TU Wien and Dynamic Perspective have developed an electronically controlled camera suspension system for capturing razor-sharp video footage in extreme situations.
Up until now, the thought of capturing steady video footage from a roller coaster would have seemed virtually inconceivable. However, TU Wien and Dynamic Perspective have now succeeded in developing a camera suspension system that can master this challenge with ease.
New camera stabilisation offers top-quality HD-video footage for TV and film even when flying dynamically.
Featuring five rotational axes and sophisticated control technology, the camera gimbal can compensate for shaking movements with such precision that top-quality film footage can now even be obtained from remote-controlled aircrafts. This opens up brand new perspectives for live sport broadcasts.
Clever not clunky
"The easiest way to overcome shaking problems is to make the camera system as heavy as possible," explains Alexander Schirrer from the Institute of Mechanics and Mechatronics at TU Wien. A heavy camera has so much inertia that minor vibrations have no impact.
However, if the camera has to be mounted on an aircraft, the weight has to be kept to an absolute minimum. Including the camera, the newly developed system weighs just under twenty kilos in total – the kind of load that is perfectly manageable for a small aircraft to carry. Other camera systems can be up to one hundred kilos in weight.
TU Wien and Dynamic Perspective spent two years working on an innovative high-performance control system to enable active camera stabilisation. The result was a special type of cardan suspension called a 'gimbal'. You actually only need three rotational axes to rotate a camera in space in any direction you like. However, two extra axes were added so that particularly fine corrections could be made very quickly.
Thousands of measurements per second
It is not just the mechanical suspension that is crucial; in fact, it is the control system that plays a leading role: sensors measure the position of the camera several thousand times a second and the programmed control algorithms must then calculate exactly the right corrective movements in a matter of several hundred microseconds so that they can be performed subsequently by the electromechanical actuators.
"First of all, we had to carry out extensive computer simulations. Then, we were able to use gyrocopters to test our control technology in practice," says Alexander Schirrer. Their patient research work certainly paid off: "Our set-up still delivers razor-sharp images even when flying dynamically, with full zoom and at full HD resolution. As a result, we are opening up a whole new level of quality, the like of which has never been seen before within this application area."
"Weighing up to 70% less than existing systems, our gimbal is the first that is suitable for use on ultralight aircrafts and drones – alongside conventional applications such as helicopters, cranes, cars and boats," asserts Peter Morawitz from Dynamic Perspective. "Within this context, maximum image stability is assured thanks to our control systems."
A new level of quality for sports footage
When you first hear about the flying camera system, action films might immediately spring to mind, but it is primarily intended for capturing sports footage. In contrast to motion pictures, sports footage does not allow for 3D animation techniques and there is no scope for time-consuming post-editing on a computer. "The footage delivered by the camera must be of top quality from the start and suitable for immediate live broadcast – and that is precisely what our system has made possible," says Schirrer. Another potential application for the new camera system is the recording of precise scientific measurements, e.g. geoinformation.
Dr. Florian Aigner | Technische Universität Wien
Terahertz spectroscopy goes nano
20.10.2017 | Brown University
New software speeds origami structure designs
12.10.2017 | Georgia Institute of Technology
University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event
On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...
Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.
Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....
Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).
When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...
Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.
How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...
Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.
It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...
17.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
20.10.2017 | Information Technology
20.10.2017 | Materials Sciences
20.10.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research