what are the difficulties of constructing a camera with $3.10^{8}$ frames per second (FPS)? In order to study the nature and speed of light, can we construct a camera with $3.10^{8}$ FPS?


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  • $\begingroup$ There are already very high-speed mechanical and, more recently, electronic framing cameras that can operate in that range. I seem to recall that the mechanical high-speed framing camera that I once used in experiments was capable of recording images at speeds up to at least 80 nsec per frame, and that was many years ago. $\endgroup$ – Samuel Weir Sep 24 '17 at 16:28
  • $\begingroup$ engineering.stackexchange.com would be your friend. $\endgroup$ – peterh Sep 25 '17 at 2:32

No difficulty. There is already camera that can captures more than $10^{15}$ FPS (i.e. $<1fs$). The real difficulty is to store lots of frames because of the memory limitation, which means the time duration is very short.

With such speed, you can see the light propagation like a wave, with wavefront. Other than that, there are not much nature of light you can study. High speed camera, however, can be very useful for the study of physical phenomena such as molecular motion, some explosions, etc.

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    $\begingroup$ It's worth noting those cameras don't actually capture at that rate. They do the same laser pulse multiple times and then process those individual captures to make a full framed video of the situation. They don't truly capture the scene at that's FPS. $\endgroup$ – JMac Sep 25 '17 at 16:13