Machine vision in intelligent traffic systems „picking up speed“

Traffic monitoring, traffic management, traffic safety and transport to be highlighted at VISION 2014 for the first time under the key topic „Traffic VISION“

Machine vision is increasingly making inroads into non-industrial application areas such as traffic management, traffic monitoring, traffic safety and transport. In order to provide users in these sectors with a more detailed overview of the potential of machine vision technology and show them innovative solutions, VISION 2014 will feature a key topic entitled "Traffic VISION" for the first time. VISION 2014, the leading world trade fair for machine vision, will be held in Stuttgart for the 26th time from 4 to 6 November 2014. "Traffic VISION" will contain a number of events which are aimed directly at visitors from the traffic sector: a special topic block "Machine vision for the traffic industry" (including a podium discussion) and application-based talks on the traffic sector.


"The main advantage of vision systems is the ability of the technology to perceive the world similar to the way in which humans do," said Christian Zinner, Thematic Coordinator of the "3-D Vision and Modelling" Research Group at the Austrian Institute of Technology (AIT). According to the experts from the AIT, the most important challenge for vision systems in the area of traffic is posed by the factors of robustness, reliability, functional safety and the cost framework. "Compared with other sensor technologies, vision systems must make an impression with essential advantages," added Zinner, "starting with high spatial resolutions of scenes,. 2-D/3-D measuring systems and compact hardware architectures through to the huge potential of evaluation options for the sensor data and the ability to recognise and classify objects."

Destination quickly reached in the Traffic VISION Tour

In order to ensure that interested trade fair visitors arrive quickly at their destination and can contact suitable exhibitors or partners, the exhibition stands offering products, solutions or services in the area of traffic will be identified by corresponding logos in the Traffic VISION Tour. Around 20 exhibitors will take part in the Traffic VISION Tour. By way of example, three of these exhibitors are presented here with their innovations:

"Due to ever increasing global competition, solution providers must primarily be flexible in order to adapt, for example, to local requirements," is the experience of Enzio Schneider, Market Manager ITS at Basler. He says this applies to topics such as monochrome cameras versus colour cameras, and also regarding illumination such as NIR versus white light. According to the expert, another important factor is whether there is a need for individual images or video sequences, hot versus cold regions, or individual track versus multi-track applications. "The solution for speed control, for example, must definitely be reliable with manageable purchase and maintenance costs," said Schneider. Basler will present two highlights during VISION 2014, i.e. the ace two-dimensional camera series and the BIP network cameras with the integrated brand-new IMX174 image sensor from Sony for the traffic market. "Thanks to its high sensitivity, the enormous dynamic range and its outstanding image quality, it will be a tough competitor for much more expensive CCD-based solutions," said Schneider. Drivers and number plates are recognised more easily in the images, while an additional illumination system can be designed with smaller dimension and is therefore cheaper.

Horst A. Mattfeldt, Director Standard Products at Matrix Vision, has ascertained that. "there are numerous challenges which vision systems must cope with in the traffic sector." However, he regards two of them as essential: "Firstly, the systems must be insensitive to extreme temperatures which not only predominate over the year, but may also change during the day. Secondly, the systems must be designed for permanent operation." Matrix Vision will present the GigE camera mvBlueCOUGAR-X104d and the dual GigE camera mvBlueCOUGAR-XD104d at VISION 2014. Both cameras are fitted with the new 2.3 megapixel IMX174 CMOS global shutter sensor from Sony. Maximum resolution is necessary in order to be able to recognise as many details as possible across several road lanes while maximum sensitivity and dynamism ensure that both dark and light image details can be shown simultaneously even with low ambient light.

Public transport can be made safer and more intelligent by means of machine vision. The Austrian Institute of Technology will demonstrate this at VISION 2014. A research group in the Safety & Security Department has developed special algorithms for the evaluation of stereo images. The result is an optical 3-D sensor system which has very high spatial resolution and allows precise monitoring of vehicle surroundings for example. Together with the Vienna-based Bombardier Competence Centre for Light Rail Vehicles, the researchers have developed a new tram safety system which is based on this "3-D stereo vision technology". "It will make trams forward-thinking, intelligent and, thus, even safer in future. The tram learns here how to detect different objects such as vehicles and people. It automatically learns how to assess its potential dangers and can therefore react accordingly," said Christian Zinner.

Inspect Application Forum: camera quality for driver assistance systems

Anyone wanting to know what high demands are placed on cameras for driver assistance systems should definitely attend the talk entitled "Optical test methods for high-resolution camera modules in driver assistance systems" by Dr. Daniel Winters, R&D Manager at Trioptics. This talk will be held as part of the Inspect Application Forum which will celebrate its première at VISION 2014. Jorgen Pederson, Business Development Manager (ITS ) at Allied Technologies, will also reveal how machine vision technology can revolutionise data collection, distribution and use within intelligent traffic management systems. The Inspect Application Forum will therefore support the Traffic VISION initiative and will be aimed especially at end users. Its objective is to promote contacts between solution providers and Integrators.

Industrial VISION Days for the first time with the topic block "Traffic" and an exciting podium discussion

The Industrial VISION Days, the world's largest talk forum on machine vision, will be divided into ten clusters for the first time. A series of talks will examine the topic of "machine vision for the traffic industry". The VDMA Machine Vision Group will again act as the initiator of the Industrial VISION Days.

A podium discussion with renowned representatives from the traffic industry will also be devoted to the topic of traffic/transport. This is being organised by the media partner ITS International with Colin Sowman, Editor of ITS International, as the chairman. The participants in the discussion will make brief statements on the current state of integration of machine vision systems in the traffic sector and on future demand. The participants will also look at machine vision solutions from other application areas to see whether they could also be useful for intelligent traffic systems.

Over 400 exhibitors will present their goods and services at VISION 2014. It is the leading trade fair in the machine vision industry and is aimed at a wide range of industries: the automotive industry along with automotive component suppliers, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering and electronics, precision mechanics and optics, medicine, transport, logistics and traffic, the security sector, pharmaceuticals, the printing industry, glass manufacturing, woodworking and lumber, recycling, the chemical and cosmetics industry, the food industry, bioenginering, the agroindustry, sport, entertainment and many more besides. The excellent integration of the Stuttgart Trade Fair Centre in the transport infrastructure makes it easy for visitors to come to VISION 2014.

Featured Product

Universal Robots - Collaborative Robot Solutions

Universal Robots - Collaborative Robot Solutions

Universal Robots is a result of many years of intensive research in robotics. The product portfolio includes the UR5 and UR10 models that handle payloads of up to 11.3 lbs. and 22.6 lbs. respectively. The six-axis robot arms weigh as little as 40 lbs. with reach capabilities of up to 51 inches. Repeatability of +/- .004" allows quick precision handling of even microscopically small parts. After initial risk assessment, the collaborative Universal Robots can operate alongside human operators without cumbersome and expensive safety guarding. This makes it simple and easy to move the light-weight robot around the production, addressing the needs of agile manufacturing even within small- and medium sized companies regarding automation as costly and complex. If the robots come into contact with an employee, the built-in force control limits the forces at contact, adhering to the current safety requirements on force and torque limitations. Intuitively programmed by non-technical users, the robot arms go from box to operation in less than an hour, and typically pay for themselves within 195 days. Since the first UR robot entered the market in 2009, the company has seen substantial growth with the robotic arms now being sold in more than 50 countries worldwide.