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Sony keeps watch of racer at Japanese circuit

Sony keeps watch of racer at Japanese circuit
A leading destination for Japanese motorsport fans
The only internationally approved race track in Japan's Chugoku region, Okayama International Circuit attracts over 300,000 spectators each year. It's the venue for several prestigious motorsport events including the Super GT touring car series, Super Formula and Japan F3 Championship, as well as the MFJ Superbike Championship. In the mid-1990s it was also home to the Formula One Pacific Grand Prix.

The challenge: ensuring nothing's missed on track
Video cameras play a key role in ensuring safety and fair racing at the 3.7km circuit, where spectators enjoy a thrilling close-up view of fast-moving cars and bikes that can reach cornering speeds as high as 100 km/h.

Activity on all parts of the track and pit areas must be watched closely at all times, allowing staff to assess rapidly-changing situations and take prompt action in the event of an incident.

Spotting a tiny 3cm screw dropped accidentally on the track is a tough challenge for any video camera that's typically designed to survey a much wider field of view. Equally, it's hard to capture crisp, blur-free images of fast-moving vehicles as they streak around the circuit.

As well as hosting pro-standard competitions, the track is a popular venue for amateur racing events. These less experienced drivers are the cause of more accidents than their professional peers, making it essential for race staff to accurately analyse and investigate regrettable situations when they occur.

The solution: IP cameras give a clearer picture
The venue's previous analogue CCTV cameras were becoming increasingly outdated, falling short of modern requirements for picture quality, reliability and advanced functions. Okayama International Circuit accordingly decided to upgrade its aging video surveillance infrastructure, taking advantage of latest-generation IP network camera technology from Sony.

Mounted on the control tower, SNC-WR632 rapid dome cameras stream detail-packed Full HD footage of race vehicles at top speed. The SNC-WR632 accurately captures split-second action at 60fps (frames per second) – double the frame rate of other network cameras that operate at only 30fps.

Ruggedised for outdoor operation in all weathers, roof-mounted SNC-EM632R cameras keep a watchful eye on activity in pit areas, overseeing the safety of team mechanics and ensuring that pit stop regulations aren't being violated.

Camera images are displayed in the main control room, giving race judges a complete picture of what's happening at every point of the circuit. Video footage is stored for later review using our NSR-500 Network Surveillance Recorder that can hold over 300 hours of Full HD images (in fully expanded configuration) on its 12TB hard disk drive array.

Building on the success of its decision to choose Sony, Okayama International Circuit now plans to boost visitor safety and comfort by installing further network IP cameras in parking and other outdoor areas.

Product Adopted:
Network Cameras, Digital Video Recording

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