January 20, 2021

The largest telescope in the world is being manufactured in Asturias

The largest telescope in the world is being manufactured in Asturias


The large synoptic survey telescope (LSST), which will be located in Chile, is currently being manufactured with the steel plates that ArcelorMittal Europe produces in Gijón. Once in service, this powerful telescope, equipped with a 3.2 billion pixel camera, will study the universe in 3D.

Another Asturian company, Asturfeito, participates in this ambitious project supplying the skeleton of the great telescope of almost 16 meters in diameter and 375 tons of weight, in whose construction 201 tons of thick plate grade S355J2 + N have been used.

This telescope, which will leave in pieces from the port of Aviles to Chile in the coming weeks, will house the largest camera in the world, 3,200 megapixels. It will be installed at 2,600 meters of altitude in Cerro Pachón (Chile) and is scheduled to start operating in 2019.

The AURA / LSST (Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy / Large Synoptic Survey Telescope) project has been funded by the US National Science Foundation. UU (NSF), and is intended to carry out a study of the Universe making a complete sweep of the southern hemisphere night after night for 10 years. The full ten-year scientific survey will begin in October 2022.

Thanks to its dry atmosphere, Chile has become the place of choice for many astronomy observatories, with 70% of the world's astronomical infrastructure planned to be in the country by 2020.

The LSST uses a three-mirror design, which offers a wide field of vision and can explore the entire sky in just three nights. It will provide sharp images taken by a 3.2 billion pixel camera, the largest digital camera ever built.

The Spanish consortium formed by Asturfeito and Ghesa won in 2014 the offer for the construction of the design and testing of the telescope assembly assembly.

ArcelorMittal is the main steel and mining producer worldwide, present in 60 countries and with a workforce of 199,000 employees. With industrial facilities in 18 countries, it has an annual production capacity of 113 million tons of liquid steel. In Spain it has 11 industrial plants and a network of 17 distribution centers. The workforce in our country amounts to 8,605 employees.

On the other hand, Asturfeito is a benchmark company in the engineering, manufacture and commissioning of capital goods with more than 20 years of experience in the scientific, nuclear, petrochemical, renewable energy, industrial or steel industries. Currently employs 160 people and has three production workshops in Asturias: in Tabaza, in the business park Principado de Asturias (PEPA), very close to the port of Aviles, (facilities where the skeleton of the telescope has been built), and in Mieres .


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