National

Africa Millimeter Telescope project to be based at Gamsberg


WINDHOEK, March 18 — Deemed as the only radio telescope in the millimeter-wavelength regime in Africa, the Africa Millimeter Telescope is set to be expanded on when Namibia hosts a scientific event themed ‘Building the Namibian Africa Millimeter Telescope: seeing the unseen’, to enlighten and educate people on a ground-breaking Africa Millimeter Telescope (AMT) project.

A research-based event will take place on March 27 in Windhoek, jointly hosted by Bank Windhoek, the University of Namibia (UNAM) and Netherland’s Radboud University (RU) Nijmegen.

Bank Windhoek’s Marketing and Corporate Communication Services officer, Andre le Roux, said that it was currently in its preliminary design phase, adding that the project sought to construct a 15-meter-high single-dish radio telescope atop Namibia’s Gamsberg mountain.

The AMT aims to provide the essential missing link to the network of telescopes around the globe known as the ‘Event Horizon Telescope’ which has set its sights on capturing the first picture of a ‘black hole.’

“This will provide us with first-time direct evidence of the existence of black holes and deliver solid proof of predictions of the theory of relativity, a major scientific breakthrough,” said AMT’s Project Director, MarcKlein Wolt.

UNAM Vice-Chancellor, Kenneth Matengu is expected to expand on the importance of the AMT project to Namibia, while AMT’s Lead Professor, Heino Falcke is expected to deliberate on black hole science as a subject-matter.

When completed, the AMT will be the only radio telescope in the millimeter-wavelength regime in Africa, and is seen as a catalyst within the discourse of advancing of science, education and outreach, capacity enriching, sustainable energy and social-economic development in Namibia. – NDN Staffer