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Fingerprint image capture device with a passive sensor array

Imported: 24 Feb '17 | Published: 06 Jan '04

Keith T. Deconde, Srinivasan K. Ganapathi, Randolph S. Gluck, Steve H. Hovey, Shiva Prakash, Robert Dobkin

USPTO - Utility Patents

Abstract

A fingerprint-sensing device with a sensor array that does not use active switching elements is fabricated on a base. Sensor support integrated circuits, which contain processing and addressing circuitry, are separately fabricated and subsequently mounted on the base, establishing electrical connections with an interconnect structure within the base, and are thus not integrated with the sensor array. The sensor support integrated circuits can be covered by a bezel structure and the sensor array by a covering material. In addition, a connection cable can be provided to connect the sensor array and the sensor support integrated circuits with a power source and to other external devices and to convey signals generated by the sensor array to the external devices.

Description

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIGS. 1A and 1B illustrate a top perspective view and a cross sectional view of a fingerprint-sensing device according to at least one embodiment of the invention.

FIGS. 1C and 1D illustrate a cross sectional view and a top view of a cell of the sensor array according to a preferred embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 1E illustrates a schematic block diagram of a fingerprint-sensing device according to the present invention.

FIG. 2 illustrates a top perspective view of a fingerprint-sensing device with a bezel structure according to at least one embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 3 is a top perspective view of the fingerprint-sensing device of FIG. 1 detached from the external cable according to one or more embodiments of the invention.

FIG. 4 illustrates the operation of a fingerprint-sensing device according to one or more embodiments of the invention.

FIG. 5 is a bottom perspective view of a fingerprint-sensing device with components attached to the bottom side according to at least one embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 6 illustrates a top perspective view of a fingerprint-sensing device according to at least one embodiment of the invention where only a single sensor support integrated circuit device is utilized.

Claims

1. An apparatus for capturing an image of a textured surface, comprising:

2. The apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the one or more sensor support integrated circuit devices includes a decoder to address the cells of the sensor array and further includes a comparator and an amplifier to process the signals obtained from the sensor array.

3. The apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the sensor array utilizes passive sensing cells.

4. The apparatus according to claim 1 further comprising:

5. The apparatus according to claim 4 wherein the cable is electrically connected to the interconnect structure using attach pads soldered to a set of contact pads disposed on the base.

6. The apparatus according to claim 3 wherein each cell of the sensor array is configured to react to a force exerted in its responsible locality, the force the result of a fingerprint feature pressed against the sensor array in the responsible locality.

7. The apparatus according to claim 6 wherein each cell comprises:

8. The apparatus according to claim 7 wherein the sensor support integrated circuit devices are connected to the base using one of wire bonding and direct attach bonding methods.

9. The apparatus according to claim 7 wherein the flexible mechanical structure is a beam or a diaphragm.

10. The apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the devices are electrically connected to the interconnect structure within the base using contact pads.

11. The apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the sensor array utilizes active sensing cells.

12. The apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the sensor support integrated circuit devices are active CMOS devices.

13. The apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the sensor array is covered by a covering material.

14. The apparatus according to claim 13 wherein the covering material is composed of a thin-film material.

15. The apparatus according to claim 14 wherein the thin-film material is a polymer.

16. The apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the sensor support integrated circuit devices are covered by a bezel structure.

17. The apparatus according to claim 16 wherein the bezel structure is composed of a moldable material.

18. The apparatus according to claim 17 wherein the moldable material is a plastic.

19. The apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the sensor support integrated circuit devices are disposed along an edge of the sensor array.

20. The apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the sensor array is disposed on a portion of the base and the sensor support integrated circuit devices are disposed on a different portion of the base.

21. The apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the first device includes a column decoder for decoding column addresses, and wherein the second device includes a row decoder for decoding row addresses, and a comparator and an amplifier to process the signals obtained from the sensor array.

22. The apparatus according to claim 1 wherein the rows of cells are disposed in a first direction and the columns of cells are disposed in a second direction perpendicular to the first direction.

23. The apparatus according to claim 22 wherein the first device is disposed along a first edge of the sensor array perpendicular to the first direction, and the second device is disposed along a second edge of the sensor array perpendicular to the second direction.

24. The apparatus according to claim 23 wherein the sensor array is disposed on a portion of the base and the first and second devices are disposed on a different portion of the base.

25. The apparatus according to claim 24 wherein the first device includes a column decoder for decoding column addresses, and wherein the second device includes a row decoder for decoding row addresses, and a comparator and an amplifier to process the signals obtained from the sensor array.

26. The apparatus according to claim 25 further comprising:

27. The apparatus according to claim 4 wherein the first device includes a column decoder for decoding column addresses, and wherein the second device includes a row decoder for decoding row addresses, and a comparator and an amplifier to process the signals obtained from the sensor array.

28. The apparatus according to claim 27 wherein the sensor array utilizes passive sensing cells.

29. The apparatus according to claim 28 wherein the first and second devices mounts are CMOS devices.

30. The apparatus according to claim 28 wherein each cell of the sensor array is configured to react to a force exerted in its responsible locality, the force the result of a fingerprint feature pressed against the sensor array in the responsible locality.

31. The apparatus according to claim 30 wherein each cell comprises:

32. The apparatus according to claim 21 wherein the rows of cells are disposed in a first direction and the columns of cells are disposed in a second direction perpendicular to the first direction.

33. The apparatus according to claim 32 wherein the first device is disposed along a first edge of the sensor array perpendicular to the first direction, and the second device is disposed along a second edge of the sensor array perpendicular to the second direction.

34. The apparatus according to claim 21 wherein the sensor array utilizes passive sensing cells.

35. The apparatus according to claim 34 wherein each cell of the sensor array is configured to react to a force exerted in its responsible locality, the force the result of a fingerprint feature pressed against the sensor array in the responsible locality.

36. The apparatus according to claim 35 wherein each cell comprises:

37. A method of obtaining a plurality of signals representative of a textured surface applied to a fingerprint sensor, the fingerprint sensor including a base containing an electrical conductor interconnect structure therein, a sensor array disposed upon the base and electrically connected to the interconnect structure, the sensor array having cells configured to detect the textured surface and represent different portions of the textured surface with signals corresponding thereto, and one or more sensor support integrated circuit devices electrically connected to the interconnect structure within the base and physically connected to the base, the at least one sensor support integrated circuit device configured to address the cells of the sensor array and process the signals obtained from the sensor array, the method comprising the steps of:

38. The method according to claim 37 wherein the one or more sensor support integrated circuit devices include a first device and a second device, wherein both the first device and the second device receive the start signal and the clock signal, wherein the first device provides the voltage, and wherein the second device processes the signal and transmits the amplified signal.