Navy focuses on periscope camera

The Navy is going to test a 360-degree, high-resolution prototype camera designed for attachment to a conventional Type 18 submarine periscope, according to the service and vendor RemoteReality.

A conventional periscope offers one view to a single crewmember, but the prototype camera offers a 360-degree field of focus, which captures photos immediately as high-resolution still imagery and video footage. Multiple crewmembers can simultaneously review the images as a live feed or as archived files to assess the operational environment on all sides of the sub.

The prototype comes with hardware and a software interface and gathers imagery through a very-high-resolution, visible-light 12-megapixel camera that offers resolution six times higher than high definition and an uncooled 640-by-480 pixels thermal infrared camera for use at night.

The prototype fits all Navy Los Angeles- and Seawolf-class submarines now equipped with Type 18 periscopes. The Navy is upgrading Type 18 scopes with a submarine-imaging subsystem video package with analog video and digital still cameras that record images for analysis using visual-enhancement software.

The camera was developed through a research contract with RemoteReality. The Navy plans to test the prototype during an early summer sea trial on a Los Angeles-class submarine in the Pacific Fleet, according to RemoteReality.

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