IC Realtime is not blowing hot air with its new Persistent Low Altitude Surveillance (PLAS) stabilized platform that links a high-tech nighttime camera to a stabilized balloon system for overhead image capture up to 300 feet high.
Surveillance from a high altitude provides a true birds-eye view of wide area surveillance. This is commonly known as Over Watch surveillance.
For many years mounting the surveillance camera to the highest point (for example atop a pole or roof) was the only way to view large crowds at special events, border security and tactical applications like crime searches, looking for missing persons, natural disasters, etc.
IC Realtime developed PLAS to enable law enforcement, border patrol or special event personnel the ability to remotely oversee large areas and recognize patterns or events requiring further investigation.
PLAS is comprised of a flight deck including power and data tether; imaging unit (camera) and its stabilized gimbal and balloon. The flight deck is a 6- x 3- x 3-inch carbon fiber housing that contains all command, control and communications equipment (i.e. the brains for the system). These integrated components provide encrypted communications to either fixed or mobile command center(s) as well as authorized mobile users.
Communications are sent via point-to-multipoint 5.8gHZ transmission system via IP connectivity (as opposed to traditional RC). IP makes it possible for one operator to control (for example pan, tilt, zoom of the camera) multiple PLAS systems at once. This makes the PLAS system unlike other aerial platforms.
PLAS is currently delivered with an IC Realtime I-Sniper nighttime camera mounted to the gimbal. However, any of IC Realtime’s imaging units (360-degree, 720-degree, thermal imaging cameras) can be used.
The PLAS system utilizes an industrial- and tactical-grade tethered balloon system from Altametry. The balloon system is comprised of an inner bladder and outer balloon that has a circumference of 6-foot. The system can reach an altitude of 455 feet.
PLAS is part of IC Realtime’s Rapid Deployment systems, which is led by the company’s Special Operations Group (SOG) within the Government Practice and Law Enforcement Division. The SOG works closely with dealers to specify and deploy PLAS for their specific customer applications.