Optical switch optical switch

Optical switching

An optical switch is a non-contact sensor that detects the presence of objects by using light. It is made of a light projection area that emits light and a photosensitive area that receives light. When the projected light is blocked or reflected by the object to be detected, the light level incident on the photosensitive area changes, and this change is converted into an electric signal and output.


It is used for object presence detection, passage detection, arrival detection, level-difference detection, surface state detection, and so on in a wide variety of everyday situations from industrial applications including production lines and distribution warehouses to household applications.


Hamamatsu provides the LEDs used as light sources and the photodiodes and photo ICs that are used as photosensors.

Various optical switch setups including transmissive type, regressive reflection type, diffuse reflection type, and triangulation distance measurement type

Recommended products

Hamamatsu optical switch LEDs offer high output and high reliability. We offer a wide-ranging product lineup for various use scenes. Red light types (660 to 700 nm) that are easy to use when you want to alert people of the operating status and easily aligned to the optical axis as well as near-infrared light types suitable for security applications and applications that require high output (850 to 945 nm) are available. We offer a type with a lens that suppresses the diffusion of emitted light. We also offer many package variations such as a surface mount type that supports reflow mounting.

Peak spectral wavelength
 - 660 nm: L11767, L11767-0066L
 - 850 nm: L14096-0085GL, L13141-0085K
 - 870 nm: L9337, L12756, L12171-0087G
 - 945 nm: L9338 

Peak emission wavelength: 660 nm

Peak emission wavelength: 850 nm

Peak emission wavelength: 870 nm

Peak emission wavelength: 945 nm

Si PIN photodiodes

These high-speed and high-sensitivity Si PIN photodiodes support the emission wavelengths of red LEDs and infrared LEDs.

 - Metal package (reliable): S5821, S1223, S5971
 - Plastic package (low cost): S2506-02, S2506-04
 - Surface mount type (can be implemented by solder reflow): S13773, S10993-02CT

Metal package (high reliability)

Plastic package (low cost)

Surface mount type (mounting using solder reflow is possible)

Photo IC

These photo ICs include functions needed for optical switches. In combination with an LED, the photo IC can be used as a reflective or transmissive sensor and provides stable operation even under a certain degree of background light.
 - Analog output type: S11049-202SB, S11049-203DT
 - Digital output type: S4282-51, S10053

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