Microscopic camera is one of the smallest ever produced


So this camera isn't going to replace our DSLR (unless we suddenly give up landscapes in favour of endoscopy) but from a technological point of view the miniaturisation of all sorts of photography gear is interesting to us.

And this is miniaturisation to the extreme. This microscopic camera - created by boffins at the Fraunhofer Institute in Germany - measures a tiny 1x1x1mm… that's about the same size as a grain of salt.

Apparently they've managed to make it so small by developing a new way to access the electrical contacts and only connecting contacts and sensors to one side of the lens wafer.

In addition to making the 62,500 pixel camera so small (that's a resolution of 250×250px) the design process also makes it remarkably cheap to the point of being disposable.

This is all the more important given the medical applications and means the gizmo will not require time-consuming and expensive sanitisation procedures. Makers say the camera will be available from 2012.