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China Takes Lead in Space Research with Largest Radio Telescope in the World

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This Sunday China has produced a world’s largest Radio telescope in order to explore any of the physical life and explore space.

Media outlet Xinhua has reported that the 500-meter Aperture Spherical Radio Telescope (FAST) was started in the Guizhou province of the China. It takes almost 17 years to complete the project as it was proposed in late 1999 and it costs almost $180 million.

According to the news of the media outlet Xinhua, Around 8000 peoples were relocated from their homes for the completion of the project in August.

FAST covers a large area that may be equivalent to the 30 Football grounds and it contains almost 4450 pannels. The government had announced $ 269 million for the villagers who had been displaced from their homes to complete this project.

The telescope is nicknamed as Tianyan or the Eye of Heaven. Tianyan has double sensitivity than the Arecibo Observatory, which was previous largest single-dish radio telescope, the surveying speed is 5-10 times and can accurately capture twice as much of the sky.

Douglas Vakoch, president of METI International said:

“By opening FAST to use by the broader international community, China is demonstrating its commitment to fostering astronomy as a global scientific enterprise, For over a half century, astronomers have been using radio telescopes to answer the haunting question, ‘Are we alone?’ But astronomers face a daunting challenge: the signals they seek are so weak that an incredibly sensitive telescope is needed to detect them. FAST’s innovative design and huge collecting area give it unsurpassed speed and sensitivity, making it vital to the search for extraterrestrial intelligence in the coming decades. We can expect China to become a world leader in the search for extraterrestrial intelligence because of its demonstrated commitment to building FAST.”

This project can permit scientists to “detect gravitational waves, or ripples in space-time, from pairs of massive black holes,”. However, FAST still holds the ability and to analyze and precisely measure the changes in the pulsar’s pulsing rates.