New telescope as big as Earth itself!

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by peter2002, Oct 2, 2002.

  1. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
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    #1
    New telescope as big as Earth itself

    I love Astronomy as a hobby. This is really cool. Using multiple radio telescopes and a super computer, the system will have the power of a radio telescope with the diamater of the Earth, which is about 7,500 miles. They call it the High Frequency VLBI Array and it is 3,000 time more powerful than the Hubble telescope in orbit. On the downside, it is a radio telescope, not optical so it won't be able to "see" images in visible light that humans see. But, that is ok because most of the Universe can't be seen through optical techniques because of dust clouds and such.

    It would be cool if SETI used this new telescope to find aliens.

    [​IMG] The international project uses radio dishes in Arizona, Spain, Finland and Chile. Signals from each are time-stamped with atomic clocks and pieced together with a supercomputer. The result is an instrument with an unprecedented ability to distinguish between two closely situated objects far away in the sky.
     
  2. macrumors 6502a

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    #2
    Thanks Jody Foster. Now maybe you can go visit your dad in some other place and time. :rolleyes:

    ...just joshing you* Looks pretty cool actually!
     
  3. Retired

    jefhatfield

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    #3
    great article

    maybe we can gather info that will help us in some way now that the telescopes can detect things 3,000 times better than hubble
     
  4. macrumors 68000

    Over Achiever

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    #4
    Wow, thats a really cool project. I'm just waiting for the CELT (california extremely large telescope) and the LBT (large binocular telescope) to get completed for the optical astronomers. Me into infrared :)
     
  5. macrumors 6502a

    funkywhat2

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    #5
    Re: New telescope as big as Earth itself!

    i'm confused. my earth science teacher tought us 26,000 miles, but he wan't very trustworthy. can someone please clarify? thanks:)
     
  6. macrumors regular

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    #6
    Re: Re: New telescope as big as Earth itself!

    diameter, not circumference.... :)

    kungfu
     
  7. macrumors 604

    scem0

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    #7
    I wonder what would happen if they announced they had seen an alien civilization. That would be crazy....
     

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  8. macrumors 6502a

    funkywhat2

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    #8
    Re: Re: Re: New telescope as big as Earth itself!

    thanks for the clarification!
     
  9. Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

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    #9
    One problem is that the earth is a sphere, so the line of site to objects is somewhat narrow. The next generation Space Telescope looks like it might go to one of the Lagrange spots and we could put a few more out in space in adjacent locations and get a telescope that covered Millions of miles - which would be fantastic.

    D
     
  10. Retired

    jefhatfield

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2000
    #10
    i think that would show that there is a god or at least a higher power in the universe since it would prove that we are not some lone mistake

    when one really thinks of it, isn't it incredibly egotistical to think that we are the only life among billions of stars?

    all that mass out there in the universe is not all ours:p
     
  11. Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

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    #11
    Even just looking as close as our own galaxy - forget intergalactic, we can't even do interstellar yet. I hope I'm still around when we get images from another planet not in our solar system, whether its from a probe, but more likely a really powerful telescope, interferrometic maybe that's space based, could view planets in a neighboring star system.
     
  12. macrumors 68000

    beatle888

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2002
    #12
    i think space may be an illusion. it has to be.
    i cant imagine it just going on and on and on.
    but then even if it isn't infinit and it does come
    to an end there would still have to be something
    behind that threshold. god what a mind fnck
    life is :p
     
  13. macrumors 6502a

    elfin buddy

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    #13
    life elsewhere

    jefhatfield:

    I always thought the discovery of life on another planet or in another solar system would have a more opposite effect. About 95% of the theists I know tend to think that we are alone in the universe because we are supposedly the only life that God created (which seems very egotistical to me). I mean, the Bible doesn't mention anything about alien civilizations, does it?

    I think life is far more common in the universe than we think it is. We haven't explored many planets, and haven't even set foot on any besides Earth.

    But let's not get ahead of ourselves here. I think we should focus on developing our own solar system before running around looking for more to claim.


    Brendan Wood
     
  14. macrumors 6502

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    #14
    Re: life elsewhere

    Err what about the moon?
     
  15. macrumors newbie

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    #15
    The moon isn't a planet.
     
  16. macrumors 68020

    Gelfin

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    #16
    Actually, some astronomers might take issue with this statement. Earth's moon is unusually large as a percentage of the mass of its primary. It is substantially larger (3476km diameter) than Pluto (2274km). It is the fifth largest satellite in the Solar System, behind Ganymede, Titan, Callisto and Io, which orbit planets at least two orders of magnitude more massive than the Earth. Also, because of its large relative mass, the moon exerts a very high gravitational influence on the Earth, whereas Jupiter probably wouldn't miss a couple of its moons at all. Because of this, many astronomers think of the Earth-Moon system as a binary planet system instead of a planet with a satellite.
     
  17. macrumors regular

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    #17
    lol, who wants to bet if that telescope is running on a mac vs a pc.
     
  18. macrumors 603

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    #18
    >many astronomers think of the Earth-Moon system as a binary planet system instead of a planet with a satellite.

    Many astronomer feel the same way about Pluto/Charon. Yet Pluto is about 8 times more massive than Charon. Our Earth is about 80 times more massive than our Moon.

    I think it would be more reasonable to consider Pluto/Charon a double planet, because Pluto is 10 times as much affected by a neighboring satellite than Earth is to our moon, and also because the size difference of Pluto/Charon isn't much, compared to Earth/Moon.
     
  19. macrumors 68000

    Over Achiever

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    #19
    Of course there are others that don't think Pluto is a planet at all (its size, orbit, composition, etc), simply a Kuiper object. Then it'd be a double Kuiper object...ah the controversy...:D
     
  20. macrumors 68020

    Gelfin

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    #20
    Oh, I don't take issue with the point that Pluto/Charon would be more likely to be considered a binary planet system (Kuiper-object concerns aside). I'm just saying that Earth+Luna is also included in that category by some astronomers.
     
  21. macrumors regular

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    Sin City
    #21
    question

    i know we are are all homo sapien sapien, I.E. Human, but if there were a race from mars they would have a species name, a cultural name and then they would be called Martians, so my question is, would people from here be called earthlings or terrans? and i thought the definition of a planet entailed an atmosphere? and besides luna is definitely a sattelite, because eventually it will stop spinning about and just revolve around the earth, it may at one point have been a part of the earth but it doesnt have an atmosphere its a sattelite.
     
  22. macrumors 68000

    Over Achiever

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    #22
    err...if a planet is defined by having an atmosphere, then moons like Titan and Trition (and others) which have atmospheres are also planets? And mercury and mars which have weak atmospheres aren't planets? I guess the word planet is relative I guess. Sorta like the definition or extrasolar planets...a bunch have been found, but are they really planets? They could be brown dwarfs...

    I guess its a hot topic of debate.
     
  23. macrumors 6502a

    elfin buddy

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    #23
    hmmmm...

    Wow! I didn't really mean to spark this much discussion about the moon :cool:

    I think the most understandable definition of a planet is anything which directly orbits the sun (orbiting something that is orbiting the sun doesn't count, i.e. moons) and has significant mass.


    elfin buddy
     
  24. macrumors 6502

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    #24
    I agree....

    I do not belong to any religious denomination but I have been doing spiritual practice for the last 17 yrs and I have meet many people since then who have done research on many levels, be it on the physical, mental or spiritual level.

    We humans are relatively "young" in the process of evolution.
    We may have developed physicaly and mentaly to a certain degree but especialy in the mental and spiritual level we are still very "under developed".

    To believe that WE are the choosen once and the highest developed beeings in this universe is therefore kind of silly.

    The saying goes: "diversity is the law of nature and equality will never be".

    That makes it save to assume that if there is "Intelligent" life out there they may look physicaly different do to different atmospheric condition on different planets but mentaly and spiritualy they most probably are like we are or, as I would think, much more developed.

    If I remember right, according to one "wise" man there are 52 planets with intelligent life out there.
    I can't remember if this was to be meant within our solar system or as a total.

    Then the question comes: why have we never for sure had any contact with them or why did they never approach us.
    Technicaly, they may be able to do so but what on this earth should make it ineresting for them ?
    All they would find is a planet that by our own idiotic behaviour is getting more and more messed up so better...stay away ! (for the time beeing)

    Our mental behaviour is "controled" or affected by the electro magnetic field that sourrounds our planet.
    Due to several shifting of the poles in the history of this planet, this has changed many times.
    To a certain degree this can have a positive or a negative influence on our way of thinking.

    In 1981 I was reading an article mentioning that this process (pole shift) has started again (in 1981).
    If we look at the erratic behaviour of our weather condition in recent years, that becomes very credible.
    There is actualy some scientific research done that supports this theory.

    Since this will lead to change of the magnetic field, affecting our mental behaviour, we can only hope that this will have a positive effect on society (and I was told it will) and this planet will become again more "liveable" for us and therefore more attractive to be visited by other "Intelligent" beeings :D

    And now...take out the Napal and other flame trowing weapons.....
     
  25. Retired

    jefhatfield

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2000
    #25
    Re: life elsewhere

    no, it addresses our own problems which are enough for us to look at

    the bible does not say we are alone in the whole universe, either

    any theist who thinks that an alien would discount even one word of what jesus christ or any religious figure of great importance said or taught is a theist without faith
     

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