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570-Megapixel Digital Camera Is the Mother and the Father of All Cameras

Illustration for article titled 570-Megapixel Digital Camera Is the Mother and the Father of All Cameras

Dark energy Peeping Toms rejoice, because Fermilab has created the gadget to catch it: A $35 million, car-sized digital camera, with 74 CCD sensors in it. It will take 570-megapixel photos of the Universe.

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The resulting sensor is one meter in diameter, covering a 2.2-degree field of view. The images are so big that, even with an ultra-fast data recording system, each photo will take 17 seconds to acquire.

The camera won't photograph the dark energy itself, however. It will just provide with ultra-detailed shots of the cosmos—tracking 300 million galaxies over the course of five years—which may bring evidence about the existence of this veiled intergalactic power. Which is too bad, because I bet she looks sexy in her undies. [Dark Energy Survey via Wired]

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DISCUSSION

Can you imagine being the engineer in charge of designing the image stabilizer on that bad boy?

The search for dark energy (dark matter) is an amazing mystery. Searching that takes up ~96% of the universe and we do not know what it is — well, there is one hell of a Sherlock Holmes episode waiting to be written on that subject some century in the future. I hope this amazing camera gets us closer to the answer.