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Auto centering RC helicam

Looking for a way to do it.
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Controlling RC Helicopters is hard. With a mounted camera and videolink etc its harder. This is more a question than an idea.

I am thinking of some kind of transmitter weared by, say a skiier, that keeps him autocentered in the frame, to make the shooting from an RC helicam easier (the kind that rotates 360 degrees (not the helicopter, stupid; the camera)).

Kind of like that hockeypuck used in NHL(?) some time ago. reciever could be either the radiocontroller, or a separate cameracontrol. Radio transmission would be cool, then you could use avalanche transmitters, often integrated in goretexjackets etc, for the autocentering. Dont know if radio is the way to do it, you have any ideas?

Farbrore, Feb 27 2009

Kevin Warwick http://www.wired.co.../news/2000/09/38467
Search for "marathon-running" [coprocephalous, Feb 27 2009]

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       Since there are no question marks this is an idea, not a question, also weared should be worn.   

       Otherwise this has no problems. It may be easier to control the helicopter rather than having a motorised camera as this will reduce weight.   

       Nice idea
miasere, Feb 27 2009
  

       100hz cam with some onboard intelligence, 50hz shutter that goes from black ir-transmissive filter to clear, ir-blocking, ir source on the skier (say, an LED on the helmet) ->voila!   

       The camera sees only darkness half the time, with a little dot (the LED) and the onboard intelligence (probably does not even have to be an fpga, depending on how good the initial contrast dot/surroundings is) adjust the servos so that the dot is always centered. The other half of the time, the camera sees just the normal picture, 50hz being enough for video.   

       If no 100hz cam is forthcoming, or the filter too expensive same thing with two cameras, one of which is a normal video cam, and the other some cheap-as-dirt ccd with ir-only filter.   

       I guess homing in on a radio signal would require much more elaborate equipment
loonquawl, Feb 27 2009
  

       //ir source on the skier (say, an LED on the helmet)//   

       A lot more people are going to have to give up smoking for that to work.
bigsleep, Feb 27 2009
  

       //ir source on the skier (say, an LED on the helmet)// Plus there's the potential Kevin Warwick Effect from that big IR source in the sky.
coprocephalous, Feb 27 2009
  

       Sorry for the spelling, miasere. English is not my first language.   

       About the IR comments: will the suns radiation be a problem with this?   

       could other tracking techniques work better? example: helmet with accent color and some kind of color/contrast locking/tracking?
Farbrore, Feb 27 2009
  

       //will the suns radiation be a problem with this// That's the Kevin Warwick Effect - link coming soon.
coprocephalous, Feb 27 2009
  

       if color tracking works, ir tracking works too, as ir is just another color _ difference being that ir we do not need, so skier would not have to wear brightly pijnk helmet, but instead a little led, that would seem to be off in normal video. sun glare can be a problem, especially in reflective environment (snow...) but you with the two-cam solution you could have the led flashin, and the tracker cam only looking for flashing lights, which would do some good.   

       If it is mostly dark skier on white snow the tracking might even work with only one cam looking for the darkest object in the pic.
loonquawl, Feb 27 2009
  

       //could other tracking techniques work better ?//   

       Radio would seem the easiest way. Triangulation would give a ready to use feed of direction etc.   

       IR could be made to work but not as loon says. TV remotes don't suffer from sun interference as the signal is modulated (flashes on and off). The trouble with using cameras to detect a rapid flashing LED though is that the LED could well be off every time the camera scan passes the LED. IR would need a dedicated sensor.   

       The really good bit about modulation though is that just like having many buttons on a remote, you could request the helicam to track player X or Y even though both of their transmitters are active.
bigsleep, Feb 27 2009
  
      
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