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MAJOR: A New Class of Photodiode Sensors

Building Blocks of an Intelligent Network – On the Path to Industry 4.0


LASER COMPONENTS revamped InGaAs and extended InGaAs photodiode technology, which has led to the development of not only the components themselves but to groundbreaking industrial “Plug&Play” sensors as well.

The development of sensors has proven to be more complex than originally anticipated: There was not a single example available on the commercial market that met our high expectations and could serve as a role model. It started to occur to us that we would have to create a new class of sensors, the result of which is now known as the MAJOR.
Properties. The MAJOR-A has a universal, purely digital sensor family with the following features:

  • Panchromatic detector with a sensitivity range of 450 nm to more than 2000 nm
  • Reduced temperature dependence of the photodiode
  • Flawless functionality in (core) systems
  • Readout of evidential data (e.g., data can be tagged with a time stamp)
  • Calibration option
  • Internal storage capacity
  • Integration of a standard mechanical interface (M12 housing)
  • Digital and analog output

Made for industry. The MAJOR-A was created for different target groups: from laser manufacturers to manufacturers of laser-based machine tools and NIR-based measurement or monitoring equipment.

The sensor element.
We selected a detector produced in house to be used as the sensor element, namely: the panchromatic photodiode IG22X1000S4i. It is based on wavelength-extended InGaAs and covers a large spectral range (see figure: Spectral Response).

At wavelengths below 2100 nm, the temperature coefficient of the sensitivity is less than 0.01%/K (see figure: Responsivity Percent Change). Thus, a temperature change of 50 K results in a deviation of only 0.5% – a value we can be proud of. Because the temperature is monitored simultaneously, it is even possible to improve this value within the system via software.

High performance: Internal data processing and storage of the MAJOR-A

Powerful electronics have been integrated into the photodiode sensor and facilitate the following processes:

  • Arithmetic averaging between 2, 4, 8, or 16 measurement values
  • Programmable amplification, automatic amplification adjustment, offset correction
  • Internal flash memory stores up to 500,000 measurement values with time and temperature stamps: At a rate of one measurement per minute, the total recording period is one year!
  • Measure on demand: The sensor module does not begin measuring until “there is movement.”

Intelligent and forward looking within a large network

The MAJOR-A is a novel sensor developed for integration into traditional structures. But, this is just the beginning:  the technical foundation for the production of intelligent, networkable photodiode sensors. These sensors will be the basis for future autonomous systems designed to take over decentralized specified tasks.
Apply by October 15, 2013, to test a module!

When is a sensor a sensor?
Comparison with digital receiver

  • It can deliver more than digital signals.
  • Store information (e.g. serial numbers, calibration data, manufacturing date).    
  • Signal conditioning option
  • It can be programmed to adjust to different applications.

Further product information:

Laser Components GmbH / Electronics Production


Contact Person:    Joe Kunsch
Company:    Laser Components GmbH
Address:    Werner-von-Siemens-Str. 15
ZIP / City:    82140 Olching
Phone:    +49 (0) 8142 2864-28
Fax:    +49 (0) 8142 2864-11

Panchromatic photodiode IG22 - spectral response

IG22 responsivity percent change in relation to the temperature

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Your contact person

Claudia Michalke

+49 (0) 8142 2864-85