Have you ever imagined seeing live imagery of the Earth from Space 24×7? Well, this is about to be true. Two high-definition (HD) cameras are going to be installed on International Space Station (ISS) which will provide 24×7 live video coverage of the Earth. The world will never look the same again.
Canadian startup UrtheCast (pronounced Earth-cast), based in Calgary, in collaboration with Roscosmos, the Russian space agency, wants to fix two HD cameras on the exterior of the International Space Station. The cameras are jointly made by two firms in UK and Canada. One camera will shoot imagery in high-definition, with 3.25 fps frame rate and 1 meter (3.3 feet) per pixel resolution, when the other will broadcast satellite imagery in lower resolution, offering a three-color image.
The cameras will capture video footage of Earth continuously. The captured HD videos will be transmitted to Earth and will be broadcasted online. Users anywhere in the world will be able to log in to a free site and see near real-time video feed of the Earth. While watching the video, users will be able to pause, rewind, zoom, and view specific times and locations (depending on ISS’s movement). People will also be able to know the trajectory (when and where it will fly over) of the ISS.
Ian Tosh, an engineer at camera-builder RAL Space near Oxford, England said, “You won’t quite see the tiles, but you’ll see all the detail in the garden,” explaining the resolution of the, to be delivered, video.
The first camera is supposed to launch this year. It is expected that by spring 2013, everyone on Earth will be able to watch the planet from the viewpoint of the ISS. UrtheCast will also release a code-base on which developers can build various applications.