World’s fastest camera relies on an entirely new type of imaging
Wileen Wong Kromhout
| 4/29/2009 2:30:00 PM
Ultrafast, light-sensitive video cameras are needed for observing high-speed events such as shockwaves, communication between living cells, neural activity, laser surgery and elements of blood analysis. To catch such elusive moments, a camera must be able to capture millions or billions of images continuously with a very high frame rate. Conventional cameras are simply not up to the task.
Now, researchers at the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science have developed a novel, continuously running camera that captures images roughly a thousand times faster than any existing conventional camera.
In a paper in the April 30 issue of Nature (currently available online), UCLA Engineering researchers Keisuke Goda, Kevin Tsia and team leader Bahram Jalali describe an entirely new approach to imaging that does not require a traditional CCD (charge-coupled device) or CMOS (complementary metal-oxide semiconductor) video camera. Building on more than a decade of research on photonic time stretch, a technique for capturing elusive events, the team has demonstrated a camera that captures images at some 6 million frames per second.