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Miniature vision sensor sets new 3D standards

15 March 2022

SICK HAS released a ground-breaking miniature version of its powerful and robust Visionary-T 3D snapshot vision sensor. Thanks to a pioneering collaboration between SICK and Microsoft Corp, the SICK Visionary-T Mini packs precise, high-resolution and rapid image capture into a robust design that is both compact and lightweight for materials handling and logistics applications.

The SICK Visionary-T Mini uses best-in-class time-of-flight snapshot technology to set new standards of data accuracy for detailed environmental perception at high speed. It captures both the 3D depth and 2D intensity values of every pixel at an exceptional (512 × 424 px) resolution in a single shot of light, at up to 30 3D frames per second.

The SICK Visionary-T Mini is, therefore, a compact and versatile all-rounder for logistics, warehousing and materials handling applications, and delivers the same high performance whether installed in static applications, on moving machinery or robots. The Visionary-T’s high repetition rate ensures there are no blurring effects as a result of movement of the camera or the object. It is particularly well-suited to dynamic applications where lower weight is an advantage, or installation space is at a premium.

Versatile industrial applications

With a low-weight and no moving parts, the SICK Visionary-T Mini performs reliably despite the shocks and vibrations of applications such as robot palletising and depalletising, or, when used as part of object detection, collision warning or navigation systems in automated guided carts, forklifts and mobile robots. Its precise data quality is an advantage for 3D dimensioning and level detection duties, for example for packaging completeness checks, warehouse storage and retrieval systems, or for intelligent loading of freight trucks.

“The SICK Visionary-T Mini fuses the best of SICK’s industrial camera expertise with the type of precision sensing technologies from Microsoft Corp that you would more normally except to find in mobile phones,” says Neil Sandhu, SICK UK product managing for imaging, measurement and ranging. “The result is an extremely competitive price performance level with consistently excellent 3D and 2D data quality for even the most rugged industrial conditions, including where there is bright light or very dark conditions.

“The Visionary-T Mini also makes it easy to integrate the data stream into your applications, particularly where the target is moving, such as for anti-collision for mobile vehicles or for robot picking from a belt, for example.”

The automatic High Dynamic Range of the Visionary-T Mini ensures even widely-varying contrasts and lighting conditions across a scene are captured reliably in each frame without the need for complex set up, or expert knowledge of time-of-flight settings. The high-density 512 x 424 px resolution is complemented by a 70° x 60° field of view.

Easy to program & configure

As a programmable device, the SICK Visionary-T Mini is easy to configure and commission. The user-friendly visualisation and configuration tool makes it easy to set up the device parameters and adapt the data to the specific application. A multicam mode is available to process image data from more than one Visionary-T Mini. With rapid 3D data transmission, the Visionary-T Mini is suitable for integration into most industrial applications.

The SICK Visionary-T Mini measures just 80 x 70 x 77 mm (w x h x d) and weighs only 520g so it can be fit into even the smallest machine spaces, on robot arms, or onto small and lightweight automated guided carts.

The Visionary-T Mini is a rugged industrial sensor with IP65/IP67 housing and no moving parts, capable of operating at temperatures between -10 and + 50°C, and in bright sunlight up to 50kLux.  Rapid and stable communication is assured over industrial Gigabit Ethernet, as well as robust electrical performance, including resistance to electromagnetic interference.