TOKYO, Japan., October 27, 2009
- Toshiba Corporation (TOKYO: 6502) today announced
the launch of a new CMOS image sensor that will bring
14.6 million pixels to digital still cameras and to
mobile phones supporting video imaging. The sensor,
the latest addition to Toshiba’s “Dynastron™”
line-up, is also the company’s first to integrate
the enhanced sensitivity offered by back-side illumination
technology (BSI). Sampling of the new sensor will begin
in December and mass production will follow from the
third quarter of 2010 (July--September).
BSI brings new levels of responsiveness to CMOS imaging.
Lenses are deployed on the rear of the sensor on the
silicon substrate, not on the front, where wiring limits
light absorption. This positioning boosts light sensitivity
and absorption by 40% compared to existing Toshiba products,
and allows formation of finer image pixels.
Toshiba has made full use of the advantages of BSI
to realize image pixels with a pitch of 1.4 microns,
and to pack 14.6 million of them into a 1/2.3-inch sensor
that meets the high level imaging and processing requirement,
and that will also bring a new level of image quality
to mobile phones. Toshiba will use the new sensor to
promote its full-scale entry to digital camera market,
and will continue to develop BSI products as a mainstream
The new sensor will be mass produced at Toshiba’s
Oita Operations, on industry leading 300mm wafer lines
deploying 65nm process technology. Initial production
will be at a volume of 500,000 sensors a month.
CMOS image sensors are a focus product of Toshiba’s
System LSI business. Until now, their main application
has been in mobile phones, where Toshiba could leverage
its high density integration and low power consumption
technologies. With the introduction of BSI CMOS sensors,
Toshiba will reinforce the sensor business by expanding
application to include digital cameras.