Patents by Inventor Yoshiki Ikuta

Yoshiki Ikuta has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Patent number: 11366205
    Abstract: A selection circuit selects one of digital values respectively output from a TDC 1 and a TDC 2. A histogram generation circuit generates a histogram indicating a relationship between a bin number and a frequency by counting up the frequency of the bin number according to the digital value selected by the selection circuit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 29, 2018
    Date of Patent: June 21, 2022
    Assignee: SHARP KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Yoshiki Ikuta, Takuma Hiramatsu, Takayuki Shimizu, Hideki Sato
  • Patent number: 11287518
    Abstract: An optical sensor of the present invention changes a light-emitting period of a light-emitting element and a period of a reference clock that is used by a time difference extracting circuit, depending on whether or not a digital value that is output from a first digital calculating portion exceeds a reference value in a determination period. With this, there is achieved an optical sensor capable of maintaining both of measurement accuracy at short distance and measurement accuracy at long distance when a housing panel is present between the optical sensor and a detection target.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 21, 2017
    Date of Patent: March 29, 2022
    Assignee: SHARP KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Yoshiki Ikuta, Hideki Sato, Takuma Hiramatsu, Takayuki Shimizu
  • Patent number: 11221410
    Abstract: A light sensor or the like that has an improved measurement speed is realized. A light sensor includes a computation unit that computes a distance between the light sensor and a sensing object on the basis of a difference between a center position of reflection light, which indicates a center position of distribution of light reception probability of a first light receiving unit in a first histogram, and a center position of reference light, which indicates a center position of distribution of light reception probability of a second light receiving unit in a second histogram.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 20, 2018
    Date of Patent: January 11, 2022
    Assignee: SHARP KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Yoshiki Ikuta, Takuma Hiramatsu, Takayuki Shimizu, Hideki Sato
  • Patent number: 11175387
    Abstract: An optical sensor configured to reduce a measurement time while the accuracy of the optical sensor is maintained is realized. An initial configuration circuit (19) includes a counter configured to perform counting of the number of pulse outputs from a first light-receiving unit (11) in first to nth regions obtained by dividing each cycle of a reference clock into n equal parts, determines, among the first to nth regions, a region in which a counter value is largest, and the initial configuration circuit causes a first DLL circuit (17) to perform a converging operation to the region determined.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 9, 2017
    Date of Patent: November 16, 2021
    Assignee: SHARP KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Hideki Sato, Yoshiki Ikuta, Takayuki Shimizu, Takuma Hiramatsu
  • Patent number: 11112494
    Abstract: Effects of ambient light are suppressed, and distance to a detection object is measured with high precision. A ranging sensor includes a VCSEL, a SPAD array that has multiple SPADs that detect photons of pulse light emitted by the VCSEL, a SPAD array that has multiple SPADs that detect photons of reflected light where the pulse light has been reflected by a detection object, a DLL that measures a time difference between a pulse signal output from the SPADs of the SPAD array and a pulse signal output from the SPADs of the SPAD array, an ambient-light-incident SPAD determining unit that determines a SPAD on which ambient light is incident, based on pulse signals output from SPADs of the SPAD array when the VCSEL is not emitting light, and a SPAD front-end circuit that stops operation of the SPAD for which determination is made that ambient light is incident.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 2018
    Date of Patent: September 7, 2021
    Assignee: SHARP KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Takayuki Shimizu, Takuma Hiramatsu, Yoshiki Ikuta, Hideki Sato
  • Patent number: 11061139
    Abstract: A ranging sensor includes a light emitting unit includes a plurality of light emitting elements, a light receiving unit including a plurality of light receiving elements, a space control unit, a position estimation unit, and a TOF signal processing unit, operates in cooperation with an RGB camera module, and generates target distance information for generating three-dimensional position information. The space control unit independently controls each element group including a light emitting element and a light receiving element allocated to a common subspace. The position estimation unit estimates, from received light amount distribution of a plurality of light receiving elements receiving a reflected light beam from the target existing in a space of each subspace, a position of the target in the space of the subspace group. The TOF signal processing unit performs TOF signal processing in parallel with channels whose number is less than that of light emitting elements.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 2020
    Date of Patent: July 13, 2021
    Assignee: SHARP KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Hideki Sato, Takuma Hiramatsu, Takayuki Shimizu, Yoshiki Ikuta
  • Publication number: 20210141069
    Abstract: Effects of ambient light are suppressed, and distance to a detection object is measured with high precision. A ranging sensor includes a VCSEL, a SPAD array that has multiple SPADs that detect photons of pulse light emitted by the VCSEL, a SPAD array that has multiple SPADs that detect photons of reflected light where the pulse light has been reflected by a detection object, a DLL that measures a time difference between a pulse signal output from the SPADs of the SPAD array and a pulse signal output from the SPADs of the SPAD array, an ambient-light-incident SPAD determining unit that determines a SPAD on which ambient light is incident, based on pulse signals output from SPADs of the SPAD array when the VCSEL is not emitting light, and a SPAD front-end circuit that stops operation of the SPAD for which determination is made that ambient light is incident.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 29, 2018
    Publication date: May 13, 2021
    Applicant: SHARP KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: TAKAYUKI SHIMIZU, TAKUMA HIRAMATSU, YOSHIKI IKUTA, HIDEKI SATO
  • Publication number: 20210018628
    Abstract: A ranging sensor includes a light emitting unit includes a plurality of light emitting elements, a light receiving unit including a plurality of light receiving elements, a space control unit, a position estimation unit, and a TOF signal processing unit, operates in cooperation with an RGB camera module, and generates target distance information for generating three-dimensional position information. The space control unit independently controls each element group including a light emitting element and a light receiving element allocated to a common subspace. The position estimation unit estimates, from received light amount distribution of a plurality of light receiving elements receiving a reflected light beam from the target existing in a space of each subspace, a position of the target in the space of the subspace group. The TOF signal processing unit performs TOF signal processing in parallel with channels whose number is less than that of light emitting elements.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 10, 2020
    Publication date: January 21, 2021
    Inventors: HIDEKI SATO, TAKUMA HIRAMATSU, TAKAYUKI SHIMIZU, YOSHIKI IKUTA
  • Publication number: 20200386889
    Abstract: A first SPAD array on which at least one first light beam that is at least one pulse light beam is incident and which is operated in Geiger mode, a second SPAD array on which at least one second light beam resulting from the at least one first light beam reflected by a detection object is incident and which is operated in Geiger mode, a voltage generation unit that applies a reverse bias voltage to the first SPAD array and the second SPAD array, and a SPAD photon detection rate controller that adjusts and controls a SPAD photon detection rate in accordance with a first photon detection rate indicating a rate of the number of at least one pulse signal output by the second SPAD array upon incidence of the at least one second light beam relative to the number of the at least one pulse light beam are included.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 5, 2020
    Publication date: December 10, 2020
    Inventors: TAKAYUKI SHIMIZU, TAKUMA HIRAMATSU, YOSHIKI IKUTA, HIDEKI SATO
  • Patent number: 10705212
    Abstract: An optical sensor includes a time difference extraction circuit for extracting a time difference based on the distance to a target on the basis of a first received light pulse signal from a first light receiving unit, a reference cycle, and a second received light pulse signal from a second light receiving unit, and a determination circuit for determining whether a crosstalk value can be calculated on the basis of the time difference extracted by the time difference extraction circuit and the reference cycle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 29, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 7, 2020
    Assignee: SHARP KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Hideki Sato, Yoshiki Ikuta, Takayuki Shimizu, Takuma Hiramatsu
  • Publication number: 20200191958
    Abstract: A light sensor or the like that has an improved measurement speed is realized. A light sensor includes a computation unit that computes a distance between the light sensor and a sensing object on the basis of a difference between a center position of reflection light, which indicates a center position of distribution of light reception probability of a first light receiving unit in a first histogram, and a center position of reference light, which indicates a center position of distribution of light reception probability of a second light receiving unit in a second histogram.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 20, 2018
    Publication date: June 18, 2020
    Inventors: YOSHIKI IKUTA, TAKUMA HIRAMATSU, TAKAYUKI SHIMIZU, HIDEKI SATO
  • Patent number: 10677648
    Abstract: Whether an optical delay on a space optical path is within a light emission cycle is accurately determined without narrowing a range of a measurable distance in the light emission cycle. A DFF 1 that divides an output pulse of a first DLL (121) by two to provide a first time offset and a DFF 2 that divides an output pulse of a second DLL (122) by two to provide a second time offset are included, and at least following mathematical formulas (1) and (2) are satisfied: O1=m·T½??(1) 0<O1<(N?1)·T1??(2) (where, m?1), when a time corresponding to a difference between the first time offset and the second time offset is O1 and the first cycle is T1.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 2, 2017
    Date of Patent: June 9, 2020
    Assignee: SHARP KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Yoshiki Ikuta, Takuma Hiramatsu, Takayuki Shimizu, Hideki Sato
  • Publication number: 20200088875
    Abstract: An optical sensor for appropriately updating a crosstalk value is provided with: a photon-counting type of first light-receiving unit for receiving target object reflected light and cover panel reflected light; and a determination circuit that determines whether or not the target object reflected light is received by the first light-receiving unit, on the basis of a first received light pulse signal that is based on at least one of the target object reflected light and the cover panel reflected light, and a reference pulse signal.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 14, 2018
    Publication date: March 19, 2020
    Applicant: SHARP KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: HIDEKI SATO, TAKUMA HIRAMATSU, TAKAYUKI SHIMIZU, YOSHIKI IKUTA
  • Patent number: 10555387
    Abstract: There is provided a VCSEL drive circuit that causes a VCSEL to emit pulsed light in a light emission period, including a drive adjustment unit that adjust a first voltage which is a voltage of drains of a PMOS transistor and an NMOS transistor in a constant current circuit and a second voltage which is a voltage of a drain of an NMOS transistor that drives the VCSEL to be the same voltage in a pre-light emission period before the light emission period.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 9, 2018
    Date of Patent: February 4, 2020
    Assignee: SHARP KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: Takayuki Shimizu, Yoshiki Ikuta, Hideki Sato, Takuma Hiramatsu
  • Publication number: 20190257689
    Abstract: Whether an optical delay on a space optical path is within a light emission cycle is accurately determined without narrowing a range of a measurable distance in the light emission cycle. A DFF 1 that divides an output pulse of a first DLL (121) by two to provide a first time offset and a DFF 2 that divides an output pulse of a second DLL (122) by two to provide a second time offset are included, and at least following mathematical formulas (1) and (2) are satisfied: ??(1) ??(2) (where, m?1), when a time corresponding to a difference between the first time offset and the second time offset is O1 and the first cycle is T1.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 2, 2017
    Publication date: August 22, 2019
    Applicant: SHARP KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: YOSHIKI IKUTA, TAKUMA HIRAMATSU, TAKAYUKI SHIMIZU, HIDEKI SATO
  • Publication number: 20190195993
    Abstract: An optical sensor configured to reduce a measurement time while the accuracy of the optical sensor is maintained is realized. An initial configuration circuit (19) includes a counter configured to perform counting of the number of pulse outputs from a first light-receiving unit (11) in first to nth regions obtained by dividing each cycle of a reference clock into n equal parts, determines, among the first to nth regions, a region in which a counter value is largest, and the initial configuration circuit causes a first DLL circuit (17) to perform a converging operation to the region determined.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 9, 2017
    Publication date: June 27, 2019
    Inventors: HIDEKI SATO, YOSHIKI IKUTA, TAKAYUKI SHIMIZU, TAKUMA HIRAMATSU
  • Publication number: 20190159309
    Abstract: There is provided a VCSEL drive circuit that causes a VCSEL to emit pulsed light in a light emission period, including a drive adjustment unit that adjust a first voltage which is a voltage of drains of a PMOS transistor and an NMOS transistor in a constant current circuit and a second voltage which is a voltage of a drain of an NMOS transistor that drives the VCSEL to be the same voltage in a pre-light emission period before the light emission period.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 9, 2018
    Publication date: May 23, 2019
    Applicants: SHARP KABUSHIKI KAISHA, SHARP KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventors: TAKAYUKI SHIMIZU, YOSHIKI IKUTA, HIDEKI SATO, TAKUMA HIRAMATSU
  • Publication number: 20190146086
    Abstract: An optical sensor includes a time difference extraction circuit for extracting a time difference based on the distance to a target on the basis of a first received light pulse signal from a first light receiving unit, a reference cycle, and a second received light pulse signal from a second light receiving unit, and a determination circuit for determining whether a crosstalk value can be calculated on the basis of the time difference extracted by the time difference extraction circuit and the reference cycle.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 29, 2018
    Publication date: May 16, 2019
    Inventors: HIDEKI SATO, YOSHIKI IKUTA, TAKAYUKI SHIMIZU, TAKUMA HIRAMATSU
  • Publication number: 20190129012
    Abstract: A selection circuit selects one of digital values respectively output from a TDC 1 and a TDC 2. A histogram generation circuit generates a histogram indicating a relationship between a bin number and a frequency by counting up the frequency of the bin number according to the digital value selected by the selection circuit.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 29, 2018
    Publication date: May 2, 2019
    Inventors: YOSHIKI IKUTA, TAKUMA HIRAMATSU, TAKAYUKI SHIMIZU, HIDEKI SATO
  • Publication number: 20190129015
    Abstract: An optical sensor of the present invention changes a light-emitting period of a light-emitting element and a period of a reference clock that is used by a time difference extracting circuit, depending on whether or not a digital value that is output from a first digital calculating portion exceeds a reference value in a determination period. With this, there is achieved an optical sensor capable of maintaining both of measurement accuracy at short distance and measurement accuracy at long distance when a housing panel is present between the optical sensor and a detection target.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 21, 2017
    Publication date: May 2, 2019
    Inventors: YOSHIKI IKUTA, HIDEKI SATO, TAKUMA HIRAMATSU, TAKAYUKI SHIMIZU