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A contact image sensor (CIS) is a particular kind of LED sensor used in scanner technologies. The contact image sensor is an array of sensors with red, green and blue LED lights supporting image capture. Contact image sensors have been popularized as a compact and low-power source of imaging capability.
In general, contact image sensors are smaller than other kinds of traditional sensors such as charge-coupled device (CDD) sensors, and, because of the LED support, are much more efficient. Although image quality may be limited, CIS is helpful in constructing scanners that are made to use less energy, and are made to be more portable. Where the Canon company describes this technology, it rates contact image sensors as more than ten times more power efficient than CCD-based imaging systems. Companies like Canon use an approach called LIDE or LED indirect exposure to build CIS sensors and innovate in optical technology.