NI Compacts LabVIEW into Industrial Machine Vision System

6/25/2003 - National Instruments announced the NI CVS-1454 Compact Vision System, an industrial vision system that makes cameras smarter by extending the power of LabVIEW into low-cost, rugged machine vision applications.

"The Compact Vision System is lowering the cost of machine vision with the capability to handle multiple camera inputs in a small form factor," said John Hanks, National Instruments vision and measurements platform manager. "For example, developers can connect a small, lightweight remote head camera for harsh industrial environments, a high-resolution mega-pixel camera for gauging small objects, and a low-cost monochrome camera for optical character recognition without the need to purchase multiple devices."

The Compact Vision System features three IEEE 1394 (FireWire) ports for connectivity to a variety of imaging sensors including Sony and Basler cameras. Developers can take advantage of FireWire technology while choosing the resolution and speed of their cameras to match specific application needs. With one device and multiple camera options, creating a customized machine vision application with the NI Compact Vision System results in a lower cost per camera solution.

Developers have two software options for application development on the NI CVS-1454. NI Vision Builder for Automated Inspection is an interactive software environment that simplifies the task of developing inspection systems. Developers use an intuitive point-and-click interface to build applications for the Compact Vision System hardware. In addition, developers can leverage the powerful LabVIEW graphical development environment to create more customized vision applications. The LabVIEW code generation feature in Vision Builder gives developers the power to easily migrate between these two software programs.

The Compact Vision System integrated I/O architecture delivers 15 digital input lines, 14 digital output lines and RS-232 and Ethernet connectivity to more than 20 of the NI FieldPoint family of distributed I/O measurement modules. Developers also can use the RS-232 and Ethernet connectivity to communicate with PLC and motion control devices and quickly link the NI CVS-1454 vision system and the data it collects to a network for information sharing. In addition, a VGA connection makes it easy to monitor inspection results in real time. With a variety of I/O and camera options, developers now have an improved choice for compact and rugged machine vision applications.

The Compact Vision System features an operating temperature range of 0 to 55 C and no fans or external vents, enabling it to easily go into harsh, industrial environments. The built-in LabVIEW Real-Time engine and 128 MB of memory ensure a completely deterministic and reliable system ideal for packaging, assembly, robotics and industrial inspection. Once the application has been downloaded onto the Compact Vision System, engineers instantly have a factory-ready application.

About National Instruments
National Instruments ( is a technology pioneer and leader in virtual instrumentation -- a revolutionary concept that has changed the way engineers and scientists approach measurement and automation. Leveraging the PC and its related technologies, virtual instrumentation increases productivity and lowers costs for customers worldwide through easy-to-integrate software, such as the NI LabVIEW graphical development environment, and modular hardware, such as PXI modules for data acquisition, instrument control and machine vision. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, NI has more than 3,000 employees and direct operations in 40 countries. In 2002, the company sold products to more than 25,000 different companies in more than 80 countries around the world. For the past four consecutive years, FORTUNE magazine has named NI one of the 100 best companies to work for in America.

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