Film Industry

Camera Motion and Lens Control

Our client KFX Technology originally developed the Aurora motion control (MoCo) system specifically for use on location in the Arctic and Antarctic during the filming of the BBC’s Frozen Planet series, narrated by David Attenborough, and approached DC Allen to provide the electronics and software system design, based on our experience in motor control in the medical and other fields. The series won awards for its cinematography and photography.

The project was challenging on a number of levels. The development time-frame was extremely short and on delivery the first systems were shipped straight to the shoot locations, where they had to perform over the course of a year in the sub-zero Arctic and Antarctic climates.

The system is capable of controlling a remote camera (the “head”) in 3 axes (pan, tilt and roll). In addition, a 3-channel lens controller allows the focus puller to control the lens focus, iris and zoom at the remote head.

During development, particular attention was paid to achieving a responsive dynamic feel that has received much praise from camera operators.

We have continued to work closely with KFX, developing an expanding range of camera control products. In 2018, we started work on a fourth-generation system for the upcoming sequel Frozen Planet II. This was delivered in 2019 to coincide with the start of filming. The series was first shown on the BBC in 2022.

Our powerful fifth-generation motion controllers include a further-extended range of features, contributing to the increasing recognition of KFX as a leading producer of film-industry camera control equipment.