THE MeerKAT radio telescope has discovered 1,300 galaxies in a tiny sliver of the universe where only 70 were known before.The telescope‚ under construction in the Karoo and operating at only a quarter of its capacity‚ is already producing powerful images that are "far better than we could have expected"‚ says Fernando Camilo‚ SA’s chief scientist for the Square Kilometre Array (SKA).Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor released the "First Light image" on Saturday‚ when 16 of a planned total of 64 radio telescope dishes were commissioned.MeerKAT is a precursor to the SKA‚ an international effort to build the world’s largest radio telescope — 100 times more sensitive than any current radio telescope. Scientists will use it to explore how stars and galaxies are formed and how the universe evolved.Radio telescopes collect radio waves from outer space that are then processed by computers‚ producing images of the universe."SA has already demonstrated its excellent science and en...

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