I'm excited to share the news that the California Academy of Sciences has a acquired a state-of-the-art high resolution microscopic camera called the "Magnify2," created by the company GIGAMacro based in Napa, California. It looks, frankly, totally badass.
The Magnify2 is billed as a "complete, high performance, precision robotic 3-axis linear motion control, image capture, post-processing, and online viewing and annotation system." It's designed to create "gigapixel" sized images (i.e. composed of a billion or more pixels) of microscopic and macroscopic items, from the fleas pictured above to plants, rocks, circuitry and really anything else that will fit on the imaging plate. It can achieve resolution detail as high as one micro, i.e. one millionth of a meter. It operates autonomously, creating hundreds or even thousands of images of a specimen, and then combining those images into one extremely high resolution image.
And I even like the color.
Check out a few examples of images produced by the Magnify2 on the GIGAmacro website.
The Magnify2 will used by our exhibits team, IT and our researchers I'm sure for many awesome applications. We've already invested in long range plans to digitize and share our scientific collections online, including high resolution images of ants that you can see on Antweb as well as stunning 3d scans of our animal skeleton collections that you can see in our new "Skulls" exhibit. I'm already dreaming up projects that our Digital Learning TechTeens can do with an imaging system like that.
You can check out the Magnify2 in the Project Lab at the Cal Academy. Try not to drool all over the glass.