by Marie Kauna – EMTV Online, Port Moresby
The production of a 3.2 gigapixel, yes gigapixel, camera has been approved for construction by the US Department of Energy.
The 3.2-gigapixel digital camera is said to be the world’s most powerful digital camera. According to a press statement, the camera “will capture full-sky images at such high resolution that it would take 1,500 high-definition television screens to display just one of them.”
The components of the camera are being built through an international collaboration of universities and labs, including DOE’s Brookhaven National Laboratory, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and SLAC.
The camera features include a filter changing mechanisation and shutter, which will help the camera to capture and view different wavelengths. The camera is also capable of viewing the lights from the near-ultraviolet to near-infrared wavelengths.
An important feature includes the database management system. The database management system will help the camera to generate a wider public archive of data which is described to be “approximately 6 million gigabyte per year, or even equivalent of shooting roughly 800,000 images with a regular 8-megapixel camera every night”.
The construction is soon to begin and according to Nadine Kurita, the camera project manager at SLAC, “we’ve been working hard for years to get to this point; everyone is very excited to start building the camera and take a big step toward conducting a deep survey of the southern night sky”.
The camera will be built at the heart of the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope, and will become the eye of LSST. In this way, it will reveal unique details of the universe and help identify some of the greatest mysteries of the universe.