SENSOR+TEST: TRUMPF presents live showcases of cutting-edge VCSEL solutions for optical sensing

TRUMPF Photonic Components, a global leader in VCSEL (Vertical-Cavity Surface-Emitting Laser) solutions for industrial and consumer sensing is showcasing two live demonstrations to show the performance of the single-mode VCSEL solutions at Sensor+Test (Booth 1-156) in Nuremberg, Germany. The sensing components based on VCSEL technology are compact and robust laser sources, supporting industrial optical sensing systems.

One showcase illustrates the measurement principle “Time-of-Flight” (ToF). ToF measurement relies on emitting a short pulse of light from the VCSEL. By measuring the time taken for the light to travel to the object and back, the distance can be accurately calculated using the speed of light, enabling precise distance measurements for applications like depth sensing with smartphones or gesture recognition systems.

Another live demonstration will highlight the capabilities for gas sensing in the 760nm to 766nm wavelength range. A benefit of optical measurement is highly accurate, real-time information. The VCSEL packages with integrated temperature control allow for easy handling and precise wavelength tunability.

Benefits of optical sensing with VCSEL technology

Optical sensing with VCSEL (Vertical-Cavity Surface-Emitting Laser) technology offers highly precise measurements due to its narrow spectral linewidth, enabling accurate detection of small changes. VCSELs are inherently compact and energy-efficient, making them ideal for integration into portable devices and reducing power consumption in larger systems. Their fast modulation capabilities allow for rapid data acquisition, enhancing real-time monitoring and response in a number of applications. Additionally, VCSEL-based sensors exhibit excellent reliability and service life, contributing to cost-effectiveness and minimal maintenance requirements over time.

New VCSEL for higher illumination quality

Single-mode VCSEL light sources offer excellent and reliable performance and are available with wavelengths ranging from 760 nm to 940 nm. For even higher illumination quality, TRUMPF offers solutions with polarization control. Later in 2024, TRUMPF will expand its portfolio of polarized VCSELs and release polarization-controlled, single-emitter, single-mode VCSEL components with 2 mW output power. This will serve applications like industrial optical encoding and spectroscopy. Evaluation samples will be available from September onwards and mass production is scheduled for the end of 2024.