Multiple still cameras for scientific position monitoring

Started 2 months ago | Discussions thread
lehill
lehill Veteran Member • Posts: 6,252
Re: Multiple still cameras for scientific position monitoring

unitary_binary wrote:

I'm a scientist that has a project where I want to use a collection (3-5) of still cameras to calibrate the motion of a few devices that are operated remotely. The measurements will be taken in a region of relatively high radiation---high enough that humans shouldn't spend a lot of time there, but low enough that electronics should be ok. The controls for the motion are about 25m away and behind concrete shielding, but wifi, ethernet, and other wired connections to cameras are available/possible.

The ideal situation is that I use relatively low-cost cameras (<$500 each) that are remotely triggered by computer and pictures sent back, but just triggering would be enough as timestamps could be used to match photos/positions. I would like the cameras to be in autofocus mode, so there is no need to truly "tether" as I shouldn't need to control anything besides the shutter operation. The distance from the camera to the motion I'm measuring is about 30 cm (12 inches) and I'd like high enough resolution that I can see distance changes of millimeter scale (~1/32") which eliminates most PoE security cameras from the hunt.

Any ideas or suggestions for a somewhat strange sort of request? Any guidance is greatly appreciated!

We're missing the lens requirements (field (or angle) of view, magnification, etc). How large is the object or feature you're trying to measure? How fast and far is it moving?

In theory, an imaging sensor could be equipped with a macro lens and measure motion on the order of the size of a sensor pixel - around 10 μm for a 24 megapixel FF sensor or even smaller for a tiny 1/2.3" sensor. Someone smarter than me would have to tell you about avoiding resolution-robbing optical diffraction at these tiny scales. So certainly, millimeter-scale measurements are very doable with the right lens.

Ultra-cheap circuit board cameras exist that can be mounted inside any kind of enclosure you want. Some of these have USB interfaces that should make controlling them and collecting data a little easier. I don't know if they make circuit board cameras with the type of lens you need.

Other possibilities are machine vision cameras or digital microscopes.

You probably already know a 25 m run of any kind of instrumentation/control cable needs to be done properly.

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Lance H

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