Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Time Lapse project

Apologies to all of you who have posted comments over the last month or so. For some reason, they were not appearing to me to moderate until a few days ago. I still have some catching up to do, but in the meantime I'll share this project with you. It's my first attempt at this and I wasn't planning to put it out, but I figure you deserve something after seemingly having your comments ignored for a good chunk of the summer. As always, your comments (and critiques) are welcome. Enjoy!

Something I've wanted to try for a while is making a time lapse video of the aircraft movements at LAX. Using the control tower as a vantage point, I found some limitations because of the camera's field of view -- to see the entire terminal area will require a wider lens than what it has. So for this attempt I set the camera up overlooking the arrival end of the 24s, which is to say the east end of the north complex. We're looking straight out over Terminal 2, with the D-9 alley on the left side of the shot and the D-8 alley to the right. You'll see aircraft lining up on Taxiway E, departing on Runway 24 Left, and arriving on Runway 24 Right.

This was shot on Saturday morning between around 8 am and 10 am. It was a holiday weekend here in the states, so traffic was a bit lower than usual. Also, Saturday is the slowest day of the week at LAX -- we generally run a couple of hundred operations a day less on Saturdays than any of the other days of the week. To top if off, as you can see we had an overcast layer that kept things moving a bit slower than usual because we weren't able to use visual separation between aircraft. All of that to say that this is more relaxed than most mornings at LAX.

For this project I'm using a different camera -- a Panasonic Lumix DC-FZ80. Its lens can go down to 20mm, and it has the ability to shoot time lapse sequences. I set it to shoot at one frame per second, and the video plays back at ten frames per second, so this will be two hours of activity condensed into about twelve minutes of video. Because it's a time lapse video, there is no ATC audio, but I did add a music soundtrack. The video will play in the window above, but it's too small to see clearly, so I suggest letting it play full screen by clicking the little square at the bottom right.


  1. What is the tower crane for? Is this more construction for the underground baggage handling system, or for terminal 1.5?

    1. I suppose that it might be for both, but we were told that it's for the Terminal 1.5 project.

  2. Love it! Please do more!