Wed Oct 18, 2017 | 20:12
Biggest radio telescope planned in UK
Sun, 03 Apr 2011 19:39:04 GMT
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Jodrell Bank observatory, near Manchester, England
The world's largest radio telescope is to be developed in cooperation with a major observatory near the city of Manchester in England.

The Square Kilometer Array (SKA) will be made up of thousands of individual dishes with a total "collecting area" of about 1 sq km, giving 50 times the sensitivity and 10,000 times the survey speed of the best current telescopes, The Guardian reported.

It is announced that the SKA project office will be based at Jodrell Bank observatory near Manchester.

It will eventually be located in Australia, New Zealand or southern Africa, with a target construction cost of €1.5bn (£1.3bn).

It will supersede the existing SKA program development office currently based at the University of Manchester. The move to Jodrell Bank is scheduled for 1 January next year.

With thousands of receptors located at distances of up to 1,860 miles from the center of the telescope, the SKA will address unanswered questions about the universe, including how the first stars and galaxies formed after the Big Bang, how galaxies have evolved since then, the nature of gravity and the search for life beyond earth.

Nine British governmental and research organizations have set up a founding board for the project.

Australia, China, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, South Africa and the UK have signed a letter of intent in Rome, declaring their common ambition to see the SKA built, and agreeing to work together to secure funding for the next phase of the project.

NN/AGB
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