|This is just amazing... http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/england/manchester/3135975.stm Camera 'sees through fog'|
Researchers at UMIST university believe it could soon be commonplace at airports, motorways or TV outside broadcasts and could improve security surveillance.
They have launched a start-up company, called Dmist Technologies, to exploit their work and are currently planning further trials.
Currently, even the most expensive cameras cannot "see" through fog.
The device works by taking out the light scattered by water particles so the picture can be recovered in colour, as if it were being shot on a clear day.
Professor Nigel Allinson, from UMIST, said it had potential for airports - where fog can shut down operations, costing thousands of pounds in delays.
He said: "The problem on foggy days is not landing planes, but keeping track of their movements on the ground.
Simple to use
"With this technology they will be able to follow planes around the airport even in very dense fog."
DMIST can also be used for live sport and is also being investigated by police and CCTV companies for security uses, according to UMIST.
Dr John Oakley, who helps runs the research team, said: "The unit adapts automatically to changing weather conditions and needs no manual intervention."
The system is said to be simple to use and can be plugged straight into a normal video camera.
Camera 'sees through fog'
I guess the military will buy a couple of these also.
While it's a great idea and one that will no doubt be very helpful, I think the article oversells it a bit, from what I can tell. Rather than actually "seeing thru fog", it seems to be enhancing and defining and optimizing what is already seen thru fog.
I could be wrong, but I think from what they are saying that what they are doing is an incamera, dedicated, realtime version of what I just did with the left side of the picture posted above. A very useful idea, and clever use of technology, but not really a technological marvel either.
ps. one reason my example doesn't look even better than it does, is because the "foggy" side of the picture is already highly jpeg.ed in the original image, and a .jpg algorithm looks at the foggy image and throws tons of potential detail away.