Nokia dials into graphene in photo-sensor patent move

Science meets almost-technology in Nokia's patent application for graphene tech with the potential for much smaller and lighter sensors than those used in most digital cameras.

Graphene , the two-dimensional Wundermaterial that has taken science by storm, is starting to creep into almost-there technology . Nokia has filed a US patent application for a new kind of photo sensor based on the remarkable form of carbon.

The technology described in Nokia's patent application has the potential to make much smaller and lighter sensors than the current CCD or CMOS sensors used in most digital cameras, paving the way for much higher megapixel counts from ever smaller devices.

Nokia is seeking to exploit graphene's transparency, and tremendous ability to absorb light equally well across the visible, UV and infrared parts of the spectrum. Because each layer of graphene will absorb just 2.3 percent of incident light, a detector can be built from a multi-layered stack of the material without the light being blocked.

This quality means it would work well in low light and as a pre-amplifier for traditional photocells, since it can collect data from all wavelengths without gobbling up all the incoming photons.

SlashGear has more detail on Nokia's graphene camera technology.