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Electronics Buyers' Guide

Electronics Manufacturing & Production Handbook 2019


 

Time-to-digital converter
30 April 2019, Analogue, Mixed Signal, LSI

ams has introduced the AS6500, a new high-resolution time-to-digital converter (TDC) featuring CMOS inputs and compact packaging for use in space- and cost-constrained applications. It can measure time intervals as short as 5 ns with 10 ps precision.

The AS6500 is based on the existing ams TDC-GPX2, and offers resolution up to 10 ps on four channels and a sampling rate of up to 1,5 MSps. With high precision and a high sampling rate, light detection and ranging (LIDAR) and optical ranging systems in cars, drones and robots can make extremely detailed and accurate ranging measurements with a wide field of view, enabling them to perform accurate object detection and avoidance. In virtual- and augmented-reality applications, real-time 3D image rendering is supported by high sampling speeds and precision in one-centimetre detail.

The AS6500 is optimised for space, power and cost. Like the TDC-GPX2, it is an integrated four-channel converter IC offering single-measurement resolution of up to 20 ps RMS per channel in normal mode, and 20 ns pulse-to-pulse spacing. Operating in dual-channel high-resolution mode, it can achieve a maximum resolution of 10 ps RMS with 5 ns pulse-to-pulse spacing.

The AS6500 is housed in a new, smaller 40-lead QFN package with a footprint of just 6 x 6 mm, making it 56% smaller than the TDC-GPX2. Its highly integrated design, which includes a 2 MHz – 12,5 MHz reference clock input, means that few external components are required alongside the device.

Operating from a 3,3 V supply, the AS6500 typically consumes just 60 mW in normal operation, and draws 60 μA in standby mode. It supports CMOS interfaces from a host system, and provides its calibrated output as a digital signal over a standard serial peripheral interface (SPI), for easy data processing in a host controller or processor.

The AS6500 is ideal for optical applications including general-purpose laser distance measurement in 1D, 2D and 3D, speed control, vehicle/truck scanning, object recognition, time-of-flight spectroscopy, automated test equipment (ATE), biomedical technology and analytics.

ams supplies a development kit, the AS6500-QF_DK, which includes a programmer and GUI software for PCs, enabling users to configure and connect their start and stop signals and begin taking sample time measurements within minutes.

For more information contact Marian Ledgerwood, Future Electronics, +27 21 421 8292, marian.ledgerwood@futureelectronics.com, www.futureelectronics.com


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