Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Square Kilometer Array

"Square Kilometer Array (SKA) is a radio telescope in development which will have a total collecting area of approximately one square kilometer. It will operate over a wide range of frequencies and its size will make it 50 times more sensitive than any other radio instrument. It will require very high performance central computing engines and long-haul links with a capacity greater than the current Internet traffic of Europe. It will be able to survey the sky more than ten thousand times faster than ever before. With receiving stations extending out to distance of 3,000 km from a concentrated central core, it will continue radio astronomy's tradition of providing the highest resolution images in all astronomy. The SKA will be built in the southern hemisphere, either in South Africa or Australia, where the view of our own galaxy, the Milky Way, is best and radio interference least. With a budget of €1.5 billion, construction of the SKA is scheduled to begin in 2016 for initial observations by 2019 and full operation by 2024.

The SKA is a global collaboration of 20 countries which will revolutionize our understanding of the Universe by providing answers to fundamental questions about its origin and evolution." - Source

SETI 2020: A good read about the future of SETI, perhaps supported largely by this new telescope project.

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