Industrial cameras are used in combination with computer vision software for image processing and to automate processes. Essentially, a single industrial camera on its own is not a complete machine vision system. The computer vision software communicates with the industrial camera to capture images. The software then uses algorithms to detect important characteristics for image processing. The possibilities are endless but a few examples of applications are product type detection, product positioning, shape recognition, measurements, OCR.
Computer vision software can be connected to a data base which stores results. This data can be used for quality control, metrology or to communicate results to a PLC or industrial robot. There is a variety of computer vision software packages available for image processing. There is a broad range of programs/solutions available including specialized libraries for a specific programming language, open source options or turnkey commercial solutions to name a few.
A commercial computer vision software solution provides a large “toolbox” with a variety of predefined functions and algorithms to choose from. Traditional machine vision techniques for image processing may reach a limit when facing challenging applications. Recent developments in artificial intelligence made it possible to overcome such limitations with ease. All major commercial computer vision software solutions provide the option of artificial intelligence as an add-on solution. This functionality is also known as deep-learning.
We offer a free SDK for use with our industrial cameras, providing camera drivers and programming examples in various programming languages. It provides the user-friendly program Galaxy Viewer. More information about the Galaxy Viewer and its additional features can be found in our Knowledge Center article: Daheng Galaxy Viewer to program our industrial cameras.
The SDK is designed to acquire first images, configure camera settings and control the camera during initialization or in R&D settings. The SDK’s sample programs and feature documentation allow you to write your own computer vision software program. It forms the basis for controlling the industrial camera by creating the image processing software. With the help of the sample programs you can easily acquire and save images or change camera parameters. Afterwards it is possible to add your own algorithms to create your own computer vision software program.
The software development kit is compatible with 32/64bit hardware platforms (such as regular and industrial PCs) and ARM platforms, including NVIDIA TX series and Raspberry Pi. Supported operating systems include Windows, Linux, and Android. Operating systems Notably and Apple MAC OS are not supported for industrial use, but engineers can run a virtual machine with Windows or Linux on MAC for compatibility. The SDK supports programming languages like C++, C#/.NET, and Python. It is possible to acquire additional languages upon request, these are not included in the standard package.
Zebra Technologies is a leading player in the field of computer vision software. They develop computer vision software to easily write your own image processing program for automating projects. With Zebra Aurora Vision software, computer vision integrators can quickly and easily solve automation projects. The image processing software ensures a robust graphical environment designed for machine vision engineers. It empowers them to develop custom computer vision software programs for quality inspection and industrial automation.
The Zebra Aurora Vision image processing software utilizes a dataflow-based approach and provides a rich collection of pre-built image analysis filters. Its standout feature is catering to professional users, enabling both straightforward creation of common applications and efficient development of complex, tailored projects. This flexibility makes it a versatile tool for computer vision engineers seeking to address a wide range of quality inspection and automation needs in the industrial sector.
On our Zebra Aurora computer vision software web page we offer a variety of packages for images processing. A simple classification of the Aurora Vision Software portfolio can be made:
IO Industries offers 2ndLook software for Windows and Linux, ideal for recording video from industrial GigE and USB3 Vision cameras in both industrial and research settings. 2ndLook is not computer vision software, but a recording and diagnosis tool. It utilizes the GenICam protocol to connect and control industrial machine vision cameras. This means that you gain the ability to easily record image streams from an industrial camera 24/7 with this 2ndLook software.
The 2ndLook software acquires individual images from the camera and generates a video file. These recordings can be reviewed for further analysis. It is user-friendly and commonly used for troubleshooting manufacturing processes and recording scientific experiments. Plus, it supports H.264 stream recording and data compression from industrial cameras.
Open source software is computer vision software which is free to use. In addition, the open-source code can be customized and modified to suit the specific needs of your machine vision application.
One of the most important packages of open source computer vision software is OpenCV. This open source software package is often used in OEM projects where computer vision is applied. The main programming language of OpenCV is C++, but language bindings in Python, Java and MATLAB are available. In contrast to some commercial solutions like Zebra Aurora, OpenCV requires extensive knowledge of a programming language and understanding of machine vision techniques in order to correctly implement them in a final code.
An open source software program worth mentioning is Kinovea. In contrast to OpenCV, Kinovea software is not genuine machine vision software. It originates from motion capture of athletes. Our high frame rate MER2-041-528U3C camera and MER2-160-227U3C camera are often being used for high speed recording. High speed recording, measurement and motion tracking capabilities can be utilized in research and quality control applications. Visit the Kinovea web page to download the Kinovea software.
Machine vision requires image processing software for a number of critical reasons. First and foremost, a single camera cannot do the image processing job. Powerful computer vision software algorithms also require powerful hardware. Integrated systems such as smart cameras, can only realize limited functions. Image processing algorithms enable automated inspection, allowing machines to quickly and accurately analyse products for flaws, quality control and object recognition. This lowers human error and creates repetitive results and increases the effectiveness of production.
Additionally, image processing software can function in difficult situations where human vision might struggle or be impossible such as low light or adverse surroundings. It also makes data extraction and measurement easier, giving engineers useful and accurate data for further improvements and quality measures.
Are you contemplating which computer vision software to use for image processing? Please reach out via the form below.