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Imaging Reflective Services: Sony’s first Polarized Sensor

Tech Update: Sony’s first Polarized Sensor

Many vision systems struggle to overcome the effects of reflections and glare on reflective surfaces like glass, plastic and metal. Sony’s newest sensor technology can solve this problem with its pixel-level polarizer structure. This technology enables Sony polarized sensors to detect both the amount and angle of polarized light across a scene.


Introducing the IMX250MZR 

The global shutter IMX250MZR CMOS sensor maintains the same pixel size, frame rate and optical format as the popular IMX250 it is based on. While the addition of a polarizer lowers quantum efficiency , the IMX250MZR also shares the exceptionally low read noise characteristic of other Sony Pregius sensors. Even with it’s lower quantum efficiency, the absolute sensitivity threshold of this sensor is still better than most CCDs.

In a snapshot…

  • The Sony IMX250MZR polarizer is a 5 MP, 2/3” global shutter CMOS sensor
  • 3.45um pixel
  • Color and Monochrome 



On-sensor polarization enables dynamic reduction of glare and reflections. It is ideal for use in applications with moving targets or in outdoor environments where control of lighting conditions is not possible. Unlike traditional polarizing filters, on-sensor polarization enables the reduction of reflections from multiple directions.

The polarizers on the IMX250MZR have a highly predictable response allowing for angles of polarization to be accurately measured. This is called polarimetry.


The IMX250MZR can measure both the amount and the angle of polarized light across a scene.

By eliminating the need for mechanical filter wheels, a camera with on-sensor polarization reduces system cost and complexity while increasing reliability and throughput. In addition to reducing cost, the elimination of a filter wheel also minimizes the size, mass and power requirements for a polarimetric system, enabling new applications like compact drone mounted systems.



  • Increase contrast on reflective surfaces by eliminating reflections
  • See though transparent parts by eliminating glare
  • Detect problems earlier by measuring internal stresses


  • Enable new applications and whole new modes of sensing
  • Decrease size, mass and power requirements


  • Increase the reliability of occupancy detection in variable lighting conditions


  • Compact and affordable polarimetry for microscopy