Created by Jonas Pfeil for his graduate thesis at TU berlin, the Throwable Panoramic Ball Camera captures a full spherical panorama when thrown into the air. The unit uses 36 2-megapixel cell phone camera modules mounted in a padded sphere to snap a 360-degree panorama.
The camera contains an accelerometer that lets the exposure be trigged at the calculated climax of flight, when it is hardly moving. The taking of a single photograph at the same moment by multiple cameras prevents the ghosting effects that occur when creating a panorama by taking and stitching sequential images.
The camera modules are mounted in a robust, 3D-printed, ball-shaped enclosure that is padded with foam and handles just like a ball. Our camera contains an accelerometer which we use to measure launch acceleration. Integration lets us predict rise time to the highest point, where we trigger the exposure. After catching the ball camera, pictures are downloaded in seconds using USB and automatically shown in our spherical panoramic viewer. This lets users interactively explore a full representation of the captured environment.
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