28 June 1915 – Moore-Brabazon reports on Aerial photography

Today Major John Moore-Brabazon reported on his “Observations on the uses of a camera from an aeroplane – more especially on the position and carriage” to 2 Wing RFC HQ. The main purpose is to determine the advantages and disadvantages of hand held vs cameras attached to the aeroplane.

Moore-Brabazon reported the advantage of a camera held by an observer were “A certain latitude as to the direction in which the camera be pointed, if a picture at a slight angle be not condemned.”

The disadvantages were

1. “The employment of two men, and consequently a double seater machine”
2. “an unreliability, due to movement of camera due to observer.”

The advantages of a camera attached rigidly to an aircraft were:

1. “The possibility of operating the camera by the pilot alone in the machine and the consequent use of scout types of machines”
2. “the extra sharpness of definition obtained”
3. “the long exposure possible of the plate, due to lack of movement of the camera.”

The disadvantages of the fixed camera were:

1. “Absence of latitude as to area included from one position in the air”
2. “increased wind resistance when camera attached outside fuselage.”

Moore-Brabazon studied in detail the types of movement that occurred to both hand held and fixed cameras and how these movements affected the photograph produced, eventually concluding “That whenever possible the camera should be attached firmly to an aeroplane for taking photographs.”

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