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The number of known galaxies … is just increased by about 1.800 per cent.
The radio telescope Meerkat, located in South Africa and consists of multiple interconnected radio disc, is not yet complete, but the astronomers were able to give a taste of the extraordinary capabilities of this tool by capturing an image of 1,300 distant galaxies in a slice of heaven where so far it had been observed only 70.
Each dot in this image is a galaxy far.
In 2017, when completed, Meerkat will cover an area of 17,651 square meters. It is located in the Northern Cape in South Africa, which has the advantage of being sparsely populated area while being close enough to Cape Town to accommodate the construction and maintenance costs.
Meanwhile, Meerkat is already surprising astronomers with high-resolution images that reveal turbulent cosmic phenomena occurring at 200 million light years from us, like a huge black hole at the center of a galaxy from which depart double jets of high particle speeds (pictured below).
But tools like Meerkat perform best in show “radio galaxies” active, ie those with the center of super blacks holes massive source of violent high-energy emissions that can last millions of years, these galaxies are the brightest in the spectrum of radio waves .
The South African radio telescope one day will be part of the Square Kilometre Array, a network of thousands of radio antennas in South Africa and Australia will be able to observe the sky at a rate 10,000 times higher than the current ones.
For the Meerkat (a local relative, however, time continues to be just Meerkat, the English name of the mongoose), an animal that monitors the environment around him lifting his head from time to time to the sky.