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Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA)

Topics Covered:

  1. Awareness in space.


Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA)


What to study?

For Prelims and Mains: ALMA- objectives, significance and accomplishments.

Context: Astronomers have obtained stunning, high-resolution images of 20 nearby protoplanetary disks, depicting the birth of planets, using Chile’s Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA).

  • The observations are part of a major ALMA initiative known as the Disk Substructures at High Angular Resolution Project, or DSHARP campaign.

Significance of these observations:

  • According to the researchers, the most compelling interpretation of these observations is that large planets, likely similar in size and composition to Neptune or Saturn, form quickly, much faster than current theory would allow.
  • It may also help explain how smaller rocky planets manage to survive in the chaos of young systems.


About ALMA telescope:

The Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) is an international partnership of the European Southern Observatory (ESO), the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Institutes of Natural Sciences (NINS) of Japan, together with NRC (Canada), NSC and ASIAA (Taiwan), and KASI (Republic of Korea), in cooperation with the Republic of Chile.

  • ALMA is a single telescope of revolutionary design, composed of 66 high precision antennas located on the Chajnantor plateau, 5000 meters altitude in northern Chile.
  • ALMA allows scientists to unravel longstanding and important astronomical mysteries, in search of our Cosmic Origins.


Sources: the hindu.