April 15, 2008 RemoteReality has designed a submarine periscope camera system that provides an instant, omni-directional view of surrounding waters. The system, which greatly outclasses the rotating periscope in terms of situational awareness and safety, will be trialled by the US Navy will on a Los Angeles class nuclear submarine later this year.
“The camera system, which combines hardware and a software interface, provides submarine operators with a critical ‘quick look’ capability,” said RemoteReality CEO Dennis McGinn. “It captures, in an instant, a full 360-degree view of activity on the surface, through the use of a very high-resolution (six times high definition/12 megapixels) visible-light omni camera and an uncooled (640 x 480 pixels) thermal infrared omni camera for nighttime use.”
“As coastal waters and critical maritime straits and choke points become more crowded, the ability to get an instant view of the horizon with a quick periscope look provides a real safety margin and tactical advantage to our submarine fleet,” he continued. “The importance of sea lines of communication (SLOCs) cannot be overstated.”
The system was developed by RemoteReality in conjunction with the Naval Underwater Weapons Center. The Type 18 periscope, which is used on all Los Angeles and Seawolf class vessels, is currently being upgraded with a submarine imaging subsystem, which records the view from the periscope and provides image enhancement software.