Students, eh? They get up late, eat dubious microwaveable noodle snacks, have one too many snakebites and then end up designing a camera capable of taking photos from space for a measly $148. Typical.

Seriously though, this is an incredible feat. According to their online diary of events, Justin Lee and Oliver Yeh from MIT in the States had only the most paltry equipment and budget to create their impressive space camera. Their equipment included a basic digital camera, a helium balloon, a mobile phone with GPS, some hand-warmers, a Styrofoam beer-cooler and a bit of duct tape (solves everything, doesn’t it?), making this endeavour (pessimistically titled ‘Project Icarus’) all the more impressive.

The pictures, as you can see, are also pretty spectacular:

All that for $148. If the student loan company get hold of this, they’re stuffed. I’ve just looked in my wallet, and I’ve got about fifteen quid. I’m pretty confident I can knock up a disposable camera on a step-ladder, but the results might not be quite as good.

Kudos to Mashable for spotting it.

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