Northwestern University researchers have developed a camera that can see more than one color in the dark using a semiconducting material known as type-II superlattices, which can be tuned to simultaneously absorb a wide range of infrared wavelengths and several distinct infrared bands.
Multi-color detection in the infrared spectrum offers unique functionalities beyond color representation, such as relaying chemical spectroscopy images in real time.
The researchers, led by Northwestern professor Manijeh Razeghi, tuned the camera's detection energies to be very narrow in a long-wave infrared window. "When coupled with image-processing algorithms performed on multiple wavebands, the amount of information rendered in a particular scene is tremendous," Razeghi says.
Other infrared cameras are able to perform similar functions, but are based on a material that is much more expensive than type-II superlattices. "The high performance, multi-functionality, and low cost offered by type-II superlattices truly make it an attractive infrared technology," she says.
From Northwestern University Newscenter
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