Beijing set to revolutionize time-keeping technology with partner Omega
Madrid, Feb 4 (EFE).- Beijing 2022 is set to become the most technologically advanced games yet with official timekeeper Omega deploying a range of novel systems to ensure accuracy and precision when monitoring starts and finishes and the movement of athletes.
Swiss luxury watch company Omega has acted as the official timekeeper of most Olympic games after first launching a partnership with the International Olympics Committee for the 1932 Los Angeles games.
The games which took place almost a century ago had just one timekeeper and 27 chronometers.
The Beijing Winter Olympics will boast a 300-strong team of timekeepers and 200 tons of equipment.
The Olympics have always been a platform to launch innovative products.
During the London 1948 games, Omega’s Magic Eye ushered in the use of electronic timekeepers using photoelectric cells that record the exact moment athletes cross the finishing line and a photo finish camera that shows the exact order in which competitors finish an event.
For the Melbourne 1956 competition, Omega introduced starting gates that trigger chronometers for ski races.
In Tokyo 1964, performance times appeared at the bottom of television screens for the first time.
The 1980 Moscow games saw Game-O-Matic technology present an athlete’s ranking as soon as they crossed the finishing line.
In 2010, an Electronic Start Pistol in Vancouver was followed by a Whistle Detection System used in ice hockey at the 2014 Sochi games.
So what is in store for Beijing 2022?
Three cutting-edge technologies will be launched.
A new jump analysis tool for the figure skating competition will allow a far greater analysis of athletes’ performance. Six cameras around the ice rink will capture the height of jumps, the length of the jump and the amount of time the skater is airborne.
An image tracking system will now detect false starts in speed skating instead of relying on a judge’s eye.
Finally, ice hockey will see a new in-game display system that boasts a set of LEDs embedded in the plexi-glass surrounding the rink. The clock will display the game and penalty time. EFE