Distant Focus was funded under the SCENICC program by the University of California, San Diego to be the primary camera system integrator for the enhanced vision part of this program. The SCENICC program has resulted in high-resolution, compact and wide field-field-of-view imaging systems and continues through several spin-off programs, as well as DFC products. Further information on the SCENICC program is contained in the links below:
During the early phase of the program UCSD and DFC produced several prototype systems while exploring the monocentric lens architecture and the potential of fiber-coupled image planes. This includes a 30 megapixel, 6 sensor system that proved the potential of multiple-sensor fiber-coupled imaging systems.
To reduce the complexity and cost of the original multi-sensor approach, a new approach for large curved focal planes was developed. Using a single large fiber bundle and a single high-resolution sensor, this research paved the way for the development of the DFC Monocentric Camera system.
The compact size and high resolution of the monocentric lenses, coupled with a flexible backend electronics architecture, allows the sensor heads of the standard DFC Monocentric Camera to be reconfigured into an ultra-compact, high-resolution panoramic system. Five apertures image simultaneously, with the data being sent over fiber-optic cables to remote processing electronics where the individual images are stitched into a single image or video.