Osram Releases 810nm LED Designed For ANPR Applications

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License plates in low light are always a struggle
License plates in low light are always a struggle

OSRAM Opto Semiconductors is expanding its family of high-power infrared Oslon LEDs for illumination solutions to include a new wavelength, 810nm. 

The new SFH 4703AS infrared emitter will improve the performance of inspection and scanning camera systems, such as those used to read license plates. The additional wavelength enhances image contrast, making it easier to read patterns from recorded images at any time of day. According to Osram, camera sensors have higher sensitivity at 810 nm, extending the visibility range of a traditional 850nm camera system at the same LED output.

Osram developed the new SFH 4703AS to address shortcomings of camera systems using wavelengths of 850 nm and 940 nm, which typically have difficulty creating high-contrast images of certain color combinations. An ideal application for the new technology is in camera systems supporting automatic license plate recognition at toll stations or entrances to parking garages. 

The SFH 4703AS gives these cameras higher-contrast images of many types of license plates, making it easier to retrieve the license plate numbers. As a result, automated barriers function more smoothly, reducing waiting times for drivers. Other camera applications that stand to benefit from the technology upgrade include traffic monitoring and closed-circuit television (CCTV) systems.

Osram Opto Semiconductors has been providing 810 nm emitters for iris scanners in mobile devices. For the SFH 4703AS, developers mounted the highly efficient, nanostack-manufactured chip in the tried-and-tested Oslon package for illumination applications. At 1 Amp the emitter generates 1 watt of optical power. The beam angle of +-45° allows for broad illumination, with a resulting radiant intensity of 630 milliwatts per steradian (mW/sr) at 1A. The component measures 3.85 by 3.85mm, and is 2.29mm high including the lens.♦