Stemmer Imaging enables industrial vision users to perform calibrated temperature measurements with thermal cameras with standardized interfaces for highly used software packages on the market.
For many sectors, it is essential to be able to measure temperature in real time, without contact with the object, for monitoring and control tasks. This is particularly the case in the automotive, agri-food, electronics and steel industries, as well as in the glass, packaging and rail industries. The use and assessment of temperatures measured with a later vision system have so far been rarely implemented.
Teledyne Dalsa's Sherlock image processing platform is now making the process easier: Stemmer Imaging has developed an image acquisition module for Sherlock that uses Common Vision Blox's Image Manager function to capture images from cameras or acquisition cards compatible with GigE Vision and GenICam. With this built-in acquisition module, users can also collect temperature data with an appropriate camera and transmit it to Sherlock for evaluation without going through interface software or specific hardware.
The main advantage of this process is that the resulting thermal image can sift through all the powerful image processing tools and algorithms provided by Sherlock and CVB for evaluation. In this way, users can create test systems that allow temperature measurements to be performed, followed by simple and inexpensive image analysis and processing.
Sherlock offers a versatile and scalable environment for use with PC-based vision systems and multi-camera systems from Teledyne DALSA's Vision Appliance range. This platform is compatible with a wide range of cameras from different manufacturers, as the integrated acquisition module, based on Stemmer Imaging's Common Vision Blox (CVB) software library, operates autonomously, regardless of hardware. In general, Sherlock de Dalsa already supports a wide range of cameras and acquisition cards. For the GigE Vision and USB3 Vision cameras provided by Stemmer Imaging, the CVB acquisition module is included free of charge in the CVB CameraSuite delivery.
Sherlock's powerful industrial vision tools and algorithms include form recognition research tools, ID reading tools, optical character recognition (OCR) tools, measurement and counting tools, contour recognition tools, and texture and color classification. An example of a system to measure temperatures and process the data obtained is Sherlock's combination with Xenics' Serval 640 camera, a GigE camera for long-wave infrared (LWIR). This camera can be used to measure temperatures between -20 and 400 degrees Celsius (test done with a black body transmitter), with an image resolution of 640 x 480 pixels. The Serval 640 meets radiometric requirements for thermal imaging cameras and, thanks to its high-precision factory calibration, it can perform both relative and absolute temperature measurements.
Another interesting example for temperature detection is Teledyne DALSA's new Calibir family of thermal imaging camera. The strengths of this new series lie in their compact shape of 29 x 29 mm3, their wide choice of focal lengths and the ability to use different interfaces at an attractive price. GigE-based models are easy to combine with many vision software available on the market and quick to get started. The Calibir GXT series is particularly interesting because it provides real temperature radiometric measurements without a mechanical shutter. Typically, radiometric cameras require a mechanical shutter so that the sensor can recalibrate regularly and prevent the temperature values displayed from constantly moving away from the actual measured values. However, this recalibration process induces a very short pause time of the image, lengthening the shooting time by about 2 seconds. The Calibir GXT camera avoids this problem and provides continuous thermal images. If the application requires extremely fine measurement accuracy, the Calibir camera also exists with a mechanical shutter.
These systems are used, for example, in the automotive industry for the inspection of heated windshields, seats, or thermal treatment of vehicle parts. Other typical applications for temperature measurements include food production, solar cell production, circuit board inspection, hot rolling of steel, inspection of diaper deposition in semiconductors, or control of forms under the influence of temperature.
While Sherlock combines perfectly with appropriate thermal cameras to perform temperature measurements, thanks to its compatibility with GigE Vision and GenICam, it also works with other acquisition systems that meet these standards. Thus, in addition to a classic use with color and monochrome cameras, it is possible to make Shape-from-Shading systems based on CVS Trevista, 3D applications with LMI Gocator models, hyperspectral systems or linear scanning type Line Scan Bar, depending on the task at hand. This operational flexibility of Sherlock, on such a number of hardware platforms, ensures that developers and integrators get the right configuration every time, without compromising on measurement functions.
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