To achieve the lowest power consumption possible, the ULP driver effectively allows the VL53L3CX sensor to become a proximity detector. It does so using Time-of-Flight (ToF) technology. In such cases, the settings and ranging flows of the sensor are especially designed to reduce power consumption. For example, the current consumption is reduced to 55 μA at 1 Hz ranging frequency, with a 2V8 power supply. All the processing is fully embedded into the sensor firmware. In addition, the sensor does not output traditional data such as signal, spad nb, etc. The implemented mechanism raises an interrupt to the host when a target is detected in the field of view.
The VL53L3CX can also be configured in its traditional ranging mode using the bare driver (STSW-IMG015). In this mode, the sensor is able to range up to 5 meters using the ST histogram algorithms. This allows cover glass crosstalk immunity beyond 80 cm, and dynamic smudge compensation.
Both drivers (ULP and standard) can be used independently or together. When used together, the VL53L3CX acts as a low-power proximity detector, then it becomes an accurate ranging sensor when an interrupt is raised.
Applications of this ULP driver are numerous: battery operated devices, user detection, system activation, touchless switch and more.