Scientists are eager to find out if there are any other forms of intelligent life somewhere out there in the universe. Space agencies have been trying for years, looking around for other planets like Earth, trying to find patterns similar to our own solar system, and even checking for any radio signals that other life forms might be trying to send out just like we are.
Despite their best efforts, scientists still have yet to find anything meaningful enough, but scientists are hoping that a new contraption bigger than any of its kind could change that.
A project known as the Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical Telescope (or FAST for short) has been underway in China since 2011. The project is the largest radio telescope ever built, and it's coming together very nicely.
Technicians have already started assembling the telescope's 4,450 triangular panels, and completion of the telescope is scheduled for next year.
FAST will be huge, making even the largest radio telescopes in operation today look like a joke. At 500 meters in diameter, scientists are hoping that FAST will be able to get further into space that current radio telescopes, and perhaps be even better for listening for signals.
Also worth noting is that the telescope will be located in the southwestern province of Guizhou, nested inside of a natural valley that is surrounded by forestation and hills.
"Having a more sensitive telescope, we can receive weaker and more distant radio messages," it cited Wu Xiangping, director-general of the Chinese Astronomical Society said in a comment. "It will help us to search for intelligent life outside of the galaxy and explore the origins of the universe."
An observation platform will reportedly be included in the construction plans so that interested tourists can check out the work of engineering art once it's completed.
With such a large dish, this massive radio telescope will be scientists' biggest hope to date of finding intelligent life somewhere out in our universe. It will be able to track down radio signals from deep within our universe, which scientists can then attempt to decode.
Source: Yahoo! News