vb.net barcode reader from image OPTICAL SENSORS in Software

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29.3 OPTICAL SENSORS
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29.3 Optical Sensors
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Optical sensors use a narrow beam of light to detect when an object is within the grasping area of a gripper. Optical sensors provide the most rudimentary form of touch sensitivity and are often used with other touch sensors, such as mechanical switches. Building an optical sensor into a gripper is easy. Mount an infrared LED in one finger or pincher; mount an infrared-sensitive phototransistor in another finger or pincher (see Fig. 29-6). Where you place the LED and transistor along the length of the finger or pincher determines the grasping area. Mounting the infrared pair on the tips of the fingers or pinchers provides little grasping area because the robot is told that an object is within range when only a small portion of it can be grasped. In most gripper designs, two or more LEDs and phototransistors are placed along the length of the grippers or fingers to provide more positive control. Alternatively, you may wish to detect when an object is closest to the palm of the gripper. You d mount the LED and phototransistor accordingly. Fig. 29-7 shows the schematic diagram for a single LED-transistor pair. Adjust the value of R2 to increase or decrease the sensitivity of the phototransistor. You may need to place an infrared filter over the phototransistor to prevent it from triggering as a result of ambient light sources (some phototransistors have the filter built into them already). Use an LEDtransistor pair equipped with a lens to provide additional rejection of ambient light and to increase sensitivity. During normal operation, the transistor is on because it is receiving light from the LED. When an object breaks the light path, the transistor switches off. A control circuit connected to the conditioned transistor output detects the change and closes the gripper. In a practical application, using a computer as a controller, you d write a short software program to control the actuation of the gripper.
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FIGURE 29-6 An infrared LED and phototransistor pair can be added to the fingers of a gripper to provide go/no-go grasp information.
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THE SENSE OF TOUCH
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FIGURE 29-7 The basic electronic circuit for an infrared touch sensor. Note the infrared filter; it helps prevent the phototransistor from being activated by ambient light.
29.4 Mechanical Pressure Sensors
An optical sensor is a go/no-go device that can detect only the presence of an object, not the amount of pressure on it. A pressure sensor detects the force exerted by the gripper on the object. The sensor is connected to a converter circuit, or in some cases a servo circuit, to control the amount of pressure applied to the object. Pressure sensors are best used on grippers where you have incremental control over the position of the fingers or pinchers. A pressure sensor would be of little value when used with a gripper that s actuated by a solenoid. The solenoid is either pulled in or it isn t; there are no in-between states. Grippers actuated by motors are the best choices when you must regulate the amount of pressure exerted on the object.
29.4.1 CONDUCTIVE FOAM
You can make your own pressure sensor (or transducer) out of a piece of discarded conductive foam the stuff used to package CMOS ICs. The foam is like a resistor. Attach two pieces of wire to either end of a 1-in square hunk and you get a resistance reading on your volt-ohm meter. Press down on the foam, and the resistance lowers. The foam comes in many thicknesses and densities. Look for semi-stiff foam that regains its shape quickly after it s squeezed. Very dense foams are not useful because they don t quickly spring back to shape. Save the foam from the various ICs you buy and test other types until you find the right stuff for you. You can make a pressure sensor by sandwiching several pieces of material together, as shown in Fig. 29-8. The conductive foam is placed between two thin sheets of copper or aluminum foil. A short piece of 30 AWG wire-wrapping wire is lightly soldered onto the foil
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