Optical Design Software

Lambda Research Corporation (Littleton, MA) announced the release of TracePro 7.8.3 and the Early Visibility release of its flagship TracePro software. Some of the new features and enhancements in TracePro 7.8.3 include: the addition of Monte Carlo Tolerancing to the 3D interactive modeler; rounding radius added to periodic and Fresnel segments to accurately model optics with chamfers and fillets; new Photorealistic Rendering Options with the ability to save Luminance Data; and a new Surface Property Generator utility.

Some of the new features/enhancements in TracePro 2018 EV include: ACIS release R28 with improved optional STEP & IGES translators; upgraded HOOPS graphic engine for improved system visualization; improved RepTile™ coincident surface algorithm for TracePro Expert users.

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High-Speed Camera

iX Cameras (Woburn, MA, and Rochford, UK), announces the addition of a new, “value-priced” camera to the premium ultra-high-speed i-SPEED 7 Series line. The new camera is designed for a wide range of applications including drop testing, airbag testing, and manufacturing, which demand the highest resolution but not necessarily the fastest speed available.

Its custom high-resolution 2048 × 1536-pixel sensor provides a maximum frame rate of 500,000 fps, which combined, enables a 13 GP/s throughput.

The i-SPEED 7 Series cameras are packaged in an instrumentation version or an optional rugged, High-G-rated version designed to resist shock. Added options include swappable SSD flash memory cartridges for quick data transfer and 1-hour batteries for field work and backup in the event of power failure.

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MegaPixel, Shortwave-Infrared Camera

Princeton Infrared Technologies, Inc. (Monmouth Junction, NJ) announces a MegaPixel (MP) shortwave-infrared (SWIR) camera with no ITAR export restrictions — the 1280SciCam. It has a 1280 × 1024 image sensor on a 12 μm pitch, featuring long exposure times, extremely low read noise, 14-bit digital output, and full frame rates up to 95 Hz. Designed for advanced scientific and astronomy applications, the camera detects light from the visible to the SWIR (0.4. to 1.7 microns). It is available with a variety of lens formats.

Princeton Infrared's imaging products are based on indium gallium arsenide (InGaAs), shortwave-infrared detector technology. Application areas include spectroscopy for sorting materials, moisture detection, thermal imaging, astronomy, night vision, industrial, medical, and laser imaging for military markets.

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Compact 4K/UHD Camera Head

IO Industries Inc. (London, Ontario, Canada) announces their new compact 4K/UHD camera head, which according to the manufactrer, allows for enhanced HDR (high dynamic range) at levels not yet seen in this class of camera. Designed for modern live broadcasting and production environments, it also suits applications in test range instrumentation, unmanned aerial platforms, and deep-sea remote viewing.

Although the 4KSDI-Mini shares many features with IO Industries’ earlier Flare 4KSDI camera, it can be mounted in more difficult spaces while providing production-quality output that can be intercut with footage from primary cameras. Features include: Sony 1”-format global shutter CMOS sensor; high dynamic range (12 stops); 12G/6G/3G/HD-SDI outputs; 10-bit 4:2:2, 4:4:4 or RAW up to 60 fps; C-mount or optional Active EF-mount; RS485 remote configuration with handheld remote control and on-screen menu; Tri-level sync input for multi-camera synchronization; and a compact, light-weight enclosure.

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Small But Smart Camera

EVT Eye Vision Technology (Karlsruhe, Germany) is introducing an ultra-small, light-weight, high-speed camera, useful for production-line robot arms and any application with limited space.

Four LEDs are included in the camera along with EyeVision image processing software — suitable for applications such as code reading (bar code, DMC, QR), OCR/OCV, pattern matching, recognizing errors, and counting and measuring objects. The software can be easily programmed via drag-and-drop. The commands are wrapped in icons that can be aligned with an inspection program.

It is also available as a vision sensor that can be equipped as BCR (Bar Code Reader), Matcher, or Measure (measurement technology sensor).

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Single Platform Video Alarm Verification

SureView Systems, (Tampa, FL) has partnered with Tyco Security Products (Milwaukee, WI) to deploy Tyco's SurGard (SG)-System 5 with their Immix platforms. The combined solution will provide video verification capabilities as part of a single platform.

The SG-System 5 alarm receiver supports the visual verification features for Tyco's wireless intrusion platform. These devices have the capability to send a visual “clip” along with the digital alarm that, via the integration with Immix, can be instantly viewed and acted upon by a monitoring agent.

The integrated system enables monitoring stations to receive digital alarm events with video supported by video analytics, two-way audio, remote access, GPS location aware devices, and other features. This makes it easier for central station operators to automatically manage video while helping save money by reducing unnecessary responses.

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Electro-Optic Coupler

Photonis (Roden, Netherlands) has introduced Cricket, a plug-and-play electro-optic adaptor that adds intensified imaging capability to any scientific camera. Cricket is designed for use in fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM) as well as in plasma and physics research, and corona discharge diagnostics. Cricket is available with a wide range of options that enable it to support 1μlx sensitivity, high speed imaging or single photon counting, depending on the needs of the application.

Cricket is a self-contained unit, equipped with C-mount connections that enable the user to simply connect to any scientific camera and attach to any lens or microscope to begin capturing intensified images. Cricket's internal structure provides power to the embedded image intensifier and maintains proper alignment and focus to provide a full 18 mm intensified image for analysis. Cricket supports detection ranges from 200 to 900 nm and can be used with most EMCCD, CCD, CMOS or sCMOS cameras with little or no additional hardware required.

In addition to providing an intensified image, the unit can also convert UV and NIR photons into green photons with emission characteristics that perfectly match the spectral response of a solid-state camera.

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Next-Generation Automotive Image Sensors

ON Semiconductor (Phoenix, AZ) has announced the Hayabusa™ CMOS image sensor platform featuring a 3.0-micron backside illuminated pixel design that delivers a charge capacity of 100,000 electrons, along with simultaneous on-chip high dynamic range (HDR) with LED flicker mitigation (LFM), plus real-time functional safety and automotive grade qualification.

The high charge capacity of this pixel design enables every device in the Hayabusa family to deliver 120-decibel (dB) HDR images with LFM. The simultaneous HDR and LFM capability is important in enhancing safety as it ensures that objects and potential hazards can be identified in both very dark and very bright areas of the scene. With the widespread use of LEDs for front and rear lighting as well as traffic signs, the LFM capability of the platform makes certain that pulsed light sources do not appear to flicker, which can lead to driver distraction or, in the case of front facing ADAS, the misinterpretation of a scene by machine vision algorithms.

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Handheld Marking System

Laser Photonics (Orlando, FL) is announcing further development of the portable handheld laser marking system MarkStarPRO™. They have re-engineered their handheld technology with a dual action interlock system including both software and mechanical integration. These latest safety enhancements adhere to both CDRH / FDA guidelines and regulations.

MarkStar is a hand-held 3D fiber laser marking system designed for portability into the field or warehouse. Operating off a 12V/24V DC power source, it is designed to operate under high-vibration, shock, and dust conditions. It provides a wide range of pulse durations, high-repetition rates, and peak powers.

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Differential Measurement System

The KD-5100 differential measurement system from Kaman Precision Products (Colorado Springs, CO) provides resolution to a nanometer of positional change. With its stable design, small size, and low power consumption, the KD-5100 is ideal for night vision systems, precision telescope positioning, fast steering mirrors (FSM) for space-based and airborne applications, and image stabilization systems.

Its small size — 2 × 2.12 × 0.75 inches thick – makes it a good choice for applications where space is a limiting factor. It is manufactured to MIL-H-38534, with MIL-SPEC components used throughout the electronics module wherever possible. It also features rugged construction, with a mean time between failures (MTBF) of better than 238,000 hours in a space flight environment and 55,000 hours in a tactical environment. Kaman also offers the DIT-5200, a commercial version of the KD-5100 for applications where mil-spec requirements, size, weight and power consumption are not critical.

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Keypad Backlighting on Curved Surfaces

Molex (Lisle, IL) has solved the challenge of backlighting capacitive keys on a curved surface for user-interface designers. Molex PEDOT Clear Conductive Sensors are flexible translucent conductive circuits printed on a polyester substrate that can be implemented on three-dimensional surfaces, allowing for more elaborate designs and greater design freedom. Translucent PEDOT sensors can be used in space-restricted applications where previous methods of backlighting (light guide film or side fire LEDs) are impractical.

Historically, designers have relied on indium tin oxide (ITO) which is considered too brittle and inflexible to be used on curved surfaces. PEDOT sensors have been shown to endure 50,000+ bend cycles, and offer a more cost-effective solution. The ability to use standard pressure sensitive adhesive for mounting also contributes to a lower overall applied cost.

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6 MP Single-Board Cameras

The Imaging Source (Charlotte, NC) has announced the availability of new 6 MP single-board cameras (color and monochrome) featuring Sony's extremely light-sensitive STARVIS IMX178 sensor and USB 3.1 (Gen. 1) reversible Type-C port connection.

The cameras provide a combination of high resolution and high speed (6 MP at max. 60 fps). Sony STARVIS sensors are among the most light-sensitive sensors on the market and deliver image quality suitable for demanding embedded machine vision tasks — making them a cost-effective solution for a range of applications such as intelligent traffic systems (ITS), optical inspection, medical engineering, logistics etc. The cameras’ small form-factor (30 × 30 × 12 mm) and USB 3 Vision compliance allow for easy integration in applications adhering to the standard.

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