McGill University and University of Victoria Use HaiVision MAKITO to Enable Interactive, Internet-Based Seafloor Exploration

MONTREAL and CHICAGO — Oct. 21, 2009 — HaiVision Network Video today announced that its MAKITO™ HD video encoder will be used to enable delivery of live video from two pioneering interactive seafloor observatories off the coast of British Columbia. First the VENUS (Victoria Experimental Network Under the Sea) and then the NEPTUNE Canada (North-East Pacific Time-Series Undersea Network Experiments) observatory will use the MAKITO to deliver high-quality, low-latency video to laboratories, classrooms, science centers, and homes around the world via the Internet.

The two undersea projects are led by the University of Victoria, with HD video-delivery technology, dubbed "Undersea Window," guided by John Roston and Jeremy Cooperstock of the Ultra-Videoconferencing Research Group at McGill University. Deployment on VENUS is underway now, and the expected result is that scientists will be able to control their own view of the undersea environment from wherever they are. Installed at the University of Victoria, the MAKITO encoder will receive HD video from a shore station, which is connected to a camera 100 meters below the ocean surface of the Saanich Inlet on Vancouver Island. As video is encoded for broader distribution, the MAKITO’s exceptionally efficient video compression and low latency will allow educators and the public to observe in real time the research work of scientists operating the camera.

"Our goal is to give viewers the feeling of sitting on the ocean floor, and the MAKITO is a neat little unit that provides the quality, compression, and speed we need to provide this immersive experience, as well as the flexibility to output dual data rates simultaneously and offer video in multiple resolutions," said Roston. "Paired with a two-way link for conversations between students and scientists, the low-cost, low-latency MAKITO encoder will allow scientists to talk about what they’re doing and to keep video and the discussion seamlessly in sync."

Using the VENUS and NEPTUNE Canada observatories, scientists will gather continuous information on ocean change, seismic activity, fish and marine mammal movements, and seafloor ecology. The projects are unique in that, for the first time, researchers will receive data from instruments, continuously and in real time. The VENUS project deployment will also inform subsequent HD video camera deployment on the NEPTUNE Canada network, comprising 800 km of powered fiber optic cable, connected to a number of seafloor "laboratories" or nodes, on the seabed over the Juan de Fuca tectonic plate. The interactive instruments linked to the NEPTUNE Canada network will empower scientists to respond immediately to events such as storms, plankton blooms, fish migrations, earthquakes, tsunamis, and underwater volcanic eruptions.

"The exceptionally low latency of the MAKITO makes it an ideal fit for demanding real-time video delivery and interactive applications, and its deployment as part of the VENUS and NEPTUNE Canada projects is an exciting demonstration of its value in extending the technical boundaries of scientific exploration and the geographic boundaries of innovative teaching opportunities," said Mirko Wicha, president and CEO at HaiVision Network Video.

The MAKITO is based on the highly efficient H.264 compression standard, encoding video up to 1080p60 resolution in under 70 milliseconds and saving more than 50 percent of the bandwidth and disk space required by MPEG-2 IP video deployments. The HaiVision encoder is equally proficient at SD (composite and s-video) as it is at all HD resolutions and frame rates up to 1080p60, and it can comfortably address video-over-IP encoding anywhere on a resolution/bandwidth scale from CIF as low as 150 kbps to full HD at 15 Mbps.

Complete information on HaiVision products, including recent case studies and application notes, is available within the download center at

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About HaiVision Network Video
Based in Montreal and Chicago, HaiVision Network Video is a private company and a world leader in delivering the most advanced video networking technology and IPTV solutions. HaiVision’s products are deployed worldwide within the foremost Fortune 100 companies, in the most rigorous military and defense applications, in healthcare facilities for video collaboration and training, for education and remote learning, in interactive broadcast applications, in IPTV applications, and within the world’s leading TelePresence suites. HaiVision distributes its products through value-added resellers, system integrators, distributors, and OEMs worldwide.

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