This camera shoots for 1/trillionth of a second!

Brookhaven National Laboratory
Yimei Zhu and Junjie Li at the 3 MeV ultrafast electron diffraction instrument, which acts like a high-resolution stroboscopic "camera" to track trajectories of atoms (Image credit: Brookhaven National Laboratory)

Scientists at Brookhaven National Laboratory have been using a superfast high-resolution "camera" that tracks the trajectories of atoms, to help them discover and develop materials that can send and process signals as easily as the brain’s neurons and synapses.

Yimei Zhu, a physicist at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory and his collaborators have been using data collected by a unique “stroboscopic camera,” capturing the hidden route of atomic motion as this material transitions from an insulator to a metal in response to a pulse of light.  

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Lauren Scott
Freelance contributor/former Managing Editor

Lauren is a writer, reviewer, and photographer with ten years of experience in the camera industry. She's the former Managing Editor of Digital Camera World, and previously served as Editor of Digital Photographer magazine, Technique editor for PhotoPlus: The Canon Magazine, and Deputy Editor of our sister publication, Digital Camera Magazine. An experienced journalist and freelance photographer, Lauren also has bylines at Tech Radar,, Canon Europe, PCGamesN, T3, Stuff, and British Airways' in-flight magazine (among others). When she's not testing gear for DCW, she's probably in the kitchen testing yet another new curry recipe or walking in the Cotswolds with her Flat-coated Retriever.