Osram Opto Semiconductors Food Check via Smartphone

Dank der neuen Infrarot-LED von Osram Opto Semiconductors lässt sich einfach im Alltag den Nährstoffgehalt von Lebensmitteln messen
Thanks to the new infrared LED from Osram Opto Semiconductors, it is easy to measure the nutrient content of food in everyday life.

In the supermarket, consumers can measure how fresh the vegetables are and how sweet the strawberries are, determine the calories of lunch in the canteen, or check whether the supposed headache tablet really is one - in future, consumers will be able to test this for themselves using a smartphone.

This is made possible by the development of broadband infrared LEDs (IREDs) that emit in a wide wavelength range. The basic technology for these applications is near-infrared spectroscopy. Among other things, it can be used to measure the water, fat, sugar, and protein content of foods. The characteristic absorption behavior of certain molecular compounds is used for this purpose. If a defined light spectrum is irradiated onto a sample, the presence and quantity of certain constituents can be derived from the wavelength distribution of the reflected light. An IRED such as the new Synios SFH 4776 serves as a compact light source for the spectrometer.

The IRED is based on a highly efficient, blue emitting ThinGaN chip in UX:3 technology. The light is converted into infrared light with a wide wavelength range from 650 to 1050 nm using to a phosphor converter specially developed for spectroscopy. By improving the phosphor material, the developers at Osram Opto Semiconductors have succeeded in increasing the light intensity by 60% compared with the predecessor SFH 4735. For the system manufacturer, this means an improved signal-to-noise ratio and thus simpler analysis of the materials.

The Synios package of the SFH 4776 is only 0.6 mm high and takes up very little space with its footprint of 2.75 mm x 2 mm, making it ideal for use in smartphones. It is used, for example, in technology-supported health monitoring.