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Archery One of the most extreme examples of invisible POV sports coverage in which we have been active involves placing cameras into archery targets to show incoming arrows as they approach the bullseye. For a major international sports event in Beijing during summer 2008, the company was asked to provide a practical archery target camera in HD. We had previously designed and implemented an SD camera based on a 6 mm diameter single-CCD imager was the design team mount in the exact centre of the target. Since no HD camera that small existed then (or indeed exists now), a special lens 180 mm long by 10 mm diameter was commissioned, tapering down to just 2 mm diameter at the tip. Athletics and ‘push-off’. In diving events, these heads can be placed on the pool bottom to capture each contestant’s entrance into the water. The operator is able to follow the diver to the bottom of the pool and see the kick back to the surface. The camera also provides excellent coverage of underwater action in water polo. Developed to capture aquatic sports from both above and below the water line, Dip Cam consists of a waterproof 3-CCD camera and portable monitor which can be mounted on a lightweight aluminium pole. The camera can be submerged to a depth of 1.8 metres and is fully controllable from a CCU panel which can be operated locally or in the master control room. We have provided vault tracking (and poolside tracking) for almost every major international sports event since 2000. Based on a 300 mm gauge track, Vault Track can be fully operational within 4 hours of delivery and packed away within 3 hours. A 30 metre length of track was installed at the 2009 Artistic Gymnastics World Championships at the 02 arena in London on an 800 mm high support parallel to the 25 metre approach and 5 metre vaulting section. The drive mechanism in the camera head allowed 90 degrees of vertical adjustment in camera angle at horizontal tracking speeds of up to 10 metres per second with full control of acceleration and deceleration. The camera itself in this case was a 1080i Hitachi DK-H32 with a Fuji 4 x 7.5 HD zoom lens Baseball The sandy surface of a baseball base is one of the most camera-hostile environments imaginable. We designed an ultra-low profile 3-CCD camera which could be embedded in the sand to capture the arrival of players as they came sliding to a halt. Each camera can be fully controlled from a remote CCU panel, including lens aperture and colour-matching. Air blowers integral with the camera head ensure a clear picture throughout the game. For referees, a miniature Baseball Ref Vest Cam was developed and used to great success at the Asian Games in the Qatari capital, Doha. Basketball Placing a camera close to each net in a basketball game can deliver very high-impact images both of the approaching action of the entire playing area. The camera itself must obviously be placed in a position that will not block the ball’s trajectory or in any other way interfere with the game. Safety being paramount, the Goal Cam is designed to withstand a direct hit from a ball or player without breaking free of the net. It can be attached quickly and easily to the net using a special mount that allows the camera to return to its original position once the net has stabilised. Bobsleigh Some of the most compelling sports video sequences ever captured have come from Pop-up Ice Cam, a 22 centimetre long unit designed to be pre- frozen into bobsleigh track. Pop-up Ice Cam incorporates dual POV cameras which can be raised and lowered by remote control to capture the sled as it approaches and departs at speeds in excess of 70 miles per hour. We also routinely provide camcorders fitted to the sleds themselves which give the television audience a front-seat view of the descent, sometimes to terrifying effect. Q-Ball is also being used increasingly to provide aerial track shots. >> TV-BAY MAGAZINE | 67