An artist's impression shows the vast array of telescopes that will comprise the SKA
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Africa and Australasia to share Square Kilometre Array

South Africa, Australia and New Zealand will host the biggest radio telescope ever built.

The nations belonging to the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) organisation took the decision at a meeting on Friday.

The fields of antennas, costing 1.5bn-euro (£1.2bn), will sweep the sky for answers to the major outstanding questions in astronomy.

They will probe the early Universe, test Einstein's theory of gravity and even search for alien intelligent life.

Dr Tim O' Brien, Associate Director at the Jodrell Bank Observatory, said there was no problem spreading the telescope out across continents.

  • 25 May 2012