The world’s largest liquid mirror telescope was launched in Uttarakhand on Tuesday. It will allow scientists to explore the deep sky and classify objects ranging from asteroids to supernovae.
The telescope was officially inaugurated by Science and Technology Minister Jitendra Singh. He said that it would help India become a more prominent player in the field of astronomy and sky-watching.
The liquid mirror telescope, known as the ILMT, is the first of its kind to be designed and built for astronomical observations. It is also the first telescope in India to be equipped with an artificial intelligence system that can classify objects in the sky.
The instrument, which is maintained by the Aryabhata Research Institute of Observational Sciences was developed through a collaboration between various scientific organizations and universities.
What is a liquid Mirror Telescope
The telescope features a rotating mirror that measures 4 meters in diameter. It is made up of a layer of liquid mercury, which is a highly reflective metal. It has been designed to survey the strip of the sky passing overhead each night.
The telescope is composed of various components. Its primary component is a bowl containing the mirror’s reflective liquid metal. It is also equipped with an air bearing and drive system. Also, the telescope’s mercury is protected from the wind by a thin transparent film made of mylar. Through the telescope’s optical corrector, the light is able to pass through a variety of filters to produce sharp images. A 4K-TV camera is located above the mirror.
Why was the telescope made?
It is designed to survey the sky at night and detect variable and transient objects such as supernovae, space debris, and gravitational lenses. Through its data, the telescope can analyze the objects in the sky using machine learning and artificial intelligence.