Today, a very very cool time laps video of the assembly of the AWARE2 Multiscale Gigapixel Camera:
Project overview, from The Duke Imaging and Spectroscopy Program:
This program is focused on building wide-field, video-rate, gigapixel cameras in small, low-cost form factors. Traditional monolithic lens designs, must increase f/# and lens complexity and reduce field of view as image scale increases. In addition, traditional electronic architectures are not designed for highly parallel streaming and analysis of large scale images. The AWARE Wide field of view project addresse these challenges using multiscale designs that combine a monocentric objective lens with arrays of secondary microcameras.
The optical design explored here utilizes a multiscale design in conjunction with a monocentric objective lens  to achieve near diffraction limited performance throughout the field. A monocentric objective enables the use of identical secondary systems (referred to as microcameras) greatly simplifying design and manufacturing. Following the multiscale lens design methodology, the field-of-view (FOV) is increased by arraying microcameras along the focal surface of the objective. In practice, the FOV is limited by the physical housing. This yields a much more linear cost and volume versus FOV. Additionally, each microcamera operates independently, offering much more flexibility in image capture, exposure, and focus parameters. A basic architecture is shown below, producing a 1.0 gigapixel image based on 98 micro-optics covering a 120 by 40 degree FOV.
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