“Great and strong Argus, who with one hundred eyes looks every way — sleep never fell upon his eyes; but he kept sure watch always.”
Although the all-seeing Argus Pantopes only lived in Greek mythology, a global aerospace company is turning myth into reality. At XPONENTIAL 2016 (formerly AUVSI), Exelis premiered its mid-sized version of the CorvusEye 1500, a wide-area motion, surveillance imagery.
The newer, smaller version of the company’s 2014 military model is designed to fit mid-sized drone models used by non-military organizations. The CorvusEye 1500 is 15 inches in diameter and weighs less than 95 pounds – a perfect fit for a mid-sized, fixed-wing UAV.
Exelis (which was acquired by Harris last year) hopes the monitoring system will be adopted by private companies and law-enforcement, as well as government agencies for the purposes of planning, public safety and analysis.
Once a drone paired with the CorvusEye launches, the surveillance system can monitor city-size areas and focus simultaneously on programmed sections – say a neighborhood or stadium — while its on-board software analyzes those areas for suspicious activity.
With multiple eyes in the sky, the CorvusEye 1500 can operate much like a security guard in a store’s backroom viewing multiple security cameras – the difference being that CorvusEye can monitor every camera simultaneously and provide autonomous analysis in real time – no human operator needed. And, the system can be programmed to look for certain types of movements in certain area – like unauthorized human motion in a restricted area of a nuclear plant or factory.
“There’s no security guy in the back room – the system watches 24-7,” said Bernie Brower, Exelis’ product manager of regional persistent surveillance. “This has many applications,” he added, “from disaster relief to business to traffic management and city planning.”
By featuring multiple sensory arrays – including night and day thermal imaging — the CorvusEye 1500 can provide wider coverage than a comparable Full Motion Video (FMV) system. The model also includes a long-wave infrared (LWIR) hyperspectral (HSI) sensor capable of pointing in multiple directions to identify threats.
“The advantage of CorvusEye is that it provides context from the air for situations that may be dangerous or inaccessible on the ground – and it can do it day or night,” said Dwight Greenlee, Exelis director of regional surveillance. “
“Most traditional airborne imaging systems can zoom in to provide coverage of an area about the size of two football fields. The important activity could be happening outside of this limited view. CorvusEye covers an area 200 times greater than most systems. It can generate up to 10 high-resolution views of different areas of interest simultaneously, which can give law enforcement, military or border patrol personnel the relevant information they need to act.”
With more public-safety agencies adopting drone solutions, a wide-area motion imagery package could especially prove useful for police agencies patrolling crowded events like the Super Bowl or the 2016 European Football Championship
Jason is a longstanding contributor to DroneLife with an avid interest in all things tech. He focuses on anti-drone technologies and the public safety sector; police, fire, and search and rescue.
Beginning his career as a journalist in 1996, Jason has since written and edited thousands of engaging news articles, blog posts, press releases and online content.
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