3.04.02 – Virtual Tour – Beech RU-8D Twin Bonanza

CAM’s Beech RU-8D is another great aircraft, with plenty to look at inside and out.

Typically, this aircraft is kept locked, so visitors can only appreciate an exterior tour. This made it an ideal subject for an interior and exterior scan.

I only took a single interior scan of the cockpit for this aircraft, as it was the first trial we did in such a confined space.

I used the SpheronVR SceneCam plus ScanLight attachment for the scans, the ScanLight ensuring a consistency of illumination for all the scans. This was useful, as the 604 hangar has inconsistent lighting coverage, plus the interior would be dark (as there is no lighting inside the Beech).

Capture Challenges

As with any cramped interior, camera placement was considered to avoid significant blurring due to minimal focus distance of lens and aperture choices. Smaller apertures would improve depth of field, but increase image noise.

With the camera occupying the front area, I would also need to climb out of the side hatch – which was small!

Scan Resolution

All scans were shot at maximum resolution which would generate a usable image of in excess of 50 mega pixels

Capture Time

Scanning time is consistent with the ScanLight attachment; typically about 6 minutes per scan.

Image Processing – HDR

The initial conversion of the raw image being handled by Spheron’s native Image Processor. This converted the native .SPH file format into a cropped, bi-linear radiance file format, saved as a 32-bit HDR file.

Tone Mapping

The resultant HDR image was then tone-mapped to allow a single image with fixed (and balanced) exposure to be produced. I used PhotoMatix Pro 5.1.3 for this purpose, which provides a healthy range of processing options. I tended to find the Default tone-mapping option worked best, as I found the Photographic option yielded images with too great a contrast range (my preference was for less contrast).

Completed Tour

To experience the full tour for the Beech, please visit the Combat Air Museum website, or click the link below

Beech RU-8D Twin Bonanza virtual tour produced using the Spheron SceneCam

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