DAKARA is the German abbreviation for “Design and application of a compact, energy-efficient, and configurable camera matrix for spatial analyses” and is a Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) sponsored project. SmartFactoryKL is one of the project’s research partners.

The aim of the project was the development of a compact camera matrix housing to enable a variety of innovative sensor applications:

Autonomous driving: Used as a rear view camera, the system recognizes even smaller structures such as curbstones and posts during autonomous parking. It provides much more precise 3D information than today’s conventional ultrasonic sensors when recording the vehicle’s surroundings (spatially and metrically).

Worker assistance: Testing at application partners Bosch Rexroth, DFKI’s Innovative Factory Systems, and SmartFactory Living Lab showed that workers in manual assembly processes can be supported by intelligent assistance systems. Such support is possible due in part to the depth information provided by the DAKARA camera matrix and the intelligent algorithms for manual handling from project partner CanControls. Using the latest machine learning methods and the depth information from the DAKARA cameras, the hand position can be determined in three dimensions. Each work step is automatically checked and the worker is provided with an intuitive gesture-controlled interaction with the software system. The hand position itself is not novel, but rather, the idea of tool and object recognition and the combination of all three elements is. The first prototype of the camera was introduced in April 2019 and it has undergone continuous development ever since. The end result is an interactive manual workstation for component assembly.

Project DAKARA was conceived as a research project to be conducted in conjunction with a doctoral dissertation. It was completed to the absolute satisfaction of the project partners.

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