Use of 3-D vision sensors for human computer interfacing is becoming immensely popular such as in the latest industrial robot applications to enhance robot flexibility and intelligence. The current trend in state-of-the-art vision systems is the presence of graphical interfaces for operators and comprehensive monitoring environments that even untrained technicians can handle with ease.
New analysis from Frost & Sullivan (technicalinsights.frost.com), 3-D Vision Sensors and Image Processing Algorithms - A Technology Assessment, finds that most of the developments and technology breakthroughs in 3-D technology have their origins in military projects and applications. However, the civilian market demand is also picking up with applications such as civil service, first response and homeland security.
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"Several startup companies have identified the potential for 3-D vision techniques and 3-D depth sensing for various applications," said Technical Insights research analyst Sunanda Jayanth. "The manufacturers will have a faster return on investment (ROI), due to the swift time-to-market for technologies in this space."
3-D vision technology is poised to affect a wide variety of industries such as industrial automation and manufacturing, automotive safety, gaming, consumer electronics, as well as surveillance and biometrics for security. The primary driver for widespread adoption of 3-D vision and image sensors is the advances in enabling technologies for 3-D vision. Over the past decade, enhanced processing capabilities and semiconductor technologies have significantly miniaturized the existing electronics devices. Consequently, the price of high-speed processors and memories has decreased, and programmers and developers are able to achieve more with the existing processors. Additionally, intelligent software to process the information from hardware boosts several application areas.
However, the high cost of equipment is a major challenge for 3-D sensing. Customers and end-users often opt for other incumbent technologies due to price, complexity and cost of factory-wide deployment of a new technology requiring a huge capital investment.
"3-D vision technologies such as laser triangulation and stereovision come with a hefty price tag, restraining effective factory-wide deployment," said Jayanth.
Wide usage of technologies that lead to cost reduction is expected. Furthermore, it is useful to offer inexpensive assembly and production concepts that lead to high yield and cost reduction along the value chain. Development of low-cost solutions based on complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) image sensors for 3-D applications is a key enabler to overcome the limitations posed by cost barriers. The photon mixer device (PMD) technology has paved way for low-cost and robust 3-D CMOS solutions.
"There are low-cost solutions emerging that will enable near proximity tracking with high resolution," said Jayanth. "This level of technology will allow for extremely detailed hand pose and motion detection, leading to another level of gesture control, particularly for laptop and cell phone control."
3-D Vision Sensors and Image Processing Algorithms - A Technology Assessment, a part of the Technical Insights subscription, provides a detailed analysis of the technological advancements, emerging trends, drivers and challenges affecting the 3-D vision sensor industry. Further, this research service includes detailed technology analysis and industry trends evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants.
Technical Insights is an international technology analysis business that produces a variety of technical news alerts, newsletters and research services.
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