the second sampling circuit to sample a reset level and a data level of the second pixel signal in a second sampling period. The control circuit controls the amplifier circuit to output the reset level and the data level of the first pixel signal in a first output period, and output the reset level and the data level of the second pixel signal in a second output period.05-06-2010
20080284885SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE, IMAGING APPARATUS, AND ELECTRONIC APPARATUS - A solid-state imaging device includes a pixel unit in which unit pixels are arrayed, a complementary-signal generating unit that generates two kinds of complementary signals having complementarity with each other on the basis of analog pixel signals read out from the respective unit pixels in the pixel unit, two kinds of complementary signal lines on which the two kinds of complementary signals are transmitted, a horizontal scanning unit that transfers each of the two kinds of complementary signals on the complementary signal lines, and a differential amplifying unit that receives the signals on the two kinds of complementary signal lines with differential inputs and compares the signals.11-20-2008
20100302422SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE, CAMERA, AND DRIVING METHOD FOR SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - A high image quality solid-state imaging device that reduces horizontal noise is provided. An embodiment of the solid-state imaging device of the present invention is a solid-state imaging device which reads a pixel signal from each of unit pixels selected on a row basis, including amplifying transistors each of which is arranged in a corresponding one of the unit pixels, first transistors each of which is arranged on a column basis and supplies bias current to one of the amplifying transistors corresponding to a selected row, an active transistor which generates a reference bias voltage, a bias signal line through which the reference bias voltage is supplied from the gate terminal of the active transistor to gate terminals of the first transistors; and a low-pass filter inserted to the bias signal line between the gate terminal of the active transistor and the gate terminals of the first transistors.12-02-2010
20110194004IMAGE SENSOR SYSTEM AND AMPLIFYING/DIGITIZING CIRCUIT THEREOF - An amplifying/digitizing circuit with a signal amplifying capability and a comparator capability is provided. The amplifying/digitizing circuit includes an amplifier having an input end and an output end, and a control circuit. The control circuit is coupled to the input end and the output end of the amplifier. When the amplifying/digitizing circuit is operated under an amplifying mode, the control circuit has a first configuration to receive a first input signal and makes the amplifier generate an output voltage at the output end according to the first input signal and an amplification factor. When the amplifying/digitizing circuit is operated under an ADC mode, the control circuit has a second configuration to receive a second input signal and makes the amplifier generate a comparison result according to the second input signal and the output voltage.08-11-2011
20110134296PHOTOELECTRIC CONVERSION DEVICE AND IMAGE-PICKUP APPARATUS - In a photoelectric conversion device, groups of unit pixels are arranged in a well, where each of the unit pixels includes photoelectric conversion elements, an amplifier transistor, and transfer transistors. The photoelectric conversion device includes a line used to supply a voltage to the well, a well-contact part used to connect the well-voltage-supply line to the well, and transfer-control lines used to control the transfer transistors. The transfer-control lines are symmetrically arranged with respect to the well-voltage-supply line in respective regions of the unit-pixel groups.06-09-2011
20100091159PHYSICAL QUANTITY DETECTING DEVICE AND IMAGING APPARATUS - A physical quality detecting device includes: a detecting unit that detects a physical quantity supplied from the outside with photo-converting pixels which are two-dimensionally arranged, each of which has a selecting transistor for outputting a signal from the detecting unit to a signal line. In the physical quality detecting device, the selecting transistor is a depletion-type transistor. The signal line is selectively coupled to a reference voltage.04-15-2010
20110169989SOLID-STATE IMAGING APPARATUS - A solid-state imaging apparatus capable of suppressing blooming and color mixing includes a plurality of pixels, each including a photoelectric converting portion and a transferring portion for transferring signal electrons from the photoelectric converting portion, wherein a plurality of the photoelectric converting portions is formed in a first conductivity type well region formed on the semiconductor substrate; a second conductivity type first impurity region is arranged between the adjacent photoelectric converting portions; a first conductivity type second impurity region having an impurity concentration higher than that of the well region is arranged between the first impurity region and each of the photoelectric converting portions; and a first conductivity type third impurity region having an impurity concentration higher than that of the well region and decreasing from the semiconductor substrate toward the surface direction of the apparatus between the semiconductor substrate and the first impurity region.07-14-2011
20090273695SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP APPARATUS, DRIVE METHOD FOR THE SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP APPARATUS, AND IMAGE PICKUP APPARATUS - In a solid-state image pickup apparatus having a pixel array unit composed by two-dimensionally arranging pixels for detecting a physical quantity in a row-column manner, pixel signals of a plurality of systems having different sensitivities are read from the pixel array unit in an analog manner, the pixel signals of the plurality of systems are amplified at respective basis amplification rates when a gain setting of the analog pixel signals is lower than a predetermined gain, and a pixel signal of at least one system having a high sensitivity among the plurality of systems is amplified at a plurality of amplification rates including an amplification rate higher than a basis amplification rate of the system having the high sensitivity when the gain setting is equal to or higher than the predetermined gain.11-05-2009
20090201402IMAGE SENSOR AND DIGITAL GAIN COMPENSATION METHOD THEREOF - The present invention relates to an image sensor and a method for compensating for a digital gain of thereof. The image sensor includes: a variable amplification means for amplifying an inputted analog image signal as a variable first gain value; an analog-to-digital conversion unit for converting the amplified analog image signal into a digital image signal; and a digital gain compensation means for comparing the first gain value with a reference gain value and compensating the digital image signal as a digital second gain value when the first gain value is less than the reference gain value.08-13-2009
20100091157SOLID STATE IMAGE PICKUP APPARATUS - An apparatus includes a plurality of pixels each including a charge storage part, a photoelectric conversion part, a first transfer part and a second transfer part, when a signal charge generated during one period is transferred to an amplifier, a control unit supplies pulses such that a turning-on pulse is supplied to the second transfer part while supplying a turning-off pulse to the first transfer part thereby transferring the stored signal charge to the amplifier, a turning-on pulse is then supplied to a reset part to reset the signal charge transferred to the amplifier, and subsequently a turning-on pulse is supplied to the first transfer part and the second transfer part to transfer the signal charge held in the photoelectric conversion part to the amplifier.04-15-2010
20090273694IMAGE SENSORS AND METHODS WITH COLUMN READOUT CIRCUITS - An image sensor includes a pixel array, a plurality of column readout lines, and a plurality of column readout circuits. The pixel array includes a plurality of pixels arranged in a plurality of rows and a plurality of columns. Each of the plurality of column readout lines is connected to a corresponding at least two pixels of the plurality of pixels. Each of the plurality of column readout circuits is connected to a corresponding column readout line of the plurality of column readout lines and includes an amplifier, a first capacitor connected between the corresponding column readout line and an input of the amplifier, and a second capacitor connected between the corresponding column readout line and the input of the amplifier.11-05-2009
20110199522IMAGER METHODS, APPARATUSES, AND SYSTEMS PROVIDING A SKIP MODE WITH A WIDE DYNAMIC RANGE OPERATION - Methods, apparatuses and systems provide a high dynamic range mode of operation for an image sensor when operating in a skip mode where certain pixels of an array are not readout. Multiple integration periods are employed in the skip mode with selected pixels being readout through circuits associated with pixels that are not readout.08-18-2011
20090295961SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE DRIVING METHOD - Photosensitive cells each includes a photodiode (12-03-2009
20110199523IMAGING DEVICE - Conventional reset ability is fixed of resetting an amplifier in a charge-to-voltage conversion amplifier. According to an imaging device of this invention, reset ability may be switched. For this purpose, a reset ability-switching function is provided for switching power consumption of the amplifier as reset ability of resetting an amplifier in the charge-to-voltage conversion amplifier, which may realize free switching of the power consumption as the reset ability and adaptability to various types of charge-to-voltage conversion. Accordingly, heat generation may be suppressed by switching power consumption to the lower one in the case where heat generation possibly increases.08-18-2011
20100060763IMAGING DEVICE AND IMAGING SYSTEM - An object of the present invention is to prevent a sensitivity difference between pixels. There are disposed plural unit cells each including plural photodiodes 03-11-2010
20100060762PHOTOELECTRIC CONVERSION APPARATUS AND IMAGING SYSTEM - In a photoelectric conversion apparatus having a plurality of unit cells, wherein each of the unit cells has a photoelectric conversion element, a transfer transistor and a floating diffusion region, a light shielding portion arranged on an upper portion of the floating diffusion region is included. The respective light shielding portions are separated from one another, and are in a floating state without being electrically connected to the floating diffusion region.03-11-2010
20100097507HIGH SPEED CMOS IMAGE SENSOR CIRCUITS WITH BLOCK MEMORY READOUT - An image sensor circuit includes a pixel array, a plurality of column analog-to-digital conversion (ADC) circuits, and at least two memory blocks. Each column ADC circuit is connected to receive analog pixel signals provided from corresponding pixel circuits of the pixel array, and is configured to convert the received analog pixel signals into digital pixel signals. Each memory block is connected to receive digital pixel signals provided from corresponding column ADC circuits of the plurality of column ADC circuits. At least two of the at least two memory blocks are connected to receive digital pixel signals that are provided from corresponding column ADC circuits that are located to a same side of the pixel array. Each memory block of the at least two memory blocks includes a plurality of memory cells, one or more sense amplifiers connected to the memory cells by a readout bus, and a memory controller.04-22-2010
20090167912Read circuit, variable resistive element device, and imaging device - A read circuit includes: an integration circuit section configured to perform an integral operation and whose input is connected to an integration node; and a bias circuit connected between a connection node to which a variable resistive element is connected and the integration node. The bias circuit includes: an integration transistor whose source and drain are respectively connected to the connection node and the integration node; an operational amplifier whose output is connected to a gate of the integration transistor, to whose first input a bias voltage is supplied, and whose second input is connected to the source of the integration transistor; and at least one diode element that is connected between the gate and source of the integration transistor and clips a gate-source voltage of the integration transistor.07-02-2009
20080278611PHOTOELECTRIC CONVERSION APPARATUS AND CONTACT-TYPE IMAGE SENSOR - To prevent such a situation that a signal from a pixel in a dark state is output at a level shifted from an originally set level to deteriorate an image quality, and to improve the image quality. A photoelectric conversion apparatus according to the present invention includes: a plurality of photoelectric conversion elements; a plurality of amplifying units for amplifying a signal in accordance with a photo-carrier generated in the photoelectric conversion elements; a plurality of signal holding units for holding output signals from the amplifying units through a plurality of switch units; and a control signal supplying unit for supplying a control signal to the switch units through a control line, in which the control line is sequentially connected to the plurality of switch units and has both ends connected to the control signal supplying units, or a change rate with time of an amplitude of a signal held by the signal holding units is set lower than a change rate with time of am amplitude of the control signal at the time of turning off the switch units.11-13-2008
20080303928IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE AND IMAGE PICKUP APPARATUS - To provide an image pickup device and an image pickup apparatus which are equipped with a linear-log sensor which can cancel variations between pixels in an inflection point caused by variations in a threshold of the transistors constituting a logarithmic conversion circuit while using a circuit constitution similar to a pixel circuit of an image pickup device having only an ordinary linear characteristic. When the photoelectric charge accumulated in a photoelectric conversion element is removed, a charge removing transistor is controlled such that the potential of the channel of the charge removing transistor is set to be higher than the minimum potential of the photoelectric conversion element.12-11-2008
20080252761IMAGE PICKUP APPARATUS - An image pickup apparatus comprising: a plurality of pixels each including a photoelectric converting element; a plurality of capacitor which receive signals from the plurality of pixels at first terminals; a plurality of clamping switches for setting a second terminal of each of the plurality of capacitor into a predetermined electric potential; a plurality of first storing units for storing signals from the second terminals of the plurality of capacitor; a plurality of second storing units for storing the signals from the second terminals of the plurality of capacitor; a first common output line to which the signals from the plurality of first storing units are sequentially output; a second common output line to which the signals from the plurality of second storing units are sequentially output; and a difference circuit for operating a difference between the signal from the first common output line and the signal from the second common output line.10-16-2008
20110205416PIXEL CIRCUIT, SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE, AND CAMERA - A pixel circuit has first, second, and third field effect transistors integrated and connected in series from a photoelectric conversion element to a side of an amplifier circuit. The first and second field effect transistors have gate electrodes to be simultaneously collectively driven. A threshold voltage of the first field effect transistor is set to be higher than that of the second field effect transistor. As the gate electrodes are driven step by step, electrons generated by the photoelectric conversion element and transferred via the first field effect transistor are accumulated in a channel region of the second field effect transistor. The electrons accumulated in the channel region are transferred to an input of the amplifier circuit via the third field effect transistor.08-25-2011
20110007198MULTI PATH POWER FOR CMOS IMAGERS - An analog signal chain for a CMOS active pixel sensor imaging system utilizes, for each amplification stage, a plurality of fixed gain amplifiers instead of a single multi-gain amplifier. The fixed gain amplifier corresponding to the desired gain level is selected and powered on and coupled to the input/output signal paths, while the non-selected fixed gain amplifier(s) are powered off and isolated from the input/output signal paths. Each fixed gain amplifier is operated at a gain bandwidth corresponding to the timing requirements of the imaging system and the gain of the amplifier. Thus, each fixed gain amplifier (other than the one corresponding to the maximum gain of a comparable multi-gain amplifier) operates at a lower level of power consumption than the comparable multi-gain amplifier.01-13-2011
20100141818SOLID STATE IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE AND CAMERA - A solid-state image pickup device wherein, in order to obtain an output of large amplitude from a low-contrast object without using a bottom detecting circuit to thereby increase a capturing rate, an accumulation end is determined when a maximum value signal in a photosensor array reaches a predetermined accumulation end level, and an amplifier circuit unit is provided for amplifying a signal, which is outputted from each of the pixels of the photosensor array, with reference to the maximum value signal of the photosensor array and for outputting the signal.06-10-2010
20130120624METHOD FOR DRIVING IMAGE PICKUP APPARATUS - A signal for focus detection is generated by a first operation, in which a signal of at least one photoelectric conversion element included in a photoelectric conversion unit is read to an input node of an amplification unit and the signal is supplied to a common output line by the amplification unit and signals for forming an image are generated by a second operation, in which a signal of another photoelectric conversion element included in the same photoelectric conversion unit as that including the at least one photoelectric conversion element from which the signal has been read in the first operation is read to the input node of the amplification unit while holding the signal read in the first operation using the amplification unit and the signals are supplied to the common output line by the amplification unit.05-16-2013
20110221945SEMICONDUCTOR DEVICE - A semiconductor device obtains highly accurate image data regardless of the intensity of incident light. The semiconductor device includes a first photo sensor provided in a pixel, a second photo sensor provided around the pixel, and a controller for setting the drive condition of the first photo sensor in accordance with the intensity of outside light obtained by the second photo sensor. An image is taken after the sensitivity of the first photo sensor is changed in accordance with the drive condition set by the controller. Thus, in the semiconductor device, an image can be taken using the first photo sensor whose sensitivity is optimized in accordance with the intensity of incident light.09-15-2011
20090021620AMPLIFICATION TYPE SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - A plurality of pixels, each including a second conductivity-type photodiode portion 01-22-2009
20130215302COMPARATOR, ANALOG-TO-DIGITAL CONVERTOR, SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE, CAMERA SYSTEM, AND ELECTRONIC APPARATUS - A comparator includes a first amplifier and a level holding part. The first amplifier includes differential-pair transistors and outputs a signal of a level corresponding to a comparison result from a first output node. The differential-pair transistors serve as a comparison part that receives a reference voltage, a signal level of which changes with a slope, at a gate of one of the differential-pair transistors, receives an input signal at a gate of the other of the differential-pair transistors, and compares the reference voltage with a potential of the input signal. The level holding part holds a level of the first output node such that the other transistor having an output part thereof connected to the first output node out of the differential-pair transistors of the first amplifier does not fall into a level at which a saturated operation condition is not satisfied.08-22-2013
20110228152SOLID-STATE IMAGE SENSING DEVICE - There is provided a solid-state image sensing device including a pixel section in which cells are arrayed, each cell including a photoelectric conversion unit, a reading circuit reading out, to a detection unit, signal charges obtained by the photoelectric conversion unit, an amplifying circuit amplifying and outputting a voltage corresponding to the signal charges, and a reset circuit resetting the signal charges, an exposure time control circuit controlling an exposure time and controlling the exposure time to be equal for all cells, an A/D conversion circuit A/D-converting a signal output from the pixel section by changing a resolution of a signal level, line memories storing an A/D-converted signal, and a signal processing circuit processing output signals from the line memories to have a linear gradient with respect to an optical input signal amount by controlling an amplification factor in accordance with a resolution of a pixel output signal after A/D-conversion.09-22-2011
20090231478SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE - A solid-state image pickup device includes a voltage supply circuit configured to supply a voltage to load MOS transistors provided to vertical output lines and columnar signal-processing circuits. The voltage supply circuit includes a first amplifier circuit configured to amplify a predetermined voltage supplied to an input part thereof from a voltage generator and to output an amplified voltage to a voltage supply wire, and a sample-and-hold circuit including a sampling switch provided on a path between the voltage generator and the input part and a hold capacitor configured to hold the voltage sampled by the sampling switch.09-17-2009
20090310001SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE, DRIVING METHOD THEREOF, AND CAMERA - A solid-state imaging device which optimizes gains for each color without a need for complicated control of changing the resistance values of variable resistances and switching switches depending on pixels from which signals are to be read, while preventing an S/N deterioration in AD conversion. The solid-state imaging device comprises: a plurality of pixels arranged in a matrix; column amplifiers, each amplifying signals generated by pixels of a corresponding one of columns of the matrix; and column AD converters, each performing AD conversion on a signal generated by a corresponding one of the column amplifiers, wherein each of the plurality of pixels corresponds to a color among colors, and each of the column amplifiers amplifies output signals generated by all pixels of a corresponding one of the colors, among pixels of the corresponding column of the matrix.12-17-2009
20110221946FAST-SETTLING LINE DRIVER DESIGN FOR HIGH RESOLUTION VIDEO IR AND VISIBLE IMAGES - A fast-settling line driver circuit capable of high-speed operation. The line driver is particularly well-suited for operation in a high-resolution imaging system. The line driver circuit comprises a signal amplifier that is configured in a negative feedback loop and connected to a bus line through a switch network. The switch network is disposed inside the feedback loop while the line driver is transmitting a signal onto the bus line. This configuration reduces the settling time of the line driver by substantially eliminating the effect of the switch resistance on the RC time constant. The line driver also comprises offset cancellation and presettle circuits that improve the integrity of the output signal and reduce the power consumption of the system.09-15-2011
20120169908IMAGING DEVICE, DRIVE CONTROL METHOD, AND PROGRAM - The present invention relates to an imaging device, a drive control method, and a program configured to be capable of making sensitivity ratios constant and improving a S/N ratio.07-05-2012
20090256937SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE - There is provided a solid-state image pickup device comprising a plurality of pixel units, each of which includes a photoelectric conversion element, a signal line which reads out signals from said plurality of pixel units, a first capacitor element which has a first electrode connected to the signal line, an amplifier which has an input terminal connected to a second electrode of the first capacitor element, and a second capacitor element connected between the input terminal and an output terminal of the amplifier, wherein the first capacitor element has a capacitance value which is smaller at the time of execution of an adding mode than at the time of execution of a non-adding mode, and thereby making an amplification factor of the amplifier smaller at the time of execution of the adding mode than at the time of execution of the non-adding mode.10-15-2009
20080259193SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - A solid-state imaging device includes column amplifiers that are each provided for a different one of column signal lines. Each column amplifier includes: a constant current circuit that supplies a constant current; an amplifier circuit that is connected in series with the constant current circuit, and amplifies a pixel signal from a corresponding column signal line and outputs the amplified signal from a point of connection with the constant current circuit; and a resistor circuit that is connected in parallel with the amplifier circuit and has a constant resistance.10-23-2008
20120194717IMAGING APPARATUS, AN IMAGING SYSTEM, AND A DRIVINGMETHOD OF AN IMAGING APPARATUS - An imaging apparatus includes a pixel unit, an amplifying transistor, and a control unit. The pixel unit includes a first photoelectric conversion unit generating a first charge based on incident light of a first color, a second photoelectric conversion unit generating a second charge based on incident light of the first color, and a third photoelectric conversion unit generating a third charge based on incident light of a second color. The amplifying transistor is provided in common to the first to third photoelectric conversion units, and outputs a signal based on the first, second, and third charges generated by the first, second, and third photoelectric conversion units, respectively. The control unit sets the pixel unit to a selected state or a non-selected state according to an electric potential of a control terminal of the amplifying transistor.08-02-2012
20120194715IMAGE SENSORS WITH LOW NOISE MODE FOR PIXEL ARRAY CURRENT BIAS - An electronic device may have an image sensor for capturing digital image data of a scene. The image sensor may have an array of image sensor pixels. The image sensor pixels may have photosensitive elements for capturing image data signals. The image data signal from each photosensitive element may be conveyed to an output line associated with a column of the array using a source-follower transistor. The source-follower transistors may be provided with a current bias using current source coupled to each output line. The current source may include a configurable current source transistor that has multiple branches that can be selectively switched into use to adjust transconductance and drain saturation voltage characteristics for the current source. Gate structures in the configurable current source transistor may be supplied with a reference voltage from an adjustable voltage reference circuit.08-02-2012
20100149391IMAGE PICKUP APPARATUS AND IMAGE PICKUP SYSTEM - An apparatus includes a detection unit including a plurality of pixels that are arranged in a matrix and that are divided into at least first and second pixel groups, a signal processing unit including first and second readout circuits and first and second A/D converters, a power supply unit configured to supply the components included in the signal processing unit with respective biases, and a control unit configured to control at least one of the signal processing unit and the power supply unit. The control unit is configured to perform processing of altering an analog signal capable of being input into at least one of the first and second A/D converters or altering an A/D conversion characteristic of at least one of the first and second A/D converters.06-17-2010
20100177226SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE AND ELECTRONIC APPARATUS - A solid-state imaging device includes a layout in which one sharing unit includes an array of photodiodes of 2 pixels by 4×n pixels (where, n is a positive integer), respectively, in horizontal and vertical directions.07-15-2010
20100157123SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE WITH SPECIFIC CONTACT ARRANGEMENT - In each photosensitive cell, a photodiode 06-24-2010
20100157124SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE AND CAMERA - In a solid-state image pickup device which has means of adding signals from a plurality of pixels, the present invention achieves a high S/N, and achieves a solid-state image pickup device suitable for both of static image pickup and moving image pickup. The solid-state image pickup device is a solid-state image pickup device which has a pixel unit has a plurality of pixels which are arranged two-dimensionally and output pixel signals derived by a photoelectric conversion, and is provided with a first mode of reading a pixel signal every pixel, and a second mode of adding and reading a plurality of pixel signals, having a variable gain column amplifier for performing readout at different gains in the first mode and second mode. The solid-state image pickup device has a plurality of output lines where output signals from a plurality of pixels arranged in one line are outputted respectively, and at least one of the variable gain amplifier is connected to each of the plurality of output lines. A gain at the time of readout in the second mode is made to be higher than a gain at the time of readout in the first mode.06-24-2010
20100165162SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - In each photosensitive cell, a photodiode 07-01-2010
20090086071PHOTO DETECTION DEVICE - A pixel includes a photodiode, an overflow circuit, a first sensing circuit, and a second sensing circuit. The first sensing circuit charges and discharges a cathode capacitance by a photocurrent flowing through a photodiode, and amplifies an obtained voltage by a source follower amplifier so as to be outputted to a data line. The second sensing circuit charges and discharged the cathode capacitance by the photocurrent flowing through the photodiode, and outputs electric charge stored in the cathode capacitance via the data line. A pixel circuit is configured so that a first mode in which the first sensing circuit becomes active and a second mode in which the second sensing circuit becomes active can be switched. The first mode and the second mode are switched according to an amount of light received by the photodiode included in each pixel circuit. Gain is controlled according to the amount of light received, in the first mode, and the storage time is controlled in the second mode.04-02-2009
20100188539IMAGING DEVICE - An imaging device has pixels being disposed two-dimensionally, in matrix, a plurality of vertical signal lines each coupled to a plurality of the pixels in a column direction, a column amplifier amplifying an optical signal and a reset signal, and a holding part holding each of the optical signal and the reset signal. The imaging device is provided with a first clip driving circuit which is disposed between the vertical signal lines and the column amplifier and clips a signal out of a predetermined voltage, a first clip voltage generation circuit which gives a clip voltage to the first clip driving circuit, a second clip driving circuit which is disposed between the column amplifier and the holding part and clips a signal out of a predetermined voltage, and a second clip voltage generation circuit which gives a clip voltage to the second clip driving circuit.07-29-2010
20130215303COMPARATOR, ANALOG-TO-DIGITAL CONVERTOR, SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE, CAMERA SYSTEM, AND ELECTRONIC APPARATUS - A comparator includes a first amplifier, a second amplifier, and a level holding part. The first amplifier includes differential-pair transistors and outputs a signal of a level corresponding to a comparison result from a first output node. The differential-pair transistors compare a reference voltage with a potential of an input signal. The second amplifier gain up the signal output from the first output node of the first amplifier and outputs the signal from a second output node. The level holding part holds a level of the second output node at a predetermined level. The second amplifier includes a transistor for amplification and a transistor for a current source. The level holding part holds the level of the second output node of the second amplifier such that the transistor for the current source does not fall into a level at which a saturated operation condition is not satisfied.08-22-2013
20100225795IMAGE PICKUP APPARATUS - An image pickup apparatus that makes it possible to achieve both high picture quality and a wide dynamic range is provided. Each pixel unit included in the image pickup apparatus includes: four photodiodes; four transfer transistors; a charge storage portion (four floating diffusions) for storing electric charges generated at the photodiodes; an amplification transistor; a select transistor; and a reset transistor. The image pickup apparatus further includes multiple coupling transistors. Each coupling transistor couples together the charge storage portions of two pixel units of the pixel units. A scanning circuit switches on or off the coupling transistors according to read mode.09-09-2010
20100238332SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE, DRIVING METHOD THEREOF, AND ELECTRONIC APPARATUS - A solid-state imaging device according to an embodiment of the present invention includes plural pixels, in which each pixel includes: a transfer transistor that transfers electric charge from a photoelectric conversion section to a floating diffusion section; a reset transistor that resets the floating diffusion section; a amplifying transistor that outputs a signal based on the electric charge held by the floating diffusion section; a selection transistor that is provided at the output side of the amplifying transistor and selects a pixel; and a charge storage capacitor that is provided between the amplifying transistor and the selection transistor and stores the quantity of electric charge on the basis the quantity of the electric charge held by the floating diffusion section through the charge-discharge behavior of electric charge through a current source.09-23-2010
20120194716IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE - An image pickup device may include an image pickup unit in which unit pixels having photoelectric conversion elements are arranged, the unit pixels outputting pixel signals, a reference signal generation unit, a comparison unit that includes a differential amplifier unit and a reset unit, the differential amplifier unit comparing a voltage of the first input terminal to a voltage of the second input terminal, a measurement unit that measures a comparison time of the comparison unit from a comparison start to a comparison end, and a change unit that changes the voltage of the first input terminal so that a voltage difference between the first input terminal and the second input terminal is set to a voltage at which a comparison operation by the comparison unit is ensured after a reset operation by the reset unit.08-02-2012
20100238333PHOTOELECTRIC CONVERSION DEVICE AND IMAGE SENSING SYSTEM - This invention discloses a photoelectric conversion device. The photoelectric conversion device includes a pixel array in which a plurality of pixels are arrayed in a row direction and a column direction, a plurality of readout circuits which read out signals from pixels for respective columns in the pixel array, and a control unit which controls the plurality of readout circuits, wherein each of the plurality of readout circuits includes a holding unit which holds a reference voltage supplied from an external power source, an operational amplification unit which amplifies the signals from the pixels for each column based on the reference voltage held in the holding unit, and a disconnection unit which electrically disconnects the external power source and the holding unit, and the control unit controls the disconnection unit to electrically disconnect the external power source and the holding unit when the operational amplification unit amplifies the signals from the pixels for each column.09-23-2010
20100128153SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE AND DRIVING METHOD THEREFOR - A solid-state imaging device in which the potential of a signal line, which is obtained before a pixel has an operating period, is fixed to an intermediate potential between a first power-supply potential and a second power-supply potential.05-27-2010
20100053395IMAGE SENSING APPARATUS - An image sensing apparatus includes an image sensor having a plurality of pixels and a control unit configured to control the image sensor. Each pixel includes a photoelectric conversion element configured to convert light into an electric charge, an amplifier configured to amplify accumulated electric charge, a transfer switch configured to input a signal of the photoelectric conversion element to the amplifier when being turned on, a reset switch configured to reset the input to the amplifier when being turned on, and a selection switch configured to output an output from the amplifier to a signal output line when being turned on.03-04-2010
20110211101Solid-state imaging element having image signal overflow path - Since the great number of elements constituting a unit pixel having an amplification function would hinder reduction of pixel size, unit pixel n,m arranged in a matrix form is comprised of a photodiode, a transfer switch for transferring charges stored in the photodiode, a floating diffusion for storing charges transferred by the transfer switch, a reset switch for resetting the floating diffusion, and an amplifying transistor for outputting a signal in accordance with the potential of the floating diffusion to a vertical signal line, and by affording vertical selection pulse φVn to the drain of the reset switch to control a reset potential thereof, pixels are selected in units of rows.09-01-2011
20110234873SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP ELEMENT AND IMAGE PICKUP APPARATUS - Disclosed herein is a solid-state image pickup element, including: a photoelectric conversion region; a transistor; an isolation region of a first conductivity type configured to isolate the photoelectric conversion region and the transistor from each other; a well region of the first conductivity type having the photoelectric conversion region, the transistor, and the isolation region of the first conductivity type formed therein; a contact portion configured to supply an electric potential used to fix the well region to a given electric potential; and an impurity region of the first conductivity type formed so as to extend in a depth direction from a surface of the isolation region of the first conductivity type in the isolation region of the first conductivity type between the contact portion and the photoelectric conversion region, and having a sufficiently higher impurity concentration than that of the isolation region of the first conductivity type.09-29-2011
20090073294Solid-state image capturing apparatus and electronic information device - A solid-state image capturing apparatus comprises a pixel array in which pixel sections for outputting a pixel signal in accordance with incident light are arranged in two dimensions, and a readout signal line arranged for each pixel section column on the pixel array, for reading out a pixel signal from each pixel section in each pixel section column, where each pixel section includes a light receiving section for performing photoelectric conversion on incident light; a signal charge storing section for storing a signal charge generated in the light receiving section and generating electric potential in accordance with the stored signal charge; and a reset transistor for resetting electric potential of the signal charge storing section to reset electric potential.03-19-2009
20110032404SOLID-STATE IMAGING APPARATUS - A solid-state imaging apparatus includes a pixel outputting a pixel signal; and an amplifier for amplifying the pixel signal. The amplifier includes an input capacitor connected between an input terminal of the operational amplifier and the pixel, a feedback capacitor connected between the input and output terminals of the amplifier, an initializing switch connected between the input terminal and the output terminal of the amplifier, a first capacitor connected in parallel to the feedback capacitor, a second capacitor connected in parallel to the feedback capacitor, a first switch connected between an one terminal of the feedback capacitor and an one terminal of the first capacitor, and a second switch connected between the one terminal of the first capacitor and an one terminal of the second capacitor. One terminal of the first or second capacitor is connected to the one terminal of the second capacitor through the first and second switches.02-10-2011
20080303929Solid-state image capturing apparatus and electric information device - A solid-state image capturing apparatus is provided, and, in a pixel of a 3TR structure, the solid-state image capturing apparatus increases the reset electric potential of the signal charge accumulation section upon a reset operation so that an electric potential difference between the signal voltage and the reset voltage upon transferring of a signal charge is sufficiently secured, a complete transferring of the signal charge is easily performed from the photoelectric conversion element to the signal charge accumulation section, and a stable condition is provided.12-11-2008
20100194945Readout Circuit for an Image Sensor - A readout circuit for an image sensor is disclosed. At least one column amplifier (CA) generates a CA reset signal when the column amplifier is reset. A capacitor and a switch are configured to receive a column of the image sensor. A multiplexer is coupled between (a) the capacitor and the switch and (b) an input of the column amplifier. A correlated double sampling (CDS) circuit is used for controllably receiving an output of the column amplifier.08-05-2010
20090066823SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE AND CLAMP CONTROL METHOD THEREFOR - In an analog front end (FE) IC chip having a CDS (Correlated Double Sampling) function and an AGC (Automatic Gain Control) function, a clamp circuit for clamping an output signal during a black reference signal period is equipped with a mechanism for suppressing the effect of noises contaminated from a power source, external circuits, etc.03-12-2009
20110001860SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - According to one embodiment, a solid-state imaging device includes a solid-state imaging device includes a pixel array, load transistor, first switch transistor, and second switch transistor. The pixel array includes a plurality of unit pixels arranged in a matrix. Each unit pixel includes a photodiode, a read transistor, a reset transistor to which one of a first voltage and a second voltage, and an amplification transistor. The second switch transistor outputs a bias voltage to the vertical signal line.01-06-2011
20110043675SOLID-STATE IMAGE SENSING DEVICE AND METHOD OF DRIVING THE SAME - According to the embodiments, a method of driving a solid-state image sensing device includes, selecting a read target row of a pixel region and resetting a voltage of a detector to a reference level of a video signal, and enabling a source follower circuit of the unit pixel as a preliminary operation for an operation of raising the voltage of the detector set at the reference level of the video signal of the unit pixel. And the start of resetting to the reference level is earlier than or simultaneous with a start of enabling the source follower circuit.02-24-2011
20110115955SOLID-STATE IMAGE DEVICE AND METHOD OF MANUFACTURING THE SAME - An object of the present invention is to provide a solid-state image device that can effectively dissipate heat. In order to attain the object, the solid-state image device of the present invention includes non-through heat dissipation portions (05-19-2011
20110242380SOLID-STATE IMAGING APPARATUS - A solid-state imaging apparatus is provided that including a plurality of amplifiers each one amplifying a signal from each one of a plurality of pixels. The amplifier including first and second field effect transistors, gate electrodes of which are connected to the same voltage node (VBL); and a first wiring connected between the voltage node and the gate electrodes of the first and second field effect transistors. The first and second field effect transistors are arranged in a direction perpendicular to a direction in which the plurality of amplifiers is arranged. Material of the first wiring has a resistivity smaller than that of the gate electrodes of the first and second field effect transistors.10-06-2011
20110128425CMOS IMAGE SENSOR WITH SELECTABLE HARD-WIRED BINNING - A CMOS image sensor allows for selectively outputting one of two vertical resolutions, e.g. 1080 to 720 lines. The scan conversion is implemented completely on the image sensor chip by using smaller sub-pixel cores, which can be electrically combined via switch transistors. A basic circuit of the CMOS image sensor has a number of pixel cells arranged in lines and columns. Each pixel cell has a photosensitive element that converts impinging light into electric charge and a first transfer element. The first transfer elements of m pixel cells arranged consecutively in the same column are arranged for transferring the charge generated in the respective m photosensitive elements during exposure to a single first charge storage element provided for the respective group of m pixel cells. In an exemplary embodiment the switching scheme allows for combining the signal information of either two or three vertically adjacent sub-pixel cores.06-02-2011
20110242379Solid-state imaging device and driving method as well as electronic apparatus - A solid-state imaging device includes: a CMOS image sensor including a plurality of pixels disposed in an array and each including a light reception element, a discharging unit, a charge accumulation section, a transfer unit, a reset unit, an amplification unit, and a selection unit; and a control unit adapted to generate a selection pulse for rendering the selection unit operative to control operation of the CMOS image sensor.10-06-2011
20110074993IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE, ITS CONTROL METHOD, AND CAMERA - An image pickup device, wherein a part of the carriers overflowing from the photoelectric conversion unit for a period of photoelectrically generating and accumulating the carriers may be flowed into the floating diffusion region, and a pixel signal generating unit generating a pixel signal according to the carriers stored in the photoelectric conversion unit and the carriers having overflowed into the floating diffusion region, is provided. The expansion of a dynamic range and the improvement of an image quality can be provided by controlling a ratio of the carriers flowing into the floating diffusion region to the carriers overflowing from such a photoelectric conversion unit at high accuracy.03-31-2011
20090219422Image capturing apparatus and electronic information device - A solid-state image capturing apparatus includes a pixel array in which a plurality of pixels are arranged in a matrix, where each of the pixels includes: a photodiode for obtaining a signal charge by a photoelectric conversion of an incident light; and an amplifying transistor for the signal charge obtained at the photodiode, and where the amplifying transistor is configured in such a manner that a gate area of the amplifying transistor is defined to be larger than a gate area of other transistors that configure the pixel.09-03-2009
20110211100SIGNEL PROCESSING CIRCUIT CAPABLE OF SELECTIVELY ADJUSTING GAIN FACTOR OF SAMPLE-AND-HOLD CIRCUIT AND SIGNAL PROCESSING METHOD THEREOF - A signal processing circuit including an amplifying circuit, a control circuit, and a sample-and-hold circuit is provided. The amplifying circuit receives an analog input signal and outputs a first analog signal by amplifying the analog input signal. The control circuit outputs a control signal according to the analog input signal. The sample-and-hold circuit is coupled to the amplifying circuit and the control circuit to selectively adjust a gain factor of the sample-and-hold circuit according to the control signal, thereby outputting a second analog signal according to the first analog signal and the gain factor.09-01-2011
20100039543SOLID-STATE IMAGE SENSOR AND DRIVING METHOD THEREOF, AND IMAGE SENSOR - A solid-state image sensor includes: a plurality of pixels, each having a photodiode, a floating diffusion, a transfer transistor, a reset transistor, and an amplifying transistor; vertical signal lines 02-18-2010
20120242878AD CONVERTING CIRCUIT, PHOTOELECTRIC CONVERTING APPARATUS, IMAGE PICKUP SYSTEM, AND DRIVING METHOD FOR AD CONVERTING CIRCUIT - An apparatus for acquiring an i-bit digital code by a first stage AD conversion and a j-bit digital code by a second stage AD conversion includes a comparing unit which compares a reference signal and an analog signal in the first stage AD conversion; and an amplifying unit for outputting an amplified residual signal acquired by amplifying a difference between the analog signal and an analog signal corresponding to the i-bit digital code. The comparing unit compares the amplified residual signal and the reference signal in the second stage AD conversion.09-27-2012
20120200752SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE - A solid-state image pickup device includes a plurality of pixels arranged in rows and columns on a semiconductor substrate. A photoelectric converter of each pixel includes a photoelectric conversion film between a pixel electrode and a transparent electrode. An amplifier transistor has a gate connected to the pixel electrode, and a reset transistor has a source connected to the pixel electrode. The solid-state image pickup device performs: hard reset operation in which a first reset voltage is applied to the drain of the reset transistor, and then the reset transistor is turned on; and soft reset operation in which a second reset voltage which has a higher level than the first reset voltage is applied to the drain of the reset transistor, and then a pulse in a negative direction is applied to the source of the reset transistor via a capacitor.08-09-2012
20120120292METHOD AND SYSTEM FOR OPERATING AN IMAGE DATA COLLECTION DEVICE - In accordance with an exemplary embodiment of the present invention, a method is provided to form an image using an active pixel sensor imager (05-17-2012
20100295979SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - A solid-state imaging device 11-25-2010
20100321549AMPLIFIER CONTROL DEVICE AND RECORDING NON-TRANSITORY MEDIUM - An amplifier control device controls an amplifier which amplifies a first signal supplied from an image-pickup element, and supplies a second signal acquired by amplification of the first signal to a signal processing unit which is a following stage. The amplifier control device comprises a control unit which changes a current supplied to the amplifier depending on whether or not the first signal supplied to the amplifier is used for image data.12-23-2010
20100321550VIDEO SIGNAL PROCESSING CIRCUIT, IMAGING DEVICE AND VIDEO SIGNAL PROCESSING METHOD - A digital still camera includes an amplification circuit, a timing generator, sample hold circuits, a differential amplifier, an analog/digital conversion circuit and a control unit. The generator generates a first-pulse signal and a second-pulse signal at different timings. The circuits sample analog video signals outputted from the amplification circuit at timings when the first-pulse signal and second-pulse signal, respectively, are provided and hold levels of the analog video signals. The amplifier acquires a difference between the levels of the analog video signals. The circuit obtains a digital video signal corresponding to the analog video signal on the basis of the difference. The unit changes the timings to provide the first- and second-pulse signals to the first- and second-sample hold circuits, respectively, and a bias current depending on the driving period.12-23-2010
20100283880IMAGING DEVICE - An imaging device includes pixels arranged in a two-dimensional form and each having a photoelectric conversion part converting light into an electric signal, a plurality of vertical signal lines coupled, in a column direction, to the pixels arranged in the column direction and receiving the electric signal read from each of the pixels, a first constant current generator provided on each of the vertical signal lines, a column amplifier having a second constant current generator and amplifying the electric signal read to the vertical signal line, and a constant voltage generator provided on each of the vertical signal lines and being coupled to a first contact of the first constant current generator and a second contact of the second constant current generator included in the column amplifier.11-11-2010
20090207289AMPLIFYING SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE, AND METHOD FOR DRIVING THE SAME - By providing dummy pixels separately from effective pixels, the total number of pixel rows is equalized with the number of horizontal sync signals included in one frame interval (which is called an “HD number”). A period during which a reset signal for an electronic shuttering operation is being supplied to an arbitrary pixel row overlaps with a period during which another pixel row is selected to perform a readout operation thereon. Thus, it is possible to suppress a variation in reset potential among effective pixels.08-20-2009
20110134295IMAGING APPARATUS AND METHOD FOR DRIVING THE SAME - An imaging apparatus comprising: a plurality of column amplifiers, each outputting, based on the same one pixel, first and second pixel signals derived by amplifying the signal by different amplifying factors p and q; a plurality of column A/D converters for performing analog to digital conversion of the first and second pixel signals obtained; a plurality of replacing units, each selecting the first pixel signal converted by the column A/D converter when the first pixel signal converted by the column A/D converter is smaller than a threshold value, and selecting the second pixel signal converted by the column A/D converter when the first pixel signal converted by the column A/D converter is equal to or larger than the threshold value; and a horizontal scanning circuit for successively selecting the first or second pixel signals selected by the replacing units.06-09-2011
20110096217SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - According to one embodiment, a cell includes 2N pixels configured to accumulate charges generated based on incident light, an amplifier transistor is formed for each the cell and amplifies, for each of the pixels, signals read out from the pixels to a floating diffusion, and charge coupled devices transfer the charges accumulated in the pixels to the floating diffusion.04-28-2011
20100110249SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE, PIXEL-SIGNAL PROCESSING METHOD, ANALOG-SIGNAL TRANSFERRING DEVICE, AND ANALOG-SIGNAL TRANSFERRING METHOD - From a pixel array where imaging pixels are arranged, pixel signals of respective columns on a selected row are read in parallel in a horizontal blanking period of a horizontal period. The pixel signals of the respective columns are output to horizontal signal lines in an effective period of the horizontal period via charge integrating amps provided respectively for the columns, i.e., provided respectively for vertical signal lines, and are thereby transferred horizontally. In the charge integrating amps, it is possible to enter a standby state while holding the pixel signals by a holding voltage. Furthermore, in the charge integrating amps, a reference potential for precharging feedback capacitors for amps at the time of a reading operation is automatically controlled based on a black level. Furthermore, pixel signals from the respective charge integrating amps are horizontally transferred in parallel using a plurality of horizontal signal lines.05-06-2010
20100214460SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - A solid-state imaging device according to the present invention includes two-dimensionally arranged unit cells each of which includes a photodiode, a transfer transistor, a floating diffusion, a reset transistor having a source and a drain one of which is connected to the floating diffusion, an amplification transistor, and a selecting transistor, a drain line which is connected to the other one of the source and the drain of the reset transistor and a drain of the amplifying transistor, and a potential switching circuit which is connected to the drain line and sets potential of the floating diffusion to a potential equal to or lower than reset potential by setting potential of the drain line.08-26-2010
20100066879SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE AND METHOD OF DRIVING THE SAME - A solid-state imaging device includes a unit cell, a first power supply which supplies a drain voltage to the amplifying transistor, and a second power supply which supplies a drain voltage to the reset transistor. The unit cell includes a photodiode which accumulates a signal charge obtained by photoelectric conversion of incident light, an amplifying transistor which has a control electrode capacitively coupled to a vertical signal line, and which amplifies the signal charge outputted from the photodiode and outputs the amplified signal charge to the vertical signal line, and a reset transistor which resets a voltage at the control electrode of the amplifying transistor.03-18-2010
20100194946SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP APPARATUS AND CAMERA - The invention provides a solid-state image pickup apparatus which comprises a pixel area in which pixels each having at least a photoelectric conversion unit and an amplification transistor for amplifying and outputting a signal of the photoelectric conversion unit are two-dimensionally arranged in horizontal and vertical directions, wherein a power supply wiring, which extends in a vertical direction along pixel boundaries of horizontal and vertical directions while meandering, is arranged on one of two pixel lines adjoining to each other in the horizontal direction in the pixel area, and the power supply wiring is connected to one of a source and a drain of the amplification transistor on each of the two pixel lines. Thus, it is possible to provide a high-sensitivity and high-image-quality amplified solid-state image pickup apparatus in which a difference of sensitivities at one-line intervals is small.08-05-2010
20100194944Binning Circuit and Method for an Image Sensor - A binning circuit and method for an image sensor is disclosed. A column amplifier (CA) is first reset, and thus generates a CA reset signal. A capacitor and a switch network are coupled between an output of the image sensor and an input of the column amplifier. A correlated double sampling (CDS) circuit controllably receives the output of the column amplifier. The switch network is controlled in a way such that an image signal of a first group of the image sensor is transmitted and stored in the CDS circuit, and an image signal of a second group is then added to the stored image signal of the first group.08-05-2010
20090316030Partial row readout for image sensor - An image sensor includes a color filter array, sense amplifiers, multiplexing circuitry, and an output. The color filter array acquires image data using an array of M columns and N rows of pixels. The sense amplifiers are coupled to the color filter array for reading out image data from the color filter array. The multiplexing circuitry couples the sense amplifiers to the color filter array, wherein each sense amplifier is time shared across multiple columns and multiple rows. The output is coupled to receive the image data from the sense amplifiers and output the image data off-chip.12-24-2009
20110187906GAIN ADJUSTABLE SENSOR PIXELS, ARRAYS AND ARRAY SYSTEMS AND METHODS THEREFOR - A sensor pixel including a sensor, charge storage, a reset block having a reset input, readout block, and a charge leakage gain adjustment block having a gain adjustment control input. The sensor, charge storage, reset block, readout block, and charge leakage gain adjustment block are each operatively connected to a node. Adjusting the gain of a sensor pixel by storing charge from a sensor in a charge storage connected to a node, leaking charge from the charge storage to reduce the charge at a node, and reading out a state of the pixel represented by the charge of a node.08-04-2011
20110149132Wafer-scale Cluster Image Sensor Chip and Method with Replicated Gapless Pixel Line and Signal Readout Circuit Segments - A multi-pixel row wafer-scale cluster image sensor chip (WCISC) is proposed. Expressed in X-Y-Z coordinates with its pixel rows along X-axis, the WCISC converts areal image frame (IMFM) into areal image frame signal (AIFS). The WCISC includes multiple imaging pixel rows PXRW06-23-2011
20120147236IMAGE SENSOR WITH CHARGE MULTIPLICATION - An image sensor includes a horizontal shift register electrically connected to a pixel array for receiving charge packets from the pixel array. A non-destructive sense node is connected to an output of the horizontal shift register. A charge directing switch is electrically connected to the non-destructive sense node. The charge directing switch includes two outputs. A charge multiplying horizontal shift register is electrically connected to one output of the charge directing switch. A bypass horizontal shift register or an amplifier can be connected to the other output of the charge directing switch.06-14-2012
20110304757SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - According to one embodiment, a solid-state imaging device includes a pixel array unit where pixels are disposed in a matrix and a column amplifying circuit that is disposed at an end of the pixel array unit and amplifies a unit signal of a unit pixel read from each pixel with at least first and second amplification factors, and outputs a plurality of amplified signals.12-15-2011
20110304756IMAGING APPARATUS - An imaging apparatus comprises: a plurality of memory capacitors for holding signals output from pixels; and a plurality of first switches for respectively connecting the memory capacitors to a common signal line, wherein each of the plurality of memory capacitors includes a terminal connected to the corresponding first switch and supplied with the corresponding signal output from the corresponding pixel, and another terminal supplied with a reference potential, a reference potential supplying unit supplies a first reference potential during a period in which the plurality of memory capacitors hold the signals, and supplies a second reference potential having a potential difference from a potential of the common signal line before turning-on of the first switch, the potential difference being larger than that of the first reference potential, during a period in which the first switches are turned on.12-15-2011
20120038807IMAGING SIGNAL PROCESSING METHODS AND APPARATUS - Methods and apparatus are provided for performing multiple correlated double sampling (CDS) operations on an imaging pixel, and in some cases on an array of imaging pixels, during a single integration cycle of the pixel(s). The multiple CDS operations may produce multiple CDS values, which may be processed in combination to produce a resulting value substantially free of various types of noise. The CDS operations may be performed using a CDS circuit including a single-ended charge amplifier having an input capacitor. The charge amplifier may also include a variable capacitance providing a variable gain. The variable capacitance may be provided by a feedback capacitor.02-16-2012
20120038806IMAGE SHOOTING DEVICE - An image shooting device includes: an image shooting part formed of a pixel array and a reading control part in which the pixel array includes a plurality of pixels arranged in a matrix form, each of the pixels having a photoelectric conversion part, a transfer transistor, an amplifying transistor, and a reset transistor, and the reading control part performs reading by switching a first reading control in which the reset transistor is controlled to be turned off before exposure to read the pixel signal from a part of rows of the pixel array and a second reading control in which the pixel signal is read from the pixel array after the exposure; and a correcting part correcting the pixel signal read through the second reading control based on the pixel signal read through the first reading control.02-16-2012
20120038805Dynamic Range Optimization and Hot Spot Correction in a Compressive Imaging System - A compressive imaging system for optimizing dynamic range during the acquisition of compressed images. A light modulator modulates incident light with spatial patterns to produced modulated light. A light sensing device generates an electrical signal representing intensity of the modulated light over time. The system amplifies a difference between the electrical signal and an adjustable baseline voltage and captures samples of the amplified signal. The adjustable baseline voltage is set to be approximately equal to the average value of the electrical signal. A compressive imaging system for identifying and correcting hot spot(s) in the incident light field. Search patterns are sent to the light modulator and the corresponding samples of the electrical signal are analyzed. Once the hot spot is located, the light modulating elements corresponding to the hot spot may be turned off or their duty cycle may be reduced.02-16-2012
20120147235IMAGE SENSOR WITH CHARGE MULTIPLICATION - An image sensor includes a horizontal shift register electrically connected to a pixel array for receiving charge packets from the pixel array. A non-destructive sense node is connected to an output of the horizontal shift register. A charge directing switch is electrically connected to the non-destructive sense node. The charge directing switch includes two outputs. A charge multiplying horizontal shift register is electrically connected to one output of the charge directing switch. A bypass horizontal shift register or an amplifier can be connected to the other output of the charge directing switch.06-14-2012
20110157440SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - To control the potential distribution generated in a well at the time of amplification and reduce a shading in a solid-state imaging device of amplification type, the amplification type solid-state imaging device of the present invention comprises a plurality of picture elements each including photoelectric conversion elements formed in a second conductivity type common well inside a first conductivity type substrate, wherein a plurality of well contacts are disposed inside a picture element array area.06-30-2011
20110157439IMAGING DEVICE, A/D CONVERTER DEVICE AND READING CIRCUIT - An A/D converter device includes a zone identifying circuit configured to identify which one of a plurality of level zones a voltage level of an analog output signal is in; a shift voltage generating circuit configured to generate a shift voltage which corresponds to a relevant one of the level zones; an operational amplifier circuit configured to change the analog output signal by means of the shift voltage, the operational amplifier circuit being configured to amplify the changed analog output signal to suit an A/D conversion input range so as to generate an amplified and shifted analog signal; a first A/D converter circuit configured to A/D-convert the amplified and shifted analog signal so as to calculate a first A/D converted value; and a second A/D converted value calculating circuit configured to calculate a second A/D converted value from the first A/D converted value in accordance with the relevant level zone.06-30-2011
20120062774ADAPTIVE SOLID STATE IMAGE SENSOR - An improved monolithic solid state imager comprises plural sub-arrays of respectively different kinds of pixels, an optional filter mosaic comprising color filters and clear elements, and circuitry to process the output of the pixels. The different kinds of pixels respond to respectively different spectral ranges. Advantageously the different kinds of pixels can be chosen from: 1) SWIR pixels responsive to short wavelength infrared (SWIR) in the range of approximately 800-1800 nm; 2) regular pixels responsive to visible and NIR radiation (400-1000 nm) and wideband pixels responsive to visible, NIR and SWIR radiation.03-15-2012
20120002091SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE - A solid-state imaging device 01-05-2012
20120008029SOLID-STATE IMAGING APPARATUS AND IMAGING SYSTEM - A solid-state imaging apparatus includes a pixel array in which a plurality of pixels are arranged, wherein the pixel array has a region formed from one of an electrical conductor and a semiconductor to which a fixed electric potential is supplied, each pixel includes a photoelectric converter, a charge-voltage converter which converts charges generated by the photoelectric converter into a voltage, and an amplification unit which amplifies a signal generated by the charge-voltage converter by a positive gain and outputs the amplified signal to an output line, and the output line comprising a shielding portion arranged to shield at least part of the charge-voltage converter with respect to the region.01-12-2012
20120008028SOLID STATE IMAGING DEVICE - According to one embodiment, a pixel outputs a photoelectrically converted signal. A reference ramp generating circuit generates a first ramp wave and a second ramp wave having a step width smaller than that of the first ramp wave. A column ADC circuit performs switching between the first ramp wave and the second ramp wave on the basis of the signal level of the signal from the pixel, compares the ramp wave with the signal level, and detects a signal component of the pixel by CDS.01-12-2012
20120062773IMAGE SENSOR AND METHOD OF READING OUT AN IMAGE SENSOR - An image sensor for electronic cameras includes a plurality of pixels arranged in rows and columns, wherein at least one common column is associated with a plurality of pixels of a column. Each pixel includes a light-sensitive detector element to produce an electric charge from incident light, a selection device to connect the detector element directly or indirectly to the associated column line and at least one switching device. The image sensor furthermore has a control device for controlling the selection device and the at least one switching device of the respective pixel. The control device is designed such that the selection device of a first pixel is activated within a time period in which the at least one switching device is activated in a second pixel with which the same column line is associated.03-15-2012
20120062772IMAGING SYSTEMS WITH COLUMN RANDOMIZING CIRCUITS - An imaging system may include an image sensor array and column randomizing multiplexers. The imaging system may include a data output circuit and image readout circuitry such as analog amplifiers, analog-to-digital converters, and memory circuits. The column randomizing multiplexers may include a first column randomizing multiplexer between the image sensor array and at least some of the image readout circuitry. The first column randomizing multiplexer may randomly connect columns of the image sensor array to the image readout circuitry. The connections made by the first column randomizing multiplexer may be randomized as each row of the image sensor array is read out. The column randomizing multiplexers may include a second column randomizing multiplexer between at least some of the image readout circuitry and the data output circuit. The second column randomizing multiplexer may reorder image data for the image readout circuitry.03-15-2012
20120154652IMAGE SENSOR WITH CHARGE MULTIPLICATION OUTPUT CHANNEL AND CHARGE SENSING OUTPUT CHANNEL - An image sensor includes a horizontal shift register electrically connected to a pixel array for receiving charge packets from the pixel array. A non-destructive sense node is connected to an output of the horizontal shift register. A charge directing switch is electrically connected to the non-destructive sense node. The charge directing switch includes two outputs. A charge multiplying horizontal shift register is electrically connected to one output of the charge directing switch. A discharging element is connected to the other output of the charge directing switch.06-21-2012
20110102654IMAGE CAPTURE DEVICE HAVING AMPLIFICATION CIRCUIT FOR AMPLIFYING SIGNAL FROM PHOTOELECTRIC CONVERSION PORTION - An image capture device includes a plurality of image capture elements for capturing an object image, a plurality of vertical output lines for reading signals out of the plurality of image capture elements, and a plurality of processing circuits. Each processing circuit includes a first capacitor element having a first electrode connected to one of the plurality of vertical output lines, a differential amplifier having a first input terminal connected to a second electrode of the first capacitor element, a second capacitor element connected between the first input terminal and an output terminal of the differential amplifier, and a first switch configured to control conduction between the first input terminal and the output terminal of the differential amplifier. The image capture device further includes a plurality of third capacitor elements configured to hold signals from the differential amplifiers of the plurality of processing circuits and to limit an output frequency band of each differential amplifier, and a horizontal output line for sequentially outputting signals from the plurality of third capacitor elements.05-05-2011
20100289933IMAGE SENSING DEVICE AND IMAGING SYSTEM - An image sensing device characterized by comprising: a pixel array; a plurality of first holding capacitances; a plurality of second holding capacitances; a first reference power supply pattern; and a second reference power supply pattern, wherein at least part of the first reference power supply pattern is arranged in a first region where reference power supply electrodes of the plurality of first holding capacitances are arrayed, at least part of the second reference power supply pattern is arranged in a second region where reference power supply electrodes of the plurality of second holding capacitances are arrayed, and the first reference power supply pattern and the second reference power supply pattern are isolated in a region including the first region and the second region.11-18-2010
20100289932SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - Suppressing increases in the area of an image cell while reducing fixed pattern noise (FPN). A photoelectric conversion signal is generated from photocurrent flowing through a photodiode (PD) in a pixel (Ca). A first transistor functioning as a load transistor is driven to operate in a strong inversion state and then operate in a subthreshold range. When the first transistor (T11-18-2010
20100245642SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - A solid-state imaging device which can, in response to the problem of black-crush occurring in an image when strong light is enters the device, positively detect black-crush in a state in which a variance margin has been secured. The solid-state imaging device outputs a luminance signal in accordance with an amount of received light, and includes: a pixel circuit having a light-receiving element; a signal output circuit having a sampling transistor which outputs, from a second signal output line, a luminance signal in accordance with the amount of light received by the light-receiving element, based on an output signal from the pixel circuit; and a high-intensity judgment circuit which is coupled by the pixel circuit and a judgment input coupling capacitor, judges whether or not light entering the light-receiving element is of high intensity based on the output signal from the pixel circuit, and in the case of judging the entering light to be of high intensity, outputs a luminance signal indicating high intensity.09-30-2010
20100245641SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE, METHOD OF DRIVING A SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE, AND IMAGING APPARATUS - A solid-state imaging device includes, on a substrate, a lower electrode, a photoelectric converting layer that is disposed on the lower electrode, and an upper electrode that is disposed on the photoelectric converting layer. The device further includes: a boosting unit which is formed in the substrate, and which supplies a power supply voltage for producing an electric field between the upper electrode and the lower electrode; a wiring portion which electrically connects the output of the boosting unit to the upper electrode; and a low-pass filter which is connected to the output of the boosting unit, and which includes a resistor that is formed by at least a part of the wiring portion.09-30-2010
20120314109SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE AND CAMERA - The present invention implements a solid-state imaging device and a camera which develop lower noise. The solid-state imaging device includes unit cells which are arranged in two dimensions. Each of the unit cells includes: a photoelectric converting element which photoelectrically converts incident light; and amplifying transistors each of which outputs a signal voltage according to signal charges of the photoelectric converting element. The photoelectric converting element is electrically connected in common with gates of the amplifying transistors.12-13-2012
20120127354IMAGE SENSOR - An image sensor for electronic cameras includes a plurality of light sensitive pixels arranged in rows and columns for generating exposure proportional signals, wherein the pixels of a respective column are coupled to at least one respective column read-out circuit via at least one respective column line, and wherein the respective column read-out circuit includes at least two column amplifiers which are connected in parallel, and includes a control device for controlling a read-out process of an image, wherein the read-out process for the respective pixel includes at least one read-out cycle. The gain factor of at least one of the two column amplifiers of the respective column read-out circuit is adjustable.05-24-2012
20120127353IMAGE-PICKUP SYSTEM AND METHOD OF CONTROLLING SAME - An image-pickup apparatus including a detector comprising a detecting unit and a reading circuit, the detecting unit including pixels, each of which including a conversion element, the reading circuit which includes a connecting unit that is electrically connected to a signal wire transferring an electric signal and that electrically connects the signal wire to a node, and which performs a reading operation to output the electric signal from the pixel. A control unit controls an operation of the reading circuit, and a sensing unit senses the end of radiation irradiation based on an output of the reading circuit, which is acquired during the period of an accumulation operation of the detector. The control unit starts establishing the electrical connection between the signal wire and the node through the connecting unit based on the sensed irradiation end, and retains the electrical connection until the start of the reading operation.05-24-2012
20120212657ANALOG ROW BLACK LEVEL CALIBRATION FOR CMOS IMAGE SENSOR - A CMOS image sensor includes an image pixel array, a dark pixel array, data bit liens, reference bit lines, a driver, comparators, and analog-to-digital converter (“ADC”) circuits. The image pixel array generates analog image signals in response to incident light. The dark pixel array generates analog black reference signals for analog black level calibration of the analog image signals. In one embodiment, the data bit lines each coupled to a different column of image pixels of the image pixel array and the reference bit lines each coupled to a different column of black reference pixels within the dark pixel array. The driver is coupled to the reference bit lines to drive an analog black reference signal. The comparators each couple to one of the data bit lines and each coupled to an output of the driver and offset the analog image signals with the analog black reference signals in an analog domain. The ADC circuits each coupled to an output of a comparator.08-23-2012
20100177225IMAGE SENSOR - The invention relates to an image sensor for electronic cameras, having a plurality of light-sensitive pixels for the generation of at least one signal proportional to exposure, wherein the pixels are coupled to a read-out circuit having at least one amplifier and configured to amplify the at least one signal of a respective pixel with different amplification factors to generate differently amplified signals for the at least one signal of a respective pixel, wherein the read-out circuit has at least one output to output at least some of the differently amplified signals as output signals. At least three different amplification factors can be selected for the at least one signal of a respective pixel, wherein the read-out circuit includes a selection device which is configured to select those amplification factors in dependence on the level of the at least one signal of a respective pixel with which the output signals of the read-out circuit are amplified, wherein the number of output signals for the at least one signal of a respective pixel amounts to at least two and is less than the number of the selectable amplification factors.07-15-2010
20090021621IMAGE SENSING APPARATUS AND IMAGE CAPTURING SYSTEM - An image sensing apparatus comprises: a pixel array; a selection unit which selects a readout region in the pixel array; and a readout unit which reads out a signal from the readout region, wherein in thinning-out readout, the readout unit reads out signals from a first readout region corresponding to the whole pixel array at a first pixel density in a first frame period and reads out signals from a second readout region corresponding to a part of the pixel array at a second pixel density in a second frame period, the second pixel density being higher than the first pixel density, and in thinning-out readout, the selection unit causes pixels in the first readout region to perform a charge accumulation operation for a first accumulation period and causes pixels in the second readout region to perform the charge accumulation operation for a second accumulation period.01-22-2009
20090021619Solid state image pickup device and camera using the same - A solid state image pickup device 01-22-2009
20120262613SOLID-STATE IMAGING APPARATUS - A solid-state imaging apparatus includes: pixels arranged in a two-dimensional matrix; a signal line connected to the pixels; and the mechanical shutter for shielding the pixels. The pixel includes: a photoelectric conversion unit generating a signal by photoelectric conversion; a reset unit resetting a signal of the photoelectric conversion unit; and a selecting unit for switching between a selecting state and a non-selecting state. The reset unit terminates the reset operation at different timing for each row of the pixels, thereby starting the charge accumulation period in the photoelectric conversion unit. The mechanical shutter shields the photoelectric conversion unit, thereby terminating the charge accumulation period.10-18-2012
20100328510IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE AND IMAGE PICKUP SYSTEM - Unit cells each having a plurality of photodiodes 12-30-2010
20100328509PHOTOELECTRIC CONVERSION APPARATUS, CONTROL METHOD THEREOF, IMAGING APPARATUS, AND IMAGING SYSTEM - Each pixel has a photoelectric conversion unit configured to convert light into electrical charges and to store the electrical charges, an amplifying unit configured to amplify a signal based on the electrical charges stored in the photoelectric conversion unit and to output the signal to an output line, and a reset unit configured to reset a input part of the amplifying unit. A clip unit, which is configured to limit an electric voltage of the output line, includes an amplifying circuitry for amplifying a signal based on the electric voltage of the output line and an MOS transistor for limiting the electric voltage of the output line based on the difference in electric potential between the gate and source. The clip unit controls the electric potential of the gate of the MOS transistor by the amplifying circuitry.12-30-2010
20110037884PHOTOELECTRIC CONVERSION DEVICE AND IMAGE PICKUP SYSTEM USING THE PHOTOELECTRIC CONVERSION DEVICE - It is a principle object of the present invention to reduce a voltage drop of a common power supply wiring in a plurality of amplification circuits to suppress crosstalk generated in other signal output lines. A photoelectric conversion device includes: a plurality of pixels each having a photoelectric conversion area; a plurality of signal output lines through which electrical signals are to be read out from the plurality of pixels; and a plurality of amplification circuits provided in correspondence to the plurality of signal output lines for amplifying the electrical signals, respectively, the plurality of amplification circuits including at least one constant current circuit portion and being disposed in a predetermined direction of repetitive dispersion, in which a constant current circuit portion includes at least a source grounded field effect transistor (the gate electrode is designated by reference symbol 02-17-2011
20120268633IMAGE CAPTURE APPARATUS - An image capture apparatus includes an image sensor, a determination unit which determines one image capturing mode, a driving unit which drives the image sensor by different driving methods in the respective image capturing modes, and a control unit which controls the operation of the driving unit. The image sensor includes a plurality of two-dimensionally arrayed pixels, a predetermined number of vertical output lines arranged for each array of pixels, and a holding memory which holds pixel signals from pixels on rows. The control unit drives the image sensor in the first power save mode when a horizontal transfer period is not less than twice a vertical transfer period, and drives the image sensor in the second power save mode when the vertical transfer period is not less than twice the horizontal transfer period.10-25-2012
20120320245SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE AND METHOD OF DRIVING THE SAME - A row scanning unit is configured to change a potential of a transfer signal from a second potential V12-20-2012
20120320246SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE, METHOD FOR DRIVING THE SAME, AND CAMERA - A solid-state imaging device includes unit pixels arranged in rows and columns, and reads a pixel signal from the unit pixels selected for each of the rows. The device includes: column signal lines provided for the columns of the unit pixels; amplifying transistors included in the unit pixels and each outputting the pixel signal; correlated double sampling units provided for the columns of the unit pixels and each performing correlated double sampling on a reset component of the pixel signal and on a data component including the reset component and a signal component of the pixel signal so as to sample the signal component; and low-pass filters each (i) inserted in the column signal line between an output terminal of the amplifying transistor and the correlated double sampling unit or (ii) included in the correlated double sampling unit.12-20-2012
20120086841PHOTOELECTRIC CONVERSION DEVICE AND IMAGE CAPTURING DEVICE - A photoelectric conversion device includes a pixel unit including a photoelectric converter, an amplifier arranged on the output side of the pixel unit, an output unit arranged on the output side of the amplifier, a first restriction circuit, and a second restriction circuit. The first restriction circuit restricts, between the amplifier and the output unit, a noise level read out from the pixel unit via the amplifier in reading out the noise level from the pixel unit. The second restriction circuit restricts, between the photoelectric converter and the amplifier, a noise level to be provided to the amplifier in reading out the noise level from the pixel unit.04-12-2012
20110279720SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE AND CAMERA - The solid-state imaging device includes a plurality of pixel units arranged in rows and columns. Each of the pixel units includes: a photodiode that generates a signal voltage corresponding to an intensity of light received; and an amplifier transistor which amplifies the signal voltage in response to a flow of an operating current, and outputs the amplified signal voltage to a column signal line that is provided for each of pixel columns. The solid-state imaging device includes current correction circuits each of which is provided for a corresponding one of the pixel columns and causes a correction current to flow between a power supply line and a grounding line. The correction current fluctuates in an opposite direction to a fluctuation of the operating current flowing into the grounding line from the power supply line via the amplifier element.11-17-2011
20120327279IMAGING APPARATUS AND METHOD OF DRIVING THE SAME - An imaging apparatus and a method of driving the same that can generate a digital data of a high resolution pixel signal are provided. The imaging apparatus includes: a pixel (12-27-2012
20100214461SOLID-STATE IMAGING APPARATUS - A solid-state imaging apparatus includes a plurality of unit cell groups arranged in a row direction and a plurality of common output lines for transmitting output signals from the plurality of unit cell groups, each including a plurality of unit cells arranged in the row direction. Each of the plurality of unit cells includes an m number of pixels arranged in a column direction and including photoelectric conversion elements each converting incident light to different color signals; an m number of holding units holding color signals of the m number of pixels; an m number of color selecting switches each selecting one color signal from within the color signals held in the m number of holding units; and a transfer switch outputting the color signals selected by the color selecting switches to one common output line of the plurality of common output lines.08-26-2010
20080225147Image Pickup Apparatus - For an image signal of a solid-state image pickup element, average value calculation means calculates an average value of pixel values for the respective color components constituting an image of each frame. Gain calculation means calculates a maximum value from the average values of the pixel values of the respective color components of the image calculated by the average value calculation means for the number of frames for one cycle of flicker generation, calculates, according to these maximum values, a gain for adjusting the average value of the pixel value of the respective components constituting the other image to a maximum width, and outputs it as a gain of each color component to be given to signal amplification means. The signal amplification means amplifies all the pixels of the color components of the image according to the gain of the respective color components given.09-18-2008
20110261240SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - A solid-imaging device including an output unit of the FDA type and capable of generating accurate image signals and consuming less power is provided which includes: photoelectric conversion elements; a vertical CCD unit vertically transferring signal charges converted by the photoelectric conversion elements; a front-stage horizontal CCD unit horizontally transferring the signal charges, according to 4-phase drive signals having a 50% duty cycle; a rear-stage horizontal CCD unit disposed between the front-stage horizontal CCD unit and the output unit and horizontally transferring, according to 2-phase drive signals, the signal charges horizontally transferred from the front-stage horizontal CCD unit; a horizontal driver circuit generating the 4-phase drive signals; and a vertical/horizontal driver circuit generating the 2-phase drive signals, wherein the voltage amplitude of the 4-phase drive signals is smaller than the voltage amplitude of the 2-phase drive signals.10-27-2011
20130100326COMPARATOR, AD CONVERTER, SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE, AND CAMERA SYSTEM - Disclosed herein is a comparator including: a first input sampling capacitance; a second input sampling capacitance; an output node; a transconductance (Gm) amplifier as a differential comparator section configured to receive a slope signal, a signal level of the slope signal changing with a slope, at one input terminal of the Gm amplifier via the first input sampling capacitance, and receive an input signal at another input terminal of the Gm amplifier via the second input sampling capacitance, and subject the slope signal and the input signal to comparing operation; and an isolator configured to hold a voltage of an output section of the Gm amplifier constant, the isolator being disposed between the output section of the Gm amplifier and the output node.04-25-2013
20110273601SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - According to one embodiment, a pixel includes a first amplifier transistor for amplifying a photoelectrically converted signal, a vertical signal line transmits the signal read from the pixel in a vertical direction, and a second amplifier transistor forms a differential pair with the first amplifier transistor and amplifies the signal read by the vertical signal line through the first amplifier transistor.11-10-2011
20130147995SIGNAL PROVIDING APPARATUS, AND ANALOG-TO-DIGITAL CONVERTING APPARATUS AND IMAGE SENSOR USING THE SAME - An image sensor includes: a plurality of image pixels providing a reset signal and a data signal; a signal providing apparatus generating a ramp signal, and sequentially providing the reset signal, the data signal, and the ramp signal; and an analog-to-digital converting apparatus converting the data signal into a digital signal by using a first timing at which the amplitude of the ramp signal is changed based on the amplitude of the reset signal and a second timing at which the amplitude of the ramp signal is changed based on the amplitude of the data signal, wherein the reset signal used to generate the ramp signal and the data signal which has been converted into the data digital signal may be output from the same image pixel.06-13-2013
20100309356SOLID STATE IMAGING DEVICE AND METHOD FOR DRIVING THE SAME - A solid state imaging device according to an aspect of the present invention includes: a pixel array (12-09-2010
20100309355AMPLIFICATION TYPE SOLID STATE IMAGING DEVICE - An amplification type solid state imaging device in use includes at least a light-receiving portion 12-09-2010
20110234872SOLID-STATE IMAGING DEVICE - According to one embodiment, the data transfer circuit outputs n bits for each N columns (n≧2) in the pixel array among digital data of a predetermined number of bits digitally converted in accordance with the column selection signal which collectively and sequentially selects N columns (N≧2) in the pixel array by using one data line. One data line is commonly and correspondingly connected to one differential input terminals of 209-29-2011
20130182161SOLID-STATE IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE, IMAGE PICKUP DEVICE, AND SIGNAL READING METHOD - A solid-state image pickup device includes: electrically coupled substrates on which circuit elements constituting a pixel are arranged; a photoelectric conversion element included in the pixel; a reading circuit that reads from the pixel, a signal based on a signal generated by the photoelectric conversion element; and first to n-th circuit sets each including a circuit element that reads a signal by a corresponding one of first to n-th reading modes. n is an integer such that07-18-2013
20110285887IMAGE PICKUP APPARATUS, IMAGE PICKUP SYSTEM, AND DRIVING METHOD OF IMAGE PICKUP APPARATUS - In a conventional image pickup apparatus, a plurality of reset methods for resetting a photodiode cannot be set. A row selection unit is provided with a first storage unit for storing an address of a read row, a second storage unit for storing an address of a shutter row, and further a third storage unit for storing an address of a row in which potential of photodiode is fixed.11-24-2011
20120287320DECORRELATED CHANNEL SAMPLING FOR DIGITAL IMAGING - In association with an imaging device which generates a portion of an image from a plurality of channels within a first row by sampling each channel during a sampling time corresponding to the channel, circuitry offsets sampling times of at least first and second channels within the first row, thereby reducing noise correlation between the first and second channels in the first row. Pixel sampling times may be defined by start times of the channels within a row, end times or both. Offsetting may be accomplished using a predetermined set of sampling time values or by randomizing sampling time values.11-15-2012
20130194469IMAGE-TAKING APPARATUS AND METHOD FOR CONTROLLING THE SAME - An image-taking apparatus changes a switching threshold value for switching between a color mode and a monochrome mode according to a maximum gain value set by a maximum gain setting unit so that switching between the color and monochrome modes can be optimally performed regardless of setting of the maximum gain value. The image-taking apparatus includes a threshold value correction unit configured to correct the switching threshold value according to the maximum gain value. The threshold value correction unit sets the switching threshold value with the maximum gain value set larger than an initial value to be smaller than the switching threshold value with the maximum gain value set smaller than the initial value.08-01-2013
20130194470SOLID-STATE IMAGING APPARATUS - Provided is a solid-state imaging apparatus that is capable of preventing a harmful influence due to noise generated in a control line. The solid-state imaging apparatus includes: a plurality of pixels each including a photoelectric conversion unit for photoelectric converting to generate a signal; control lines for supplying control signals for driving the pixels; driving buffers for driving the control lines; and switching units for switching between a first path for supplying power source voltages from power source circuits to power source terminals of the driving buffers and a second path for supplying power source voltages from capacitors to the power source terminals of the driving buffers.08-01-2013
20130201373IMAGE PROCESSING APPARATUS AND METHOD - An image processing apparatus includes an amplifying unit for, during a main scanning line period, amplifying an analog image signal input from a photoelectric conversion element and outputting the signal; an A/D converting unit for analog/digital-converting the signal to digital image data and outputting the data; and a digital offset correcting unit for performing a low-pass filter calculation based on the data to obtain an average value, calculating, based on the average value, a digital correction value used for correcting the data to obtain a desired black offset level, and performing correction on the data using the value. The digital offset correcting unit compares the value to a threshold, reduces the value to be equal to or less than the threshold if the value is equal to or greater than the threshold and updates the value to the reduced value, and performs the low-pass filter calculation and calculates the value.08-08-2013

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