Phytec’s phyBoard-Pollux Imaging Kit in combination with the FPD-Link III Starter Kit provides powerful machine learning and vision for the edge with flexible positioning of the camera moduls. Thanks to the graphics capabilities of the i.MX 8m Plus SoC and the on-chip NPU, even complex tasks are handled with high performance on the SBC without a cloud connection. An FPD-Link III connection allows the camera module to be placed up to 15m away. In addition to pure data transmission, the FPD-Link III connection includes bidirectional channels for control commands (e.g. for configuring a camera module via I2C for controlling a focusable lens), as well as the possibility of power supply, via a single coaxial cable. Either by using thicker coaxial cables (e.g. RG174) for external positioning or very thin, flexible coaxial cables (e.g. RG1.37) for internal placement, a high degree of freedom in camera placement is achieved. Two independent camera interfaces that can be operated either stand-alone or in stereo mode allow connecting different camera boards. Due to the wide range of industrial interfaces (e.g. Ethernet with TSN, CAN FD, PCIe Gen3), there are hardly any limits to the field of application. The kits are based on components that are ready for series production, i.e. development is carried out with exactly the components that will later be used in series devices. This makes the transfer to series production particularly easy and safe.
The 2020 Mars Rover mission will have 23 cameras on board. Descent cameras will help pilot the rover’s descent to the Martian surface. Engineering cameras will allow the rover to navigate the rocks and dust that cover the planet. And finally, scientific cameras will make observations and help collect samples.