CCD Charge Coupled Device

The CCD Charge Coupled Device is a computer chip that converts the light energy that enters a camera into an electrical charge, which is then converted into an electronic image. The image is then optimized into a very high quality picture. There are two types of CCD: frame transfer and interline transfer. The technology is an analog technology that must use additional processing in order to change the information into digital data.

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The CCD was invented in 1969 by engineers at the AT&T Labs. Eventually Sony made significant investment into the technology. Today Sony is the number one manufacturer of CCD devices in the world. Sharp is also one of the major manufacturers as well. Most security cameras made today have a Sony chip in them. It has definitely been a technology that has ushered in a whole now world of opportunities. CCDs are found today in copy machines, scanners and cameras, including digital cameras and camcorders and much more.

Some of the built in disadvantages to CCDs are as follows. They do not handle high contrast and bright light situations very well. CCDs use an Electronic Shutter. This shutter has one exposure rate for all the pixels in the array. Because of this bright areas are over exposed and dark areas are underexposed which leads to compromised images. Also because it is an analog technology that must be converted to digital opportunity is created to introduce image noise. Image noise creates interference in the image and also creates larger files sizes for storage. This technology differs from newer technology introduced by Pixim about ten years ago that is an all digital technology.

It is also important to note that all CCD sensors are naturally sensitive to infrared light. Therefore they must have an IR filter to block this light in order to have good color images. Click here to learn more about Infrared and its use in night vision cameras.

Also see CMOS, Wide Dyanmic Range WDR and SNR.

Click here to learn more about Pixim Digital Technology

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