Wide Field Survey Telescope : China
China is set to launch the Wide Field Survey Telescope (WFST) in September.
- Wide Field Survey Telescope is the largest time-domain survey facility in the Northern Hemisphere.
- The core scientific objective is to explore and monitor dynamic astronomical events and conduct time-domain astronomical observation research.
- This will enable researchers to detect faint and distant celestial signals, including those from galaxies beyond the Milky Way and galaxy clusters.
- It will also seek out planets or their moons in the Kuiper Belt and beyond.
- It has set out to find and track 10 lakh solar system objects for a comprehensive view of the solar system and its evolution.
- The telescope is located at the Lenghu astronomical observation base in northwest China’s Qinghai Province.
- The base, which sits at an average altitude of about 4,000 meters, offers optimal conditions for stargazing due to its clear night skies, stable atmospheric conditions, dry climate, and minimal artificial light pollution.
- It is recognised as one of the best observatory sites on the Eurasian continent.
- The WFST project was launched in July 2019 through a collaboration between the University of Science and Technology of China and the Purple Mountain Observatory under the Chinese Academy of Sciences.