Published on Thursday, 28 June 2012
The police capture footage from helicopters flying over Belgium equipped with external HD
cameras and AJA Ki Pro Mini tapeless recorders for special operations and environmental control.
|The Belgian Federal Police Air Support Unit (DAFA) patrols the country from the air every day to help pursue criminal suspects, search for missing persons and monitor traffic. As a part of its daily routine, DAFA operates four McDonnell Douglas Helicopters equipped with external HD cameras and tapeless recorders to capture footage for special operations, public order, judicial inquiries and environmental control.|
|DAFA recently installed new HD gyrostabilized camera units from Zeiss Optronics, South African Branch, in its helicopter fleet. The units are ZEISS LEO III HD gimbals with the standard cameras fitted – the Attica Thermal imager, the Multi-spectral HD zoom TV camera and Multi-spectral HD spotter camera. Commander Jeroen Eeckelaers and Chief Tactical Flight Officer Patrick Van Hemelrijck also took the opportunity to transition the team's on-board digital video recorders from SD to HD. Belgian Reseller FORMAT C helped research different products, and after evaluating the options, a group of DAFA operators, pilots and commanding officers chose the AJA Ki Pro Mini portable tapeless recorder.
"A reliable, high-definition recording device is important to us because our video footage is often used as judicial evidence. Ki Pro Mini seemed like the perfect fit and so we decided to put it to the test," Jeroen said. In flight, the Air Support Unit and FORMAT C tested the Ki Pro Mini’s quality and variety of recording options, duration of recording on solid state memory, tactile feel of the buttons, power needs and Apple ProRes workflow.
|AJA Ki Pro Mini is a miniature field recorder for creating ready-to-edit digital video. It supports an Apple file-based workflow by recording standard Apple ProRes 422 QuickTime files on regular CF cards. The Ki Pro Mini device is compact and strong, and records broadcast quality SD/HD digital I/O including SDI, HD-SDI and HDMI, two channels of balanced analog audio input - 2 XLRs - with switch selectable line/mic levels and LTC timecode input.
It is lightweight and small enough to fit in the DAFA cockpits, and CompactFlash support means their team can handle and transfer aerial footage for post quite easily. DAFA installed four Ki Pro Mini recorders in four of its helicopters and a fifth back-up unit in the video station on the ground. During flight operations, the recorders are used to capture HD video signals generated by external helicopter cameras. Depending on the duration and type of mission, and the destination of the footage, the resolutions and compressions vary.
|Ki Pro supports various levels of Apple ProRes including Proxy, LT and HQ, as well as the option to use Avid DNxHD codecs. Footage is either delivered live to the police, judicial units, Special Forces, the environmental department or civil protection and the recorded video acts as a backup for further analysis. The footage may also be edited and delivered via DVD. "The system operator needs to establish and control the correct settings for the end product but once these are set, Ki Pro Mini is fairly easy for members of the team to learn to use," Jeroen said. www.aja.com www.digistor.com.au|