Work commences on the world's largest telescope in Chile

  • As per reports, on Friday President Michelle Bachelet of Chile inaugurated the construction work on the European Extremely Large Telescope (ELT), the world’s largest telescope, expected to be operational by 2024.

    The telescope is going to feature a 39-meter mirror and is located on a 3000-meter high mountain hill top, in the dry Atacama desert. 

    ELT is expected to cost over $1.2 billion dollars and is a collaboration between the European Southern Observatory and nations from the southern hemisphere. 

    The Atacama desert is expected to host 70% of the world’s most important astronomical observatories by 2020, given the dry dessert conditions at Atacama being most conducive for space observation and research. 

    Astronomers, including astrophysicists and scientists, have been expanding research of planets orbiting other stars, to deepen understanding of the conditions prevailing on the planets and the atmosphere around it. ELT is expected to siginificantly enhance research for possible planets that could support life.