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Friday, 24 July 2009

Huge telescope opens in Spain's Canary Islands



If you wanted proof of how unpoluted the skies over the canaries are then how about 130,000 euros worth of faith in our clean climate

The Gran Telescopio Canarias, one of the the world's largest telescopes is seen at the Roque de los Muchachos Observatory in the Canary Island of La Palma, Spain, Friday July 24, 2009. The euro130 million (US$179 million) telescope, designed to take advantage of pristine, clear skies at the Roque de los Muchachos observatory atop the Atlantic island of La Palma, was inaugurated Friday.

La Palma, Canary Islands — One of the world's most powerful telescopes has opened its shutters for the first time to begin exploring faint light from distant parts of the universe.

Planning for the telescope began in 1987 and has involved more than 1,000 people from 100 companies. It was inaugurated Friday by King Juan Carlos.

The Canary Islands Astrophysics Institute, which runs the telescope, says it will capture the birth of stars, study characteristics of black holes and decipher some of the chemical components of the Big Bang.

Source: Associated Press 24th July 2009

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