Wednesday, June 20, 2012

New gigapixel camera may revolutionize photography, surveillance. From @latimes

Say cheese: Engineers have created a new camera with the capability of capturing over a gigapixel of data, a resolution that is significantly better than normal human vision.

Pixels represent individual points of data in an image, so the more pixels in a single image, the more details can be resolved within that image. The average retail camera currently captures only about 8 to 10 megapixels. The resolution of the gigapixel camera is at least 100 times better than that, and the researchers say their design may eventually be able to capture 50 gigapixels at once.

The new device, called Aware-2, is actually made up of 98 small cameras that surround a common lens, which gathers light and sends it to the cameras. Each of the 98 cameras captures a small part of the device’s field of view and a specially-designed computer processor stitches the images together.

The resulting image has far more detail than the human eye can handle. But photographers using the camera can zoom in on different parts of the images in great detail, essentially allowing a single image to become many detailed photographs, according to the researchers, who work at UC San Diego, Duke University, the University of Arizona, and a company called Distance Focus.

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