3.2 billion-pixel digital camera, to be world’s largest digital camera, now getting closer to reality

By on Apr 27, 2012 in Amazing, Astronomy, Lifestyle, United States Comments

The making of the 3.2 billion-pixel digital camera called the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST), was said to be getting close to reality after another critical step was completed, which later would be the world’s largest digital camera.

An artist’s rendition of LSST, the 3.2 billion-pixel
digital camera, with a man standing beside it

Image Credit: LSST Project

According to a press release by SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory on its official website on Tuesday, April 24, 2012, LSST has received “Critical Decision 1” approval by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to move into the next stage of the project.

As noted by SLAC (Stanford Linear Accelerator Center), the 3.2 billion-pixel digital camera will be capturing the widest, fastest and deepest view of the night sky ever observed; and will survey the entire visible sky every week.

“With 189 sensors and over 3 tons of components that have to be packed into an extremely tight space, you can imagine this is a very complex instrument,” Nadine Kurita, project manager for the LSST camera at SLAC, was quoted at SLAC.Stanford.edu.

“But given the enormous challenges required to provide such a comprehensive view of the universe, it’s been an incredible opportunity to design something so unique.” Kurita added, with the gigantic camera to create about 6 million gigabytes per year.

“I’ve personally been working on this since 2003, and it is tremendously satisfying to finally see this move forward to the point when we can begin to carry out the project.” SLAC‘s Steven Kahn, LSST deputy project director and leader of the DOE-funded effort on LSST, reportedly said.

The construction of the would-be world’s largest digital camera, which will be measuring roughly five feet by 10 feet and will weigh over three tons, is being expected begin in 2014, as preliminary work on LSST‘s 8.4-meter primary mirror has already started and its final site atop Cerro Pachón in northern Chile.

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