http://www.nmm.ac.uk/rog/2008/05/the_largest_digital_camera_in.htmlI bought a new digital camera a few weeks ago, and I was very impressed by its resolution - a whopping10 Mpx! (10 million pixels). But that is tiny compared to the digital camera involved in the University of Hawaii's Pan-STARRS project...
Their digital camera is a staggering 1,400 Mpx!
I would have to buy another 139 cameras to compete with that!
Pan-STARRS main aim is to repeatedly photograph the sky looking for potentially hazardous asteroids - we only know of 953 PHA's at the moment (according to SpaceWeather.com). Having said that, they will also be able to do lots of other interesting science as well, such as looking for variables stars (e.g. supernovae).
This project continues in the great tradition of astronomers leading the way in digital camera technology. The first CCD (a type of digital camera sensor) was used on the Kitt Peak National Observatory's 1m telescope all the way back in 1979. This CCD was 50x more sensitive than film. It took until 1990 for the first commercial digital camera became available, and now, almost everybody has one!