Dot Projection

Single-surface 2-in-1 dot-projector for driver-monitoring and depth-sensing

Our demonstration systems highlight the remarkable capabilities of our record-breaking single-surface metalens dot projectors, unveiled in October 2023. These innovative projectors consist of a single surface adept at collimating light and projecting precise dot patterns. The use of a single surface not only streamlines the module design but also facilitates the creation of exceptionally compact dot-projector modules. We are showcasing three distinct configurations with fields of illumination (FOI) of 70° x 40°, 70° x 70°, and a record-setting 144° x 70°, all demonstrated live.

These projectors boast over 70% efficiency, less than 10% dot uniformity error, and high contrast ratios exceeding 40:1.

Dot Projectors

Dot projection optics are made with metaoptic according to customer specifications. The metaoptic are single surface (1M); typically used for 3D sensing (structured light and time of flight) for face recognition, short distance Lidar, etc.

NILT can design, prototype and manufacture metaoptic to state-of-the-art standards.

  • Dot projection designed for stand alone, or to be used with external collimator
  • Design freedom to match desired FoI with perfect N x M tiling
  • Single-surface element allow for extreme miniaturization of optical system
  • Extreme FOI possible
  • Dot projectors can be designed both for collimated as well as divergent light sources with a high number of possible use cases
  • All dot projectors can be optimized to customer requirements
Dot Projection | NIL Technology

Projected dot pattern with invisible horizontal tiling

See examples below:

  1. Dot projector 70×40 degree
  2. Dot projector 70×70 degree
  3. Dot projector 144×70 degree
  4. Collimator

Demonstrated specifications:

  • Overall performance depends on design specs
  • Diagonal FoI above 144° demonstrated
  • Efficiency above 80% demonstrated for single surface combined collimation/fan-out function*
  • Uniformity error below 5% demonstrated
  • Contrast ratio above 60:1 demonstrated

*for fan-out of a collimated beam, 90% efficiency is demonstrated

Dot Projection | NIL Technology
Dot Projection | NIL Technology
Dot Projection | NIL Technology

NILT meta dot projector (left: module, right: element)

Dot Projection | NIL Technology

1. Dot projector 70 x 40 degree

Dot Projection | NIL Technology

The dot projector has a 3 x 3 tiling, FOI of 70⁰ x 40⁰, efficiency above 70%, and dot uniformity-error <10%, making it an ideal platform for most 3D sensing applications where low power consumption is critical.

Dot projector λ [nm] FOI (X*Y) [⁰] Tiling Number of spots Efficiency [%] Dot uniformity error [%] Contrast ratio
A 940 70x40 3x3 2,952 82.9 8.5 60:1
B 940 70x40 3x3 2,925 78.7 3.7 60:1

2. Dot projector 70 x 70 degree

Dot Projection | NIL Technology

The dot projector has a 3 x 5 tiling, FOI of 70⁰ x 70⁰ and demonstrates an efficiency above 70% even with its relatively larger FOI.

λ [nm] FOI (X*Y) [⁰] Tiling Number of spots Efficiency [%] Dot uniformity error [%] Contrast ratio
940 70x70 5x3 4,875 73.9 5.1 42:1

3. Dot projector 144 x 70 degree

Dot Projection | NIL Technology

The dot projector has a 5 x 5 tiling, FoI of 144⁰ x 70⁰, yet maintains a dot-uniformity-error around 20% which is highly advantageous for applications such as in-cabin monitoring.
(The full projected pattern is pincushion distorted but the corners are clipped by the limited field of view of the detector)

λ [nm] FOI (X*Y) [⁰] Tiling Number of spots Efficiency [%] Dot uniformity error [%] Contrast ratio
940 144x70 5x5 8,125 67.1 20.9 41:1

4. Dot projection by collimator

Dot Projection | NIL Technology

This dot projector is based on collimation without fan-out. This means that the number of projected dots equals the number of emitter in the VCSEL array and the FOI is givel bu the focal length of the metalens collimator.

λ [nm] Tiling Number of spots Efficiency [%] Contrast ratio
940 1x1 325 85 166:1

Ipsum lorem

Dot Projection | NIL Technology

Ipsum lorem

FOI Non-uniformity (%) Efficiency (%)
70x50 15.6 77.6

Introducing NILT and our groundbreaking Meta Optical Elements

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