In the rugged environment of the ocean, making brilliant films is far from easy. To shoot the “OCEANS” documentary, French film company “Galatée Films” therefore required some advances to be made to existing camera technology. The challenge of creating the necessary camera stability to ensure shudder-free images could be shot from a permanently shaky surface was a particularly difficult task for the developers. A gyroscopic mounting platform with several DC-Micromotors proved to be the perfect solution.
Shooting high-quality nature films is hard enough on land, but even more challenging at sea. For one thing, the crew is much more dependent on the weather and for another, the kind of travel required on location is extremely time-consuming and cannot be repeated indefinitely. This means that each take must produce the perfect shots, for “Cut – take 2!” is seldom an option. In this particular case, an 8-m-long and 2.5-m-wide rubber dinghy with a 200 hp outboard motor was chosen as the “assault vehicle”. The inflatable was suitable for transporting the camera equipment in the shallow waters along the shoreline as well as out on the high seas. Onboard stabilization consisted of the Thetys platform, a 4.5 m jib crane and a stand to mount it on the boat. When attaching it to the bow, care had to be taken not to exceed the maximum allowable weight, so that the seaworthiness of the inflatable was not unduly impaired. These requirements meant that the 4.5 m-long crane weigh-ing 300 kg had to be able to carry the stabilizing platform with 75 kg of its own weight, plus camera load. The platform itself can stabilize camera equipment weighing up to 40 kg.