Official launch of the Square Kilometer Array radio telescope


"The SKA project has been many years in the making," Tsesarsky said. "Today we are gathered here to mark another chapter in this 30-year journey we have taken together. We are starting the construction of the SKA telescopes.”

At the unification ceremonies, it was announced about construction contracts worth more than €300 million: €200 million for infrastructure in Australia and South Africa and €100 million to make antennas for both telescopes. This follows more than 40 contracts worth more than €150 million in the past 18 months. According to the SKA organization, the total amount of allocated funds is about 500 million euros.

SKA-Low (left) in Australia will have 50 to 350 MHz with 131,072 herringbone antennas. over 512 individual stations – the maximum baseline is approximately 65 km.

At 110 MHz, the field of view is expected to be 327 arc minutes and the maximum resolution is 11 arc seconds. The system time is planned to be better than 10 ns. ~7.2 Tbit/s is the expected data flow

SKA-Mid in South Africa (top image) is a 350 MHz to 15.4 GHz antenna antenna with 197 antennas, including 64 antennas from the existing MeerKAT array. At 1.4 GHz it will have a resolution of 60 arc minutes and 0.3 arc seconds, and at 6.7 GHz it will have a resolution of 12.5 arc minutes and 0.06 arc seconds, respectively. Better than 5 ns is the target system and the expected throughput is 8.8 Tbit/s.

These data streams are planned to be combined and reduced to ~5 Tbit/s by external processing, after which they will enter a ~250 Pflop/s scientific computer, which is currently estimated to have an annual output of about 710 Pbytes /year.

SKA-Low are impressionists
SKA-Mid - Artist's image on the left, mixed with MeerKat's photo on the right




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