In recent years, drones have become increasingly popular for various applications, ranging from agriculture and surveillance to delivery. With the demand for advanced drone capabilities growing, the need for powerful and efficient processing solutions has also increased. In this blog post, we will explore how e-con Systems’ multi-camera solution, coupled with the Qualcomm RB5 kit, is the ideal choice for drone applications.
What essential criteria do drones need to meet?
To understand why the e-con Systems’ multi-camera solution with the Qualcomm RB5 kit is well-suited for drones, let’s first consider the specific requirements of drone technology.
The key aspects to focus on are multi-camera support, power efficiency, TOPS, and thermal efficiency.
Multi-camera support is a crucial requirement for drones as it enables them to capture data from multiple angles and perspectives simultaneously. It refers to the ability of the drone’s processor and software to handle and synchronize the output from multiple cameras effectively. In general, higher number of cameras can offer a higher resolution, prevent lens distortion, and enable a larger field of view. With multi-camera support, drones can achieve a higher level of situational awareness, enabling them to perform tasks such as 3D mapping, object tracking, and real-time image analysis more effectively.
Many drone applications, such as agricultural surveys or monitoring large areas, require the use of multiple cameras to capture comprehensive data. You can check in detail about the diverse applications of drones and the benefits of multi-camera support in the following application section.
Our Cutting-Edge Solution
The Qualcomm RB5 processor, along with e-con Systems’ multicamera solution, enables drones to connect up to 6 cameras. This capability allows them to capture multiple perspectives, and the feed from all 6 cameras can be synchronized.
Low Power Efficiency
Drones are typically battery-operated vehicles and maximizing power efficiency is crucial for extended flight times and enhanced performance. To meet these requirements, the processor in the drone must consume minimal power while processing the captured data and transmitting it to the cloud for further analysis and application while conserving battery life.
Our Cutting-Edge Solution
The Qualcomm QRB5165 processor utilizes its extensive experience in mobile technology to incorporate advanced power optimization capabilities. These features effectively reduce power consumption, leading to extended battery life for robots. This enhancement enhances the portability and durability of the multi-camera system by minimizing the need for frequent recharging. As a result, the usability of the system is significantly improved.
Tera Operations Per Second (TOPS)
TOPS refers to the computational power of a processor, specifically the number of operations it can perform in one second, measured in trillions (tera). Drones often operate in dynamic environments and are tasked with performing complex tasks such as real-time image analysis, object detection, and advanced analytics. To handle these demanding applications, drones need high TOPS performance to execute the necessary algorithms and computations quickly and accurately. This real-time processing and decision-making ability empower drones to respond swiftly to changing conditions, ensuring optimal performance and enhancing their effectiveness in a wide range of applications, including autonomous navigation, surveillance, inspection, and more.
The impressive compute power of the Qualcomm RB5 Kit, capable of delivering 15 TOPS (Tera Operations Per Second), empowers drones to process complex algorithms and make real-time decisions efficiently.
Thermal efficiency is a key factor in determining the performance of drones. Drones with low thermal dispersion are capable of achieving extended flight times, making them an ideal choice for long-distance missions and carrying heavy payloads. Moreover, their reliability is significantly improved, enabling them to operate silently in urban environments. Another benefit of low thermal dispersion is the reduced risk of overheating, ensuring consistent and reliable performance even in hot weather conditions or at high altitudes. These advantages contribute to the overall effectiveness and operational efficiency of the drones.
Qualcomm, drawing from its expertise in the mobile industry, has incorporated advanced thermal management techniques into the QRB5165 processor. This strategic integration ensures efficient heat dissipation and minimizes the risk of overheating. By optimizing thermal performance, the QRB5165 enhances system reliability and extends the lifespan of the cameras. The result is a reliable and durable multi-camera system that operates smoothly without the need for an overly powerful cooling system.
What are the diverse applications in which drones can be utilized?
The e-con Systems’ multi-camera solution with the Qualcomm RB5 kit caters to a wide range of drone applications. Here are a few notable examples:
In agricultural surveys, drones are extensively used to gather valuable data about large fields. For instance, an agricultural drone that is assigned to survey an entire 1km field, typically takes around 1 to 2 hours to complete. To facilitate this task, it is crucial for the drone’s processor to have multi-camera support and consume minimal power. The processor must be capable of efficiently fetching scenes from multiple cameras and transmitting them to the cloud for further application. In scenarios like growth monitoring, the captured data is sent to the cloud for processing, providing valuable insights and analysis.
The integration of the Qualcomm RB5 kit with e-con Systems’ multi-camera solution provides the necessary capabilities to support and synchronize multiple cameras seamlessly. This powerful combination enables the drone to capture high-quality imagery from different angles and perspectives during the survey. The captured data can then be processed in real-time, allowing for immediate analysis and action.
Precision agriculture relies on drones to identify specific areas that require targeted treatment, such as pesticide spraying. With the aid of the multi-camera solution, the drone can accurately identify areas that require spraying/seeding application and take immediate action to address the issue. This capability plays a vital role in promoting optimal crop health, maximizing yield, and reducing operation costs.
By combining the cutting-edge QRB5165 processor with e-con Systems’ multicamera solution, the potential for enhancing precision agriculture is further amplified. The advanced processing capabilities of this powerful combination enable accurate data analysis and facilitate real-time decision-making. As a result, farmers can streamline their agricultural operations, optimize resource allocation, and make well-informed decisions based on actionable insights.
Delivery and Logistics
Another significant application of drones is heavy-lift drone delivery. With the increasing demand for efficient and rapid delivery services, drones have emerged as a promising solution for transporting goods over short to medium distances. The ability to carry heavy payloads is crucial in this context, as it enables the delivery of larger and heavier items. By utilizing the multi-camera support, power efficiency, and advanced processing capabilities of the Qualcomm RB5 kit, combined with e-con Systems’ multi-camera solution, drones can perform heavy-lift delivery tasks with precision, efficiency, and reliability.
The Qualcomm RB5 kit, in combination with e-con Systems’ multi-camera solution, offers a powerful and efficient platform for drone applications. Its multi-camera support, power efficiency, advanced processing capabilities and thermal efficiency make it an ideal choice for various drone use cases, including precision agriculture, surveillance, and delivery. With this integrated solution, drones can achieve enhanced performance, extended flight times, and increased reliability.
Explore the selection of the currently available cameras for Qualcomm RB5 Kit and unlock the full potential of your drone applications.
Suresh Madhu is the product marketing manager with 16+ years of experience in embedded product design, technical architecture, SOM product design, camera solutions, and product development. He has played an integral part in helping many customers build their products by integrating the right vision technology into them.