New Infrared LED from Osram for 2D Facial Recognition

Smartphones, tablets and the like can now be unlocked in very different ways: with a password, fingerprint scan or even an iris scan. 2D facial recognition is another method and involves illuminating the user’s face with an infrared light source and capturing the image with an IR camera. The system then compares the image with the images previously stored for the purposes of identification, focusing on characteristic two-dimensional features. If there is a match for the various data such as the width of the mouth, length of the nasal ridge and distance between the eyes then the device will be unlocked.

Synios P2720 from Osram provides bright and uniform illumination of the user’s face for 2D facial recognition. (Image: Osram)

By using a wavelength of 940 nm, Synios P2720 reduces the red glow that can occur with infrared light sources in the short-wave infrared range. Up to now, the sensitivity of IR cameras was only good if the light source had a wavelength of 850 nm. The cameras have been further developed to give them greater sensitivity in longer wavelength ranges so 940 nm light sources can now be used – which in turn improves the overall performance of the system. 

Bright and uniform illumination of the user’s face or eyes is particularly important for facial recognition and also for eye-tracking systems. Synios P2720 offers impressive performance with an output of 1,150 mW at 1 A. Thanks to this high overall output it has a radiant intensity of 360 mW/sr.

The new Synios P2720 has the same footprint as the 850 nm version. Measuring only 2.0 mm x 2.75 mm x 0.6 mm, the IRED is therefore ideal for space-critical applications.

The first infrared LED with 940 nm for 2D facial recognition provides the basis for good quality IR camera images and reduces red glow. (Image: Osram)

The IRED has no optics. Its compact dimensions mean that customers can install secondary optics in line with their requirements. 

“Everyone wants the reassurance that the data on their mobile devices is as secure as possible”, explained Nina Reiser, Marketing Manager for the Emitter Laser Sensor segment at Osram Opto Semiconductors. “Our extremely powerful and bright IRED illuminates the facial characteristics of users perfectly, ensuring that only authorized persons have access to the device.”

This IRED for 2D facial recognition is the latest addition to Osram Opto Semiconductors’ existing portfolio for biometrics. The new Synios P2720 is already available for initial customer projects. 

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