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3D camera for large-area magnetic field measurements

12 May 2015

HallinSight is the name of a 3D magnetic field camera developed by researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits (IIS). Equipped with an array of 3D sensors, the camera is able to measure magnetic fields in all three dimensions at high speeds. Its high resolution makes it suitable for quality assurance applications and laboratory testing.

 Fraunhofer IIS will debut the camera at the Sensor+Test trade fair next week in Nuremberg.

One potential application for the camera is said to be characterising and controlling the quality of permanent magnets, which are never perfectly magnetised. For this reason it is important to understand to what extent the magnetisation is imperfect, especially for applications that rely on precision positioning technology. The camera precisely measures the magnetic fields with an array of 3D sensors based on the HallinOne technology. The 256 sensors are mounted 2.5mm apart on a 40x40mm surface. With 128 parallel-operating signal processing channels, the camera has a measurement frequency of up to 200 Hz which allows even rapid dynamic magnetic processes to be recorded.

The camera makes it possible to capture an image of a three-dimensional (vector-based) magnetic field within only 5 ms. This can only be accomplished by moving away from the conventional sequential scanning method and deploying simultaneous sensor operation. The measurement results from the 3D sensors are acquired by means of parallel snapshots. The information can then be displayed in real-time or stored for analysis and documentation with a graphics software application, which is also used to configure the camera. A USB interface provides easy connectivity to the PC.

The camera is also said to be suitable for integration with various test systems and its high recording speed makes it suitable for inline testing in the production environment. It takes just 2ms to record a full image. After a 3ms period, for signal processing and data transfer, the next image can be captured.

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