NORCROSS, Ga. – Leica Geosystems announced that ORTHOSHOP Geomatics Ltd. has bought a second Leica RCD30 imaging camera. The order comes just two months after ORTHOSHOP expanded its inventory of airborne sensors with the purchase of a Leica ALS70 City Mapper (CM) laser scanner and RCD30 camera.
“The RCD30 is one of those rare cases where the excellence of the actual product far exceeds performance stats and data found in marketing claims,” said ORTHOSHOP CEO George Constantinescu. “When we had the opportunity to work with our first RCD30, we became aware of many interesting possibilities. The second RCD30 gives us considerably enhanced operational flexibility, and we see it potentially fulfilling three roles for us.”
The first role will be in a two-camera configuration. Constantinescu explained the RCD30’s controller is designed to control up to five separate camera heads. With two cameras mounted side-by-side in one aircraft, ORTHOSHOP will be able to cover a swath rivaling that of some large format cameras, providing considerable operational efficiency. Secondly, when the wide-swath capability is not required, the additional RCD30 can be mounted on a separate aircraft, so multiple digital acquisition projects can be handled simultaneously. Finally, the additional camera also gives ORTHOSHOP equipment redundancy.
“We also seized the opportunity to standardize our operation around the Leica IPAS and FCMS positional, navigation and sensor control solutions, giving us a coherent approach to all critical project planning and execution elements,” said Constantinescu. “Our legacy RC30 analog sensors now benefit from the same leading edge positioning and control technology as our latest digital sensors.”
Introduced by Leica as a digital follow-on to its RC30 film cameras, the RCD30 is a medium-format digital imaging system developed for a variety of photogrammetric and remote sensing applications. The 60 MP single-camera-head design delivers co-registered, multispectral imagery in the Red, Green, Blue and Near IR portions of the spectrum. The sleek modular design allows the camera to fit easily in aircraft previously outfitted with film cameras, and the RCD30 integrates with many LiDAR sensors, including the Leica ALS series.
“With its single-lens, twin sensor design, the RCD30 is a step forward in medium-format camera technology,” said Constantinescu. “It is a true metric camera built from the ground up for mapping, and its attractive form factor means it can be deployed in a wider range of aircraft than most other metric cameras, making it an ideal imaging sensor for its intended niche.”
Established in 1980 and based in Calgary, Alberta, ORTHOSHOP is a leading provider of comprehensive geospatial services across Canada and around the world. In the 1980s, it became the only company in Canada to own the Leica OR1, the first computer-controlled orthophoto workstation. With a strong foundation in engineering, surveying and photogrammetry, ORTHOSHOP serves private and public-sector clientele in many disciplines including energy, transportation and utilities.
“For more than three decades, ORTHOSHOP has maintained a leadership position in the industry by deploying state-of-the-art technologies and taking an uncompromising approach to their implementation,” said Jean Gardiner, general manager of Leica Geospatial Solutions.
In January 2012, ORTHOSHOP – a long-time user of Leica equipment – expanded its airborne acquisition capability with its purchase of the Leica ALS70 LiDAR scanner and first RCD30 camera, which have been installed together in one aircraft. The firm integrated the two sensors for simultaneous collection of LiDAR point cloud data and metric quality RGB/NIR imagery. One of the application areas that ORTHOSHOP plans to service with the ALS70 and RCD30 is the monitoring of utility corridors. The second RCD30 will be deployed for imaging projects in all of the vertical markets now served by ORTHOSHOP.