Osram Opto Introduces 940nm IR Emitter for 2D Facial Recognition

Smartphones, tablets and other electronic devices can now unlock with a password, fingerprint scan, iris scan, or even using 2D facial recognition. 2D facial recognition first illuminates the user’s face with an infrared light source and then captures the image with an IR camera. Once obtained, the system compares the image with the images previously stored for identification.

This comparison focuses on characteristic two-dimensional features. If there is a match for the facial measurements such the width of the mouth, the distance between the eyes, and the length of the nasal ridge, then the device will be unlocked. According to Osram Opto Semiconductors, using the Synios P2720 infrared emitter with a wavelength of 940 nm reduces the red glow that can occur with infrared light sources in the short-wave infrared range.

Longer Wavelength Enhances Facial Recognition Performance

Previously, the sensitivity of IR cameras was only acceptable if the light source had a wavelength of 850 nm. Now, the cameras have been further developed for greater sensitivity in longer wavelength ranges. So, a 940 nm light sources can now be used to enhance the overall performance of the system.

Uniform and bright illumination of the user’s face or eyes is particularly critical for facial recognition and for eye-tracking systems. The company’s Synios P2720 offers an output of 1,150 mW at 1 A. With this high overall output, the IR emitter has a radiant intensity of 360 mW/sr.

The new Synios P2720 features the same compact footprint as the 850 nm version, measuring just 2.0 mm x 2.75 mm x 0.6 mm. While the IRED has no optics, the device’s compact size allows the use of secondary optics to meet requirements.

“Everyone wants the reassurance that the data on their mobile devices is as secure as possible,” explained Nina Reiser, marketing manager for the Emitter Laser Sensor segment at Osram Opto Semiconductors. “Our extremely powerful and bright IRED illuminates the facial characteristics of users perfectly, ensuring that only authorized persons have access to the device.”

The new Synios P2720 is already available for initial customer projects.

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