China opens world’s largest RAPID radio telescope for foreign talent, replaces US Arecibo Observatory


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Sputnik International

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

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

Located in Pingtang, Guizhou, southwest China, FAST is the world’s largest radio telescope and has placed China ahead of competitors in the race to become the world’s technology capital.

The device is three times more sensitive than US equivalents and covers the surface of 30 football fields, costing its builders 175 million dollars (1.1 billion yuan). Construction of the 500-meter device began in 2011 and was opened for operations in January this year.

“We were inspired by its structure, which we gradually improved to build our telescope,” Wang Qiming, chief inspector of FAST’s operations and development center, told AFP.

The news comes after the US-held Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico was destroyed after its 900-ton reception platform shattered and fell 140 meters into this month’s radio antenna, destroying the device.

China has pledged $ 1.4 billion to build technological autonomy through its Made in China military programs in 2025 and 2027, after the Trump administration blacklisted dozens of mainland technology companies, including Huawei Technologies, ZTE Corp. and SMIC. , the chip maker in Shanghai, among others, triggering a bitter technical race.