Aerial photos: worth a thousand words

26-07-2017 21:27

Ready to take off? Experience the thrill, discover Switzerland and its bewitching landscapes by a bird’s perspective
The Federal Office for Lands topography, Swisstopo, provides high-resolution images of the Swiss landscapes taken by high performing cameras.
The aerial pictures offer indispensable and valuable information that allows us to perceive and identify essential details of the territory where our lives take place.
Every year a third of Switzerland is covered and this year images of Western Switzerland and the Valais will be shot.
Natural habitat, urban areas, archaeological sites, every element of physical space is revealed and displayed in its unique features. The number of applications is limitless:  from the study of glacier development, to agriculture and forestry, from space planning to the actual management of natural hazard.
Achieving sharp and crisp looking photographs, with an incomparable degree of detail, requires the use of the finest technology and particular types of cameras, which ensure an ideal basis for measurements and visualizations in three dimensions.
Swisstopo’s aerial images are taken with two new high-tech cameras, named DS100 (Air-borne Digital Sensor), which are simultaneously installed in two aircrafts. Derived from the space industry, this ultimate technology, allows capturing images in three dimensions with a ground resolution of 10 cm.

Like a veritable form of art, these images display unique shapes and harmonious colors, combined in a picturesque view, which has an unexpected romantic effect.

The rough edges that outline the powerful mountains, the soft and sinuous lines of valley and hills, rivers and lakes, the fascinating ensemble of the chalets with their classic sloping roofs, every unique detail of our charming region comes to light, in a dream-like image of a boundless space, so calm, so free.
The picture above has been made with the latest technology: the details of branches and trees are so clear, the colors so vibrant, that you can almost smell the fresh scent of the pine trees and hear the sweet music of the river flow.
These aerial pictures have something magical about them, they offer us a new perspective on the world around us and break down the barrier between human scale and natural scale.
Exploring a landscape can now be experienced from a large public at a different level, real space and virtual space finally find a common ground and we are very honored that they could actually meet… right here on our mountaintops!

by Arianna Proto di Santa Dorotea
Gstaad Life - Issue 4 July 2017

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