Is it a bird, is it a plane?
Jeb Corliss, GoPro-sponsored athlete and world-renowned wingsuit pilot, put his skills to the test by performing
“The Human Arrow“ flight at the Great Wall of China on 1st June 2016. The feat was broadcast live on GoPro’s Facebook page and blog. It was also live on Tianjin TV in China and later picked up by many broadcasters around the world. The total estimated global audience was more than 1.25 billion with many watching live together with extensive newspaper coverage and links to the video of the event.
The hair-raising flight, which was 10 years in the making, required Jeb to drop from a helicopter and fly through the air at 120 mph to hit an apple-sized target suspended over the Great Wall of China.
Jeb Corliss and GoPro were delighted with the coverage they achieved with the Human Arrow flight over the Great Wall. As Jeb explained:“The set-up of the HEROCast solution as really quick and simple and didn’t compromise any part of the flight safety. The high quality video from multiple camera angles brought this incredible live footage to the public for the first time. It could really change the way these events are covered in the future “
Live POV coverage of the jump was made possible using HEROCast™ technology designed by Vislink, the lightest, most compact wireless HD micro transmitter available. For the live aerial shots, two GoPro Hero4 Black cameras with the HEROCast BacPac transmitters were mounted on Jeb, one on his helmet with the standard antenna and the other chest mounted with an external 1watt amplifier and omni antenna. A second wingsuit pilot, James Boole, followed with another HEROCast BacPac helmet mounted system and external Vislink 1 watt amplifier to capture the ‘in air’ wide shot.
The drop helicopter was fitted inside with a fourth discreetly wall mounted GoPro Hero 4 and HEROCast Tethered system with a 1w amplifier and the standard omni antenna extended onto the aircraft skid. Inside a HHT3 handheld receiver was used to monitor all four airborne feeds. Both the wingsuit pilots and helicopters were rigged using the standard HEROCast kit cables mounts and antennas.
For the receive system, Vislink provided a MDR (Modular Diversity Receiver) four channel receive system with the dual antenna receive heads placed at strategic locations. This is specifically designed to receive multiple RF video channels and enable unrivalled, uninterrupted coverage of an event.
The MDR receive system has already been used for over a decade covering the Moto GP Moto Motorbike series and is relied upon for many other international sporting events including the World Rally Championships, Americas Sailing Cup, World Super Bikes, International Golf, Formula E electric racing series, NHL Ice Hockey as well as events such as Horse and even Camel racing.
Hemang Mehta, Senior Manager – Professional Products and Services at GoPro continued: “Clean and sweet video was delivered all the way from just before Helicopter take off right through to Jeb landing. It was sent out by the TJTV OB truck to an additional 14-18 TV stations which carried the event live or delayed broadcast. We estimated a total audience reach of about 1.25billion, which is amazing. HEROCast video footage was used approximately 80% of the time while our cameras and transmitters were active. In other words, they grabbed and telecast almost everything we sent out when we were live. And we were live for the entire duration of the target hit flight on Sunday morning.”
The live POV broadcast of the Wingsuit flight was clearly an ambitious project, but the solution proved to be well capable of meeting the challenge with exceptional results.
A longer version of this article is available with technical details of how the amazing footage was captured and broadcast. Click the button below to find out more.
Jeb Corliss is an American GoPro sponsored professional skydiver, wingsuit flyer and BASE jumper . He has jumped from sites including Paris’ Eiffel Tower, Seattle’s Space Needle, the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro and the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. In recent years he has completed a series of high profile wingsuit flights culminating in the” Human Arrow” flight over the Great Wall of China.
Photographs and video – Courtesy of GoPro