A telescope that will make Hubble telescope look dire, meet the world’s largest telescope known as European ‘Extremely Large Telescope’. Construction of ELT began in Chile on Friday and is expected to capture its first images in 2024.
Chilean President Michelle Bachelet inaugurated the construction of the European ELT which will start functioning from 2024 and the European Southern Observatory involving 16 nations should have the best lens yet to find habitable extra-terrestrial planets. Located at a height of 3000-metre-high mountain in the middle of Atacama Desert in Chile, the ELT will boast a 39-meter diameter lens. To build this telescope, such an arid, dry and remote area was chosen because it remains cloudless almost around the whole year, which makes it perfect for observing the sky without any cloud or human interference.
The main mirror of ELT will have 800 hexagonal sections, each with a diameter of 1.4 meters, designed to fit together exactly, and is to be protected by an 80-meter dome. This telescope will be five times larger than any of the current telescopes and will capture 16 times sharper images than the Hubble Telescope! This will definitely take astronomy and space research to a whole new level, breaking the bars of distance to look into distant extra-territorial bodies.
With its enormous size, the E-ELT could change our perspective of the universe and the project will also illustrate the potential of European Southern Observatory (ESO). The ELT is being funded by the European Southern Observatory, an organization consisting of European and southern hemisphere nations. ESO has not declared the construction cost yet but back in 2012, the estimated cost of ELT was around $1.12 billion’