The Square Kilometeris an ambitious international project that will see the world's largest radio telescope, built on two continents, capable of portraying enormous areas of the sky with resolution exceeding the Hubble Space Telescope. SKA will include more than 100,000 low-frequency antennas in Australia and hundreds of dishes in South Africa, all of which work together to create a total collector area of 1 square kilometer.
SKA will ultimately help scientists see how galaxies have formed after the Big Bang, reveal the secrets of magnetic fields and dark energy, and even potentially seek out signs of extraterrestrial life.
But building a radio telescope that is powerful requires overcoming serious challenges in design and construction. Now, scientists from CSIRO, the Australian National Science Agency, which heads the Australian side of the project, have revealed just what is needed to fill the largest radio telescope in the world.
"We are setting the foundation for 132,000 low-frequency SKA antennas in Australia, which will get stunning data," said CSIRO SKA Infrastructure Manager, Antony Schinkel.
the scale of the fifths, or one million billion bits per second – more than the global internet speed today, all flowing into one building. "
All of these data require their own infrastructure, including 65,000 optical fiber cables for data transfer from the antennas to the supercomputer equipment of the SKA