News Article | May 8, 2017
Studio9000 Multi-channel Real-time data/disk Video Recorder and streaming system is the industry's most compact 2U rackmount streaming system with IRIG-B or GPS frame time-stamp capability designed for 4K broadcast video capturing and recording applications that streams 4K IP Video. -- Cepoint Networks released its latest real-time disk video/data recording and streaming system built with 3G HD-SDI Multi-channel capture and playback ports, with IRIG-B or GPS frame time-stamp capability. Studio9000-sv7 is designed for High definition Broadcast and Surveillance real-time video capturing, recording and playout applications conforming to SMPTE 342 standard and has capability of simultaneous video/audio capture and recording and 4K video Transport over 10G. Other capabilities includes synchronized capture and recording of high speed data and 4K video with precision IRIG-B or GPS hardware time-stamps of video or image frames.Also included is an embedded or removable Solid State Disk storage media capable of storing up to 8 hours or more of data or content. The industrial grade unit is designed for high speed imaging and video recording for scientific analysis, and can capture and record simultaneous multiple streams of video or images up to 4K res from any source, HD-SDI, computers, VGA sources, X-Ray machines, NTSC or PAL component or composite, analog or digital video sources in uncompressed AVI or compressed, H.264, MPEG-4, M-JPEG and quite suitable for tracking and analyzing images and videos of fast moving objects, Bullet & Ballistic Testing, high end surveillance such as Airborne video surveillance, X-Ray, FLIR, Machine Vision, Radar imaging, etc. Resolution and frame speed can range up to 2048 x 2048 and up to 100,000 fps or more. Since the unit was designed with mobility and laboratory environment in mind, an optional 28V or 48V DC powered version is also available in addition to the standard 110-240V AC powered unit.4K IP-VIDEO CAPTURE/RECORDING AND STREAMINGThe New Product expands on Company's standard and custom communications solutions. This greatly enhances customer experience and saves time and money through some key features:- Simultaneous real-time capture and recording of synchronized Multiple 3G/HD-SDI video sources- Synchronized IRIG-B or GPS precision time-stamp on each video frame- Synchronized optional audio recording with video- SMPTE standard 4K IP video Transport Streaming- Removable Storage Disc modules or RJ-45 EthernetCepoint's Studio9000 video acquisition systems are being used in Broadcasting, R & D laboratories, and defense agencies for complex and advanced imaging applications.Product is now available direct from the company or approved representatives in North America, or online for an MSRP starting price of $5,000. Current customers of the standard Product can receive a discounted upgrade. For more information on Product or to view a demonstration on how New Product can increase your productivity, visit: http://www.cepoint.com or For information, contact: email@example.com Phone: (603)557-7464.ABOUT COMPANY NAMECepoint is a systems integration, consulting, and manufacturing company with emphasis in custom and specialized IT systems and video products and solutions for defense, R & D, security and communications applications. The company also manufactures high performance, industrial strength computing systems, enterprise storage raid, network communication systems, applied computing products, and technologies for scientific applications and industrial processes, as well as RAID, applied computing products, for Telecom, Government, utilities and industrial markets, for mission-critical applications, servers, VoIP, video surveillance, real-time IRIG-B or GPS time-stamp DVRs, rugged portables, NEBs compliant computers.The company is committed to the interests of your audience with products available through major authorized representatives in North America, Australia, Europe, the United Kingdom and Japan as well as on the Internet. For additional information, please visit our website at http://blog.cepoint.com/
News Article | May 22, 2017
OpticsPlanet.com is looking to express appreciation to our nation’s heroes by striving to raise $50,000 to support veterans and their families through the Gear Up for a Cause campaign. Each time a customer makes a purchase from now until June 18th, 2017, OpticsPlanet.com will donate a portion of net proceeds from every order towards programs designed to help veterans. OpticsPlanet has teamed up with some of the most prominent brands in the industry in continuing efforts to support our nation’s veterans, service members, and their families. Offering weeks’ worth of promotional offers and sales events, shoppers can get their gear and help a hero. In addition, OpticsPlanet is offering limited-time campaign exclusive events created specifically for Gear Up for a Cause. Alpha Crates is a surprise collection of hand-curated items, and OpticsPlanet will donate up to $15 for each crate sold. In addition, OpticsPlanet.com will offer an item called the S.P.O.I.L.S. Kit for a limited time. This item is a collection of branded merchandise including hats, flashlights, bottle openers, lens cleaning cloths, and more provided by campaign partners. The best part is that the full $20 cost of each kit will be given to the charity, helping them positively impact the lives of veterans who have bravely served our country. Gear Up for a Cause supports Hope For The Warriors®, a nonprofit veteran service organization that provides assistance to combat wounded service members & their families. For over 10 years, this organization helps restore self, family, and hope by striving to meet the changing needs of those touched by military service. Hope For The Warriors has a 4 Star rating with Charity Navigator. OpticsPlanet is no stranger to supporting the military and our veterans. In addition to the yearly Gear Up for a Cause campaign, in 2016 OpticsPlanet’s Operation Gift campaign partnered with Operation Gratitude to help send more than 3,000 care packages to members of the armed forces serving across the world. “Our dedicated customers are continuously driving the success of these charitable efforts due to our shared passion for supporting our nation’s heroes,” says Meghan “Meg-O” O’Laughlin, Gear Up for a Cause Campaign Manager. OpticsPlanet is proud to partner with Hope For The Warriors® as well as campaign partners Bushnell, Crimson Trace, FLIR, Holosun, Leupold, Pulsar, Steiner, Streamlight, Surefire, Trijicon, and Vortex. For more information about Gear Up for a Cause and to help support veterans today, visit: http://www.OpticsPlanet.com/GearUp.
News Article | May 23, 2017
GroupGets LLC., the online platform that empowers users to securely join or organize group buys for any product, has launched GroupGets for Business. This new service is ideal for enterprises and manufacturers that want to broaden their distribution channels by connecting with creative individuals and engineers who are actively looking for a specific product or assembly to realize their product development visions. GroupGets levels the buying playing field by giving independent inventors, product developers, makers, and businesses the same access and pricing for specialized technology products as larger players. GroupGets connects these buyers with a wide variety of products offered by leading manufacturers, and enables them to apply the power of crowdfunding to secure volume pricing on products that would otherwise be unobtainable due to high minimum-order quantities. With thousands of successful GroupGets transactions completed, GroupGets has established itself as an innovation hub depended on by manufacturers such as FLIR Systems Inc., Hamamatsu, Research at Google, and startups like Breadware Inc. Today, with the launch of GroupGets for Business, GroupGets aims to attract lean manufacturers of sophisticated products and components that want to connect with new markets without having to resort to selling one-offs and small-quantity lots. For these manufacturers, GroupGets acts as an efficient and easy on-ramp to mass distribution that complements their existing sales channels. "We’ve grown fast and evolved into a thriving innovation hub by enabling early access to tip-of-the spear technologies for professional researchers, product developers, makers, and enthusiasts worldwide," said Ron Justin, co-founder and CEO of GroupGets. "GroupGets for Business is the next phase of our evolution. It’s ideal for manufacturers looking for a way to market and sell beta versions, ‘unofficial’ product concepts, pilot products, and advanced technologies to our innovation-hungry community. We also have private, invite-only campaigns to enable supply chain ‘black ops’ for B2B and other uses." Forward-thinking manufacturers are using GroupGets to get early ROI on their technology investments by offering them for sale to an expanding community of independent inventors, developers, makers, and other businesses. What manufacturers are saying about GroupGets "GroupGets is a valued early distribution and innovation partner for multiple FLIR products." —Dr. Jay James, FLIR Systems Inc. "The GroupGets platform offers a powerful mix of a ready-to-use online storefront, a highly experienced marketing team, and access to a loyal customer base. As a company doing our first major product launch, our online retail options are limited — and the GroupGets campaign was perfect. The GroupGets team was able to help us get our campaign set up quickly. Further, as there is no upfront cost to launch our campaign on GroupGets, the pricing structure is a win-win. The GroupGets team is first rate and we will be releasing exclusives of our future products first on GroupGets." —Daniel Price, CEO, Breadware Inc. "We are proud to partner with GroupGets to help us build our Keyport Maker Program. The GroupGets team is exceptional, and their dedication to serving the maker community—from incredible deals on hard-to-source components to their awesome customer support—is exactly what we need to support the development of new Keyport-compatible products." —David Cooper, CEO, Keyport Inc. About GroupGets LLC Founded in Santa Barbara, California, and now based in Reno, Nevada, GroupGets empowers anyone to securely join or organize group buys for any existing product. The platform brings backers together and securely handles fulfillment. The GroupGets in-house design team, GetLab, can design custom accessories and software to make products more useful and accessible. Leverage the power of shared purchasing interests and collaborate with GroupGets! For more, visit http://www.groupgets.com.
News Article | May 16, 2017
The global handheld imagers market was valued at USD 1.6 billion in 2016 and is expected to reach USD 5 billion in 2024, growing at a CAGR of 13% during the forecast period. -- The global handheld imagers industry is driven by the improving manufacturing process and advancements in technology. Companies invest enormously in research and development operations for offering innovative products to sustain in the handheld imagers market. Companies are focusing on improving and ensuring robust distribution channel and enhanced technical services in order to achieve maximum profits. Handheld imagers provide various benefits such as barcode scanning, age verification and document scanning. The companies provide different types of handheld scanners that suit the requirement of the users. The most prominent among them is the handheld thermal imager. They are very popular in many industries and applications as a non-contact temperature measurement device including HVAC, automotive, building, inspection, energy audits, plant maintenance, electrical contractors, insulation experts and many more. These handheld imagers provide various features such as voice annotation, video output, and resolution and image refresh rate.Declining handheld imager market price trend is anticipated to increase the demand across several industry verticals. Increasing R&D investments have also contributed to low production cost thereby improving manufacturing technique. Product miniaturization to address the growing demand for light portable devices will drive the industry growth over a forecast period.The major reasons that will drive the growth of the market include the escalating terror attacks and criminal nuisances across the globe. The 9/11 attack have significantly impacted the demand for the handheld imagers. Moreover, security concerns, especially at airports and stations due to the heavy crowd, are propelling the demand for handheld imagers across the globe. Moreover, the advancements in technology such as infrared imaging will push the market to the global level. North America will dominate the market due the adoption of millimeter wave technology, followed by Asia Pacific and Europe. The Europe and Asia Pacific will witness substantial growth over the forecast period owing to growing security concerns across the regions. Asia Pacific with the highest number of patents for microbolometers is anticipated to witness considerable growth over the forecast period. The Asia-Pacific market is growing with robust growth rate, as compared to other regions for microbolometer IR detector market due to its continuous economic growth and large manufacturing base.Our in–depth analysis of the global handheld imagers market includes the following segments:By Product:· IR scanners· Stud Finders· Millimeter wave scanners· MicrobolometersBy Application:· Construction· Industrial· Security· Medical· OthersThe growth of the global handheld imagers market is driven by its growing adoption in untapped application areas. New innovative products have significantly offered the scope for handheld images in several application sectors such as security, medical and industrial areas. Further, the increasing demand across security industry is likely to push the market to the global level. The increasing demand is accredited to the rising security concern in areas including government and airports. Moreover, the ability to locate, track and capture criminal in adverse conditions may drive the market demand. Increasing scope of applications including medical, industrial and security is anticipated to drive the demand for handheld imagers during the forecast period. The rising terrorism threat and criminal activity are influencing the market growth. The abilities of the imager in sector to diagnose patient's body, inner ears or the health of the patients' retina may increase the demand across the medical space. Further, technological innovation has led miniaturization and development of lightweight handheld managers, which is expected to positively impact the market growth over the forecast period. Availability of cost-effective handheld imagers due to mass production and a wide range of special applications integrating this technology will lead to the growth of the market. Moreover, the high investment for the development of camera based scanners also contributing towards the growth of handheld imagers market. The advanced and competitive barcode reader scanner has industrial features to increase accuracy, productivity and user friendly operation. Camera-based solutions provide high price-performance ratio and are user-friendly. This is further anticipated to provide new avenues for market growth in the forecast period. However, the technical misspecification regarding handheld imagers is expected to pose a challenge to market growth.· Zircon Corporationo Company Overviewo Key Product Offeringso Business Strategyo SWOT Analysiso Financials· Fluke Corporation· FLIR· Stanley Black and Decker· Franklin Sensors· Raytek· Sago Systems· BAE Systems· CH Hanson· BoschFor Table of Content & Free Sample Report Contact:Ajay DanielEmail: firstname.lastname@example.orgU.S. +1 646 586 9123U.K. +44 203 608 5919
News Article | May 23, 2017
WILSONVILLE, OR--(Marketwired - May 23, 2017) - FLIR Systems, Inc. ( : FLIR) today announced that James J. ("Jim") Cannon has been appointed President and Chief Executive Officer, effective June 19, 2017. Mr. Cannon will succeed Andy Teich, whose retirement after 33 years of service was previously announced on February 14, 2017. Mr. Cannon's extensive and varied leadership experience, together with his proven operational expertise and ability to adapt business strategies to meet evolving market needs, makes him ideally suited to lead FLIR and its portfolio of innovative technology-based products and applications. He previously served for more than 16 years in a variety of senior leadership positions at Stanley Black & Decker, Inc., most recently as President of Stanley Security North America & Emerging Markets. Prior to that, Mr. Cannon was President of the company's Industrial & Automotive Repair (IAR) business unit, first in North America and subsequently in Europe and Latin America, before then serving as President of Stanley Oil & Gas. In addition to his global, cross-functional leadership experience at Stanley Black & Decker, Mr. Cannon served in the U.S. Army for 10 years as an infantryman and armor officer in a wide variety of assignments around the world, including Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm in Iraq, where he learned to truly appreciate FLIR's technology and was awarded a Combat Infantryman's Badge. He later oversaw key security missions as part of the Army's peace enforcement operations in Bosnia. "We are delighted to appoint a chief executive of Jim's caliber," said Earl R. Lewis, Chairman of the FLIR Board of Directors. "Jim's proven track record of achieving strong results in both business and the military make him uniquely well qualified to serve as FLIR's next CEO. Our Board of Directors conducted a thorough search process, in which Jim distinguished himself as a true leader of leaders and demonstrated his experience and adaptability running business units worldwide. We're confident he is the right person to lead FLIR's dedicated employees. On behalf of the entire Board, I'm pleased to welcome Jim and am excited to work closely with him as we continue to leverage the unique attributes of the FLIR brand and product portfolio to deliver increased value to our shareholders." "The opportunity to join this outstanding leadership team and serve alongside over 3,000 talented FLIR employees worldwide as the Company's next CEO is a great honor," said Mr. Cannon. "The FLIR brand is synonymous with continuous innovation and delivering value to customers around the world. From my own personal experience having relied on FLIR technology as a combat veteran, I've seen firsthand the powerful, life-saving impact the Company's portfolio of solutions can have for our customers. Andy and the FLIR team have done a great job building out FLIR's technology and business, and I'm excited to build on that success and drive further growth for the benefit of FLIR's employees, customers, and shareholders." As President of Stanley Security North America & Emerging Markets, Mr. Cannon held direct P&L responsibilities across five business units, managed over 5,000 employees, and oversaw the operations of numerous manufacturing plants and distribution centers. In this role, he successfully developed and executed a strategic plan that reduced complexity and cost while driving continued and sustained improvement. In his previous roles as President of Stanley Oil & Gas, President of IAR Europe & Latin America, and President of IAR North America, he demonstrated his operational skills by driving significant organic growth, increased efficiency, and improved profitability at each business unit. Mr. Cannon serves on the board of directors of Lydall, Inc. and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration/Marketing from the University of Tennessee in Chattanooga. Mr. Cannon will be based out of the Company's Wilsonville, Oregon headquarters. About FLIR Systems, Inc. Founded in 1978 and headquartered in Wilsonville, Oregon, FLIR Systems is a world-leading maker of sensor systems that enhance perception and heighten awareness, helping to save lives, improve productivity, and protect the environment. Through its nearly 3,500 employees, FLIR's vision is to be "The World's Sixth Sense" by leveraging thermal imaging and adjacent technologies to provide innovative, intelligent solutions for security and surveillance, environmental and condition monitoring, outdoor recreation, machine vision, navigation, and advanced threat detection. For more information, please visit www.flir.com and follow @flir. Forward-Looking Statements The statements of opinion in this release that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements are based on current expectations, estimates, and projections about FLIR's business based, in part, on assumptions made by management. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks and uncertainties that are difficult to predict. Therefore, actual outcomes and results may differ materially from what is expressed or forecasted in such forward-looking statements due to numerous factors, including risks and uncertainties discussed from time to time in FLIR's Securities and Exchange Commission filings and reports. Such forward-looking statements speak only as of the date on which they are made and FLIR does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statement to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this release, or for changes made to this document by wire services or Internet service providers. Note to Editors: download additional information, images, and b-roll here.
News Article | May 25, 2017
Hazard: The meters can fail to give an accurate voltage reading, resulting in the operator falsely believing the electrical power is low or off, posing an electrocution hazard. Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled digital clamp meters and contact Extech for a free replacement meter. Consumer Contact: Extech toll-free at 855-239-8324 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, by email at email@example.com, or online at www.extech.com and click on Safety Notices at the bottom of the page for more information. Units: 1,700 (in addition, about 20 were sold in Canada) Description: This recall involves Extech digital clamp meters with model numbers EX650, EX655, MA160, MA61, and MA63. These models are all AC/DC clamp meters, which are electrical testing devices that measure AC/DC voltage, resistance, capacitance, frequency, temperature, continuity, and diode. Serial numbers in the following format are included in the recall: R15XXXXXXX to R17XXXXXXX. Only serial numbers in this range are included in the recall. The "EXTECH" logo and the model number are printed on the front of the unit and the serial number on the back. The digital clamp meters are green and orange. Incidents/Injuries: Extech received two reports of clamp meters displaying an incorrect voltage reading. No injuries have been reported. Sold at: Grainger, Platt Electric Supply stores and industrial and electrical distributors and wholesalers nationwide and online at Amazon.com and other websites from January 2016 through April 2017 for between $110 and $230. Importer: FLIR Commercial Systems Inc., of Goleta, Calif., owner of Extech Note: Health Canada's press release is available at: http://healthycanadians.gc.ca/recall-alert-rappel-avis/hc-sc/2017/63356r-eng.php This recall was conducted, voluntarily by the company, under CPSC's Fast Track Recall process. Fast Track recalls are initiated by firms, who commit to work with CPSC to quickly announce the recall and remedy to protect consumers. About U.S. CPSC: The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of injury or death associated with the use of thousands of types of consumer products under the agency's jurisdiction. Deaths, injuries, and property damage from consumer product incidents cost the nation more than $1 trillion annually. CPSC is committed to protecting consumers and families from products that pose a fire, electrical, chemical or mechanical hazard. CPSC's work to ensure the safety of consumer products - such as toys, cribs, power tools, cigarette lighters and household chemicals – contributed to a decline in the rate of deaths and injuries associated with consumer products over the past 40 years. Federal law bars any person from selling products subject to a publicly-announced voluntary recall by a manufacturer or a mandatory recall ordered by the Commission. For more lifesaving information, follow us on Facebook, Instagram @USCPSC and Twitter @USCPSC or sign up to receive our e-mail alerts. To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury go online to www.SaferProducts.gov or call CPSC's Hotline at 800-638-2772 or teletypewriter at 301-595-7054 for the hearing impaired. CPSC Consumer Information Hotline Contact us at this toll-free number if you have questions about a recall: 800-638-2772 (TTY 301-595-7054) Times: 8 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. ET; Messages can be left anytime Call to get product safety and other agency information and to report unsafe products. Media Contact Please use the phone numbers below for all media requests. Phone: 301-504-7908 Spanish: 301-504-7800 To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/extech-recalls-digital-clamp-meters-due-to-electrocution-hazard-300464201.html
News Article | April 20, 2017
froglogic, an early anticipator for the need for GUI test automation and code coverage tooling for the rapidly transforming embedded markets, expanded its offerings to cover many of the embedded HMI testing needs. Many renowned companies including Bosch, Siemens, GE, FLIR, Prüftechnik and St. Judes Medical have already adopted froglogic’s tools for the quality assurance of the their embedded software development processes. After a very successful exhibition at the Embedded World 2017 in March, froglogic will also present and demo its embedded software testing and coverage solutions at the ESC Boston. You will find froglogic at the booth #1177. For any questions, if you’d like to schedule a meeting with a froglogic representative, please contact sales(at)froglogic.com.
News Article | April 19, 2017
Not content with laying out a full-blown augmented reality (AR) platform with its new smartphone camera software, Facebook has launched two, brand new 360-degree video cameras to jump start that end of the immersive social media revolution. During Facebook’s second and last keynote address at its F8 developer conference in San Jose, California, Facebook CTO Mike Schroepfer debuted the new hardware dubbed Surround 360 x24 and x6. Looking a lot like Nokia’s own OZO 360-degree camera, the two sequels sport 24 and six lenses, respectively, in a spherical orientation. Clearly, this is a marked upgrade upon the previous Facebook Surround 360 camera, which simply had a circular band of cameras. Each lens on these cameras can shoot within six degrees of freedom, or 6DoF, and each camera is far more portable and durable than the previous model. This means, according to Facebook, that “viewers can move up/down, left/right, and forwards/backwards with pitch, yaw and roll inside the experience to see content from different angles.” Both cameras are said to capture the full RGB color spectrum and use new depth-estimation algorithms through image oversampling – four times and three times oversampling on the x24 and x6, respectively – to produce better image quality. These improved depth-sensing techniques are said to also afford content creators more impressive 360-degree pieces of video. For instance, live-action video shot with these cameras is supported in existing visual effect editing tools. Because everything in a scene captured by these cameras includes depth information, computer-generated imagery, or CGI, elements can be integrated into live action sequences captured by these cameras. These cameras are clearly designed for content creators, but tease a future in which 360-degree video gets even better, with readier access to 3D effects and allowing for viewers to move around within said video – rather than be the focal point of the camera(s). Designed and prototyped in Facebook’s own Area 404 lab with help from FLIR, a specialized computer imaging company, the social network aims to license out its designs to manufacturing partners to kick start its adoption by content creators. Better yet, Facebook also revealed that it has boosted the effective resolution of 360-degree video on its platform when streaming to non-VR and VR devices by 51% and 59%, respectively, by using machine learning techniques. These AI techniques predict where viewers will focus on most within a video or be most interested in, devoting the majority of rendered pixels to those areas and at the right times, thus increasing effective resolution. What this all means for you, in the long run, is 360-degree video somehow cooler than it already is – stay tuned to those News Feeds.
News Article | April 19, 2017
Burns, a CNC model maker at Facebook’s nascent Area 404 hardware lab, has been overseeing the prototyping of the company’s latest products—a pair of brand-new virtual reality camera rigs it developed (and that will be manufactured by licensed partners). Unlike any other cameras, they can shoot in what’s known as six degrees of freedom, or 6DOF, meaning in 360 degrees and in 3D. The first camera, known as the x24, is meant for professionals making high-end projects, and features 24 lenses capable of shooting at extremely high resolutions. It was conceived in-house and the rugged, stylish outer shell was prototyped at Area 404, while Facebook turned to FLIR, a developer of thermal imaging cameras, to incorporate its lens-system integration into the x24’s 6DOF architecture. At the same time, Facebook is also announcing a lower-end version, the x6, which has six lenses and shoots in a lower resolution, and was designed and prototyped entirely in house. Facebook isn’t yet saying who will produce either camera, nor what they will cost. Why Six Degrees Of Freedom? The upshot of 6DOF cameras? That users of high-end VR headsets like Facebook’s own Oculus Rift or HTC’s Vive will be able to move around in any direction in the footage it shoots rather than just be able to look around in 360 degrees from a fixed center position. Today, that’s largely only possible with computer-generated imagery or images shot using numerous cameras pointing inward. Or with expensive one-off cameras that aren’t designed to work easily with popular visual-effects and image-processing software. “We want there to be tons of really great immersive content produced, so that people can have these amazing experiences that we want them to have in VR,” said Mike Schroepfer, Facebook’s CTO. “Virtual experiences can take you to places you’ve never been, like Mars or training to be a doctor in an emergency room, but video really opens up the opportunity for you to be in the real places in the world, seeing the Northern Lights or a family member.” Created by the same team behind the reference design for Facebook’s $30,000 open-source Surround 360 camera last year, the sleek, black x24 is one of the most sophisticated hardware products Facebook has ever developed and the first commercially available product to emerge as a collaboration between Area 404 and numerous other parts of the company. When Facebook formally unveiled Area 404 at a packed press event last summer, it still had that new hardware lab smell. Long workbenches were empty, dozens and dozens of electrical outlets were unclaimed, and though there was plenty of very expensive equipment on display–3D printers, 5-axis CNC milling machines, and the like–they were hardly in use. Earlier this month, I was invited to be the first reporter to see the operation in action and to have exclusive access to the Area 404 folks leading the effort to turn out the x24 prototypes. Now, the workbenches are covered in electronics and tools, there’s plenty of things plugged into the outlets, and the hard-core equipment is busy turning out work for various teams at Facebook eager to leverage their access to such an outfit. It’s “organized chaos,” Burns says. And why not? It’s open to anyone at the company wanting to pursue a hardware project. In fact, said Schroepfer, Area 404 is now overbooked, forcing Facebook to open more hardware facilities to handle the demand. Even as the Surround 360 team was still working on that first reference design last year, it was already conferring with Burns about how Area 404 could help make these new cameras–which the company believes will exist side by side in the filmmaking world with those based on last year’s open-source reference design–as powerful and robust as possible. And on a time scale that no outside prototyping organization could even come close to matching. Brian Cabral, the Facebook engineering director who’s led the company’s VR cameras project since its inception in 2015, explained that the goal for the new camera was to be able to produce high-quality, color-rich, 3D imagery in 360 degrees with 120 million pixels of depth information captured 60 times a second that can be easily integrated into well-understood and used visual effects systems. In other words, 3D imagery that professional filmmakers would know exactly how to process with the tools they use everyday. Even better, Cabral said, because imagery from the camera can be precisely mapped in 3D point cloud, it’s fairly simple to pair it with computer-generated 3D imagery, making visual-effects-driven cinematic films easier than ever to produce for VR systems like the Rift or Vive. It also makes it possible for visual effects artists to do things like replace backgrounds as they normally would with a green screen, but without having to use a green screen, Facebook says. And while the best imagery produced by the new cameras will be for systems like the Rift or Vive, they will also be able to produce high-quality 360-degree imagery for mobile VR headsets like Samsung’s Gear VR. When viewing content on that system, users are in the center of whatever they see and can look around them in all directions, but can’t move in three dimensions. Still, imagery produced with the new cameras for such gear looks fantastic, clear, and rich. Asked why Facebook made the x24 and x6, Cabral pointed to the company’s core mission–connecting everyone to the memories and experiences they want to share. “That runs the gamut from people creating richly produced content to everyday content,” he said. “Given that [VR has] a completely new [visual] language, we wanted to make sure there’s a language to learn to share in this space…The people learning to communicate the language are the artists. They’re the first ones learning to capture, direct, and compose in 360.” Eric Cheng, Facebook’s head of immersive media, said that at launch, the company has assembled a preliminary list of partners with whom it has been working on the camera. That list includes Adobe and Foundry, both makers of popular post-processing tools, as well as Otoy, a developer of software for making and distributing 3D content. “People will be able to use content from this camera in familiar tools,” Cheng said, “when it ships rather than having to struggle with new tools.” At the same time, Cheng added, Facebook has also been working with VR and visual effects production companies like Here Be Dragons and FrameStore. “The goal is to let you experience an environment or a story as immersively as possible, so that the technology fades away, and you’re left with the story,” Cheng said. “We’ve seen that in VR gaming already. This is a giant step for live action as well.” Johannes Saam, the senior creative director at FrameStore, the visual effects house for films like “Guardians of the Galaxy 2,” agrees. “The potential of Facebook’s [6DOF cameras] is incredible,” Saam said in a statement. “Its point-cloud-based approach paired with image overlap blurs the lines between 2D and 3D in the production pipeline and opens up the opportunities for advanced volumetric capture, [which] has the potential to be the next wave in cinematography. Being a part of creating this process and molding it into a modern production pipeline was very exciting.” But before Saam or anyone else could get their hands on Facebook’s new cameras, there had to be collaboration between Cabral’s team and Area 404. Burns said that his group had been involved in the camera design process “from concept all the way through the maturity of the mechanical and industrial design.” In fact, he said, the camera was very much designed around Facebook’s in-house capabilities–meaning the kinds of things that could be prototyped using the professional-grade equipment available at Area 404. “It’s very complex to make,” Burns said. “It’s something only we can build. If we had tried to outsource [the production and iterative prototypes] it would have taken” months longer to get to where the project is today. More to the point, Facebook would still have produced the camera, said design prototype staffer Joyce Hsu, but it would have likely had a significantly less ambitious or polished design. “We picked a design that is the perfect balance between function and form,” Hsu said. Initially, the teams generated 3D-printed prototypes of the camera. Using those, they were able to identify issues that would come up in manufacturing. Once they moved on to actually producing the rapid prototypes in the lab, they were able to rapidly iterate, Burns said, making steps forward on mechanical or industrial design elements “in hours or days, rather than weeks or months. That can only happen when you have a place like Area 404 and can bring” everyone together. Jim Ammon, a mechanical engineer who worked on the camera project, noted that quick conversations with Burns and folks like Hsu allowed them to make design decisions in-house that likely saved days of work down the line. “It’s hard to do that,” Ammon said, “if you’re dealing with a remote [manufacturing] shop or a shop in another country.” Still, building a camera like this in-house means not having anyone to lean on for advice or help. “There’s no playbook, and no rules,” Burns said. “There’s no one telling you how to make it. You just have to figure it out.” One of Burns’s early epiphanies was to realize that he could utilize Area 404’s lower-end 3-axis milling machines to do some of the more brute-force work turning blocks of aluminum into the basic, semi-finished curved components that make up the camera’s outer shell. That meant the lab’s top-end 5-axis milling machine was available for more sophisticated work. But because the lab has both devices, they could work on different aspects of the design at the same time, rather than being forced to do one or the other. Now that the designs are done, it’s time to turn them over to manufacturing partners. Facebook isn’t saying which companies it is working with, nor how much it expects the cameras to cost. Schroepfer said it’s fair to imagine that the x24–with 24 lenses–will cost more than last year’s camera, the design of which called for 17 lenses. But the company is hopeful that professionals will see the value of a truly 6DOF camera rig designed to work seamlessly with the most popular editing and processing software. Already, Schroepfer said, numerous manufacturers have built cameras based on last year’s Surround 360 design. Now, it’s time to give the industry the tools to go even further, and Facebook expects filmmakers to be able to buy the cameras directly, or even rent them as needed. Either way, the more they’re used, the better off it is for Facebook, as a company making a major push into VR. “We didn’t want to get into the camera business, we just wanted to make sure lots of people were able to produce this content,” he explained. “We’re trying to make it easier to bring whatever tools they want. And again, this is all toward [the goal of] if we get a lot more awesome immersive content being created and shared, we’ll give ourselves high-fives.”
News Article | February 27, 2017
BARCELONA, Spain, Feb. 27, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- DJI, the world leader in unmanned aerial technology, Sunday unveiled the new Matrice 200 drone series (M200), which is purpose-built for professional users to perform aerial inspections and collect data – making drone technology an affordable and easy-to-use tool for enterprises that recognize how aerial imaging can transform their operations. The M200 series' folding body is easy to carry and easy to set up, with a weather- and water-resistant body, ideal for field operations. It offers DJI's first upward-facing gimbal mount, opening up the undersides of bridges, towers and other structures to inspection. It is compatible with DJI's powerful X4S and X5S cameras, as well as the high-powered Z30 zoom camera and the XT camera for thermal imaging. It has a forward-facing first-person view camera, allowing a pilot and a camera operator to monitor separate images on dual controllers. Its safety features include obstacle avoidance sensors facing forward, up and down, as well as an ADS-B receiver for advisory traffic information from nearby manned aircraft. With a dual battery set-up, the M200 platform can fly for up to 35 minutes with a mounted camera. "Drones have quickly become a standard part of the enterprise toolkit and industrial users have come to rely on DJI technology to efficiently collect aerial data," said Paul Guo, Director Enterprise Solutions at DJI. "With the M200 series, DJI introduces a holistic solution designed specifically for these users. We are revolutionizing professional workflows by making it possible to use advanced sensors in various combinations to make sophisticated tasks such as bridge inspections, land surveying and search-and-rescue missions, easier, safer and more reliable than ever before." The M200 series is designed for professionals using drones for more precise, efficient and safe aerial data collection. Examples of industry applications include: More information about the M200's applications is available here: http://www.dji.com/matrice-200-series/applications Standard and Pro versions The M200 series comes in three versions. The standard M200 is equipped with one downward-facing gimbal mount. The M210 opens up for multiple payload configurations – one single downward facing gimbal mount, two parallel downward-facing gimbal mounts or one upward-facing gimbal mount. The M210 features additional connectivity ports to support third party sensors and accessories. The M210 has the capability to support additional sensors in the future and additional payload can be mounted on top of the aircraft. The M210 RTK is available with D-RTK modules for centimeter-precision navigation. Unrivaled Safety and Reliability With an IP43 classification, the M200 series is built to endure adverse environments. The aircraft is equipped with more than 20 internal sensors for maximum redundancy and reliability, including compass, GPS system, dual inertial measurement units (IMUs) and three barometers. Gimbal controllers have been integrated in the aircraft body for protection and to prevent drift. The aircraft features two stereo-vision systems below and in front of the aircraft and has an upward facing infrared sensor for obstacle avoidance. A redundant battery system improves safety and also allows the craft to stay powered while batteries are swapped in sequence. The M200 series features DJI AirSense, a built-in ADS-B receiver, enhancing airspace safety by automatically providing the operator with real-time information about the position, altitude, and velocity of nearby manned aircraft equipped with ADS-B transmitters. AirSense enables safer and more efficient use of airspace, particularly in locations where other manned aircraft may be operating. The M200 series is also equipped with an integrated flight controller, featuring two IMUs and a GNSS unit, with additional analytical redundancy systems. Working together with advanced diagnostic algorithms, it can seamlessly switch from one IMU to the other to maintain reliability and precision. DJI Flight Management In addition to the DJI GO 4 app, the M200 series supports the brand new DJI Pilot app, which is specifically designed for enterprise users, optimizing user experience and flight performance. Users can also plan flights through DJI's GS Pro app, which uses a clear and concise interface to establish complex flight missions with just a few taps. The M200 series is compatible with DJI's Mobile and Onboard Software Development Kit (SDK), enabling programmers to build customized solutions for flight planning, data collection and analysis. The DJI Pilot app is compatible with DJI FlightHub™, a web-based software package allowing teams to share real-time data with offsite parties over the Internet. This includes remote emergency situation control rooms keeping track of first response teams or asset management centers inspecting global infrastructure networks. In an easy-to-use control center, DJI FlightHub lets users plan flights with multiple drones and keep track of each aircraft's status. An offsite control room can simultaneously monitor live feeds and can remotely control gimbal and camera. The software enables managers to plan flights in advance using waypoints and dynamic geofencing. Intelligent Flight Features The M200 series' computer vision enables intelligent flight modes to help with data collection. These features are available for multiple DJI sensors, enabling advanced shots such as zooming while tracking an object: Accessories The M200 series pairs with DJI Goggles, displaying an 85-degree view from the drone in full 1080p for a bird's-eye view of the world below. The M200 series uses DJI's powerful Lightbridge 2 system, supporting a range up to 4.3 miles (7 km) where, allowed by local laws and regulations, at live view resolutions up to 1080p. The master and slave controller range extends to 328 feet and users can switch between 2.4 GHz and 5.8 GHz frequencies to cut through any noise for greater signal stability. The M200 series offers two battery versions – a standard 95 Wh version and a more powerful version of 174 Wh with flight time of up to 38 minutes. M200 payloads The M200 series enables three different payload configurations – one downward-facing camera (M200), two downward-facing cameras (M210) and / or one upward-facing cameras (M210). DJI's updated series of Zenmuse cameras is optimized for aerial imaging and communicates directly with the aircraft's gimbal and flight controllers. For situations that require a balance between weight and image quality, the Zenmuse X4S has a 1-inch, 20-megapixel sensor with 11.6 stops of dynamic range and a 24 mm equivalent focal length. The Zenmuse X4S offers aperture control (f2.8-11) and a mechanical shutter capable of 1/2000 shutter speeds, eliminating rolling shutter distortion when taking images of fast-moving subjects or when flying at high speed. The Zenmuse X5S has a larger Micro Four Thirds sensor with 20.8 megapixels and 12.8 stops of dynamic range, and supports eight lenses from wide angles to zooms. DJI's Zenmuse XT, powered by FLIR, provides high-sensitivity thermal imaging ideal for analytics and telemetry. DJI's Zenmuse Z30 is the first integrated aerial camera with an optical zoom up to 30x and digital up to 6x, making image data collection significantly faster while greatly reducing the risk of harm to both personnel and equipment. Price and Availability The M200, the M210 and the M210 RTK are available for pre-order from official DJI Enterprise dealers and will start shipping in Q2 2017. Pricing details and information on where to buy the M200 series will be announced in due course. For more information about the M200 series, please see here: http://www.dji.com/matrice-200-series/ Photos and videos of the M200 are available for download at this link: http://bit.ly/2lXFQty About DJI DJI is a global leader in developing and manufacturing innovative drone and camera technology for personal and professional use. DJI was founded and is run by people with a passion for remote-controlled helicopters and experts in flight-control technology and camera stabilization. The company is dedicated to making aerial photography and filmmaking equipment and platforms more accessible, reliable and easier to use for creators and innovators around the world. DJI's global operations currently span across the Americas, Europe and Asia, and its revolutionary products and solutions have been chosen by customers in over 100 countries for applications in filmmaking, construction, emergency response, agriculture, conservation and many other industries. For more information, visit our website: http://enterprise.dji.com Follow DJI Enterprise on Twitter: https://twitter.com/DjiEnterprise Subscribe to our YouTube Channel: www.youtube.com/DJI