This camera weighs four tons. Its shutter and filter are both nearly 1.5m tall. And its job is to unlock the secrets of our universe's dark energy. Here's how they built it.
What you're watching is 6 per cent of the images captured of the camera's 10-month construction at Chicago's Fermilab. Construction is about 80 per cent complete. And once the finished product hass been tested, poked, prodded and approved, the camera will then be disassembled and shipped off to the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile. That's when the real work begins.
The DECam, as it's called, is an integral part of the Dark Energy Survey, which aims to peer three-quarters of the way back to the time of the Big Bang, in search of answers to essential cosmic mysteries:
Because gravity causes mass to attract other mass, over time, this gravitational pull should slow the universe's expansion Instead, the universe is accelerating: galaxies are speeding away from each other faster and faster. DES aims to help pin down the cause of this acceleration. Theorists offer two possibilities: either three-quarters of the universe is dark energy, which causes a type
of anti-gravity, or gravity itself behaves differently on cosmic scales than Einstein thought it did. The answer will determine the fate of the universe.
See there? No big deal, guys. Just the FATE OF THE UNIVERSE. If Canon in D weren't so soothing, I'm pretty sure this whole thing would be giving me an intergalactic migrane right now. [Symmetry via Motherboard]