Sensors enhance UV protection & gesture recognition

19th January 2016
Posted By : Nat Bowers
Sensors enhance UV protection & gesture recognition

 

Silicon Labs has announced two optical sensors: one that can be used to protect consumers from the harmful effects of UV radiation; and one to develop innovative touchless user interfaces leveraging high-performance proximity sensing and gesture recognition.

The Si1133 optical sensor provides a cost-effective solution for adding highly accurate UV index measurement capabilities to a wide range of sports equipment and outdoor lifestyle products. The Si1153 ambient light sensor is optimised for operation in bright daylight conditions and extended range, allowing it to be used for gesture control and proximity detection applications in outdoor environments.

Accurate UV index sensing

Overexposure to UV light has long been recognised as harmful, especially for people with elevated risks of sunburn and potentially fatal melanoma. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 66,000 deaths occur annually from melanoma and other skin cancers. The Si1133 sensor enables accurate measurement of UV index levels to help gauge the sun’s intensity and prevent skin damage. The Si1133 sensor can be incorporated easily and economically into a wide range of cost-sensitive outdoor recreation products such as sports and fitness wearables, backpacks, bicycle helmets, sunglasses, beach/patio furniture and sun lotion packaging. Products equipped with the Si1133 sensor help enable consumers to monitor their UV exposure and safely maximise their time spent outdoors. The Si1133 UV sensor provides an output, via its I2C serial interface, that directly corresponds to the digital UV index defined by the WHO. The Si1133 device also senses ambient light levels, which conveniently allows for automatic brightness adjustment of associated output displays.

Si1133 key features:

  • Exceptional UV measurement accuracy: ±1.5 on the UV scale;
  • Ambient light sensing supporting less than 100mlx resolution and operation under dark glass;
  • Highly integrated solution reducing cost and complexity with on-chip dual 23-bit ADCs, DSP and high-sensitivity visible light, UV and IR photodiodes;
  • I2C serial communications with up to 3.4Mb/s data rate;
  • Ultra-low power for longer battery life: 500nA standby current; and
  • Small 2x2mm QFN package.

High-performance proximity sensing

The Si1153 sensor offers significant performance improvements for proximity sensing and gesture recognition in daylight conditions, enabling a host of user interface innovations. Unlike many competing sensors best suited to indoor environments, these sensors can be used outdoors in high ambient light and over an extended range of up to 2m. The Si1153 sensors are suited for gesture-based operation of automotive infotainment systems, bicycle computers and other outdoor sports equipment, making it easier and safer for consumers to control electronic devices without taking their eyes off the road or tasks at hand. The sensors are also a good fit for ATMs, PoS terminals, door entry systems and other proximity sensing applications requiring both extended range and exceptional daylight performance.

Si1153 key features:

  • Proximity detection adjustable from under 1 to 200cm;
  • Up to three independent LED drivers supporting multi-axis proximity motion detection;
  • Ambient light sensing supporting less than 100mlx resolution and operation under dark glass;
  • Highly integrated solution reducing cost and complexity with on-chip dual 23-bit ADCs, DSP and high-sensitivity visible light and IR photodiodes;
  • I2C serial communications with up to 3.4Mb/s data rate;
  • Ultra-low power for longer battery life: 500nA standby current; and
  • Two package options: 2x2mm QFN and 2.9x4.9mm module with LED.

Daniel Cooley, Vice President, Marketing, IoT products, Silicon Labs, commented: “Continual advances in optical sensing hold the key to product design innovations that enhance consumer health, safety and convenience. Our next-gen Si1133 and Si1153 sensors provide developers with state-of-the-art technology that makes it easy and cost-effective to add accurate UV index measurement and high-performance proximity sensing and gesture detection to a wide array of consumer, automotive and commercial applications.”

Silicon Labs supports optical sensing development with the 115XOPT-EXP-EVB multi-use evaluation board, which showcases all features of the Si1133 and Si1153 sensors and simplifies the evaluation of UV, ambient light and proximity sensing, as well as gesture detection.

Samples and production quantities of the Si1133-AA00-GM UV index sensor are available now and priced at $1.13 in 10,000 unit quantities. Samples and production quantities of the Si1153 proximity/gesture detection sensor are also available now in three versions: the extended-range Si1153-AA00-GM priced at $1.84, the Si1153-AA00-GM with enhanced daylight performance priced at $1.91 and the Si1153-AA09-GM module with integrated IR LED priced at $2.32 (all in 10,000 unit quantities). The 115XOPT-EXP-EVB evaluation kit is available now for $44.43 (MSRP).

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