世界上最大的望远镜 (shìjiè shang zuì dà de wàngyuǎnjìng) The world’s largest telescope

The construction of Tiānyán, the world’s largest telescope

Above: photos between 2009 and 2016, when the telescope was completed.

Last week, the world’s largest telescope was completed. Where is it, you ask? China! Where else 😛 It was built in a valley in 平塘 (Píngtáng) County, 贵州 (Guìzhōu) Province.

五百米口径球面射电望远镜 (wǔbǎi mǐ kǒujìng qiúmiàn shèdiàn wàngyuǎnjìng) is its name, abbreviated to FAST (Five-hundred-metre Aperture Spherical Telescope,) which is a crazy mouthful in either Chinese or English, but they do have a much cooler nickname of sorts, 天眼 (tiānyán) which in this context means Sky Eye.

Construction began in 2011, and was completed last Sunday. Tiānyán has the potential to search for more strange objects to better understand the origin of the universe, and boost the global hunt for extraterrestrial life.

The original budget was CN¥700 million, and ended up costing CN¥1.2 billion. Wow that’s a lot of money!

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