Eagle Eyes In The Sky: Aqueti’s Cameras Help Their Clients See All

The Aqueti founding team (from left): Scott McCain, David Brady and Steve Feller with Aqueti's Mantis camera.

Security cameras are now often just part of everyday life, from when you go into a grocery store or walk in a variety of public areas. But what if there was one camera that could survey a large area and also be able to powerfully focus on smaller areas, ultimately showing you more than what the eye can see on its own?

With Aqueti’s 100-megapixel scale, multi-lens camera systems, you can.

One of the masterminds behind the technology is David Brady, a Duke professor of photonics for some 20 years in the area of camera design and the startup’s Chief Scientist. Durham-based Aqueti was added to Scot Wingo’s 2020 Tweener list.

“The value proposition of our camera is that our cameras are not inexpensive, but we give a lot higher media-quality-per-dollar than other other solutions, like in solutions where you might otherwise have a lot of cameras installed,” Brady said. “With us, you can install a much smaller number. We create a kind of virtual reality interface so you can navigate through the camera as well as you can through virtual reality.”

On Aqueti’s website, you can see with stunning clarity how their camera systems can zoom in onto a specific area of a larger space. A small bike rider or store window sign can be amplified so dramatically that you can read the fine print.

This type of solution has been used in broadcasting and other applications, but Brady said that for now Aqueti’s products are primarily being used for public security applications, such as traffic or roadway monitoring. But stadiums, large public squares, airports, cruise lines and amusement parks are all good target markets that could benefit from an enhanced view to provide increased safety.

“Even though we’re small, we’re a global company,” Brady said, noting Aqueti has projects in the U.S., Europe and the Middle East.

Working through global systems, Brady said the hardest thing has been to set up consistent supply chains to build their cameras. 

“Now we’re pretty well positioned to keep growing that,” Brady said.

Naturally, as the Covid-19 pandemic hit, Brady said it introduced some serious challenges for Aqueti, but the team is still engaged and working hard from home. During the pandemic, Brady said Aqueti can provide infrared images for health screening and that their cameras also may be helpful in many cities to help ensure that social-distancing measures are being maintained.

“We’re seeing a lot of opportunity and a lot of demand for our products,” Brady said. “This time is a challenge for everyone. And especially as we come out of this and try to get back to the new normal, I think we’ll see new challenges. But we certainly think that actually 2020 is going to be a good year for us, and 2021 will ultimately be an even better year.”

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About Suzanne Blake 116 Articles
Suzanne profiles startups and innovation for GrepBeat. She is also a junior studying journalism and political science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Reach Suzanne at suzanne@grepbeat.com.