Astronomy sets new records with revolutionary telescope
The EU-funded design study of the world's largest sub-millimetre astronomical telescope is about to start. The work, led by the University of Oslo, includes a study to power the telescope by renewable energy.
Panoramic view of ESO's Atacama Pathfinder Experiment telescope (APEX). This 12-metre diameter telescope, operating at millimetre and submillimetre wavelengths is located at an altitude of 5000 metres on the Chajnantor Plateau in the Chilean Andes, proposed location of AtLAST.
“Towards an Atacama Large Aperture Submillimeter Telescope”, in short AtLAST, is a three years long design study for a new astronomical sub-millimetre observatory.
The 3.5 million euros grant assigned by the European commission under the Horizon2020 research and innovation program will enable a comprehensive design study for AtLAST, which will take into account technical, operational and environmental challenges of this ground-breaking new infrastructure, possibly ready in 2030s.
The project represents a giant technological leap for astrophysicists and for scientists exploring ways to make AtLAST fully powered by renewable energy, - the first study of such kind for an astronomical facility, says Dr. Claudia Cicone, new associate professor at the Institute of Theoretical Astrophysics, and study lead of the project.