First UltraCam Hawk in United States Purchased by Bergman Photographic

by | Feb 19, 2014

Graz, Austria, Feb. 5, 2014”Bergman Photographic Services has contracted with Microsoft's UltraCam business unit and subsidiary to purchase an UltraCam Hawk digital aerial camera system. Bergman Photographic has been an adopter of the UltraCam product line since its purchase in 2009 of the first UltraCamL to be based in the US Pacific Northwest, followed by upgrades to an UltraCamLp and an UltraCamXp. The purchase marks the first acquisition of an UltraCam Hawk that was announced in October 2013 at the Intergeo conference in Essen, Germany.

The UltraCam Hawk incorporates the third generation UltraCam architecture into a base model that is fully upgradable to the larger UltraCam Falcon or Eagle camera systems. Attractive for use in smaller aircraft due to its compact size and integrated system sensor head, the UltraCam Hawk appeals to mapping companies looking for an affordable option to expand their aerial services or serve smaller, or lower-altitude, projects. The UltraCam Hawk is also fully supported in the UltraMap workflow software system and is compatible with the UltraNav direct georeferencing and flight management system.

We chose the Hawk for several reasons, stated Bruce Bergman, co-owner of Bergman Photographic Services. First, the self-contained camera fits in two of our smaller aircraft that do not accommodate the UltraCamXp system. We intend to use the Hawk for corridor work and smaller mapping/ortho projects. We have a large amount of repetitive jobs, such as construction sites and inventory work, which have gradually shifted to digital over the last couple of years. Having the Hawk provides us the flexibility to operate our UltraCamXp further afield on larger projects for which it is better suited.

We also felt the time was right to get into the new generation of UltraCams that have a graceful and pre-planned upgrade path to a Falcon or Eagle version, continued Bergman. As we already have an UltraCamXp, staying in the UltraCam family of cameras just makes sense. The market acceptance of UltraCam cameras and the proven support from the Boulder, Colorado, crew added to the decision to stay and expand our use of UltraCam products.

The UltraCam Hawk's space requirements, weight and electrical specs allow the system to work as a film camera replacement when necessary. In Bergman's case, the self-contained digital camera can be used effectively with existing corollary pieces of film equipment and can quickly be moved from one aircraft to another.

Initially the Hawk will be used with a standard (non-gyro) mount, an optical viewfinder and simple Airborne GPS without an IMU, explained Bergman. As we go forward the system will be upgraded with higher level support components and to a larger footprint using the upgrade path designed into the camera. This may be our last year for film, so the Hawk eases our transition to 100% digital acquisition capabilities.

Microsoft is pleased that Bergman Photographic decided to purchase the new UltraCam Hawk to complement its existing resources, said Alexander Wiechert, Microsoft Business Director. The small integrated unit fits well into the company's aircraft and is perfectly suited for the intended types of projects.

About the UltraCam Hawk

The UltraCam Hawk system architecture offers features and benefits that include the following:

¢              A 92 mega-pixel (11,704 x 7,920 PAN) image footprint with a 70mm focal length lens, ideal for smaller aircraft and local projects that require a rapid response

¢              A system sensor head that integrates the sensor, computing sub-systems, solid-state devices (storage sub-system), and the optional UltraNav direct georeferencing and flight management system, simplifies installation and requires minimal space in the aircraft

¢              Advanced electronics for excellent frame rate and a minimal 72 dB signal-to-noise ratio achieves high image dynamic

¢              Filters with curved characteristics to flatten out vignetting for operation of lens system at optimal Modulation Transfer Function (MTF) performance for maximum sharpness and contrast

About Microsoft's UltraCam Business Unit

With its operations based in Graz, Austria, and sales and support teams in North America, Microsoft's UltraCam business unit brings more than two decades of photogrammetry expertise to Microsoft's Bing Maps business unit. The division is responsible for the highly successful line of UltraCam digital aerial mapping systems that today include the UltraCamHawk, UltraCam Falcon, and UltraCam Eagle digital photogrammetric sensors, and the UltraCam Osprey nadir/oblique photogrammetric digital aerial sensor. Also offered is the UltraNav Flight Management and Direct Georeferencing system, designed to maximize the efficiency of UltraCam aerial mapping. Rounding out the UltraCam offerings is the fully integrated UltraMap workflow software system, with features that include high-density 3D point cloud creation, highly accurate and detailed digital surface model (DSM) generation, and ortho mosaicing capabilities based on an automatically generated DSM or traditional DSM.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq MSFT) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

About Bergman Photographic Services, Inc.

Bergman Photographic Services, Inc. (BPS), based in Portland, Oregon, has been providing imaging services to the Pacific Northwest since 1975. BPS specializes in precision mapping and oblique aerial photography. Clients engage BPS routinely throughout the western US and points east. Its versatile fleet of five aircraft enables it to optimize efficiency for missions ranging from low obliques and large-scale mapping to high altitude and high speed for small-scale and long-line projects. For more information, visit or contact Bruce Bergman at [email protected] or call (503) 239-6010.



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