China opens world’s largest radio telescope FAST to foreign talent, US Arecibo observatory taps


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Sputnik International

The largest radio telescope in the world has opened its doors to the world, despite Washington’s ongoing trade war, and has become a symbol of China’s increasing technological supremacy.

China’s 500-meter Aperture Spherical Telescope (FAST) will open its doors to foreign astronomers in an effort to attract top talent from around the world.

Based in Pingtang, Guizhou, Southwest China, FAST is the world’s largest radio telescope and has placed China above competitors in the race to become the world’s engineering capital.

The device is three times more sensitive than US equivalents and covers an area of ​​30 football fields, costing builders $ 175 million (1.1 billion yuan). Construction of the 500-meter device began in 2011 and was commissioned in January of this year.

“We took a lot of inspiration from the structure, which we gradually improved to build our telescope,” Wang Qiming, FAST’s chief inspector of operations and development center, told AFP.

The news comes after the U.S. Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico was destroyed after the 900-ton receiver platform fell 140 meters into its radio dish this month, destroying the device.

China pledged $ 1.4 trillion to build technical self-reliance through its Made in China 2025 and 2027 military programs, after the Trump administration blacklisted dozens of its mainland technology companies, including Huawei Technologies, ZTE Corp. and Shanghai-based chipmaker SMIC, among others. instigating a bitter tech race.