Features

A Step Up for R2

The lower limbs for the humanoid Robonaut 2 (R2) are aboard the International Space Station (ISS) awaiting attachment by a station crewmember to R2’s torso, which arrived on the ISS in February 2011 during the last flight of the space shuttle Discovery. That event signaled the first human-like robot to arrive in space to become a permanent resident of the laboratory. Jointly developed by NASA and General Motors, R2 showcases how a robotic assistant can work alongside humans, whether tasks are done in space or on Earth in a manufacturing facility.

Posted in: UpFront

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Jet Fuel from Sunlight

The European Union-funded Solar chemical reactor demonstration and Optimization for Long-term Availability of Renewable JET fuel (SOLAR-JET) project has successfully demonstrated the production chain for renewable kerosene obtained directly from sunlight, water, and carbon dioxide, potentially revolutionizing the future of aviation.

Posted in: UpFront

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Product of the Month: June 2014

The USB-2404-UI from Measurement Computing, Norton, MA, offers simultaneous sampling at up to 100 S/s, per channel, on four 24-bit channels of universal analog input. The device is designed for multi purpose testing, and can measure voltage, current, thermocouples, RTDs, resistance, and bridge-based sensors. The device features a built-in thermistor for cold-junction compensation, and a six-position spring terminal that allows different measurement types to be performed on each channel. It includes channel-to-channel isolation to protect the entire system from harmful voltage spikes and eliminate measurement errors caused by ground loops. It also includes 250 Vrms channel-to-channel and channel-to-ground isolation, and does not require an external power supply. TracerDAQ® software acquires and displays data, and generates analog signals.

Posted in: Products

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Blurring the Boundaries: IP and Machine Vision Cameras Converge

In modern production facilities, users are more frequently combining two different strands of camera technology. Classic machine vision cameras manage inspection tasks and yield management, while network cameras (also called IP cameras) handle process monitoring and bringing production to a standstill when necessary.

Posted in: Features, Imaging, Articles

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Defining the Smart Camera

Smart cameras have been used in industrial applications for roughly two and a half decades, but advances in processor technologies have made the devices much more accessible and popular within the past 7 years, especially in areas such as machine vision and surveillance. However, when the term smart camera is mentioned, a wide variety of ideas still come to mind among individuals because there is no widespread agreement upon the definition of what a smart camera technically is. It is generally agreed upon that the basics of a smart camera include not only the image sensor, but also some type of processing chip: a CPU, DSP, FPGA, or other type of processing device (see Figure 1).

Posted in: Features, Imaging, Articles

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Indoor/Outdoor Cameras Improve School District’s Security

Located in Texarkana, Texas, Liberty-Eylau Independent School District (LEISD) has been serving communities since 1886. Today, the district has more than 2,700 K-12 students across six schools, including a high school, a middle-intermediate school, an elementary school, a primary school, a pre-K center, and a School of Success.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Imaging

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Line-Scan Camera

The 3DPIXA 3D line scan color camera from Chromasens (Burlington, MA) employs factory-calibrated stereo engineering. To output both color images and 3D altitude data in real time, the Chromasens 3DPIXA simultaneously captures two images of the same object. Height and shape are calculated using special algorithms running on the GPU.

Posted in: Imaging, Products

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