Smart Cameras minimize running costs
Intelligent cameras from Vision Components, which can independently record and analyze images, are not only more compact and easier to integrate than PC-based machine vision systems, but also have the added advantage of a significantly better energy balance. This factor is becoming more and more important in factory automation and also plays a big role in standalone systems. The VC systems’ energy balance, which is already very positive due to the relatively small amount of material going into their production, is improved even more by their low power consumption.
While a standard PC has an average power input of 150 W, the average for VC smart cameras is 3 W – for the newest generation of standard models, the VC nano series, even less than 2 W. In an application with 24/7 operation, PCs – without screens, cameras, or other necessary equipment – consume about 1,300 kWh per year while smart cameras only consume about 25 kWh. Assuming an average energy price (energy mix), smart camera users in Germany save about 200 € per machine vision system annually. In larger facilities with multiple machine vision systems, these savings add up to more substantial figures. The implications for the ecological balance are just as weighty. Generating one kilowatt hour of energy produces approximately 550 g of CO2 in Germany. Therefore, continuous operation of a PC-based industrial machine vision system produces 715 kg CO2 emissions – 52 times the amount for an intelligent camera whose carbon footprint is 13.7 kg per year. If the production costs are included the CO2 balance, smart cameras even increase their advantage over PC-based systems. Users need not fear performance losses, on the contrary: deciding for a camera with integrated intelligence, they can secure additional advantages as all VC cameras use digital signal processors especially designed for CPU-intensive real-time applications.