BBC and Global News select StarTracker for election graphics camera tracking
By: Fergal Ringrose
Wednesday, July 5, 2017 - 5:31 pm

After making its third NAB appearance, StarTracker, claimed to be the first automatic, real-time optical camera tracking system, has become a technology standard-bearer in the world of camera motion tracking. Developed by London-based Mo-Sys Engineering, 80 per cent of virtual set providers had StarTracker in their NAB booths. In addition to the Mo-Sys NAB booth, the company’s technology was on display at: Blackmagic Design/Ultimatte, ChyronHego, Brainstorm, WASP3D, Zero Density and Ross Video.

The BBC repeatedly selected StarTracker, in conjunction with Vizrt graphics, for use in election coverage such as the UK general elections. Global News, Canada’s largest news organisation and leader in virtual set technology, used StarTracker for the first time on election coverage.

“We use a lot of virtual reality,” said Gerry Belec, Director, Operations and Technology, Global News, Corus Entertainment, “but this was our first time using a Mo-Sys system. On this election night, our high-end cameras and jib were already being used, so we were left with some rather outdated equipment. It gave our older equipment new life. We learned that any camera or set can become virtual or augmented. This equipment used to be so specialized. We created a temporary virtual set environment with legacy gear for a great price. Track by putting stickers on the ceiling, and any place is virtual.”

Belec adds that they took delivery just a couple of days before the May 9 election, and the Mo-Sys team worked remotely from the UK to walk them through set up and support questions as they came up. “We were all very impressed with their level of support,” he said. “They’re really on the ball over there.”