New Generation Smart Camera

Oct. 1, 2009
This competitively priced all-in-one machine vision solution features multiple processors and flexible, easy-to-use software designed to meet the needs of both first-time and experienced vision users.

“We’re certainly going to take a hit on margin to try and break into the market space with this kind of product, but over the course of time, our pricing is in line with what we need to run our business,” says Steve Geraghty, vice president of operations for Dalsa IPD.

Geraghty’s reference is to the BOA vision system, a highly integrated smart camera from Dalsa Corp. that is said to comprise all of the elements of an industrial machine vision system at a very competitive price.  

BOA—an all-in-one machine vision solution—is smarter, easier to use, and more flexible than previous generations of smart cameras, says the company. It is billed as the first smart camera in its class to incorporate multiple processing engines. This enables algorithm optimization via DSP, application management via CPU, and sensor management via FPGA. It is also the first smart camera to truly embed the application software, which is easily set-up through a standard Web browser, according to Dalsa. This means no software to install and thus no version control problems. BOA is designed to deliver greater flexibility for its users via a rugged, easy-to-mount enclosure, built-in factory communications and a low deployment cost.

“BOA sets a new benchmark for single-point inspection cameras in the industry. It offers advanced vision capabilities that are easy to integrate at an affordable price, while consuming very little space and power,” says IPD’s Geraghty. (IPD stands for “Industrial Products of Dalsa.”)

Designed specifically for industry, the ultra-small BOA features a 44-mm cube form factor that is well-suited for tight-fit applications. The IP67-rated housing means that the camera can be directly deployed in harsh, wash-down environments. This is particularly useful to meet cleanliness standards in the food and pharmaceutical industries, and eliminates the need for a separate, costly protective enclosure. BOA’s small form factor and easy mounting capabilities allow it to integrate easily into existing production lines, machinery or moving equipment, Dalsa says.

Building on the strength of its software, Dalsa has evolved and embedded the complete functionality of its iNspect software in BOA. iNspect is well-suited for both first time and experienced vision users alike; it is said to offer excellent inspection capabilities that can be readily applied across a multitude of applications. The easy-to-use, graphical point-and-click interface allows users to rapidly prototype and deploy solutions, and it is available with a fully featured emulator for offline application development and debugging, Dalsa says.

The BOA vision system is available immediately in a monochrome version with a 640x480 CCD sensor (model BVS-0640M) with pricing starting at $1,995. A color version will be available later in November, and higher resolution versions will follow later, according to Geraghty.

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