In our continuing coverage of Microsoft Research projects, today we bring you an important update to a piece of software that we have not covered before: ICE.

ICE, or Microsoft’s Image Composite Editor, is a ‘panoramic image stitcher.’ Or, to put it more simply, ICE is an app that will take a set of photos that overlap and create a single, unified image from them. This is useful if you have a camera in a single spot over time, for example, to track the motion of a person through the frame.

Snowboarding magazines are famous for this sort of shot, showing an athlete in all stages of a jump. What follows is an image that shows off what the latest version of ICE can do:

ski jump 41 520x93 Microsoft Researchs panoramic image stitcher gets an upgradeWhat makes that image special is that, instead of being formed from a series of images, the core ICE capability, that panorama was built from a video. The latest edition of ICE, version 1.42, can now create stitched images from various video files.

The new version includes lens vignetting correction as well, helping to smooth the brightness of a photo out, making for a better final result. ICE 1.42 also includes a new blending engine, which reduces chop between input images.

All told, the new ICE is a very capable tool for the amateur photographer looking to put some extra spice into their next photo shoot. ICE is free and you can grab it here for Windows.