Sensors & Transducers


Sensors achieve with ­embedded systems

May 2017 Sensors & Transducers

SICK and Silicon Software are combining their expertise and working together to extend the AppSpace ecosystem with FPGA programming for embedded sensor and integration hardware. This collaboration is diversifying the range of application solutions available with sensors from SICK – even in areas such as industrial image processing. In addition to its own FPGA algorithms, in the future, VisualApplets will also be used for the graphical programming of tailored sensor and integration technologies. To ensure compatibility between VisualApplets and sensors, VisualApplets Embedder was implemented as a one-off solution. Both companies are market leaders in their respective fields and hope to use their combined knowledge to share in the strong growth in the sensor and image processing market.

This collaboration offers customers the right sensor solution through an even more focused approach. The wide range of functions offered by VisualApplets – with over 200 operators – and FPGA programming using data flow models on a graphical user interface, are opening up new markets and applications. “VisualApplets represents the logical next step for the AppSpace software ecosystem,” explains Detlef Deuil, head of product management Vertical Integration Products. “For our in-house application software developers, and potentially for selected OEMs and system integrators as well, it is very easy to use real-time data processing in our sensor and integration hardware and implement powerful application solutions. All application developers from the various industrial sectors can benefit from the easy use and integration of VisualApplets in our products.”

Shared synergy effects benefiting customers

VisualApplets is the integrated development environment for real-time applications on FPGA processors in image processing. It enables access to the FPGA processors hardware such as frame grabbers, industrial cameras and vision sensors in order to implement custom image processing applications.

SICK offers a broad sensor and integration portfolio, ranging from compact sensors that are easy to operate, through configurable standalone solutions, and right the way up to flexibly programmable sensor systems for the most demanding of requirements. Access to its own sophisticated FPGA functions – and, in the future, to extensive operator libraries from Silicon Software – is being provided in order to minimise the complexity, costs, and risks associated with implementing programmable sensor solutions. From established modules, this creates new, perfectly tailored solutions suitable for any customer requirement in any industry.



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