Latest Technology: Google ‘Trekker’ cameras capture the Galapagos


Fans of Charles Darwin will already tour their hero’s former abode, Down House, close to London, on Google’s Street read service – however pretty before long they will be able to take the same inspect the cradle of his theory of selection, the Galapagos Islands off the coast of Ecuador.

A team from Google has simply completed AN imaging mission there during which they explored each nook and cranny of the rocky, tortoise-filled, equatorial Pacific outcrop – and that they did thus employing a really freaky camera system.

Called the road read traveler, the system is AN 18-kilogram backpack-mounted gismo comprising AN outsize, articulated camera head, a system for levelling the lean of same camera head, GPS antennas, a knowledge storage system and a bunch of batteries. The spherical head incorporates fifteen 5-megapixel cameras – constant resolution as Street read cars use.

The traveler got its debut on a mapping trip to the Grand Canyon in Arizona last October. however the firm says it’s currently completed the wide  survey of the Galapagos Islands which imaging are live to tell the tale Google Maps later this year.

The picture higher than shows expedition member Daniel Orellana of the Charles Darwin Foundation – a partner within the Google venture – climb out of a volcanic rock tube on the archipelago’s Isabela Island. The volcanic rock landscapes there “tell the story of the formation of the Galapagos”, says project leader Raleigh tailor at Google’s maps division.

At ten sites, she says, they imaged “giant tortoises and blue-footed boobies, navigated through steep trails and volcanic rock fields, and picked our method down the crater of an energetic volcano”.

The venture extends below the waves, too: the Catlin Seaview SurveyMovie Camera joined in to gather underwater wide  imaging round the islands. beautiful as its pictures ar, they don’t seem to be simply pretty pictures: the scientific aim of another partner within the project, the Galapagos Islands National Parks board, is to form a baseline against that changes to the submarine surroundings are often assessed over time as climate changes.