Advanced Imaging


Advanced Imaging Magazine

Updated: July 8th, 2008 05:26 PM CDT

Photron’s High-Speed Camera Captures Shark Attack for BBC

Shark Attack Picture
Photron’s ultima APX camera captures a shark attack at 1,000 frames per second.
The high-speed ultima APX camera from Photron Inc., (San Diego, Calif.) captured an awe-inspiring image for the critically acclaimed BBC/Discovery Channel production of “Planet Earth.” The ground-breaking, super-slow-motion segment shows a great white shark attacking a Cape fur seal at dawn, off the southern tip of South Africa. The high-speed imaging wildlife sequence is part of an 11-part TV series produced by the BBC and airing in the United States on the Discovery Channel. BBC’s six-member production crew used the ultima APX ultra high-speed, high-resolution camera to digitally capture the killer shark attack at 1,000 frames per second in full color 1024 x 1024 pixel resolution, leaving the viewer no question as to the demise of its prey. The complete, surprise attack is documented in a spectacular, slow-motion sequence lasting 47 seconds.

More than five years in the making, Planet Earth redefines blue-chip natural history filmmaking and continues the Discovery Channel mission to provide the highest quality programming in the world.

Andrew Bridges, director, sales and marketing at Photron says, “We are delighted to be an integral part of the breathtaking, wildlife imagery in “Shark Attack at Dawn,” captured by BBC’s Planet Earth camera crew. We are also very proud to lead the industry with our technical advancements in digital high-speed imaging. We look forward to future opportunities as the premier, high-speed camera supplier for many more great filmmaking adventures!”

In 2006, the ultima APX won an “Outstanding Innovative Technical Achievement” Emmy Award for its slow-motion replay capability and close-up action at 12,500 fps of the impact of a golf club striking a ball broadcast by “Golf on CBS.” The ultima family of cameras, like the APX used in the BBC series, can image up to 3,000 frames per second at full resolution, up to 10,000 fps at 512 x 512 pixel resolution and up to 250,000 fps at reduced resolution.

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