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8/16/2012
11:26 AM
Michael Endler
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The Jaw-some Tech Behind Shark Week

As Shark Week celebrates its 25th year with jaw-filled images, a slew of new technologies drive both content production and distribution.
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"Shark Week's Impossible Shot," which aired Sunday, saw wildlife cameramen travel to Gansbaai, South Africa, where they attempted to capture an aerial view of a great white breaching the ocean's surface.

Brooke Runnette said in a phone interview that the crew used a Phantom camera to capture this unprecedented shot. Capable of recording up to 1,000 frames per second at full resolution, this device allows filmmakers to slow high-speed footage down to the 30 frames per second that most television broadcasts use. The result is an immersive slow-motion documentation of the event that enables viewers to peruse each detail of the shark's behavior.

The camera was suspended above the shark with a balloon to capture the desired moment. A decoy used to attract the shark was synched to the Phantom, allowing filmmakers to work around the whims of the animal; sharks, after all, are not known for taking direction.

Prior to the digital revolution, such dynamic footage would have been impossible to achieve.

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PJS880
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PJS880,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/17/2012 | 7:58:31 PM
re: The Jaw-some Tech Behind Shark Week
I will have to say that the technology that is used to capture and study sharks has grown immensely anyone can see that when they watch the latest shark week. They have all the close ups of the shark and most of the time inside the sharks mouth. All these advances make for a way more interesting shark footage. I dig the creativity put into the punch bug shaped shark cage, and the message in the mirror. How many people watch or tape shark week on a yearly basis and look forward to it much like the Superbowl is anticipated?

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