ALMA radio astronomy antennas

ALMA radio astronomy antennas

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Credit: BABAK TAFRESHI/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: ALMA radio astronomy antennas and star trails, time-exposure image. ALMA (Atacama Large Millimeter/sub-millimeter Array) is an array of 66 radio antennas located at an elevation of 5000 metres on the arid Chajnantor plateau in the Chilean Andes. Data from the separate antennas is combined by interferometry, making it one of the most powerful telescopes in the world. Observations began in 2011, and the array is scheduled to be fully operational by the end of 2012. Star trails are formed by the apparent motion of the stars in the sky as the Earth rotates on its axis. Photographed in November 2011.

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