2015 photo of assembly site of “FAST” in Guizhou Province, China. (Xinhua/Jin Liwang)
Over 9,000 Chinese villagers must leave their homes to make way for aliens “or for the possible echoes of them,” reports Ed Wong in the New York Times.
The telescope is known as FAST (Five hundred meter Aperture Spherical Telescope), and has been in the works since the mid-1990s. It's scheduled to be completed in September, 2016, and to cost around $184 million dollars.
FAST's dish is about as large as 30 football fields, and will be located deep in the mountains of Guizhou, China. It will be the world's largest telescope, overtaking Puerto Rico's Arecibo Observatory, a mere 300 meters in diameter.
Earlier this week. China's state news agency Xinhua revealed the planned displacement of some 2,029 families (totaling 9,110 people) within about three miles of the telescope, in the southwestern province of Guizhou.
Removing all the people from the area will create “a sound electromagnetic wave environment” for the telescope, reported Xinhua.
From the New York Times piece:
Officials plan to give each person the equivalent of $1,800 for housing compensation, the report said. Guizhou is one of China’s poorest provinces. Forced relocations for large projects are common across China, and so are complaints about them and about the amount of compensation offered. The Three Gorges Dam displaced more than one million people along the Yangtze River, for example, and the middle route of the gargantuan South-North Water Diversion Project has resulted in the relocation of 350,000 people to make way for a series of canals.
The Chinese government has announced ambitious plans for its space program, at a time when the American one’s direction is uncertain. China aims to put an astronaut on the moon and a space station in orbit. The FAST project is another important element in the larger plan.
Photos: Chinese Academy of Science
The high resolution imaging science experiment (HiRISE) on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter captured this image in the Red Planet’s Hellas Planitia region. According to the University of Arizona researchers who operate the HiRISE camera for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, shapes like this “are the result of a complex story of dunes, lava, and wind.” But […]
Emily Lakdawalla and her colleagues at one of my favorite science nonprofits The Planetary Society prepared this fascinating map titled “Where We Are: An At-A-Glance Spacecraft Locator.” As William S. Burroughs once said, “This is the space age and we are here to go.”
NASA announced today that the International Space Station is now open to private astronauts for commercial business and, yes, tourism. It ain’t budget travel, that’s for sure. Kenneth Chang writes in the New York Times: NASA is not selling space vacations directly, but allowing commercial companies to arrange such trips. The agency plans to charge […]
Even if you feel like AirPods are worth the price tag, you’ve got to admit there’s a certain anxiety that comes with using them. What if I lose them? What if they get wet in the rain? Or drenched in sweat? Or fall into the drink you dropped them into? Shiny tech is great, but […]
With the quick-fix appeal of video games and their own cell phones, it can be tough to keep kids focused on supposedly “educational” toys. And while it may seem counter-intuitive to fight tech with more tech, we’re all in when it comes to the Toybox 3D Printer. We’re not sure if anyone had envisioned a […]
Whether you’re an artist, designer or just organizing a photo album, photo editing software is a must. And software designers know it: Platforms like Photoshop and Lightroom have a ton of helpful features, but you’ll pay for them in spades. Luckily, there’s some competition in the photo editing arena. Right now, Skylum’s Luminar software is […]