With his pictures featuring the new logistics center of Coop, ALPA photographer Jean Jacques Ruchti has captured one of the largest construction projects in recent years in Switzerland. He received the order from Industrial Engineering AG in Zurich, which specializes in industrial buildings.
The photographs are part of a company's publication that documents the work from the beginning of 2012 until the end of the year 2016 and also the extent of the construction. In the construction pit next to the A1 motorway, three football fields would have had space. Since summer 2016, the new distribution center, the largest bakery and confectionery in Switzerland and a deep-frozen warehouse have been in operation. Overall, the project cost 600 million francs.
A world of its own
Jean Jacques Ruchti went about the project with his ALPA 12 SWA and the Rodenstock / ALPA HR Alpagon 4.0 / 32mm lens among others. As a back he used a Leaf Aptus II 12. The images showed in this post have all been created with this setup.
"Construction sites of this size form their own world with their own rules and conditions," says Jean-Jacques Ruchti about the particular challenges of the project. "The strain on people and materials is high, you climb over scaffolding, between construction machines and thanks to the work dust, the air is dusty everywhere. Due to the size of the system, a maze of different stages of construction stretch over hundreds of meters. Only through close contact with the designers of this colossus does the photographer succeed in capturing these decisive moments."
Comparison with the Gotthard tunnel
The new distribution center is a huge milestone for Coop. Joos Sutter, the chairman of management, compared the significance of this for the company with that of the new Gotthard Basistunnel for Switzerland.
Three central functions are linked to the site. Today around 600 employees produce 60,000 tonnes of bread and pastry products each year. The site also includes the Swiss distribution center for frozen goods as well as the regional headquarters for Zurich, Northwest and Central Switzerland with around 350 stores.
The bakery draws the electricity from a heating center, which is located on the site. A photovoltaic system on the roof of the high bay warehouse also supplies the site with solar power. The bakery and the distribution center are connected by a Skywalk - the longest in the country.
Website Jean-Jacques Ruchti
ALPA 12 SWA
© Jean-Jacques Ruchti
Another project on the building site was the shooting for Schweizerische Bauschule. Jean-Jacques Ruchti again captured the pictures with his ALPA 12 SWA. Here's the making-of video. © Jean-Jacques Ruchti
From 26th to 28th October 2017, the PDN PhotoPlus Expo 2017 will take place at the Javits Convention Center in New York Center. The ALPA platform can be found on several partner booths at the show as well as represented in New York.
Make an appointment and experience the modular ALPA platform together with a high-end digital back. Take the opportunity to feel the exceptional products yourself.
Whether for classic landscape and reportage photography, automotive and industry, to extreme macro solution, the flexible and highly modular ALPA system offers individual, customized solutions. Even if the majority of people are digital (up to 100 MP RAW) with ALPA today, ALPA does not neglect the classic film and still offers high-quality roll film backs for 6x7 and 6x9.
ALPA is also prepared for the convergence of still photography and video, allowing the use of cine optics via Arri PL connector and a variety of proven current and vintage lenses from Hasselblad H and V, Contax 645 or latest models from Canon and Nikon together with video-capable lenses Backs from Sinar and Hasselblad. In particular, Hasselblad offers the new H6D-100c model, which is also available separately, a digital back that allows 4K video in digital medium format.
Due to the exclusive collaboration between ALPA and Hasselblad, a fully compatible use of H lenses from Hasselblad on ALPA cameras became possible. This includes the use of the leaf shutter up to 1/1000s and hybrid operation together with the ALPA 12 FPS and its focal plane
Special Products Featured
ALPA GON Tripod Kit
ALPA Silex Control Unit
ALPA Arri Rosette, Set
ALPA Lens Module Hasselblad H
ALPA Lens Module Arri PL
Website of the PDN PhotoPlus Expo 2017
Floor Plan PhotoPlus 2017
Partners showing ALPA at the Show or in New York...
• Capture Integration - Booth 149
The specialists from CI show you the ALPA with digital backs from Phase One together with cameras and accessories from ALPA. Phase One offers a wide range of backs and resolution, as well as achromatic variants and the latest Trichromatic 100 MP. Capture Integration is a full service partner/dealer of ALPA.
Website Capture Integration
Website Phase One
• Hasselblad / Hasselblad Bron - Booth 237
On the Hasselblad / Hasselblad Bron booth, the most recent Hasselblad digital backs can be seen together with the electronic ALPA 12 FPS (with focal plane shutter) as with ALPA Silex on a ALPA 12 MAX operating Hasselblad H lenses. With ALPA Silex, electronically controlled lenses of Hasselblad or e.g. Canon can also be connected to any classic ALPA 12 body. Especially the now as standalone available H6D-100c will stun you.
Thanks to Hasselblad / H|B for showcasing ALPA x Hasselblad with the ALPA 12 FPS, the ALPA Silex and ALPA 12 MAX for H lenses and other combinations as well as the ALPA GON tripod head system.
• Fotocare - New York
In addition, you can easily arrange an appointment with our New York ALPA dealer and partner Fotocare. You will find Fotocare at 41 W. 22nd Street (between 5th and 6th Ave). Fotocare offers a vast variety of combinations with ALPA and backs from Hasselblad, Phase One and Sinar.
Website Phase One
Website Sinar Photography
French newspaper „Le Figaro“ features extraordinary cameras in their „High End“ section. In prominent position: the ALPA / Phase One A-Series new with 100 MP. Read the full article (French only) in the attached PDF.
PDF for download (French only): Le Figaro - High-Tech - 15th February 2016
Product Page: ALPA Phase One A-Series
Our Spanish representative Txomin Ruiz de Larramendi from TxLab Barcelona has produced a new instruction video (in Spanish) showing the setup of an ALPA 12 STC in two combinations. Have a look at the instructive video which is also interesting if you do no speak Spanish. We also linked earlier videos for your convenience.
Website TxLab: www.tx-lab.com
Setup ALPA 12 STC (02.2016)
The ALPA 12 System by TxLab (03.2015)
The ALPA 12 FPS by TxLab (03.2014)
The ALPA 12 STC is without doubt the most compact camera made by ALPA but at the same time also the most versatile. Both is located in its genes: When ALPA introduced the camera in 2010, our customers placed the desire to unite the ingenious compactness of the ALPA 12 TC with the adjustment of a technical camera. At the time, especially lanscape photographers voiced the need for incresed resolution via stitching due to the still relatively small and low-resolution sensors back then. For this reason, the ALPA 12 STC shifts horizontally in its normal configuration. Its name therefore originates from the abbreviation Stitching Travel Compact.
But the compact allrounder also performs well in the vertical: numerous ALPA photographers use the little sister of ALPA Max as a handy camera for architecture with ample displacement (+/- 18mm). As a compact 'shift module' for the ALPA 12 FPS, the STC plays its strengths in combination with ALPA lenses in SB-34 mount or Hasselblad V lenses:
In its 'standard configuration' when mounted on a tripod, the camera's handgrip is located on the 'bottom':
Lately, however we received many requests from users who prefer the save tripod usage in challenging environmental conditions (wind, etc.) with the handgrip located on top. ALPA responded to these requests with the introduction of the new STC stitching adapter:
The new STC stitching adapter with integrated dovetail allows the connection to UniQ / C compatible accessories like the ALPA Micro 3D tripod head. Together with the already launched tripod plates QPL.IND.SML and QPL.IND.SQR in 2014, it highlights the commitment of ALPA to the platform-spanning and future-proof UniQ / C system. The ALPA 12 STC stitching adapter is now available.
The ALPA 12 FPS was developed by ALPA as a universal tool for photographers. It allows the employment of a great variety of different lenses. In addition to the already available adapters for Nikon, Canon, Hasselblad V and Mamiya 645 MF an adapter for the highly acclaimed Carl Zeiss lenses for Contax 645 is now available. This adaptation allows, just like the Canon adapter, an electronic control of aperture and distance adjustment. Due to the large usable image circle of the Contax lenses it has +/-12mm horizontal as vertical displacement and thus allows both perspective corrections against converging lines as well as stitching of individual images. Available soon!
Product page: ALPA FPS Lens Module Contax 645 Shift
With the use of conventional camera systems and macro objectives, only a limited resolution could be achieved. That’s why ALPA developed a special setup for Focus Stacking. It’s a good example for our philosophy to provide solutions for special projects. Ask our specialists if you have a dedicated project.
Photographer Bernhard Schurian extensively tested the ALPA solution (ALPA Focus Stacking solution with ALPA 12 FPS and ALPA Macro Switar 5.6/105 mm) at the Museum für Naturkunde in Berlin. In addition to the mass digitisation of the collection, he has portrayed particularly interesting and spectacular animals. To document their complexity, Bernhard Schurian needed equipment for macro photography and an optimal workflow.
Here some results of his work over the last year and in different stages. Two samples are available as zoomable version (Zoom 1) (Zoom 2) for exploring. The images have been combined from in general some 500 to 700+ single exposures on 100 MP digital backs.
For further details see also the detailed news article on When Even Insects Become Huge: Macro Photography With ALPA.
It is our philosophy to provide new solutions for special applications. If you are working on an according photographic project, please contact us.
Photograph: ©Bernhard Schurian
Eumorpha Achemon (Zoom Version)
Photograph: ©Bernhard Schurian
Dipt Asilidae Microstylum (Zoom Version)
Photograph: ©Bernhard Schurian
Photograph: ©Bernhard Schurian
In macro photography, ALPA offers ways to surpass the results so far. The exclusive Rodenstock / ALPA lens Macro Switar 105 mm (with floating elements) allows you to display even the smallest parts of insect hair. The lens has just been produced in series and is now available from ALPA.
Photographer Bernhard Schurian extensively tested the Rodenstock / ALPA Macro Switar at the Museum für Naturkunde in Berlin in combination with the ALPA 12 FPS. In addition to the mass digitisation of the collection, he has portrayed particularly interesting and spectacular animals. To document their complexity, Bernhard Schurian needed equipment for macro photography and an optimal workflow.
Accurate to 0.1 micrometers
However, with the use of conventional camera systems and macro objectives, only a limited resolution could be achieved. Important details were not recognisable in the desired quality. In the knowledge, Ralph Rosenbauer, ALPA's scientific consultant, developed a special setup that goes beyond these possibilities and delivered unusually good results.
The requirements for this set-up quickly exceeded the previously known standards:
• On the one hand, the camera had to be movable, which required the highest precision. Every little bump would have affected the result. ALPA solved this problem with a motorised carriage which is normally used for optical experiments and lasers and allows steps of 0.1 micrometer each. This corresponds to 0.0001 millimeters. For comparison: A human hair measures between 0.02 and 0.08 millimeters. ALPA developed software specifically to control the carriage.
• In addition, the lens had to be able to resolve the fine structures of insects. A requirement that even the most powerful macro lenses meet only conditionally. The Rodenstock / ALPA Macro Switar 105 mm , on the other hand, offers an optimal resolution even at the aperture, and can be perfectly adapted to the respective imaging scales thanks to its "floating element". Its comparatively long focal length allows for a comfortable working distance and thus facilitates the light setup.
• The triggering of the shutter was another major challenge since vibrations had led to misalignment between individual images.
• The shells of many species of insects have extreme contrasts in the macro image, especially when black surfaces alternate with bright hair, bristles or iridescent spots.
• For a photograph to document the insects, more than 1000 individual shots are necessary. This enormous amount of data could hardly have been solved by a computer, so several of them were used simultaneously. For control, a Windows tablet served, to capture the images a laptop with CaptureOne
Setup for documentation at the Museum für Naturkunde in Berlin. © Ralph Rosenbauer
In addition to the above-mentioned design and the Rodenstock / ALPA Macro Switar 105 mm lens, various digital backs were used, with the IQ3 100 MP resulting in the best results due to the dynamics. As a camera, the ALPA 12 FPS was predestined for this task because its electronically controlled slit shutter and the absence of a back-flip mirror allow a vibration-free release.
In the end, the finished motifs had to be optimised. The dust, lint and the preparation needles of the insects were removed and the data were prepared for further processing. The end result makes it possible to look at insects as you have never seen them before with your own eyes: with clear sharpness, clear details and colours.
The results of the project - for the presentation on the Internet in strongly reduced resolution. © Bernhard Schurian
Impressed experts at Smithsonian
The setup of ALPA, the workflow and the photographs by Bernhard Schurian proved so convincing that he has already presented it to a specialist audience. In the USA, at the end of June, Bernhard Schurian gave a lecture at the Smithsonian Natural History Museum in Washington. It houses the world's largest insect collection with around 35 million specimens. "The audience at the Smithsonian consisted mainly of photographers and IT professionals," Schurian says. "The number of questions asked during the lecture shows that this solution is of great interest."
Another opportunity to study the project from a somewhat different perspective is from 21 July to On 9 September in Berlin, Bernhard Schurian will be present during these days as an artist at the exhibition "The Beauty of the Formula" at the Alte Schule Gallery in the Cultural Center Adlershof For the Museum of Natural History, some of which are displayed in the large format of 1.5 x 2 meters, to make the viewer even closer to a world that is otherwise hidden from the eye.
Follow the links and visit our website to learn more about this Project and the modular ALPA system. If you have any questions, ALPA of Switzerland ([email protected]) and your ALPA dealer will be pleased to help you.
Rodenstock / ALPA Macro Switar 5.6/105 mm
ALPA 12 FPS
Museum für Naturkunde Berlin
Galerie Alte Schule, Adlershof Berlin
In 360 Degree Panoramic Photography, cameras need full freedom in movement. To us, it was only consequent to test our new ALPA GON Tripod Case in this environment. Our testing person was Thomas Bredenfeld, one of the most respected experts in Panoramic Photography. Bredenfeld has been working in this field for more than 20 years. His name is known especially in Germany, Switzerland and Austria.
For more than ten years, Thomas Bredenfeld has been a member of the Pano-Tools list. He is a lecturer for a wide range of events referring to panoramic photography, image editing and multimedia aspects of photography. In 2011, he helped to organize the annual PanoTools meeting in Vienna. Bredenfelds book „Panoramafotografie – Digitale Fotopraxis“ is a standard reference for German speaking panoramic photographers.
We hope, our ALPA GON Tripod System will also be a standard reference for all photographers, whether they focus on panorama or other subjects. ALPA GON is based on a modular design and can be used for any purpose in photography.
One solution for all
This summer, Thomas Bredenfeld took our new ALPA GON Tripod Kit on the road. The set is now available. It contains the ALPA GON Tripod Head, Triobal Mini Leveling Head, Pano Plate, Nodal Point Rail, Carbon Tripod Legs and Drumstick Legs as well as other accessories.
Product Page: ALPA GON Tripod Kit 1
Amongst other places, the ALPA GON Tripod Kit has been tested at IVRPA in Vienna and at Thomas Bredenfeld's workshop at Photo-Adventure in Duisburg. It was mainly used as an exemplary construction for an „Astro-Panorama“-setup – completed with VR-products from Novoflex.
Astro-Panorama-Setup with ALPA GON. © Thomas Bredenfeld
According to Thomas Bredenfeld, the ALPA GON proved its versatility once again. „The setup with ALPA GON has high load carrying capacity“, he says. „The modules are very stable and precise, even if you add a lot of parts to your setup. The participants at the workshop were pretty impressed.“
Panoramic photography with ALPA GON, showing the Landscape Park Duisburg-Süd. © Thomas Bredenfeld
Also check out the interactive panorama view
ALPA GON Tripod Kit is another example of our modular philosophy. All our prodcuts correspond to the UniQ/C-Standard. Photographers, therefore, are able to combine different products from different brands as needed. We look forward to inform you about the full potential of our gear. For any further questions, please contact ALPA of Switzerland or your local dealer.
Product page ALPA GON Head
Website Thomas Bredenfeld
3D Printing or Additive Design really makes a difference when it comes to producing small batches on demand. It can also help professional photographers solve quality issues. ALPA has been researching for years and is using the technology to produce Lens Shades as well as other camera parts.
ALPA Lens Shades are laser sintered and come in various shapes. They match precisely with the features of different lenses and digital back sensors. Furthermore, ALPA Lens Shades are highly effective when it comes to light reflection.
They are durable, flexible and at the same time dimensionally stable. This means, you can stuff your ALPA Lens Shade into your bag, leave it there for hours and it still will be able to return to its original shape.
Avoiding light spots
Just like any of our products, ALPA Lens Shades had to withstand the high expectations in the field tests. On of the recent testers was Swiss architectural photographer René Dürr. In spring 2017, he took several Lens Shades on a photographic trip to the region of Veneto, Italy.
The intention that led him to this field test was a quality issue. "I am used to working very precisely and I've had some problems with light spots different than usual on my pictures", he explains. "I discussed the matter with a lot of experts, but we couldn't find the reason. I was not even able to correct the spots within the post production, so I couldn't use any of the pictures affected." ALPA technical advisor Hans-Peter Ochsner knows the problem. „light spots are quite common, especially when the weather is clouded.“
After a short briefing with ALPA, René Dürr decided to try our printed Lens Shades. The result was exciting, he says. "They have proven successful. The spots are just gone and I can confirm all the other advantages, too. For example, I keep the ALPA Lens Shades in my backpack and they never distort. Another pro is the simple handling. I just put them over the lense and they stay right there."
Two of the pictures René Dürr sent us. The light spots in the middle may be small, but they ruined the whole photograph. So he tested different types of ALPA Lens Shades.
"In the end, they save me a lot of time and money as a professional photographer", Dürr says.
You'll find more information about Additive Manufacturing of serial components in Frederick Waldern's blog on zuehlke.com (only in German). He also names ALPA as an example.