In studying dark energy and dark matter a new kind of special-purpose telescope may prove useful. The mapping of dark matter with gravitational lensing and the search for distant supernovae both require the search of large swaths of sky. These searches could be achieved with a wide-field-of-view (1 degree or more) telescope and a commensurately large CCD camera (probably gigapixel or larger). The Sloan Digital Sky Survey (a project to digitize the sky and map large-scale structure, depicted in Figure 4.3) and the MACHO project (a search for dark stars in the halo of our galaxy through microlensing) have shown the value of such special-purpose telescopes.

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