The BBC's coverage of the Beijing Olympics will make use of a new video compression tool developed by BBC Research and Innovation that squeezes HD signals down SD lines.

Optimised for professional production, Dirac Pro compresses high definition (HD) signals so they can be sent down standard definition (SD) circuits where HD infrastructure is not available.

The BBC Resources team will use it in Beijing at venues where it is unable to secure part or full HD links.

Using equipment manufactured by NuMedia Technology, Dirac Pro provides virtually lossless compression and low latency as it squeezes 1.5 GBit per second HD SDI links into 270 MBit per second SDI.

It utilises motion compensation to make use of the correlation between picture frames, dramatically reducing the amount of data required to code a picture.