What Would You Do With a Billion-Pixel Camera?

By Tara MacIsaac
Tara MacIsaac
Tara MacIsaac
Tara MacIsaac is an editor and reporter who has worked on a variety of topics over the course of her ten years with The Epoch Times, including science, the environment, and local New York news. She is currently working with The Epoch Times edition based in Southern California.
February 6, 2014 Updated: July 18, 2015

The European Space Agency (ESA) will use it’s billion-pixel camera—the most precise camera to ever be used in space—to photograph a billion stars.

There are a million pixels in a megapixel. So, the ESA’s Gaia camera is a 1,000-megapixel camera.

To put that in perspective, the iPhone 6 will reportedly have a 10-megapixel camera. Professional photographers usually shoot with around 15 to 20 megapixels. 

On the very high end, the 200-megapixel Hasselblad H4D-200MS sells for $45,000. According to a Reuters report from 2012, the 570-megapixel Dark Energy Camera was named the world’s largest and most powerful digital camera.

The European Space Agency mission Gaia will map a billion stars, mapping each over seven times to understand their movements and other characteristics.

The device, adrift in space, uses two telescopes and a series of mirrors to reflect the light and images through the telescopes into the camera.
106 CCDs and almost a billion pixels.

*Image of a photographer via Shutterstock

Tara MacIsaac is an editor and reporter who has worked on a variety of topics over the course of her ten years with The Epoch Times, including science, the environment, and local New York news. She is currently working with The Epoch Times edition based in Southern California.