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Researchers click world's first 3,200-megapixel digital photos

By Tanisha Jindal


Considering a SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory blog post, Stanford researchers have taken the largest-ever 3,200-megapixel photos utilizing sensors which will be a component of the world’s largest camera. The camera is going to be installed within the university’s Legacy Survey of Space and Time (LSST) telescope in Chile, which can study dark energy, substance and make the “largest astronomical movie of all time.”

The photos are so vast that it might require 378 4K ultra-high-definition TV screens to exhibit one among them full size. You'll also see small, dim objects other cameras can’t capture -- the resolution is so high that you simply could see a ball from 15 miles away, and therefore the sensors can spot objects 100 million times dimmer than visible with the eye.

This staggering performance is formed possible through 189 sensors, referred to as charge-coupled devices (CCDs) that every measure 16 megapixels. The CCDs are packaged into units called “rafts,” which structure the camera’s focal plane. There are 21 rafts and four speciality rafts not used for imaging. The focal plane comprises 3.2 billion pixels. Each raft having worth up to $3 million individually, were inserted into a grid for the focal plane over six “nerve-wracking” months.

The 3,200-megapixel images are the results of the sensors passing a crucial first test. While some higher-stakes stages of the project are behind them, the team still has demanding work to try building the rest of the camera. Final testing is predicted to start out mid-2021.


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