Disassembled digital camera

Camera – in its simplest form, a box with a hole in front of it. There is a special piece of glass in front of the hole called a lens. To take a photograph of something, the lens makes a small picture of the object inside the camera. The lens does this by focusing light. A lens in a camera works like a lens in glasses (spectacles) or a magnifying glass.

  • Pin-Hole camera has no lens. It uses a very small hole to focus light.
  • Brownie camera
  • SLR (Single Lens Reflex)
  • Digital camera – uses an image sensor, and stores pictures on a memory card instead of film. The picture can be saved in a compressed file (JPEG, TIFF) or in an uncompressed RAW file. The compressed images take much less storage space.

Digital photography – photography done using a digital camera. Sometimes it is called digital imaging. A digital camera has a lens, aperture, and shutter. The picture the lens makes is recorded by a light-sensitive electronic sensor.

World’s fastest camera captures 4.4 trillion frames per second. With the STAMP (Sequentially Timed All-optical Mapping Photography) system, the object being photographed is sequentially illuminated by many beams derived from a femtosecond laser.

AirPano is a not-for-profit project focused on high-resolution spherical panorama shots from a bird’s eye view. Being the largest resource for 360° aerial panoramas in the world – by geographical coverage, number of aerial photographs, and artistic and technical quality of the images, AirPano has already photographed over two hundred most interesting locations on our planet. There are nearly two thousand 360° panoramas on our website at the moment.

Mantis Shrimp Eyes

Mantis shrimp-inspired camera enables glimpse into hidden world – By mimicking the eye of the mantis shrimp, researchers have developed an ultra-sensitive camera capable of sensing both color and polarization. The bioinspired imager can potentially improve early cancer detection and help provide a new understanding of underwater phenomena, the researchers said.

What’s the problem?

Big Shot Camera – designed as a kit for assembly – putting the kit together exposes the user to a wide range of science concepts. It includes features that cannot be found in other cameras, allowing the user to explore new creative dimensions. It sis low-cost, making it accessible.

  • Ask – Who is the camera intended for? Why would they want to build their own camera?
  • Imagine – What parts of the camera have to be pre-made? What parts of the camera can be assembled by the user?
  • Design, Build – What does the user need to assemble the camera? Do they need special tools? How can the camera be designed so it is challenging to assemble but not so complicated that people will mess it up?
  • Improve – What can the user learn from assembling this camera? What can the user add?

That’s engineering

  • electronics – the study and use of electrical parts and circuits. These “electronic components” manipulate the force of electricity. There are many electronic components that are used in electrical devices such as – resistors, capacitors, coils of wire called inductors, integrated circuits, connection wires and circuit boards.
  • image sensor – In a digital camera, the lens forms an image of the scene on a small electronic chip called the image sensor]. The sensor measures this light and converts it to a digital image.
  • Digital photography uses an electronic sensor such as a charge-coupled device (CCD) or CMOS semiconductor to record the image as a piece of electronic data rather than as chemical changes on film.
  • charge-coupled device (CCD) – an integrated circuit containing an array of linked, or coupled, capacitors. Under the control of an external circuit, each capacitor can transfer its electric charge to one or other of its neighbors.
  • semiconductor – a material with an electrical conductance that is intermediate to those of an insulator and a conductor. A semiconductor behaves as an insulator at very low temperature, and has an appreciable electrical conductance at room temperature.

Engineering ideas

  • lens, focus, digital compression, light-sensitive, sensor, electronics, component, chip, high-resolution, spherical panorama, aerial, resolution, bird’s eye view

Do it
Here are some challenges for you to work on…

  • Make a pinhole camera – A pinhole camera is the simplest way to capture images. It consists of a dark chamber with a tiny hole in the place of the lens. These instructions will show you how to build your own pinhole camera with a viewing screen.

Learn more…

  • Big Shot Camera – great web site with information, fun facts, activities