Timescapes is a New Zealand founded and operated start-up capturing visual data through their platform using intelligent, high resolution cameras and an intuitive web-based platform. Their solution is transforming the way construction projects are being delivered throughout New Zealand. As a company specialising in software, Timescapes were purchasing their camera systems off the shelf. These systems were not fit for Timescapes long term vision, they were expensive, often unreliable and they did not have end-to-end control. They approached Blender to work alongside them to design and supply their own proprietary camera system to create a fully integrated solution to launch globally.
The Camera system assembly required three separate sub-assemblies. The brief contained a variety of cosmetic and technical requirements that are typical to electronics enclosures including IP66 waterproof rating, durability in harsh environments, stability in the presence of high winds and an overall look and quality to match the Timescapes brand.
The overall look and feel of the camera was important to Timescapes. The design brief was clear: A clean, minimalist aesthetic that doesn’t simply look like a security camera. Our industrial design team focussed on clean lines, across broad surfaces that kept clear of the standard security camera characteristics.
The camera enclosure is made up of three main components: an Aluminium Extruded Casing, a Front Glass Element and the Polycarbonate Back Cover. The aluminium extrusion gives the enclosure a solid outer shell to protect it from the environmental conditions and against any knocks that it may encounter during use. The Front Glass Element seals the front and is coated with Anti-Reflective and Hydrophilic coatings to ensure crystal clear images in all weather conditions. The Polycarbonate Back Cover is removable, allowing access into the enclosure for setup and servicing.
Timescapes were growing and had the need to get these cameras out in the field. This opened up the opportunity for in-field testing with EVT prototypes. Starting with a batch of 10, Blender was able to learn about how the enclosures reacted to in-field use, and implement incremental improvements each batch.
The camera is mounted in a variety of places, and is exposed to a range of environmental conditions including high winds. The requirement was to mount the enclosures in winds of up to 250km/h. Through engineering calculations and FEA simulation, the ball mount and bracket were designed to meet this specification. To meet the cosmetic and functional requirements, this meant the need for a custom ball mount and bracket. As Timescapes uses external contractors, the installation process needed to be easy. To achieve this, Blender designed a quick release plate that connected the mounting accessories to the enclosure.
To achieve the required waterproof rating, a silicone seal at the front and back of the enclosure was specified. Blender created a test setup to perform IP66 testing to ensure that the assemblies met the requirement.
Beyond the development of the enclosure, Blender has partnered with Timescapes to supply and assemble batches of enclosures. As a growing business, Timescapes needed a flexible manufacturing solution where design changes could be quickly implemented into upcoming batches. As the designers of the product Blender was able to seamlessly integrate changes from batch to batch, while Timescapes continued to grow and deliver their service
The Camera system is now operating on a number of sites and has supplemented the Timescapes service perfectly. Blender has designed a system that fits the Timescapes brand, is easy to install and can withstand the harsh environment that it is exposed to. The flexible nature of the relationship has allowed Timescapes to scale organically and adapt to any new problems that have come up in the field.