The ASPECT aircraft uses a high resolution digital camera to collect visible aerial images.
The camera consists of a Nikon D2X SLR camera body with a fixed focus (infinity) 24mm F1.2 Nikor lens. The camera sensor has 12.5 million pixels (12.2 Mpixels viewable) giving a pixel count of 4288 x 2848 in a 3:2 image ratio.
An effective ground coverage area of 885 x 590 meters is obtained when operated from the standard altitude of 850 meters.
Image ortho-rectification, which corrects for optical distortion and geometric distortion due to the three dimensional differences in the image, is accomplished using an inertial navigation unit (pitch, roll, and heading) coupled with a dedicated 5 Hz global positioning system (GPS). Aircraft altitude above ground is computed using the difference between the indicated GPS altitude and a 30 meter digital elevation model (DEM). Full ortho-rectification is computed using a camera model (lens and focal plane geometric model) and pixel specific elevation geometry derived from the digital elevation model to minimize edge and elevation distortion.
Documented geo-location accuracy is better than 49 meters.