Today: Saturday, 2 December 2023 year

Greenland: New large telescope is up and running properly

Greenland: New large telescope is up and running properly

New Greenland telescope with a dish measuring 12 metres in diameter is located on the northwest coast at the US Thule airbase, and is part of an ambitious project, the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT), to study black holes. As ScienceNordic understood, that operational radio telescope is so strong and accurate guarantees that no light can escape when it ventures too close.

The Greenland Telescope installed in 2017 is an integral part of a global network of telescopes, including the Chilean and Hawaiian telescopes. all of them will point in the same direction, and data will be pooled from all of the telescopes in the EHT project to produce the images, explained says EHT project leader, Sheperd Doeleman from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, USA.

To produce an image of a black hole, three gigantic telescopes’ data will be combined by the scientists from EHT project:

“The EHT essentially turns the entire globe into one giant radio telescope, and the farther apart radio dishes in the array are, the sharper the images the EHT can make,”

Mr Doeleman said and added that the Greenland Telescope (GT) will help to obtain the best possible image of a supermassive black hole outside our galaxy. Without the GT, astronomers would not be able to catch a glimpse of the shadow black holes cast.

“We hope to see the shadow of the black hole. There will be a glow of light from gas and plasma around the black hole from material that is about to be engulfed. But since the black hole does not shine, its silhouette will appear dark surrounded by light,”

Moreover, moving the telescope up to the ice sheet where it can be of most use, is absolutely desirable. The shorter distance the signal has to go through the atmosphere, the less it is absorbed.