JAI has combined a configurable design process with its Fusion Series of high performance, prism-based multispectral cameras to make it possible for customers to specify a custom set of multispectral wavebands for their Fusion Series cameras. The innovative new approach is called "Flex-Eye" and it is designed to make multispectral imaging even more effective by precisely tailoring the wavebands to the exact requirements of specific applications, including those in fluorescence-guided surgery, food inspection, intelligent farming, agricultural analysis (NDVI/NDRE), electronics inspection, biometrics, and many more.
JAI's standard Fusion Series cameras are prism-based multispectral area scan cameras equipped with two or three Sony Pregius CMOS sensors offering either 1.6 megapixels or 3.2 megapixels of resolution and a set of predefined wavebands – one that spans the entire visible spectrum (400-700 nm) and one or two additional wavebands located in the NIR region (700-1000 nm). A dichroic prism divides the incoming light to the separate sensors while maintaining a common optical path. This affords simultaneous capture of all wavebands with high frame rates and perfect pixel-to-pixel alignment enabling the cameras to handle movement and fine details that might cause problems for other types of multispectral cameras.
With the addition of Flex-Eye, users can now customize the spectral locations and widths of the individual wavebands to better suit the needs of their application, rather than accepting the default wavebands in the standard models. Depending on the user's requirements, the two or three user-specified wavebands can all be located within the visible spectrum or can be placed at multiple locations across the 400-1000 nm range.
400 to 1000 nm represents the limit of the current prisms in the Fusion Series, however plans call for possible extensions into the UV range (200-400 nm) and the SWIR spectrum (1000-1700 nm). JAI is also looking to eventually add the Flex-Eye concept to its prism-based line scan cameras (Sweep+ Series).
As part of Flex-Eye, JAI has developed an online configurator that makes it easy for customers to define and visualize their custom configuration on PCs or mobile devices. A few clicks or taps specifies the number of sensors, the resolution, and whether Bayer or monochrome sensors are to be used in the visible spectrum. Then an intuitive GUI lets users place, stretch, or shrink their wavebands on a simple spectral chart. Wavebands as narrow as 25 nm are supported, and built-in validation rules help to guide the user to a working configuration.
Fusion Series Flex-Eye cameras share the same high performance capabilities of the standard Fusion Series models. Models equipped with three 3.2-megapixel sensors can run at up to 107 fps at full resolution while cameras with two 3.2-megapixel sensors can deliver up to 123 fps. For models with three 1.6-megapixel sensors, the maximum rate at full resolution is 213 fps and with two 1.6-megapixel sensors it's 226 fps.
The high throughput of the cameras is supported by a 10GBASE-T (10 GigE) interface equipped with integrated auto-negotiation technology, providing automatic backwards compatibility to NBASE-T (5 Gbps and 2.5 Gbps) and traditional 1000BASE-T (1 Gbps) output for customers running vision applications on these lower-speed Ethernet standards. In addition to 8-bit output, the cameras can provide 10-bit and 12-bit output, with synchronous or asynchronous operating modes across the multiple sensors.
The 10 GigE interface complies with the GigE Vision 2.0 standard and uses a multi-stream approach over a single cable to efficiently provide the multispectral wavebands for separate analysis or for combining on the host processor. The interface also supports the Precision Time Protocol (IEEE 1588) to enable network-level synchronization in multi-camera systems.
The Fusion Flex-Eye cameras have a size of 62 mm x 62 mm x 86.5 mm, with a lens mount supporting C-mount lenses.
The Flex-Eye product concept page: www.jai.com/products/product-lines/flex-eye-concept