CogniSatTM AI and Computer Vision Payload Processing Platform Specifications

The power of Myriad brought to cubesats

CogniSatTM AI and Computer Vision Payload Processing Board Specifications

The power of Myriad 2
brought to cubesats

The Ubotica CogniSatTM CubeSat Board brings the power of Myriad 2’s CV and AI compute acceleration to a PC104 form-factor for smallsat and cubesat missions. It is built around the Intel® Movidius™ Myriad™ 2 Computer Vision (CV) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) COTS VPU whose 12 vector cores provide high-performance parallel and hardware accelerated compute within a low power envelope.

Widely Adaptable for AI and
Computer Vision Deployments

Flexible and Integration Ready

CogniSatTM combines the power efficient compute of the Myriad 2 VPU with a wide range of interfaces and peripherals, providing broad flexibility for integration into satellite platforms. Either Gigabit Ethernet or USB2.0/3.0 can be used as the primary control and data interface to the board, enabling data rates sufficient to handle many CV and AI applications at near-streaming throughput.

Efficient Neural Network Inference

Common NN frameworks (e.g., TensorFlow, PyTorch, Caffe) can be used for NN model development and training, with the model subsequently targeted to CogniSatTM. CogniSatTM leverages the broad range of pre-qualified models and layers available within Intel®’s OpenVINO™ toolkit. Pre-trained OpenVINO™ models can be used with transfer learning, or can be deployed directly on CogniSat’sTM board, via the Ubotica CVAI Toolkit™ software.

Customisable CV and ISP Pipelines

Custom Computer Vision pipelines can easily be deployed and executed on CogniSatTM using the CVAI Toolkit™ software*. The software supports application-specific CV and ISP pipelines that utilise a combination of the power-efficient Myriad 2 streaming hardware blocks and software filters implemented on the vector engines. Deployment to CogniSatTM involves the transfer of only a single configuration file, and runtime updates enable the updating of pipelines without requiring application re-compile or system reboot.

Dual Operational Modes

In Direct Mode, a master host communicates with CogniSatTM to load CV and NN models to the Myriad, and to thereafter submit image frames to the board and receive processing results. The host can dynamically update the Myriad application over the primary interface, enabling flexible runtime solutions. In Custom Mode, frames from a directly connected sensor can be captured, processed and inferenced.

Key Features

CogniSatTM has the following features**:

  • PC104 form factor, meeting ESA-TEC’s board specification for cubesat IODs
  • On-board integrated latch-up protection, with auto-restart and trip signal
  • Single 5V supply
  • CAN interface for C&C
  • Direct operation mode → CV and AI engine as a slave over USB 2.0/3.0 or Ethernet
  • Custom operation mode → CV and AI for directly interfaced sensors, control over SPI, CAN, USB or Ethernet†
  • All COTS components: Selected based on flight heritage and prior rad test results
  • Integrated Neural Network Supervisor
  • Serial NOR boot flash
  • External power-down control
  • Parallel and MIPI camera interfaces for direct sensor connection†
  • Fully compatible with the Ubotica CVAI Toolkit™ Software, for complete control over CV and AI processing
  • microSD card for non-volatile data storage
  • Additional on-board peripherals
    • Floating Gate Dosimeter for radiation sensing
    • IMU (3D accelerometer and gyroscope)
  • Targets sub 5W power envelope and incorporates power gating
  • Stackable 2x dual row board-edge headers for power delivery and low-level control

** These features subject to modification
* In Direct Mode
† In Custom Mode

CVAI ToolkitTM

Ubotica’s CVAI ToolkitTM is a lightweight library for developers to bring the power of Myriad’s Computer Vision (CV) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) compute acceleration to their in-orbit applications. The full feature set of the Myriad Vision Processing Unit (VPU) is exposed to facilitate the rapid development and deployment of applications to process data on-board satellite in a fast, power efficient manner.
Key Features:

  • Fully compatible with Myriad Neural Networks developed for Intel’s OpenVINO platform.
  • Runtime configuration of Myriad’s Hardware and Software CV filters for Image Transformations.
  • Integrated Neural Network Supervisor
  • Optimised for environments with a single Myriad VPU
  • Supports both USB and Ethernet connectivity
  • APIs for C/C++ and Python programming languages
CANSupporting CSP
SPIMaster/slave, 3.3V logic
I2C3.3V logic
UART3.3V logic
GPIOx5, 3.3V logic
MIPI4-lane CSI-2 camera I/F
CIF16-lane parallel camera I/F
Size, Weight & Power
Nominal Power Consumption2W (typical CV & NN example)
Length94mm (98mm incl. connectors)
Width90mm (99mm incl. connectors)
Height (max)15mm