Large Millimeter Telescope


Large Millimeter Telescope

The Large Millimeter Telescope (LMT) (Spanish: Gran Telescopio Milimétrico, or GTM) was inaugurated on 22 November 2006. It is the world's largest and most sensitive single-aperture telescope in its frequency range, built for observing radio waves in the wave lengths from approximately 0.85 to 4 mm. It has a diameter of 50 metres and 2000 m² of collecting area. It is located on top of the Sierra Negra, the fifth highest peak in Mexico and an extinct volcanic companion to Mexico's highest mountain, the Pico de Orizaba, in the state of Puebla. Its construction took 10 years, and cost 116 million dollars. It is a binational Mexican (70%) - American (30%) joint project of the Instituto Nacional de Astrofísica, Óptica y Electrónica (INAOE) and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

Millimeter wavelength observations using the LMT will give astronomers a view of regions which are obscured by dust in the interstellar medium, thus increasing our knowledge about star formation. The telescope is also particularly fitted for observing solar system planetesimals and planets and extra-solar protoplanetary disks which are relatively cold and emit most of their radiation at millimeter wavelengths. There are also proposals for observing fluctuations in the cosmic microwave background as well as active galactic nuclei.

External links

* [http://www.lmtgtm.org LMT web site]
* [http://www.inaoep.mx Instituto Nacional de Astrofísica, Óptica y Electrónica]
* [http://www.astro.umass.edu/ University of Massachusetts Astronomy Department]


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