MeerKAT telescope officially launches in Northern Cape with 64 satellite dishes

Sixty-four satellite dishes at the MeerKAT site in the Northern Cape are beaming with pride.

The precursor to the Square Kilometre Array in the Karoo will officially be launched on Friday.

READ: International funding helps MeerKAT telescope get up and running by April

The MeerKAT will allow astronomers to study the formation of the first galaxies, magnetic relations between planets as well as details around the large-scale structure of the cosmos.

As part of the first phase of the SKA project, 64 white satellite dishes are now dotted across the Karoo skyline, a sharp contrast to the arid Carnarvon surroundings.

Construction at the facility, about 90 kilometres outside the Northern Cape town, began in 2012.

The district's high altitude, low light and atmospheric pollution, makes it the perfect location to host the SKA.

EWN reporter, Kevin Brandt says as you drive towards the site, you can see glimpses of this satellites starting to appear.

He adds that the MeerKat site will allow South African astronomers the opportunity to do some research with regards to the galaxy.

As well as cosmicism, that is the study and observation of the magnetic relationship between planets and stars.

Kevin Brandt EWN, reporter

Listen below to the full interview:


This article first appeared on CapeTalk : MeerKAT telescope officially launches in Northern Cape with 64 satellite dishes


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