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Schlieren photography
CREDIT: NASA

How fast is fast?

...sometimes speed is everything

Automobile photography can be considered as fast but some other applications leave this standing still. The Bloodhound Land Speed Record project has just achieved 628mph in the South African desert. Projects like this need really high speed cameras.

Automobile and aerospace production will routinely use cameras running at around 1000 frames per second for test runs, sacrificing resolution for speed. They take "only" 1 or 2 Mpixels per frame, a figure we would have taken as normal for a compact camera only a few years ago. Our camera specifications have moved on just as rapidly as these cameras!

We are by no way at the end of this journey yet. In early December I attended The 2019 Combined Royal Colleges Lecture in London. Professors Dhaliwal and Bradley showed some real high speed imaging, this time to distinguish tissue for medical applications.

What is the fastest picture you have ever taken?