AEF Introduces New Digital Camera Systems Team

The team unites over 20 digital camera experts from AEF member companies to improve cross-brand interoperability and integration of digital cameras as OEMs move from analog to digital systems.

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The Agricultural Industry Electronics Foundation (AEF), a global non-profit organization founded to improve cross-manufacturer compatibility in agricultural equipment, has announced a new Digital Camera Systems (DCS) Project Team. The team unites over 20 digital camera experts from AEF member companies spanning the United States, South America, Europe and Asia, to improve cross-brand interoperability and integration of digital cameras.

According to Norbert Schlingmann, general manager, AEF, there is not a standard that covers the integration of video systems into complex, mobile working machines such as mixed fleet tractor-implement combinations.

Agricultural machinery manufacturers and machine operators are currently making the transition from well-known analog video systems to digital video systems. These new systems often bring a broad range of additional feature sets -- such as configuration options like frame rates and video quality, different views like slow motion, zooming to a region of interest, 360-degree birds eye view or even object detection -- which can lead to a variety of compatibility challenges.

The team is being led by Niklas Niebrügge, ANEDO GmbH, a software developer with expertise in digital video system solutions. Niklas has been a member of AEF’s High Speed ISOBUS (HSI) project team since 2020, supporting the areas of digital video and camera communication interfaces like ISO 17215.

“Today, video system components are constantly combined in new ways leading to a high risk of cross-brand incompatibility and access difficulties for the end user,” said Niebrügge. “I am looking forward to leading the new DCS team and having additional active support in identifying typical use cases and determining further requirements to find solutions to these issues.”

The AEF received a high number of requests from its member companies to join the project team. A diverse group made up of camera, terminal, cable, connector and agricultural machinery manufacturers, as well as system integrators and suppliers, were selected by the AEF Steering Committee.

Their first goal will be to develop a new AEF functionality to enable plug-and-play, off-the-shelf, video solutions that offer vision system component interoperability and easy integration for manufacturers and after-market sales in the context of high-speed ISOBUS (HSI) infrastructure. To achieve this, the team will work closely with AEF’s HSI and Wireless In-field Communication (WIC) project teams. The team will also be developing an AEF Guideline for Protocols and Interfaces.