Embedded Video Processing and Radio Unit
The embedded video processing and radio unit (VPRU) is a small, high performance single board computer for capturing and transmission of high definition video and for providing a simple TM/TC interface for the system it is built into.
- Capture high quality video in 640x360 and 1280x720 pixels, 25 fps, progressive scan
- Perform some basic compression of the video stream in real time
- Provide a TM/TC interface to other processing units
- Interleave telemetry from other processing units and the video stream and transmit it over a radio link
- Receive telecommands via the radio and forward them to the other processing units
Nice to have requirements:
- Pan, tilt, and zoom
- Transponder functionality in the radio unit for ranging
The VPRU is going to be developed in three incremental iterations resulting in three prototypes:
- First Prototype
- This prototype will focus on the video processing functionality and the TM/TC interface. For the radio part, a simple Wi-Fi interface will be used allowing laptops and handheld devices to act as hosts.
- Second Prototype
- This prototype will focus on the radio unit and implement the transponder functionality.
- Third prototype (TBC)
- This prototype will focus on adding the pan tilt and zoom functionalities and will be likely to replace the camera unit from the first and second prototypes.
Initial Analysis and Further References
To begin with, two processors from Texas Instruments are evaluated: The TMS320DM355 digital media processor and the OMAP3530 application processor. Both are based on the DaVinci™ technology and contain hardware accelerators for video processing (both front end and backend). While these may not provide the best solution, they are relatively easy and cheap to get started with, because development environments are available in the form of the Beagle Board, the Leopard Board, and the Gumstix series.
The experiments done using these processors are documented in: