Vertically Rising 360 Camera at the Eden Universe Project

We’re still working hard over at the Eden Project in Cornwall, installing more Meta Cameras and setting them up for constantly live streaming over 5G! So far we have six cameras connected and streaming and are working on setting up and installing the last three. Below you can see a picture of our ‘vertical camera’ which is moving on a winch based system from the roots of a tree to above it’s canopy.

Meta Camera Rising through the Canopy

Each of the cameras have their own challenges but perhaps the vertical one see here has the greatest! To get the winch on to the famous honeycomb ceiling of the Eden Project we had to work with their ‘ropes’ team and manually pulley the giant lump of metal and cable to the ceiling, before carefully fixing it in place and testing it! The winch not only pulls the camera up and down through it’s length of travel but also provides power to the camera, router and now gyro that sit on the business end of it’s length.

Meta Winch System, Eden

The Meta team preparing the winch for it’s hoisting to the ceiling of the biome dome.

The camera will stream a 360 video of it’s journey to people watching through the Eden Universe portal, this content will even have an augmented reality overlay, thanks to our project partners, Marshmallow Laser Feast. The winch is controlled by DMX over the network, allowing it to be set on a loop continuously or manually overridden from Eden itself or anywhere in the world!

The guy cables that run either side of the camera are completely invisible to the final view of the 360 as they sit in the unseen area where the two lenses overlap. We call this ‘hiding them in the stitch’ and it allows for a completely clean 360 view around the camera.

Due to the huge lengths of travel and the need for this camera to be incredibly stable, Meta have had to work to reduce the level of wobble created by the motion of the camera. The guy ropes on either side had to be heavily tensioned to reduce this wobble and have since been replaced with a particularly low creep version of the cables, allowing for further tension. These new guys, coupled with extra ballast to the camera have reduced the majority of the wobble but some still persists. So next month we will be returning with a custom designed (and printed) active gimbal that will be removing the last traces of movement from the camera.

Here’s a short preview of how the camera is looking, please note that the cables between you and the tree and the general site below will be tidied up soon!: