Vishay – VCNL4020: Proximity Sensing

Many applications require a sensor that detects not only the presence of an object, but also its relative proximity.

The VCNL4020 integrated proximity and ambient light sensor is I2C programmable and features 16-bit resolution. By itself, it senses proximity range from 2mm to 20cm. Add an external emitter and the range increases to up to 50cm. Add an external driver and the range again increases to up to 1m.


Parts IR EmitterObject Reflectivity (%)IRED Current (mA)Current Consumption (mA)RangeRange Resolution (%)
VCNL4020 Integrated 18% 200mA 0.031mA 2mm - 15cm ±5.0%
VCNL4020 with External EmitterVSMF2890X01 18% 200mA 0.031mA2mm - 20cm±5.0%
VCNL4020 with External EmitterVSMF2890X01 18% 200mA 0.031mA20cm - 50cm±10.0%
VCNLx with External Emitter and DriverVSMY2850 18%1A0.16mA1cm - 100cm±10.0%
VCNLx with External Emitter and DriverVSMY98545 18%4A0.6mA10cm - 100cm±10.0%


  • Paper towel dispenser
  • Soap dispenser
  • Automatic toilet flushing
  • Automatic water faucet
  • Industrial door or latch switch
  • Touchless light switch
  • Smartphone display control

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