Tech Leadership

ISOCELL 2.0: Let there be light

on Mar 04, 2021

Our smartphones are incredible devices – compact, and capable of performing a wide variety of functions to a very high standard. Foremost among these incredible capabilities is an increasingly high standard of smartphone photography, which allows us to preserve our fondest memories conveniently and in remarkable quality.

Of the foundational components that enable this high standard of smartphone photography, few are more important than the image sensor. The image sensor on a smartphone camera is responsible for taking the light that enters through the camera’s lens and producing an image from it, with the size of the sensor and the number of light capturing ‘pixels’ the sensor contains determining the quality of the digital image that is produced.

However, as an increasing number of pixels are incorporated into smartphone image sensors that must, by their nature, be small, a phenomenon called color crosstalk that involves light bleed between neighboring pixels can occur. Samsung has set out to address this issue and others with its innovative ISOCELL technology.

What is ISOCELL Technology?

In 2013 Samsung introduced cutting-edge ISOCELL technology, which incorporates physical barriers between pixels to isolate them. Compared to conventional BSI pixels, the ISOCELL technology reduced crosstalk between pixels by approximately 30%, thus improving color fidelity. And it also increased full well capacity by 30%, enabling pixels to absorb and process more light.

How ISOCELL 2.0 raised the bar

Samsung has now introduced next-level ISOCELL 2.0, which further refines the technology by replacing the metallic grid between color filters with a new material. In the first generation ISOCELL pixels, slight optical loss occured when the metallic grid between the color filters absorbed small portions of the incoming light.

To solve this problem, ISOCELL 2.0 began with the establishment of ISOCELL Plus, the first phase of ISOCELL 2.0’s development. ISOCELL Plus replaced the metal barriers with an optimized new material. However, the barriers still contained some metal that caused the lower parts of the color filter barriers to absorb light, resulting in some optical loss.

Now, the second phase of ISOCELL 2.0 replaced the lower portion of the color filter barriers with a more reflective material. It further reduces optical loss in each pixel and drastically improves light sensitivity, allowing smartphones to produce even more vivid pictures with reduced noise.

By delivering enhanced light sensitivity, ISOCELL 2.0 allows even smaller pixels in the sensor to absorb more light, giving the sensor the tools it needs to produce photographs that are made up of a greater number of pixels. This enables the production of images with very fine detail without compromising the sensor’s vivid color reproduction.

Light is the most important factor when it comes to producing high-quality photos, and your smartphone’s image sensor is responsible for processing that light. Equipping your phone to make the very most out of the light available, ISOCELL 2.0 is empowering you to use your smartphone to capture memorable moments in stunning quality anytime, anywhere.

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