Many applications, such as robotics, computer gaming, automobile security, medical imaging and surveillance, require a three-dimensional representation of the environment. As a consequence, real-time 3D-imaging has become one of the most important challenges in the design of modern electronic image sensors. The ActLight’s DPD can be compared with an APD. The great advantage of the DPD is low voltage (can operate at about 1V) as compared to 100 V for silicon APD with reasonable gain. Other advantages are extremely good signal to noise ratio (up to 6 orders), and compatibility with standard CMOS production process.

Heart rate electronic modules

Heart rate electronic module (or optical blood flow sensor) measures pulse tracking the changes in blood flow. It is done by measuring the reflection of light off the blood flowing in capillaries.

Photodiodes, currently used for these measurements, require strong light, therefore high power LED. ActLight’s DPD has high sensitivity which allows decrease light source power, which makes it perfectly suitable for smart watches and life-logging wristbands.

Photodiodes for laser barcode scanners

barcode reader

Long-range handheld laser barcode scanners currently use avalanche photodiodes (APDs) which require high voltage for operation. DPD can offer similar to APD performance, but does need high voltage. Moreover, DPD is built with standard CMOS technology and can be easily integrated with other circuits.

Proximity Sensors


Today’s mobile devices like smartphones and tablets come with proximity sensors integrated in order to save energy by turning off the screen when not used or optimize ergonomics by locking screen for unwanted accidental input.

ActLight delivers a low power and sensitive photodiode for proximity sensor solutions that can save energy and bring new use cases for proximity sensors.

Gesture Control Sensors

The ability to track a person’s body movements and fine gestures to control interactions is a proven technology in solutions like the Microsoft Kinect and gesture control is one of next technologies entering into smartphones and tablets for both 2D and 3D gesture control. Meanwhile the solution needs to be low power and small, that has been hard to deliver so far when using technologies like the traditional built in image sensors (cameras in phones).

Here, ActLight can help proposing DPD for different gesture control solutions.

Light Data Transfer

data_iphoneSending and receiving more and more data with high speed to and from mobile devices is a key priority for many electronics producers. This is driven by the need of transferring of large data volumes created by the use of content like high definition videos. The radio transmission (wifi, bluetooth) has limited information transfer rate and using light offers the possibility of exploiting a completely different part of the electromagnetic spectrum boosting the speed of data transfer.

ActLight’s DPD enables such devices to be able to reach the speed more than 1 Gb/s. At the same time, the DPD remains a low power solution offering a simple implementation in mobile devices.

On-chip optical data transfer

opticalOptical data transfer being much faster continuously replaces copper wires and interconnections. The trend is that optical data transfer is getting smaller and smaller, and ultimately, it will be used on chip.

The groundbreaking ActLight innovation of the DPD will make it possible to implement small and low power photodiodes for fast optical data transfer in data buses in computers and for on-chip optical data transfer. The ActLight’s DPD solution scales down well with CMOS technology nodes and it works even better when going to the small design.