Named after Intel co-founder Gordon E. Moore, Moore’s Law observes that the number of transistors in a dense integrated circuit doubles approximately every two years.
According to Intel, the continuation of Moore’s Law means the rate of progress in the semiconductor space will far surpass that of nearly all other industries. In fact, the future of Moore’s Law could deliver a magnitude of exponential capability increases – driving a fundamental shift in computing, networking, storage and communication devices.
During a recent presentation at Intel in Santa Clara, Steve Woo, VP of Solutions Marketing and distinguished inventor at Rambus, told the Chinese American Semiconductor Professional Association (CASPA) that Moore’s Law was also helping to accelerate the development and adoption of smart sensor technology.
“The Internet of Things (IoT) has prompted the semiconductor industry to place an emphasis on more efficiently capturing, securing, moving and analyzing an increasing volume of digital data,” Woo explained in a follow-up interview with Rambus Press in Sunnyvale.
“Rambus shares the industry’s vision of 50 billion connected devices by 2020, which will also include always-on, always-connected smart sensor endpoints tasked with capturing and delivering a wide range of data. Moore’s Law is a critical factor in making this vision a reality.”
Indeed, says Woo, the size of refractive imagers is currently limited by optics. However, many applications don’t actually require extensive high resolution imaging capabilities provided by a standard lens-based configuration.
“How can we build even smaller imagers? By replacing the traditional camera lens with a diffraction grating, while leveraging advanced algorithms and chip processing capabilities,” he continued.
“Now this is where Moore’s Law comes into play, because it continues to help enable the technology necessary for Rambus scientists to create and refine miniature, lensless smart sensors (LSS) that can be as small as the size of a human hair. While Moore’s Law has been a driving force in the computing industry for decades, we’re seeing a growing number of benefits in computation imaging and sensing applications such as LSS.”
According to Woo, Rambus’ low power sipping sensors can perform a wide range of functions, including image change detection, point tracking, range finding, sophisticated gesture recognition, object recognition and image capturing.
“These versatile capabilities make LSS technology suitable for at least five key ‘smart’ verticals, including consumer, cities, transportation, manufacturing and medical,” he added.
It should be noted that lensless smart sensor technology recently garnered significant attention from analysts, journalists and industry experts after Rambus officially kicked off its LSS POD program in Barcelona, Spain during Mobile World Congress 2015. The POD program offers partners early access to LSS hardware along with optimized algorithms.
Interested in learning more about the technology behind Rambus lensless smart sensors? You can check out our LSS article archive here.