Published on January 12th, 2012 | by Paz0
China News: World’s Biggest Telescope To Be Built by China
Great article from The Huffington Post about China’s initiative to move forward in the “space” industry. Can they do it and will they have the talent?
Those are my questions?
by Audrey McAvoy
HONOLULU — China and India are catapulting to the forefront of astronomy research with their decision to join as partners in a Hawaii telescope that will be the world’s largest when it’s built later this decade.
China and India will pay a share of the construction cost – expected to top $1 billion – for the Thirty Meter Telescope at the summit of Mauna Kea volcano. They will also have a share of the observation time.
It’s the first advanced telescope in which either nation has been a partner.
“This will represent a quantum leap for the Chinese community,” Shude Mao, professor of astrophysics at National Astronomical Observatories of China, said in a telephone interview Wednesday from Waikoloa on the Big Island, where he was attending a meeting of the telescope’s scientific advisory committee.
The Thirty Meter Telescope’s segmented primary mirror, which will be nearly 100 feet – or 30 meters – long, will give it nine times the light-collecting area of the largest optical telescopes in use today. Its images will also be three times sharper.
G.C. Anupama, professor at the Indian Institute of Astrophysics, said the largest telescope in India has a 2-meter mirror, though the nation is currently building one that will be 4 meters long.
“So it’s a huge jump for us from the 4-meter to the 30-meter,” Anupama said in a telephone interview from the sidelines of the advisory committee’s meeting. “It definitely will take Indian astronomy to greater heights.”