Scientists complete construction of largest digital camera ever

Scientists Complete Construction of Largest Digital Camera Ever Designed

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After nine years of development and 3,2 billion pixels, the LSST camera is complete: it represents the largest digital camera ever built for astronomy and will be the crown jewel of the Vera Rubin Observatory, ready to begin its exploration of the southern skies .

A revolution in space observation

The Vera Rubin Observatory and its LSST camera mark a turning point in the way we observe the universe. Featuring a 1,55 meter wide optical lens, this camera will take an exposure of the sky every 20 seconds, with automatic switching of filters to capture light in every wavelength, from near ultraviolet to near infrared. This constant monitoring promises to transform our understanding of space, shedding light on fleeting events and monitoring changes in the southern sky.

The challenges of light pollution and satellites

Despite its ideal location in Chile's Atacama Desert, the observatory is not immune to the challenges posed by terrestrial light pollution and, more importantly, satellites. Satellite constellations, like SpaceX's, can leave light trails in captured images, presenting a significant challenge for the LSST project. Fortunately, solutions are being studied to “clean up” this interference and preserve the quality of the data collected.

Invaluable scientific potential

The observatory's LSST program aims to map the sky with unparalleled precision, providing an unprecedented window on the universe. This colossal undertaking should increase the number of known celestial objects tenfold, revealing the complex dynamics of our universe from our cosmic neighborhood to the confines of observable space. The first public images are expected by March 2025, marking the start of a decade of major scientific discoveries.

To learn more about the technical challenges and progress of this monumental project, read the full article at Gizmodo.

Conclusion

The Vera Rubin Observatory's LSST camera represents a major advance in our ability to observe the universe. Despite the challenges posed by light pollution and satellites, its potential to transform our understanding of space is immense. With the feverish wait for the first images in 2025, we are at the dawn of a new era of space exploration.

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Scientists Complete Construction of Largest Digital Camera Ever Designed

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