Company: InVisage Technologies
InVisage Technologies hopes to usher in a new generation of high-quality, thin, feature-rich camera phones. By the end of the year, it hopes to revolutionize our smartphone cameras by shipping its Quantum13 camera sensor chips, capitalizing on a technology called QuantumFilm that has been in the works for more than a decade.
QuantumFilm sensors make it possible for images to be much sharper than those taken with today’s cameras, with twice the dynamic range (or ability to accommodate both dark and light sections in the same picture). And the camera itself can be much smaller.
QuantumFilm is a light-sensitive layer on a digital camera image sensor. It captures the light when you take a photograph, and sends it to the electronics underneath. Conventional cameras use silicon chips to absorb light, but these chips (based on complementary metal oxide semiconductors, or CMOS) only capture about 25 percent of the light that hits the surface of the silicon.
QuantumFilm uses tiny nano particles known as quantum dots. The QuantumFilm can absorb eight times more light than silicon, said Jess Lee, president and CEO of InVisage, in an interview with VentureBeat. That translates into a big quality improvement. Since the capture of light is so much more efficient, the entire system can be cheaper.
“It absorbs light eight times faster than silicon,” Lee said. “We’ve replaced silicon with QuantumFilm. That is the heart of our performance advantage.”
The opportunity is big.