ASD -For Safe and Secure Life-

Auth. On CardTM

Application of biometrics to smartcards

≫1st Generation (1998) : Fingerprint Authentication outside card

  • An external fingerprint scanner captures a fresh fingerprint image.
  • The magnetic tape or the IC chip on a card stores the enrolled reference fingerprint data.
  • An external terminal extracts and verifies the fresh fingerprint data.
  • Proprietary fingerprint data of 128 byte/finger for a magnetic-stripe card.

≫2nd Generation (2002) : Fingerprint Authentication inside card (Matching on Card)

  • An external live scanner captures a fresh fingerprint image.
  • A PC extracts fingerprint data from the fresh fingerprint image, and sends the data to a smartcard.
  • We built the world's first minutia-based algorithm for commercial smartcards.

≫3rd Generation (2010) : Auth On Card

  • A smartcard with a built-in fingerprint image sensor.
  • The sensor on the card captures a fresh fingerprint image, from which data is extracted on the card.The fresh fingerprint data is verified on the card using the reference data.
  • Our newly developed authentication algorithm for the smartcard, the "Asymmetric Fingerprint Authentication Algorithm (AFA)," acquires fresh fingerprint image data using the fingerprint image sensor FTPS on the smartcard. The AFA requires another fingerprint image sensor with a larger area to acquire the reference fingerprint data.


A new fingerprint image area sensor for smartcards

The fingerprint image sensor FPTS-22 is a proprietary capacitance-based area-type sensor. The thickness of the fingerprint image sensor is 0.18 mm. FPTS-22 is a fingerprint area sensor for smartcards. In addition to being the smallest such sensor in the world, it is cost-effective. We have designed the sensor area to be 8 mm x 8 mm in order to comply with the ISO7816 standard of mechanical stress while obtaining a satisfactory authentication accuracy in verifying the owner.

The sensor consumes a low electrical current of 9 mA, which is another critical factor in implementing a practical biometric smartcard. In addition, the sensor surface is robust electrically, achieving an excellent ESD tolerance.

FPTS-22 photo



  • 2D sensor array of 160x160 pixels
  • Resolution: 508 dpi
  • Active sensing area: 8 mm x 8 mm
  • Gray scale: 8-bit
  • High speed serial/parallel interface
  • Read out time less than 0.1 sec
  • 9 mA power consumption
  • ESD: 15 kV (IEC61000-4-2)
  • 1,000,000 wear cycles
  • RoHS compliant

fingerprint image sample photo

A sample of fingerprint image
captured by FPTS and the histogram of it.


Packaged fingerprint image sensor for smartcards

Since ISO7816 specifies the thickness of a smartcard to be 0.76 mm or less, the packaged sensor IC chip FPTS-22 including the control circuit must be very thin for mounting it on the smartcard.

We have fabricated the sensor IC chip on a thin film substrate. We employ a new packaging method to reduce the total thickness while obtaining the sufficient mechanical and electrical integrities as well.

Employing either the Chip on Film (COF) or the Chip on Board (COB) technology, we have succeeded in producing the packaged sensor FPCF/FPCB with a total thickness of less than 0.45 mm.


Parameter Value Unit
Scanning speed Less than 0.1 sec
Dimensions 13x19x0.45 mm
Weight 1.5±0.1 g
System clock 4 to 32 MHz
Interface SPI
SPI clock 0.020 to 32 MHz
Operating voltage 2.7 to 3.3 V
Total current 9 mA
Operating temperature -20 to 70
Humidity 20 to 80 RH %

FPCF photo


FPCB photo