US tech giant Intel Corp. has unveiled a new 3D camera that is meant to allow machines to know where they are, without the use of sensors or GPS (Global Positioning System).
The Intel RealSense Tracking Camera T265, developed by the firm’s R&D team in Haifa, uses an “inside-out tracking” mechanism that enables the camera to understand the environment without relying on external sensors. The technology will enable agricultural robots to navigate obstacles in distant fields without GPS, and industrial robots or drones in warehouses or remote outdoor areas to find their way using just their camera.
The T265 uses a vision processing unit developed by the firm which directly handles all the data processing necessary for the machine to track its way. This makes the camera a low-power solution that developers can put into their existing or new products where “rich visual intelligence” is needed, Intel said in a statement on January 23.
The T265 complements Intel’s RealSense D400 series cameras, and the data from both devices can be combined for advanced applications like occupancy mapping, improved 3D scanning and advanced navigation and collision avoidance in GPS-restricted environments, the statement said.
The device will begin shipping next month, the firm said, at a price of $199.
Intel has been operating in Israel since 1974 and employs around 10,000 workers in its Kiryat Gat production center and in four development centers, in Haifa, Yakum, Jerusalem and Petah Tikva. The Haifa center is Intel’s largest outside the US. In 2017, Intel bought Jerusalem-based Mobileye, a maker of advanced vision and driver assistance systems for use in autonomous vehicles, for a whopping $15.3 billion, the largest acquisition of an Israeli tech firm.