In 1996, we designed two chips:
Demonstration kits were showed in 1997.
The square chip (160x160 pixels, 500dpi) got a brief life, because it quickly appeared that the cost will be too expensive on the long run. We used a ceramic package just because it was practical for us.
We tested a chip-on-flex package type: the idea was to remove the wire bonding, and use the kapton as a protective coating, hoping that the thermal signal will cross it. The chip was working, but the signal was too low, technology at that time was not enough sensitive and kapton too thick.
FCDEMO1 was the demonstration kit using the FC8x8 (design ID3 semiconductors). The Analog-to-Digital converter is clearly visible in the box, and the output was directly connected to the parallel port of a PC, using the EPP mode.
The very first sweep sensor was a 40x350 pixels chip (yes, it was pretty large compared to
what we can do today, but it was the first!), using a Chip-On-Board (COB) package with pins.
The chip was even larger because of the test structures on the side.
The side photo was published in 1997 in a newspaper.
FCDEMO2 was the demonstration unit for the sweep sensor FC2x17.
It was designed with the help of
& GMP Design.
A LED ramp was blinking to encourage people to sweep his/her finger,
as it was the very first sweep fingerprint sensor.
The first public appearance occurred at the CTST (CardTech/SecureTech) May '97 in Orlando, demonstrated with the Cogent software.
Image 2 & 3 copyright Electronique, Betty.