Wireless Video Streaming To Unmanned Watercraft
Two wireless network cameras, along with network video equipment empowered by netSCOPE software, were recently mounted on a remote-controlled, 16-foot Zodiac-style watercraft dubbed the “Sea Fox” to enable transmission of live color video from the boat to an on-shore base station. Sharp and bright, even in low light environments, the video streams from the Toshiba cameras can be clearly viewed on a notebook PC from up to one mile away.
The pole-mounted cameras -- one mounted to face forward and the other aft -- provide a full 115-degree horizontal viewing area. The operator can view them individually or side by side. The remotely controlled pan-tilt-zoom functions maximize flexibility of this advanced surveillance system. Pointing and clicking on the navigation panel displayed on the notebook’s monitor alongside the video images administer the PTZ controls.
The Sea Fox was designed to be sent into international areas, such as a harbor or marina, ahead of troops to provide visual detection of land- or water-based dangers. Powered by a 200 horsepower, jet fuel engine, the GPS-equipped Sea Fox is capable of running 45 knots in 8-foot seas for upwards of 24 hours straight.
“The Sea Fox camera system performed extremely well at Fleetweek and received high marks from attending members of the defense community,” noted Jeff Dodge, president, netSCOPE, Inc, Charleston, South Carolina. “We had only three days before Fleetweek to put the video system together for the Sea Fox so it was only by the skill of our software programmers combined with the high quality and ease-of-use of the Toshiba cameras that made it possible.”