09/07/2013 05:13 BST | Updated 07/09/2013 06:12 BST

Squito Throwable Camera Invented For Sports, Fun - And Search And Rescue (VIDEO)

An American inventor has patented a camera which you can throw to take panoramic pictures in mid-flight.

The device is shaped like a tennis ball, and uses a number of position and orientation sensors to process images into a straightforward picture, even as it tumbles through the air.

The new patent follows from one filed three years ago, and details a number of improvements and practical solutions that could see the idea turned into a real, commercial product before too long.


Inventor Steve Hollinger said:

"Throwable camera innovations are accelerating with advancements in sensor and imaging microelectronics.

"And with the advent of low-cost, high-speed cameras for outdoor recreation, an affordable throwable camera is finally within reach."

The idea is that the ball might be used in sports, recreation, reconnaissance and even search and rescue.

Hollinger is now working on the first practical prototypes, each equiped with three cameras.