The Optoelectronics Group of Vishay Intertechnology, Inc. introduced two new fully integrated proximity sensors designed to increase efficiency and performance in consumer and industrial applications. Featuring an IR emitter and a vertical-cavity, surface-emitting laser (VCSEL), respectively, the Vishay Semiconductors VCNL36821S and VCNL36826S each combine a photodiode, signal processing IC, and 12-bit ADC in a compact 2.55 mm by 2.05 mm by 1.0 mm surface-mount package.
Compared to previous-generation devices, the proximity sensors released today offer smaller packages at a lower cost, making them ideal for space-constrained battery-powered applications, such as detecting if users are wearing or not wearing earpods or virtual reality / augmented reality (VR / AR) headsets. With ranges to 300 mm, they also provide collision detection in toys and consumer and industrial robots. The VCNL36821S and VCNL36826S feature low power consumption down to 6 µA to increase efficiency in these applications.
The devices support the I²C bus communication interface for easy access to the proximity signal, while their programmable interrupt function allows designers to specify high and low thresholds to reduce the continuous communication with the microcontroller. The proximity sensors use intelligent cancellation to eliminate cross-talk, while a smart persistence scheme ensures accurate sensing and faster response time. The IRED and VCSEL wavelengths peak at 940 nm and have no visible “red-tail.”
The VCNL36821S and VCNL36826S offer excellent temperature compensation from -40 °C to +85 °C, and a Moisture Sensitivity Level (MSL) of 3 — in accordance with J-STD-020 — for a floor life of 168 hours. The sensors are RoHS-compliant, halogen-free, and Vishay Green.