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Ultra High Speed Cameras – How Do They Film a Tank Shell In flight Or a Nuclear Bomb Test?

Ever wondered how they film a tank shell in flight for over 100m meters like it was travelling at walking speed or the instant of a nuclear explosion. In this video, I look at the super high-speed cameras that can run at millions of frames per second that were made well before the modern electronic ones of today as well have the amazing flight follower systems and the fastest real-time tracker in the world.

image/text credt: Curious Droid 

From the footage, it looks like the camera is panning around and following the projectile but that would be impossible, the tank round is travelling at over 1500m per second and would normally look like this.For all of you out there who said it was done with mirrors then you are absolutely correct..read more:(curious-droid).

It works by having a computer controlled high speed rotating mirror in the line of sight of a high-speed camera. The speed of the rotation of the mirror matches that of the object being followed, so the faster the object is travelling like a railgun projectile, the faster the mirror would turn to keep up with it.


Using this method, the object can be kept in the field of view for 100m or so of travel and about 90 degrees of the mirrors movement. In this example, the Tracker2 from specialised-imaging you can see the mirror and then to the left is the camera. Because the mirror is computer controller it can be programmed to follow objects that accelerate either linearly or non linearly.