February 7, 2017

Atlantic Canada Profiles: SubC Imaging

The Rayfin Autonomous Machine Vision System. (Photo: SubC Imaging)

The Rayfin Autonomous Machine Vision System. (Photo: SubC Imaging)

SubC Imaging, located in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada, creates some of the most advanced underwater imaging systems in the world, including state-of-the-art cameras, lights, lasers and DVR Overlay solutions for media management. Since its founding in 2010 SubC has developed an international clientele in the offshore energy, ocean sciences and aerospace and defense sectors with clients in over 20 countries.

 
SubC focuses on enabling its clients to more easily acquire high quality visual data using their platform of choice and helping them better manage and use that information for improved decision making. SubC also currently has two products under late stage development and soon to be available for field testing. 
 
The first, the Rayfin Autonomous Machine Vision System, is designed for use on all platforms with special attention paid to the unique requirements of autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) which are becoming more widely used for underwater inspections, monitoring and surveys. Built with this platform in mind, the Rayfin has the ability to synchronize AUV data with camera data and is fully programmable to trigger based on commands or events such as altitude, depth, time, etc. Additional features under development include image mosaic and object recognition.
 
The automated stitching of bottom mosaics will be done using a combination of feature mapping and navigation data (dead reckoning) with the internal IMU of the camera and other data (gyro, depth, altimeter) fed in from the system over serial or Ethernet. All data will be logged with their respective images and along with the World File created for each image used to assist in the image stitching process.
 
The Rayfin will feature the following High Level Specifications.
 
LiquidOptics water-corrected imaging:
•Video Transmission models
* HDE: HD over Ethernet, SD over Composite
* HDC: HD over Coax and Ethernet
* HDF: HD over Fiber and Ethernet
•Internal 4K UHD recording and 12.3 megapixel digital stills
•Hybrid LED strobe/lamp and external laser sync direct from camera
•Dive interval programming (automated stills, recording, hibernate)
•Control via Ethernet, RS232 and RS485
•Live video and image file transfer over Ethernet
•Built in sensors: accelerometer, gyro, compass and (optional) depth
•Video, stills and data storage in SubC Dive Log format
•1TB or optional (2TB or 4TB) of solid state storage for video, stills and data. 
 
The second, the VisionSphere System, provides a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) pilot full visual coverage of a vehicle’s environment by strategically mounting cameras with ultra-wide (UltraOptics) overlapping fields of view (FOV) around the vehicle. The enhanced situational awareness helps mitigate the risk of collision with subsea assets and the potentially costly repairs that can result. The system can also improve efficiency with more of the subsea environment being captured in a shorter period of time and also allows for better multi-tasking since the pilot can focus on flying the ROV while the co-pilot focuses on the inspection. In its current configuration all camera feeds would be recorded and viewed simultaneously on separate separate monitors. SubC has patents pending around the viewing medium, involving stitching the videos together, to create a 360 spherical view around the ROV. Multiple clients can simultaneously digitally pan, tilt and zoom within the spherical view.
 
 
(As published in the January/February edition of Marine Technology Reporter)
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