Vision standards to add support for 3D vision

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Support for 3D imaging is now part of the latest and planned releases of a number of machine vision standards. The newest version of GenICam contains support for 3D vision, while work is ongoing for CoaXPress, USB3 Vision, and GigE Vision to support 3D imaging in future releases, indicating the growing demand for such technology.

New versions of all the machine vision standards were discussed during a weeklong International Vision Standards Meeting, which took place at the end of April in London, UK. The event was organised by the G3, made up of machine vision associations EMVA, AIA, JIIA, and VDMA, and was hosted by EMVA-member company Active Silicon.

The core of the support for 3D vision is centred on GenICam. The GenTL transport layer within version 3.0 supports both area scan and line scan 3D cameras, as well as supporting multiple data values (such as 3D co-ordinate and pixel intensity) for each pixel.

The GenApi has also been rewritten for v3.0, which improves loading time by a factor of five. The memory footprint required to run the GenApi has been reduced by a similar amount.

The CoaXPress committee is working towards version 2.0 of the standard, due for release in 2016, which will add support for 3D cameras. In the meantime, version 1.2 of the specification is set for release in summer 2015, which will have detail changes to aid developers, and will also pave the way for higher speeds (up to 12.5Gb/s).

The USB3 Vision and GigE Vision committees are also working on providing support for 3D vision. In addition, a USB3 Vision update will support multiple streaming devices and the USB3 Vision committee is also addressing cable length issues.

Version 2.1 of GigE Vision will standardise on two different types of locking connectors – Type 90 and Type 110 – that can be used in GigE Vision systems. These will alleviate the interoperability issues that have arisen due to the fact that some manufacturers have chosen to deploy their own proprietary solutions in the past.

Elsewhere at the meeting, Camera Link, currently in version 2.0, and Camera Link HS were both discussed. Camera Link v2.0 consolidates previous updates and offers five different levels of implementation. The Camera Link HS standards committee is putting plans in place to produce revision 2 of the specification, due out in 2016, which will add a context packet mechanism and specify a frame leader and trailer packet.

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