Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

At the end of the 2009 I would like to take the opportunity to wish all my readers a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. 

Everyone is telling that the economy is recovering, let’s hope that this will be the driver for a successful 2010.  I heard from various industrial sources that CCD fabs as well as CMOS fabs are completely filled with image sensor wafers.  Apparently the future for imaging looks bright.

Looking back to 2009, it was a difficult year for many of us in the imaging business.  If I look to my own activities, 2009 started with a drastic reduction in attendees of the ISSCC2009.  If I recall the numbers, the amount of participants was about 66 % of the previous years.  Being the vice chair of the technical program committee, I was reponsible for the evening and educational activities.  Also within the ISSCC organization “cost-cutting” became a buzz-word.    As far as my own teaching activities were concerned, in the first half of 2009 the number of in-house trainings dropped, and several public courses had to be cancelled because of lack of participants.  Despite all the negative signals, the International Image Sensor Workshop in June was a big success.  Being the general chair of the workshop, I was very much concerned about the financial consequences if we had to face a low number of papers and/or participants.  But the workshop was sold out in just a few days, Johannes Solhusvik helped me putting together a very strong technical program, and we combined the workshop with a one-day symposium on BSI which attracted a lot of attention. 

After the Summer holidays, the teaching and training activities started to recover.  New in-house courses were organized, and in the Fall of 2009 only one public course needed to be cancelled.  The drop in number of courses in the middle of the year gave me the time to work on other items, and the result of that will be a brand new course in 2010.  Although I am still working on it, the course will become available in the second half of 2010.  It will be the first course ever in digital imaging with hands-on evaluations and measurements in the class room.  New hardware is acquired (11 cameras, light boxes, power supplies, laptops, etc.) and at this moment I am preparing the exercises for the course.  The first four experiments are ready : illustrating the improvement in S/N when multiple images are averaged, measuring the fixed-pattern in dark (pixel, column and row FPN), measuring the temporal noise in dark and measuring the pixels with random-telegraph pattern (RTS pixels).  More assignments will follow.  It is a lot of work, but it is also a lot of fun to prepare the set-ups.  I am really looking forward to work with it in a class room.  So 2010 will bring its own challenges, but it so much more motivating to work on these positive challenges to expand and improve my own business.

I wish all of you the very best for 2010, and hope that we will regularly “meet” through this blog.  Thanks for visiting the website of Harvest Imaging !

Albert, 24-12-2009.

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