(19)
(11)EP 2 093 997 A3

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT APPLICATION

(88)Date of publication A3:
21.05.2014 Bulletin 2014/21

(43)Date of publication A2:
26.08.2009 Bulletin 2009/35

(21)Application number: 08165874.2

(22)Date of filing:  03.10.2008
(51)Int. Cl.: 
H04N 5/335  (2011.01)
(84)Designated Contracting States:
AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MT NL NO PL PT RO SE SI SK TR
Designated Extension States:
AL BA MK RS

(30)Priority: 22.02.2008 GB 0803278

(71)Applicant: CMOSIS nv
2000 Antwerpen (BE)

(72)Inventor:
  • Meynants, Guy
    2470, Retie (BE)

(74)Representative: Bird, William Edward et al
Bird Goën & Co Wetenschapspark Arenberg Gaston Geenslaan 9
3001 Heverlee
3001 Heverlee (BE)

  


(54)Active pixel array with charge binning


(57) A pixel array comprises pixels (10) arranged in columns. A pixel (10) comprises a photo-sensitive element (11) for generating charges responsive to electromagnetic radiation and a buffer amplifier (M2) for buffering a voltage proportional to the charges generated by the photo-sensitive element. A first switch (M3) selectively connects an output of the buffer amplifier to an active pixel mode column output line (9). A second switch (M1) selectively transfers at least part of the charges generated by the photo-sensitive element (11) to a passive pixel mode column output line (15). The pixel (10) can be selectively operated in a conventional, active pixel mode, and in a passive pixel/charge binning mode. The second switch (M1) can be a reset switch, with the second output line operable, on a time-shared basis, as a supply line for providing the reference voltage. Another embodiment has the first switch and the second switch connected to a single column output line which is operable, on a time-shared basis, as the active pixel mode column output line and as the passive pixel mode column output line.