Traditional surveillance cameras can be a great help to law enforcement officers for a range of missions, including canvassing a crowd for criminal activity, or trailing a terrorist. But there are shortfalls, like a loss of visual contact with the rest of the scene when zooming in on a specific point of interest.
A new video surveillance system being developed now by the Department of Homeland Security’s Science and Technology Directorate called the Imaging System for Immersive Surveillance (or ISIS) takes new camera technology – and real-time image-stitching – and bolts it to a ceiling, mounts it on a roof, or fastens it to a truck-mounted mast. A unique interface then allows the user to maintain a full field of view, while a focal point of choice can be magnified.
Like a fisheye lens, ISIS sees v-e-r-y wide. But, whereas a typical fisheye lens distorts an image and can only provide limited resolution, video from ISIS is perfectly detailed, from edge-to-edge.