Basler presents time-of-flight camera at Control
Basler’s foray into the 3D imaging world with its new time-of-flight (ToF) camera was on display at the Control show on Rauscher’s booth. Control, the quality assurance trade fair, runs from 26 to 29 April in Stuttgart, Germany.
A prototype of the system was shown for the first time at the 2014 Vision show, but Basler is now launching a product targeting applications such as logistics, robot bin picking, and biometrics.
Jana Bartels, product manager for the time-of-flight camera at Basler, commented in a presentation at Control that the technology has an accuracy of ±1cm, and that time-of-flight will never reach micron accuracies.
She listed the advantages of the ToF camera as being compact, plug-and-play, operates with a relatively small amount of processing power, and captures both 2D and 3D information in a single shot, making it much faster than a laser scanner.
She added, however, that ambient light can saturate the pixels and that interference from scattered light and when using multiple cameras can confuse the signal. The system is more robust than a Microsoft Kinect camera, for instance, Bartels commented.
Bartels quoted the price of the GigE camera as €1,950. It is based on a Panasonic sensor with VGA resolution, 15fps and a working range of 0.5 to 5 metres. It uses LEDs to generate 40ns light pulses, the round trip time of which gives depth information in the scene.
Bartels said Basler aims to release a 1.3 megapixel version of the camera based on a sensor designed for outdoor use by 2018. The company will be exhibiting the ToF camera at the US Vision show in Boston from 3 to 5 May.