QHYCCD Company

Light Speed Vision (Beijing) Co., Ltd.


QHYCCD designs and manufactures high-performance scientific grade CMOS and CCD cameras.  The QHY line of products include thermoelectrically cooled cameras, high-resolution scientific grade cameras, astronomical imaging cameras, digital X-ray machine DR cameras, and solar, industrial and laboratory cameras.  The sensor arrays used in QHY cameras range from 400,000 pixels to more than 50 megapixels.  Sensor format sizes range from 1/4 inch to medium format photography size (61mm diagonal), all with complete independent intellectual property rights.  Most of the company's products are exported to the United States and Europe.  The rich QHY product line is renowned for excellent performance and reliable quality.  The company goal is to provide customers with first-class products and services.


QHYCCD, founded by Qiu Hongyun, Ph.D., produced China's first CCD cameras for astronomical observations in 2003 when the market was dominated by a relatively few manufacturers mostly based in the United States and in Europe.  Since that time, however, a number of companies have made entry into the astronomical and scientific imaging market place.  Despite the increased pressure of competition from established manufacturers, QHYCCD continued to develop and produce larger and more capable cameras contributing to its rise in popularity not only in China but also in the U.S. and Europe over the ensuing years.  In less than 10 years, the QHY line expanded to about a dozen models.  Today the QHY product line includes over 40 different models and configurations including scientific cameras like the 50 Megapixel medium format CCD (61.3mm diagonal) QHY50 pictured at left.  Satisfied QHY customers include the LAMOST Observatory (above right) with eight QHY45 cameras on the largest optical telescope in China (4 meters).  The QHY45 CCD is 2K x 2K with 24 micron pixels and 70.1mm diagonal size.  For other scientific and industrial use, work has just begun on a fast 29 Megapixel, 35mm format CCD based camera that will output multiple frames per second.  Development is also underway on an E2V thinned back illuminated CCD camera for professional astronomy applications. 

Unlike some companies that primarily offer one type of camera, either CCD or CMOS, QHYCCD has expertise in development of both types, large and small.  Almost complete is a new QHY42 camera using a 2k x 2k back illuminated CMOS sensor with 11 micron pixels.  This sensor delivers 95% peak quantum efficiency and only 1.3e- of noise with an output of 48 frames per second!  For astronomy applications requiring long exposures, a smaller 2k x 2k sensor with 6 micron pixels and global shutter is planned that will appeal to astro-imagers.  In beta test as this is written is the new QHY183M, a 20 Megapixel back illuminated monochrome CMOS camera with high QE and 15 FPS output expected to sell for around $1000.  The broad product line of QHYCCD, with cameras costing over $40,000 to as little as $99, means that there is a high quality scientific grade camera available for nearly any budget or application.


As many amateur astronomers can testify, in the case of QHYCCD, affordable does not mean lower quality.  QHY cameras have been used by amateurs for nearly 15 years with satisfaction and success.  The first observatory established in China by and for amateurs is Xingming Observatory.  Set up and managed by amateur Gao Xing, the observatory is housed at the Nanshan Station of Xinjiang Astronomical Observatory affiliated to the Chinese Academy of Sciences.  The Nanshan site is about 75 km southeast of Ürümqi, a major city along the ancient Silk Road.  There are about 280 observable nights per year, with median atmospheric seeing around 1.4".  Established in 2007, the observatory offers online access to several telescopes and cameras and is currently conducting several scientific surveys including the NSP (nova search plan), CSP (the comet search plan) and SASP (supernovae and asteroids search plan) and various specialized sub-projects.  Observations are carried out almost every clear night. 

In 2010, a half-meter telescope equipped with a QHY9 camera began running the SASP (Supernova and Asteroid Search Plan).  This has since been upgraded with a QHY16 camera.  Within a few years, the program has found dozens of supernovae and nearly a hundred asteroids.  "QHYCCD's biggest feature is the high cost (of competing products).  "If you want to buy the same performance (in other products) some prices are twice as much  as QHYCCD.  And even compared to those products costing more than twice as much, QHYCCD is not inferior."  Xingming Observatory has always been very keen on collaborations with other amateurs and professionals.  The site is located in a longitude range with relatively few observatories, and so a significant effort has been devoted into time-domain observations.  The Xingming facilities have participated in rapid follow-up of gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) detected by the Swift spacecraft as well as high frequency observations of asteroids and comets.  [Note:  If you have any suggestions or comments, please contact: Ye Quan-Zhi at the California Instute of Technology (qye at caltech.edu) and/or Man-To Hui at the University of California at Los Angeles (pachacoti at ucla.edu)]. 

Many amateurs are performing research and contributing to science in the field of astronomy.  However, unlike professionals, the vast majority of amateur astronomers, particularly in the United States and Europe, take images for aesthetic reasons rather than scientific research or discovery.  Overwhelming evidence of the use of QHY cameras for aesthetic astro-imaging can be found on the QHY Flickr group.  Although the group has been in existence only a few years, there are over 2,000 amateur images posted to this group alone, testifying to the capability of QHY cameras to engage in a wide range of imaging styles and applicaitons.  The extraordinarily low noise and high sensitivity of QHY CMOS cameras has made them the camera of choice for planetary imaging where stacking and processing  numerous frames tremendously improves the image.  Moreover, the same low noise cameras facilitate taking and combining shorfter exposures of deep space objects to achieve similar results as a single long exposure.  This makes it much easier to control guiding corrections and focus in each individual sub-frame and to discard a bad frame when necessary without losing an entire night's work.


Whether you are a professional astronomer or an amateur, whether you are doing research or taking aesthetic images, whether you have a blank check from a well endowed foundation or are on a retiree's budget, QHYCCD has a solution that will help you.  With 15 years of experience, QHY has the expertise to provide a quality product for just about any need.  Listed below is a partial list of current QHY cameras:


ModelSensorTypeMpSize mm HSize mm VPixels HPixels VPixel umMono/ColorArea mm2Diagonal mmIllumination
QHY16200AAPS-H CCD16.527.2421.78454036306Mono/color593.334.88Front  
QHY12Super HADCCD14.723.7616.18464031605.12Color384.428.74Front  
QHY9 KAF8300CCD8.018.1312.94335823965.4Mono234.622.28Front  
QHY22 ICX694CCD6.312.8810.10283822244.54Mono130.116.37Front  

For more information please feel free to contact SBS or any QHY Dealer directly