Not many of you would know, but Microsoft makes cameras as well. It all started when Microsoft acquired Vexcel. You might have seen the wonderful work done by Microsoft’s cam in Bird’s Eye view in Live Maps. Now, Microsoft has come up with UltraCamLp medium format digital aerial photogrammetric camera. It has a high resolution of 92 megapixels (11,704 x 7,920 pixels pan). Apart from the resolution, it has the same specifications as its predecessor UltraCamL which has a resolution of 64 Megapixels. These cameras are used in aircrafts, you wont see them in the hands of Flickr photographers.
In 2010, Microsoft will have an even higher resolution camera, at 196 Megapixels, the UltraCamXp. I couldn’t find the feature set of UltraCamLp on the Microsoft website yet, here are the specifications of the 196 Megapixel beast:
- Largest format available (196 megapixels; 17,310 across track, 11,310 along track) means fewer flight lines, less time, and lower costs
- Short frame interval allows multi-ray photogrammetry even for large-scale mapping at low altitude and high aircraft speed; forward overlaps of 60% are achieved at a 1 inch pixel size at 110 knots
- Removable storage units provide two benefits: the length of missions is limited only by the constraints of the aircraft; ground time is minimized
- Maximum use of legacy environments; supports ALL standard gyro-stabilized camera mounts (PAV-30, Z/I-TAS, GSM3000) and most common GPS/IMU systems
- Pixel size on the ground (GSD) at flying height of 500 m is 2.9 cm (1.8 cm at 300 m flying height)
- 1:3 pan-to-color ratio delivers stunning color and color-infrared (CIR) image quality and negligible image vignetting