SKA to be shared

The long-awaited verdict on the location of the world’s biggest radio telescope array has been announced – Australia and Africa will share it.

The EU1.5 billion Square Kilometre Array's (SKA's) scientific consortium announced today that the core antenna will be located in South Africa’s Northern Karoo, with Botswana, Ghana, Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, and Zambia as co-hosts of the 4,000 antennae.

"We have decided on a dual site approach," SKA board chairman John Womersley announced in The Netherlands today following a meeting of the SKA organisation's members in the Dutch capital.

In addition to taking space research to new levels, the project is expected to bring with it benefits such as improved ICT infrastructure and skills development to its hosts.

With basic infrastructure already being prepared in both sites, the SKA will be built in phases. with the full array to be completed by 2021.

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