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STMicroelectronics VL53L3CX Time-of-Flight Ranging Sensor

The new STMicroelectronics VL53L3CX Time-of-Flight Ranging Sensor features extended capabilities of its FlightSense™ Time-of-Flight (ToF) sensors to include ranging of multiple objects in the field of view. Patented histogram algorithms in the new VL53L3CX also increase the accuracy of the sensor’s distance measurements.

The improved STMicroelectronics ToF technology makes the VL53L3CX ToF sensor an attractive option for security applications, for instance for occupancy and presence detection in intruder alarm systems.

VL53L3CX ToF Uses

The VL53L3CX measures the distance to objects over a range from 2.5cm to 3m using the ToF technique, timing the interval between emission of a beam of infrared light and the detection of its reflection from objects in the field of view.

Unlike conventional infrared sensors, the VL53L3CX ranging sensor is unaffected by the target’s colour or reflectance. In security applications, the ranging sensor enables occupancy detectors to perform error-free sensing by ignoring unwanted background or foreground objects, or to report the exact distances to multiple targets within the field of view.

The patented histogram algorithms implemented by STMicroelectronics increase the sensor’s immunity to interference (crosstalk) caused by reflections from the cover glass. They also provide for real-time smudge compensation, preventing external contamination from adversely affecting the ranging accuracy of vacuum cleaners or equipment which might be used in a dusty industrial environment. Rejection of interference from ambient lighting is also improved.

In addition, STMicroelectronics has increased linearity in the VL53L3CX, improving the accuracy of short-distance measurement, and enhancing wall tracking, cliff detection and obstacle avoidance in equipment such as service robots and vacuum cleaners.

The VL53L3CX ToF sensor is supplied in a 4.4mm x 2.4mm x 1mm all-in-one package design which eases integration into end products.

See all Touch & Proximity Sensing from STMicroelectronics

VL53L3CX Features

  • 25° field of view
  • Single power supply
  • Works with many types of cover glass materials
  • I²C interface up to 1MHz
  • Full set of software drivers for Linux® operating system

VL53L3CX Applications

  • Building automation
  • Lighting controllers
  • IoT end points
  • Automatic wake-up in portable devices
  • User detection in automatic sanitary equipment
  • Robots
  • Indoor drones

Evaluation Boards

The P-NUCLEO-53L3A2 is a complete evaluation kit allowing developers to evaluate the operation of the VL53L3CX ToF ranging sensor in their application.

The X-NUCLEO-53L3A2 is an expansion board for the NUCLEO-F401RE development board. It provides a complete evaluation kit enabling developers to develop applications using the VL53L3CX ranging sensor with multi-target detection.

STMicroelectronics P-NUCLEO-53L3A2