13.04.2012

Image processing with the sercos real-time field bus

Not long ago, users faced an almost impossible problem in the field of image processing. They could only integrate image processing into their systems via circuitous means. Furthermore, the benefits of the bus systems were lost. This resulted in a lower transmission speed, a lack of real-time operation and a lack of synchronisation between the participants, which in turn caused jitter.

The need to directly integrate field buses into the image processing devices was obvious. After much research, the real-time field bus sercos produced impressive results.

Sercos in an independent standard that stands for fast drive solutions and is a European leader in CNC and contour control systems. We focus on markets in which the combination of fast drives and image processing is in demand (handling & robotics, packaging and filling, laser processing etc.). We also regard the ability to use slave-to-slave communication and the fact that the time regime of the sercos Master ensures greater synchronicity of the entire system as further advantages. The ability to transmit non-real-time (NRT) data via the bus parallel to the process data not only makes the image processing system easy to configure but also makes it possible to transmit images for documentation purposes while the process is running. We have also considered the implementation costs, which can be easily calculated with sercos!

As a result, the first image processing systems with an integrated sercos interface have now been developed. The enhanced versions of the smart camera series pictor® and the multi camera system vicosys® offer users a simple solution for combining the advantages of image processing with those of the sercos automation bus. The laborious integration process that required a great deal of expertise has now been reduced to a minimum. Thanks to the on-board sercos interface in our components, integrating high-end image processing has once again become fun.

To continue driving the development of field bus technology in image processing, we will maintain our commitment to sercos e.V. in the future.
As a technology leader, we not only aim to increase the awareness of image processing in the world of automation, but also to ensure that automation is adopted as an integral part of image processing. Industrial image processing and automation technology have to interact like clockwork and function reliably.