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AP Deploys New Robotic Cameras System For Olympics Swimming, Diving Events

Telemetrics
Telemetrics' PT-CP-S5 (Image credit: Telemetrics)

TOKYO—The Associated Press is relying on a unique, remotely controlled robotic camera system designed and built by Telemetrics to capture images of the Opening Ceremony of the 2021 Tokyo Olympics from high atop Olympic Stadium here. 

However, the primary use of the new system will be to capture still images of swimmers and divers as they hit the water and swim up from the depths of the pool for diving and swimming events, including synchronized swimming. AP will once again use the system on the stadium to capture the Closing Ceremony, the company said.

In all, AP will use six of the robotic camera control systems. Some will be equipped with a Sony Alpha 9 II mirrorless camera; others with the Sony Alpha 1. A Telemetrics PT-CP-S5 remote-control pan/tilt head inside a Telemetrics PT-WP-S5 weatherproof camera housing, which is placed inside a waterproof housing, called the PL-HOUL-S5 pool housing, will keep the system dry and give AP full control over the cameras, Telemetrics said.

The pan and tilt motion supported offers the news agency full coverage of the pool, and the zoom control makes it possible to capture extreme close-up shots of the action, it said.

The system was designed and built for Olympic-sized pools and watersport events. Easy to deploy and using a single Cat7 cable interface, the system enables AP to take full control of camera functions, including shutter, zoom and focus, as well as monitor live feeds using the Telemetrics RCCP-M remote camera control panel. Powering the system is done via the Cat7 cable using Power over Ethernet (PoE) connectivity, it said.

A single operator will have control over multiple cameras at the same time with full live preview of their images via the control panel, the company said.

Captured images will be transferred immediately to a poolside technician operating the RCCP-M panel. Once edited, toned and captioned, images will be sent to AP members and clients worldwide in real time via FTP.

“This easy to use, remotely controlled system provides a fully integrated package that is ideal for a number of hard-to-reach camera positions, like underwater applications,” said Telemetrics vice president Michael Cuomo.

Telemetrics has assigned PT-CP-S5 A9 as the product designation of the complete robotic camera package. It includes a compact pan/tilt head and weatherproof camera housing. The system’s robotic servo employs motors that deliver ultra-high position and velocity accuracy, it said.

AP also used the new system for Super Bowl LV in Tampa Bay, Fla.—its first such use in a live sports setting.

More information is available on the company’s website.  

Phil Kurz

Phil Kurz is contributing editor to TV Technology