(ORDO NEWS) — The NOEMA radio telescope, located on the Plateau de Boure in the French Alps, is now equipped with twelve antennas, making it the most powerful radio telescope of its kind in the northern hemisphere.
The telescope is operated by the Institute of Millimeter-Millimetric Radio Astronomy (IRAM). The opening ceremony was held on 30 September.
NOEMA is a unique tool for astronomical research. The telescope has twelve 15-meter antennas that can be moved back and forth on a specially designed rail system for up to 1.7 kilometers.
The telescope is equipped with highly sensitive receiving systems. During observations, the observatory’s antennas act as a single telescope, a technique called interferometry.
When all antennas are directed to the same area of space, the signals received by them are combined using a supercomputer.
Thus, their detailed resolution corresponds to the resolution of a huge telescope, the diameter of which is equal to the distance between the outermost antennas.
The maximum spatial resolution of NOEMA is so high that the telescope is able to detect a mobile phone at a distance of more than 500 kilometers.
NOEMA is one of the few radio observatories in the world that can simultaneously detect and measure a large number of signatures, i.e. “fingerprints” of molecules and atoms.
With the help of NOEMA, more than 5,000 researchers from around the world study the composition and dynamics of galaxies, the birth and death of stars and comets, and the environment of black holes.
NOEMA has already made a number of important scientific discoveries and discoveries. For example, the telescope observed the most distant galaxy known to date, which formed shortly after the Big Bang.
In addition, NOEMA recently measured the temperature of the cosmic background radiation at a very early stage in the evolution of the universe.
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