Interesting news for all photography freaks, a new and interesting camera that can see five times better than a person with 20/20 vision is here. The resolution is 50 gigapixels, or 50,000 megapixels. Generally the cameras used by professionals reach no more than 40 MP and a typical point and shoot might be 8 or 10 MP. The amount of information captured by a gigapixel camera in a single frame is as much as the data stored on a PC’s hard drive, for just one click.
The group led by David Brady, professor of electrical engineering at Duke’s Pratt School of Engineering, along with scientists from the University of Arizona, the University of California, San Diego and Distant Focus Corp developed the camera. The research was also supported by DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency). Military always had a deep interest in image processing (for spying and other purposes) but such a camera could also be used in other fields like astronomy too.
A conventional digital camera has a single image sensor while the gigapixel camera has 98, which all work in unison! A computer joins all the disparate images together to create a single image sensor. On zooming the image you see details that are not visible by the naked eye.
Michael Gehm, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of Arizona, noted in the press release that to increase the camera’s resolution, they had to go make the optical elements of the camera more complex. The researchers improved the electronics and made a system of parallel processors. The camera lens focuses the light to each of the image sensors and the computer takes care of building the final image.
97% of the camera is comprised of the electronics and computer only to process the complicated information processing. Just 3% is devoted to optical elements. The details of this new and interesting camera were published in the journal Nature.