Geo Tactical Solutions (GTS), in collaboration with Ricoh Americas Corp. and Eka Technologies, is in the final stages of development for its new SE-7 GPS module for the Ricoh G700SE-M Rugged GPS Camera. The SE-7 module will add several important capabilities to the Ricoh G700SE-M to support advanced geospatial photo collection, mapping and analysis. Noteworthy features of the SE-7 module include greater speed and accuracy of GPS readings, automatic photo ‘memos’, recording ‘object’ location, GPS Track-logs, the ability to record and display multiple GPS coordinate formats, electronic compass, selective availability anti-spoofing module (SAASM) compatibility and GIS integration.
Recording ‘Object’ Location
Laser range finders may be connected wirelessly to the SE-7 module via Bluetooth or by cable connection to record distance and GPS coordinates of objects within photographs. The Ricoh G700SE-M with SE-7 module combines the range finder’s data with GPS positional data to calculate the location of an ‘object’ within a photograph. All GPS coordinates collected with the SE-7 module may be stored and displayed in a variety of formats including LAT/LONG, MGRS, Decimal Degrees, DMS, UTM and State Plane depending on user requirements.
The SE-7’s SAASM provides accurate GPS readings even in the presence of malicious jamming or spoofing. Secure and decrypted GPS signals are recorded by connecting an external GPS SAASM device such as a DAGR (Defense Advanced GPS Receiver) to the SE-7 module. This powerful feature ensures the accuracy and precision of GPS coordinates in a GPS-compromised environment.
The Ricoh G700SE-M with SE-7 supports up to 20 attribute fields called ‘memos’ which are used to tag photographs with relevant information such as photographer’s name, operation ID, operation type, unit ID, and so on. This information, along with GPS coordinates, GPS date and Zulu time, are automatically stored as metadata in each image file on the G700SE-M. “Memos are set by the operator before collecting photographs to automate the process of recording complete who, what, when, where and why information for each photo,” explained Andy Shannon, Sales and Support Manager at Geo Tactical Solutions. “Collecting this information not only transforms a photograph into a powerful information source, it keeps photographs organized by common attributes and facilitates more complete, accurate and simplified mapping and reporting during data processing.”
Electronic Compass and GPS Track-Logs
The SE-7’s electronic compass allows users to accurately record the direction a photograph is taken regardless of the angle the camera is held. In addition, the SE-7’s GPS Track-Log feature can record and map the geographic path by which photographs are collected. After images are collected in the field, data is uploaded from the SE-7 module in preparation for analysis, mapping and reporting.
GTS offers photo mapping and management software (PhotoGIS) along with the Ricoh G700SE-M (with SE-7 GPS module) for mapping, editing and reporting photos collected in the field. Digital photographs collected with the G700SE-M can be converted into a number of file formats suitable for mapping in popular GIS applications such as ArcGIS, FalconView, TIGR and Google Earth for further geographic analysis. After importing data, the images are plotted as a separate spatial data layer along with their associated attribute information (‘memos’).
“As a direct result of customer feedback, we designed and developed the SE-7 module to be extremely lightweight, rugged, and versatile while providing all the capabilities required by the most demanding operations and workflows,” noted Mr. Shannon. “This new enhancement will allow the Ricoh G700SE-M to lead the way in GPS camera technology for years to come.”