The speed of light is often referred to as the universe’s speed limit, making it nearly impossible to catch on camera.
But a high-tech camera created by researchers at the California Institute of Technology has managed to do just that.
The mind-bending footage has been captured in a new video from YouTubers The Slow Mo Guys in an episode of their ‘Planet Slow Mo’ series.
In it, a CalTech researcher documents what it looks like when a beam of light travels at a speed of 10 trillion frames per second.
CalTech invented what it calls the ‘world’s fastest camera,’ which makes it possible to visualize the speed of light.
Dubbed T-Cup, the device captures images at 10 trillion frames a second – streaks ahead of the average smartphone camera, which manages around 30 per second.
The camera was first unveiled in October of last year.
For the video, postdoctoral scholar Peng Wang starts out by recording the speed of light at 100 billion frames per second.
At this rate, it takes a beam of light about 2,000 picoseconds to travel the length of an average water bottle.