|Aerial Photography From Your R/C Model|
The Right Machine For The Right Job
We at Hi Cam have been using a helicopter for the past five years, and it has been a hard-working, faithful machine, capable of taking off virtually anywhere. It is excellent for still photos, and action video shots using an on-board camcorder. We would never give up using the helicopter, as it is a great way to take stills, and stills seem to be the biggest slice of the market, in Australia at least. If you want a steady supply of work, you can't beat stills!
Another Kind Of Photography
This is quite hard to do with most radio-controlled vehicles because of their low inertia and resultant twitchy nature they're better for fast action stuff. We can help the situation by using a wide-angle lens, which reduces the apparent instability in the shot. The other trick is to design a vehicle that has a great deal of natural stability. Here is a design we've been working on:
Powered Parachute - A Test In Perseverance
We began our stab in the dark by looking at some existing designs. Finding them instructive but unsuitable, we built our own design, powered by a Zenoah G23 petrol engine, and using giant servos to pull on the parachute's steering lines. After a lengthy period of building, it was time to take it to the field for the first flight. The machine sped across the grass, lifted off in spectacular fashion, and then did a barrel roll into the ground!
It turned out that the torque reaction had rotated the vehicle, with the parachute allowing this to happen, letting one side of its lines follow that side of the vehicle down. We have now fitted a cross-bracing system on the rigging to give roll stability, using an idea borrowed from NASA's new X-38, an emergency crew return vehicle for the International Space Station. Testing is continuing through August and September 2000.
All Good Fun
Contributed by Richard Shelton at HiCam.
Web Site: HiCam Aerial Photography
(These articles first appeared on the Hi Cam web site
and have been reproduced with the owner's permission).