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Thermal Camera Teardown - NEC AVIO F30 compact camera aka Mikron Mikroshot

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Fraser:
I recently purchased some Mikron Mikroshot-B thermal imaging cameras.

These camera are made by NEC AVIO and hold the NEC designation of F30 and F30S. The Mikroshot-B is an F30S with the upper temperature limit set at 100 Degrees Celcius but twice the sensitivity of the F30 standard model.

The data sheet for this camera is attached.

The cameras arrived safely and I have had some time to test them before embarking on a teardown. They perform very well and offer 160x120 pixels at 8.5fps and a manual focus lens. The lens is a very unusual looking profile but it allows the camera to focus well at close range using the focus ring, yet act as a focus free lens at longer ranges which avoids having to mess around with the focus ring all the time. Minimum focus is 10cm without any additional lenses needed. I have found the camera to be excellent for PCB thermal profiling.

The camera stores its images on a standard SD card and in radiometric .JPG format. The files may be read by most image JPG viewers but a free program is available from NEC to view the radiometric data, modify images and create reports. The software is named NS9500LT. You need to ask NEC to send a password for the download link.

Ok enough about the camera, on with the teardown.

I will add some messages below this one with the images. the originals are high resolution and 3MB each so I can supply better quality on request. I am supplying only a sample of the images as I did not want to bore you. More available of specific areas of the PCB if wanted.

The camera was relatively easy to dismantle and is well built. It was designed to be a light weight camera that may be carried in a pocket so weight savings have meant that the case is plastic instead of the more common alloys that NEC use. There is an aluminium chassis on to which the PCBs attach.
PCB interconnects are via flexible ribbon cables and nice quality PCB connectors. All a bit small and fiddly but definitely a tech friendly design  :)

It is worth noting in the following pictures that there is one main PCB that carries most of the interesting chips. The small top PCB does contain a PIC but is mainly minor ancillaries and nothing very interesting. It is also worthy of note that the large (18mm across diagonals) microbolometer is deliberately masked to reduce the illuminated area, using a metal shield in front of it.The same metal shield carries the temperature reference IC.
The microblometer may well be larger than 160 x 120 and so masked to reduce the resolution for the F30, but I have no definite information on this.

The main chips used in the F30 design are listed below (as marked, not identified yet) :


TI DAVINCI $NA-8CAILNW TMS320 DM6441AZWT  .................Media processor  Released by TI in Jan 2007
SPANSION GL512P10FFIR1  labelled F30 ROM U102 V1.1   ......Mirror Bit 512Mbit (64Mb) Flash.
M 9CF12 D9KHQ................................................................ Micron MT47H32M16HR-3 IT -  DDR2 SDRAM 512MBIT 3NS
X 3S100E D35869-0837.....................................................  Xilinx SPARTAN 3E
AD780B............................................................................. Analogue Devices Bandgap Voltage Reference 2.5V/3V
AD5551..............................................................................Analogue Devices 14bit serial DAC
LT2245   N29508.................................................................Linear Technology 14bit 10Msps ADC
8054 ARUZ #0831...............................................................Analogue Devices Rail to Rail amplifiers (Quad) 150Mhz 3dB bandwidth
B5301 U0118  0841.............................................................
PIC16LF819.........................................................................Enhanced Flash Microcontroller
Microchip 4FC I823...............................................................EEPROM  ;)  This may be where the F30 identifies itself as a standard or S model ?

No visible ID on the Microbolometer but even if there was I doubt a data sheet would be available. NEC used to use Boeing thermal cores but they also made some in Japan.

Pictures follow in the next few postings........

Enjoy  :)

Aurora

Fraser:
Picture Set 1 - Case

Fraser:
Picture Set 2 - PCB's etc

Fraser:
Picture Set 3 - PCB close-ups

mikeselectricstuff:
Quite a lot in there- obviously the sensor isn't as well integrated as the Flir ones with the built-in ADCs.
can't see why a mask would be to limit res - probably to mask spurious modes coming through the lens - e.g. off-axis sunlight

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