China is developing a Telescope in the mountains of Guizhou province, dubbed as FAST that will have the ability to listen to sounds originating from distant places in space. Upon completion, the telescope will be the biggest in the world able to decode all the cosmic signals and messages in space.
The $196 million telescope is made of a dish that is almost the size of 30 football fields slated for deployment sometime next year. Engineers are currently assembling the telescope’s reflector believed to be 500 meters in diameter consisting of 4,500 panels.
The telescope upon completion will be connected to the country’s supercomputer expected to be ten times more sensitive. The radio telescope is also expected to maintain a lead position in the world for up to 30 years.
The current location of the telescope was selected because it is ‘Radio Silence’ without any cities or towns within a radius of 5 km. The Telescope upon commissioning should give astronomers an opportunity to jump-start various science projects according to the chief scientist of the project, Nan Rendong. The telescope should also be of great help for surveying natural hydrogen in distant galaxies while helping in the detection of faint pulsars as well as for looking for the first star shining.
The Telescope dubbed FAST could be used to carry out large-scale surveys for HI emissions from galaxies. Equipped with 7,000 pulsars the telescope should help scientists in their push to make breakthroughs on pulsars, highly magnetized rating stars known to produce electromagnetic radiation.
FAST should also be of great help in the ongoing search for life in space as scientist continue to look for molecules that constitute life away from the earth surface. Breakthroughs have already been made scientists having already detected 180 kinds of molecules in space such as ammonia and methanol. Scientists remain confident of discovering amino acids in space considered to be a key building block for life.