Rabu, 23 April 2008

Sensor Spotlight: the RC30

Since I covered a satellite sensor in the last sensor spotlight, I thought I would go for a airborne sensor this time. The focus of today's post is the RC30, which has been the workhorse of the airborne mapping community for many years. Introduced in 1992 by Leica Geosystems, over 400 cameras have been deployed all over the world.

About the sensor: the RC30 is a frame camera system that can capture imagery in color, panchromatic, and false color film. There are a couple of different lens options (6 and 12 inch focal lengths), which allow for large-scale mapping applications. Complete specifications are available here.

For an example of what RC30 imagery looks like, check out the orthophotos available online at MassGIS. These were flown by Keystone Aerial Surveys, who also happen to have a great photo of the camera on their site here. Other components in the system may include a GPS/IMU system, a PAV30 gyro-stabilized mount, a GPS reference station, and more.

In LPS, the workflow for the RC30 is the classical frame photogrammetry workflow - it is basically the workflow outlined here.

Lastly, just to demonstrate the longevity of this sytem, check out this advertisement from 1988 for an RC20 (Wild Heerbrugg was an earlier incarnation of Leica Geosystems). The RC20 was the predecessor to the RC30, and is essentially the same except for the addition of gyro-stabilized suspension on the RC30. Aside from that, I just think it is a very cool ad!!!

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