Surveillance Solutions Page Banner

Surveillance solutions for real-time situational awareness

Remember watching your favorite Hollywood spy? That guy had all the cool gadgets: a laser in his watch and a missile launcher in his pen. He could watch a couple of seedy foreign agents across the room with a high-resolution, auto-focusing spy cam that was powered with kinetic energy and camouflaged as a tie tack. His spy cam could even broadcast 720p HD video to HQ in London at 60 fps. But the most intriguing thing about this scenario is that technology—that is, Aptina® technology—is catching up with Hollywood.

Now don’t go out and try to design some IP HD security camera the size of a toothpick, but know that our sensors—our security and surveillance-specific sensors—have more capability than ever before. We’ve been working hard to lead the world in surveillance sensor designs so that you, our customer, can conceive and design technologically spectacular security and surveillance camera systems. We’ve spent years developing the largest surveillance sensor portfolio in the industry to give you high-quality, tested, and packaged parts for your progressive security and surveillance designs. Go ahead and browse through our offerings, block diagrams, and reference designs. Be impressed and be inspired. Be the one to make the current Hollywood spy thriller technology look old school. Read on to learn more about surveillance camera technology.

View or download Aptina’s recent surveillance imaging solutions brochure.

Read More

Surveillance: an unstoppable market

It’s no surprise that surveillance system use is on the rise. We all want to know what’s going on in the world. IDC tells us that worldwide shipments of network cameras have been growing quickly over the past few years, to 500,000 units in 2006. What’s behind this surge? IDC suggests it’s the availability of improved IP network delivery, aggressive marketing, and an overall increase in surveillance activity.

IDC makes it even clearer how big the market is by breaking out the recent surveillance market by consumption, with the United States accounting for 35% of the global market, Europe 29%, and Asia/Pacific 25%.

Surveillance Market by Consumption

Supplied by IDC

With this global penetration, IDC assumes that over time, surveillance and security—core applications historically—will continue to be the reasons why the network camera market is only going to get bigger and better. By 2011, network solutions (using CMOS image sensors) will surpass analog systems in total market share.

Growing surveillance partnerships

Of course we value partnerships. In the surveillance arena, we have partnerships—and good ones, too—at all levels in both the commercial and consumer markets. We partner with and provide reference designs to companies who make the best camera processors and components in the market. Take a look at some of the great designs and applications that have come out of our partnerships (below). And browse through our reference designs. Then contact us to see what we can design together.

Designed a smart camera that manages in-camera image processing. The ioimage camera offers sophisticated picture-in-picture displays. The advanced digital output and dual-streaming capabilities of our sensor helped make this key feature possible. According to ioimage’s Dvir Doran, "(Their) good design enabled an easy integration, which was a significant factor for us."
Agiltron, Inc.
Developed a new infrared sensor that, when coupled with a conventional visible light imager, creates a mass-marketable true thermal imaging solution for consumer, commercial, and military markets. Agiltron's LightLever™ sensor enables cameras to see in the dark and through smoke and fog. Our wide operating-temperature range, along with increased dynamic range, enabled this winning design. "The technical support we received was outstanding," says Agiltron’s Matthew Zavracky.
Mango DSP
Created the Pegasus embedded reference design that supports applications such as video streaming, encoding and decoding, intelligent analytic solutions, and surveillance management. It’s integrated with the Mango DSP DIVS software, enabling the creation of a video analytics-enabled IP surveillance camera with all the functions of a full security system. "With their support, Mango is the first to introduce an analytic and camera-ready, plug-and-play reference design solution based on TI’s DaVinci Mango DSP case study technology," says Mango’s Daniel Peled.
WiLife, Inc.
Developed a powerful PC-based digital video surveillance system for residential and light commercial use. The LukWerks™ camera produces higher-quality images with exceptional functionality, including a motion-detection feature that can be set to record only when the camera sees movement. "Support and education were terrific," WiLife's Evan Tree explained. "(They) allowed us to use a rich set of features and registers that we could tailor to our application."

Digital surveillance solutions to watch the world

You can’t beat the functionality, the quick turn on information processing, and the easy installation of network cameras. With network cameras, users have immediate access to situation surveillance in just about any location—remote or public—from across the street to across the globe. New surveillance software can rapidly scan through video feeds to monitor and detect suspicious activities—from somebody entering an unauthorized area, to an unattended bag (at an airport or other public place), to somebody cheating at the blackjack table, to unwanted loitering. With real-time viewing, situations that need quick resolutions have them and decisions can be made real-time, not hours later, ensuring cost-effective safety and security that everyone can appreciate.

HD Video Surveillance IP Network Camera Reference Design

DM355IPNC Product Image

Build an IP Network Camera at an Analog Camera Price

Aptina partnered with Texas Instruments to bring to market this highly optimized reference design, which reduces development time and cost for IP network camera developers: the DM355IPNC-MT5. This reference design:

  • Reduces development time by up to 98%
  • Delivers higher quality, wider field of view HD images
  • Lowers electronic bill of materials to less than $40
  • Empowers customers to bring $150 HD IP network cameras to the market
  • Allows upgradeability to IP-based, HD network
  • Enables differentiation via royalty free Linux IPNC camera app source code and schematics

 Buy Now for $795 [Leaving]

This reference design is based on the MT9P031 and TI's TMS320DM355 DaVinci™ digital media processor. It enables video surveillance providers to add cameras built with this reference design to their existing systems—at the cost of a traditional analog camera—and gain the flexibility to upgrade to an IP-based, HD network when ready.

HD IP network cameras bring scalability, distributed content and greater field of vision. Unlike analog cameras, IP surveillance systems offer an easily scalable distributed network and ability to implement video analytics as well as an optimized second video stream at D1 for recording.

This solution reduces development to under four months by including complete and optimized schematics, gerber files, as well as free Linux application source code, including:

  • Integrated auto white balance and auto exposure
  • Simple motion detection
  • Dual stream HD MPEG4 and MJPEG video codecs to support recording and monitoring needs at full frame rates
  • DaVinci IP Netcam software framework including IO application programming interfaces (APIs), media APIs, and DaVinci codec engine
  • General Surveillance Product Information

    Where can I find information about how to develop applications using Aptina's image sensors?

    We have Developer Guides to assist you as you in developing applications with our image sensors. The guides provide detailed information on working with chip registers and variables and explain how to use Aptina's developer software—DevWare. These guides are intended to supplement the part-specific data sheets and are provided exclusively for licensed developers.

    Currently, Developer Guides are available for the following parts:

    How do you prevent frame dropping during window size changes, binning, or skipping?
    To help prevent frame dropping, add a frame buffer for continuous frame manipulation operations, such as electronic pan-tilt-zoom (EPTZ).
    Where can I find the headboard schematics for Aptina dev kits?

    Schematics for our full line of dev kits are included with the DevSuite software installation. Once you install the software on your computer, you can find them at:

    C:Program FilesMicron Imagingdocschematics

    Note: The dev kits will only be available at that location if you used the default installation location.

  • MT9V032

    If the exposure signal inputs to the sensor from the H3 pin, is the auto exposure control (AEC) function usable?
    Yes. The AEC function is usable in snapshot mode.
    Is the binning function usable in the case of "on" BIN2 and/or BIN4?
    Yes. The binning function is usable in snapshot mode.
    What is the 10-bit image data mode setup procedure, and how can the 10-bit mode operation be used?

    To enter the 10-bit, low-voltage differential signaling (LVDS) mode, use the following three commands:

    • REG = 0xB1 0x0002 -> 0x0000 (LVDS power ON)
    • REG = 0xB3 0x0010 -> 0x0000 (LVDS driver enable)
    • REG = 0xB6 0x0000 -> 0x0001 (Select 10-bit mode)

    Next, issue a soft RESET to start the readout process.

    For further information about LVDS operation and configuration, refer to technical note TN-09-79: Stand-Alone Serial Operation (PDF 92KB) and the MT9V032 data sheet (PDF 1.8MB).

    In the case of 10-bit mode, how can I obtain the LINE_VALID and FRAME_VALID data signals?

    When in 10-bit output mode, specific codes are issued to indicate the following data signals:

    • Start of FRAME_VALID (0)
    • Start of LINE_VALID (1)
    • End of LINE_VALID (2)
    • End of FRAME_VALID (3)

    You must design-in a field-programmable gate array (FPGA) to detect these reserved codes and to create the appropriate FRAME_VALID and LINE_VALID data signals for your camera system.

    Where do I find the order of stereoscopy mode?
    Please refer to technical note TN-09-80: Parallel and Serial Stereo Operation (PDF 164KB).
    What is the variation of sensitivity?
    The variation of sensitivity is approximately 15 percent.
    What is the variation of color ratio?
    The variation of the color ratio is approximately nine percent.
    How do I reduce the fixed-pattern noise (FPN) at a slow frame rate?
    To reduce FPN, set R0x20 to 0x03DF.
    How do I reduce the fixed-pattern noise (FPN) that is seen in sequential snapshot mode?
    Snapshot mode for the MT9V032 is a "simultaneous" clocking of the pixel. Sequential snapshot mode is not a valid mode of operation.
    What is the conversion gain of the MT9V032 (the efficiency of the conversion of photoelectrons to voltage)?
    The conversion gain of the MT9V032 is 30 µV/-e.
  • MT9V131

    Are there drawbacks to connecting a light-emitting diode (LED) directly to a sensor's flash pin?

    It is generally recommended that LEDs not be directly connected to the sensors, for the following reasons:

    • Some sensors do not have strong drivers and cannot source/sink 5mA, which is typically needed.
    • If the sensors have high current drivers (>1mA is considered high), then they will generate heat, which will cause the image quality to degrade.
    • The sensor does not have constant current output capability. The LED intensity is proportional to the current, which means that the intensity may fluctuate, depending on pressure, volume, and temperature (PVT).
    • Most LED driver integrated circuits (ICs) have soft start capability, which minimizes current spikes, but the sensor does not have the same soft start capability, so it cannot prevent inrush current.
    • The LED forward voltage (the voltage needed to turn on) may be higher than the VDD, and the flash output pin is not fail-safe (cannot apply voltage higher than VDD).
  • MT9D131

    Where can I find more information about how to develop applications using Aptina's MT9D131?
    For help developing applications using the MT9D131, refer to the MT9D131 Developer Guide (PDF 3.3MB).
    Other than looking at the fuse ID, is there a register that verifies whether the MT9D131 module is revision 3 or revision 5?

    Yes. You can look at the monitor variables, MON.VMT and MON.VER, to verify the module revision. For example:

    Variable Definition
    (ID = 0, Offset = 0, 16-bit variable)
    Module Revision
    VAR = 0, 0x00, 0xE356 //MON_VMT (REV1)
    VAR = 0, 0x00, 0xE8CD //MON_VMT (REV2)
    VAR = 0, 0x00, 0xE9A8 //MON_VMT (REV3)¹
    VAR = 0, 0x00, 0xEDA7 //MON_VMT (REV5)

    • The "12345" patch will not change this virtual method table (VMT) value.
    Variable Definition
    (ID = 0, Offset = 12, 8-bit variable)
    Module Revision MON.VER¹
    VAR8 = 0, 0x0C, 0x0016 //MON_VER (pre-MP: REV1)
    VAR8 = 0, 0x0C, 0x001F //MON_VER (pre-MP: REV2)
    VAR8 = 0, 0x0C, 0x0020 //MON_VER (MP: REV3 and REV5)²

    • This variable only distinguishes between pre-mass production (MP) and MP revisions.
    • No differences exist between revision 3 and revision 5.