Apogee Ascent Kodak with KAI-0340
Apogee Ascent cameras work great with scientific computer processes that are extremely demanding. The Ascent's high sensitivity sensors can detect very weak signals that aren't visible by humans or other astrophotography CCD equipment. Apogee has made sure the Ascent camera series is equipped with portable and easy installation methodsm with USB 2.0 which most computers now these days have. In addition, the cameras feature high resolution which can detect very small detail in large field of views. Since the Ascent cameras have micron pixel ranges from 6.8-7.4 microns, they make a great choice to balance optical balance and dynamic ranges. If the user chooses to use the optional CRI liquid crystal tunable filters, these Apogee cameras acquire stunning publication quality color images. All Ascent cameras come with software that is simple. An ActiveX software development kit and Linux drivers are available from Apogee.
The Ascent camera series from Apogee ship with advanced and simpler features than previous cameras. The Ascent cameras use forced air that accurately regulates heat. These new Apogee cameras can withstand temperature delta's of approximately 30C below ambient temperature. The Ascent CCD cameras also come with a new optional advance filter wheel by Apogee, the AL-AFW25-4R. This filter wheel gives more convenience when using your camera. It plugs in simply to the front of the camera with no other steps. Another great feature ofn the Ascent cameras from Apogee include computer compatibility with drivers. Last but not least, the Ascent cameras can take a maximum of 65535 image sequence rate.
Components of the Apogee Ascent A340 Camera:
Kodak Sensor KAI-0340:
The Apogee Ascent A340 camera is built with the KODAK KAI-0340 image sensor. This sensor by Kodak has a 640 (H) x 480 (V) resolution, 1/3” optical format, progressive scan interline CCD. Kodak offers and supplies this in two different versions: these include the KAI-0340-Dual and the KAI-0340-Single. The KAI-0340-Dual will support 210 full resolution frame-per-second readout while the KAI-0340-Single will support 110 frame-per-second readout. The observor can reach maximum frame rates as high as 2,000 Hz when using the KAI-0340-Single and 3,400 Hz when using the KAI-0340-Dual by using the Fast Horizontal Line Dumo which can rid horizontal lines during readout and special clicking. Apogee knows this sensor has very valuable features such as electronic shuttering, peak QE (quantum efficiency) of 55%, extremely low noise and low dark current. Because of these advancements, this Kodak sensor is known for exceptional sensitivity and it makes for an ideal for machine vision, scientific, surveillance, and other computer input applications, but of course the Apogee Ascent Cameras! Both sensor versions can also be supplied with Kodak’s RGB Bayer color filter array, making it a color sensor for your critical color applications.
The Ascent A340 consists of 4 light-shielded rows followed by 488 photoactive rows. The first 4 and the last 4 photoactive rows are buffer rows giving a total of 480 lines of image data.
The A340's output mode consists of all pixels that are clocked out of the Video L output in the lower left corner of the sensor. There are twelve total empty pixels that don't recieve any charge. 24 pixels recieve charge from the left shielded edge and 24 from the right. The first and last 4 photosensitive pixels are buffer pixels giving a total of 640 pixels of image data in the Ascent A340.
In the dual output mode the clocking of the right half of the horizontal Ascent CCD is reversed. The left half of the image is clocked out Video L and the right half of the image is clocked out Video R. Each row consists of 12 empty pixels followed by 24 light-shielded pixels followed by 324 photosensitive pixels. When reconstructing the image, data from Video R will have to be reversed in a line buffer and appended to the Video L data.
While the top of the Apogee camera's sensor has no dark reference rows, the bottom has 4. The 4 dark rows aren't completely dark and are not recommend for use in dark reference levels. However, you can use the 24 dark columns on the left or right side of the image sensor as a dark reference.
Of the 24 dark columns, the first and last dark columns should not be used for determining the zero signal level. Some light does leak into the first and last dark columns. Only use the center 22 columns of the 24 column dark reference.
Ascent® Camera Series
The Ascent Camera Series supports a variety of interline transfer sensors with high quantum efficiency and low dark current. Most cameras are available with a choice of monochrome sensor or color sensor with a Bayer mosaic. Low noise and small pixels are ideal for OEM applications, astrophotography, biological sciences, guiding / adaptive optics, and other high frame rate applications.
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