NEC Develops Wireless Camera Powered by Fluorescent Light

Nov 30, 2007
Kouji Kariatsumari, Nikkei Electronics
Powered from a fluorescent light
Powered from a fluorescent light
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NEC Corp developed a wireless camera that can be powered from a fluorescent light by simply attaching a ring-shaped component for power acquisition to the bulb.

The camera only requires fluorescent lighting equipment with a straight bulb to provide a video system without the necessity for a power supply installation work. The company expects that the product can be utilized as a video system to monitor the attendance of employees or to check if there is a meeting room available in the office buildings as well as to analyze the customer behavior in supermarkets and convenience stores.

Sharp unveiled the power supply technology used in this wireless camera in January 2006. Based on the electromagnetic induction, the camera obtains power by using the magnetic field generated by the AC source (45-100kHz) in the fluorescent light. NEC Engineering Ltd already commercialized a position information system using this power supply technology.

Basically, the new wireless camera is operable at 120mW. It is provided with a function to automatically adjust the frequency of shooting video in response to the power supply from the fluorescent light.

The function makes it possible to shoot and transmit images in the optimum quality with the use of any commercially-available inverter fluorescent light with a straight bulb while eliminating the need of manually adjusting the power consumption of the camera, the company said.

The camera shoots images every 10 seconds. It supports VGA (640 x 480), QVGA (320 x 240) and QQVGA (160 x 120) resolutions. An IEEE802.11b-compliant wireless LAN is employed for the image transmission.

The camera will be exhibited at iExpo2007 in Tokyo Big Sight from Dec 5-7, 2007.