M3-F focus module

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New Scale Technologies has released the tiny M3-F focus module, to be launched at Vision 2010 in Stuttgart (9-11 November). In industrial inspection, the M3-F module provides remote lens adjustment to enable fast line changeover. It provides an autofocus function to enable greater variation in target objects to be imaged, or the ability to image multiple points on an object with a single camera.

The M3-F module also provides key advantages in rapidly growing non-industrial applications such as biometric security. Dynamic focus enable both wide field and macro imaging, giving rise to multi-function cameras that can image facial features, capture video, read barcodes and scan fingerprints with a single device. It also provides faster and more accurate matches for facial recognition and iris scanning by allowing greater variation in distance from the subject to the camera, while ensuring sharp images.

The module is a fully integrated package measuring only 20 x 22 x 16mm. It accepts M12 or smaller lenses, and can be mounted on a camera board over sensors up to 17 x 17mm. With its small size and 3.3V input requirement, it can replace the stationary lens holder in existing fixed-focus camera designs without increasing system size. No external controller is needed.

Each M3-F module is an integrated micro-mechatronics system incorporating a piezoelectric Squiggle micro-motor, position sensor, driver and microprocessor. It accepts high-level commands from the system processor over standard I2C or SPI serial interface.

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