Electronics > Electronics

On-board image processing - robot car

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johnny_jones:
Hi all, I am trying to get a little robot car to do on-board image processing.

So far my plans are as follows:
- microcontroller (ardiuno uno) to sync up the camera, SRAM memory and DSP chip(s)
- DSP chips will perform image processing algorithms and return result(s) to microcontroller
- camera is a very small CMOS type (6mm x 6mm x 4.5mm)

Thoughts:
- feed the 8 bit data stream from the camera into a 1Mx8 bits (8Mbit total memory)
- storage of 640x480 images (so I need 921600 locations of 8 bit storage)
- address line will be controlled by the microcontroller

DSP Chips:
- I have never worked with these before, is it similar to FPGA development?
- I still have to look into my DSP chip needs (multipliers, clock speed and on-chip memory are the most important?)

I have never done this before, does this sound like a reasonable effort that will not be too hard to debug or verify?

EDIT: actually, I'm thinking the UNO cannot supply the necessary 20 bit wide address line? perhaps I need to use an FPGA as well?

Thanks

Soeren:
Hi,


--- Quote from: johnny_jones on November 18, 2012, 09:38:29 PM ---I have never done this before, does this sound like a reasonable effort that will not be too hard to debug or verify?

--- End quote ---
Not at all.

DSP, which btw. is quite math intensive, is not something that you just jump into with zero knowledge - grab a couple of books on the subject and see if you can get a basic understanding, then try applying what you learn to a DSP chip, one little step at a time.

johnny_jones:
Alright so I talked to a professor, it was rushed, he said to look into a DSP development board with full API for openCV. Don't know if such a thing exists or is easy to use.

Another person I consulted said to go with an ARM development board to make interfacing the camera and what not easier.

Do you know some guidelines on how to select a suitable hardware application? I have almost no idea on how to determine if the processor and it's board organization can suit my processing needs. Most of the stuff I have experience with is low-level FPGA design and, well when you design all the logic elements, clock cycle and processing time is a hop skip and a jump away.

Or any thoughts/suggestions also appreciated.

Soeren:
Hi,


--- Quote from: johnny_jones on November 19, 2012, 06:56:18 PM ---Do you know some guidelines on how to select a suitable hardware application? I have almost no idea on how to determine if the processor and it's board organization can suit my processing needs.

--- End quote ---
You have to determine the needed data throughput per time unit, considering time for whatever processiing of the data you need. This will give you the absolute minimum speed.



--- Quote from: johnny_jones on November 19, 2012, 06:56:18 PM ---Or any thoughts/suggestions also appreciated.

--- End quote ---
ITX-Pico PC or ITX-Nano PC with a top quality web cam would be my preferred "motor", then the code can be written and compiled directly on the target system (just plug it in between screen/keyboard/mouse), get Robo Realm (or similar) installed and you'll save a lot of time.
Perhaps take a look at some of the PC-104 boards as well.

While you may like the size of your tiny cam, it will most likely be crap on all points color/focusgeometry/etc. compared to a larger cam with high quality optics - and the better your raw data, the easier it will be to process.

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