Starting in 2012 and continuing for 5 years, the Dark Energy Survey (DES) will use its newly constructed camera, DECam , to observe a large swath of the southern sky out to vast distances in order to provide new clues about the nature of dark energy – or why the universe’s expansion is accelerating. The DECam imager (pictured) comprises 74 CCD detectors and 570 Megapixels in total. Its construction was carried out at Fermilab, and after a comprehensive test phase, shipping to the DES site in Chile has begun. Commissioining of DECam will be done in the first half of 2012 and, in a year from now, DES will be taking science data. These are exciting times for Dark Energy research!
– Marcelle Soares Santos