Things move quickly in the Internet of Things. However, for such a huge and burgeoning market sector and technology area, there is still quite a lot of ‘dust to settle’, especially considering the often repeated prediction of between 20 and 50 billion connected electronics devices by 2020 - an assertion that is not ridiculed or toned down by expert industry watchers and analysts and therefore seems a probable outcome.
As discussed earlier, the Mars rover Curiosity uses KAI-2020 image sensors in its scientific cameras to better understand the geological history of the planet and capture stunning panoramas of the Martian landscape (as well as some pretty neat selfies). And while the images coming from Curiosity are undoubtedly impressive, this actually isn’t the first time our image sensors have landed on the surface of another planet. The story begins in 1997, when KAI-0371 image sensors from Eastman Kodak’s image sensor group (now part of ON Semiconductor) were used as the “eyes” of the Mars rover Sojourner. This was the first rover to explore the surface of Mars, and these image sensors enabled the rover to see its way across the Martian terrain and capture color images of the ground and soil.
The conventional wireless sensor devices that are currently available on the market all have a series of drawbacks that will limit their scope moving forwards. They will not be able to address emerging applications with increasing challenging demands and something needs to be done in response.