World’s Largest Radio Telescope:
On 4th Feb, the Square Kilometre Array Observatory (SKAO) Council held its maiden meeting and approved the establishment of the world’s largest radio telescope.
- SKAO is a new intergovernmental organization dedicated to radio astronomy and is headquartered in the UK.
- At the moment, organizations from ten countries are a part of the SKAO.
- These include Australia, Canada, China, India, Italy, New Zealand, South Africa, Sweden, the Netherlands and the UK.
- Unlike optical telescopes, radio telescopes can detect invisible gas and, therefore, they can reveal areas of space that may be obscured by cosmic dust.
- The first radio signals were detected by physicist Karl Jansky in the 1930s.
- The Arecibo telescope in Puerto Rico, which was the second-largest single-dish radio telescope in the world, collapsed in December 2020.
- The telescope was built in 1963.
About SKA Telescope:
- The telescope is proposed to be the largest radio telescope in the world.
- It will be located in Africa and Australia whose operation, maintenance, and construction will be overseen by SKAO.
- The completion is expected to take nearly a decade at a cost of over £1.8 billion.