3D Model of the ALMA antenna
3D model of the European ALMA antenna.
ALMA is the world’s most powerful telescope for studying the Universe at submillimetre and millimetre wavelengths, on the boundary between infrared light and the longer radio waves. However, ALMA does not resemble many people’s image of a giant telescope. It does not use the shiny, reflective mirrors of visible- and infrared-light telescopes; it is instead comprised of many “antennas” that look like large metallic satellite dishes.
ALMA comprises 66 antennas, 54 of them with 12-metre diameter dishes, and 12 smaller ones, with a diameter of 7 metres each.
The most visible part of each antenna is the dish, a large reflecting surface. Most of ALMA’s dishes have a diameter of 12 metres. Each dish plays the same role as the mirror of an optical telescope: it collects radiation coming from distant astronomical objects, and focuses it into a detector that measures the radiation.
This 3d model is not available for sale.Credit:
ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO)/David Chorlton