LX Semicon partners Microsoft on Industrial 3D

  • September 8, 2021
  • William Payne

South Korean fabless semiconductor provider LX Semicon is employing Microsoft Time of Flight (ToF) 3D sensing technology to build new solutions for Industry 4.0, starting with IoT and autonomous mobile robots.

The collaboration between LX Semicon and Microsoft will accelerate LX Semicon’s sensing solutions’ time to market with IP, know-how, guidance and advanced depth processing software developed by Microsoft for over two decades. LX Semicon joins the Microsoft Azure Depth Platform programme as a semiconductor strategic partner for 3D solution.

Chae Lee, Senior Vice President of LX Semicon said: “Solving Industry 4.0 challenges demands semiconductor companies to drive constant innovation with new cutting-edge technologies in order to stay ahead in a fast moving space. Our collaboration with Microsoft is going to accelerate the R&D for 3D & AI technologies and position LX Semicon as a leader in machine vision solutions.”

According to LX Semicon, the semiconductor industry is entering an era where people and machines need to interact in new ways, which requires advanced sensing and AI. The multi-sensors technologies needed to support such interactions include vision sensors aimed at providing machines the ability to see in 3D, audio sensors to process voice commands, MCUs to calculate and process data converted from sensors to digital signals, communication chips to drive interactivity between various devices, and Artificial Intelligence to mesh the data coming from multi-sensor systems, make recommendations and take relevant actions.

Established in 1999 and based in Daejeon, LX Semicon is making aggressive investments in R&D with the aim of developing new Industry 4.0 technologies. As a result, the company has made a strategic decision to collaborate with Microsoft in developing 3D sensing solutions to be applied in new applications for IoT, logistics, and automobiles.

The Korean company describes Microsoft’s ToF sensing technology as well known in the imaging world for high accuracy, resolution, and precision to understand the environment in which it operates. LX Semicon says that the technology has proven itself in large scale deployments, powering depth sensing in Microsoft’s products such as Kinect in gaming, HoloLens in Mixed Reality and Azure Kinect.

Microsoft’s decision to open up this technology to the broad ecosystem is seen by LX Semicon as empowering semiconductor designers and producers to apply it across multiple scenarios in manufacturing, robotics, automotive, IoT and more.

Cyrus Bamji, Partner Hardware architect at Microsoft’ silicon & sensors group – “The collaboration with LX Semicon is an important step in our journey to expand the semiconductor ecosystem for Azure Depth Platform. We are excited to work with LX Semicon’s R&D team combining their extensive experience in mobile and automotive with our ToF expertise to create industry solutions powered by 3D vision & AI”.

LX Semicon is a designer and developer of mixed-signal semiconductors. The company utilises its own algorithm and technologies to enhance the features and capabilities of flat panel displays that are used in electronic devices and mobile handsets.