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Giant Mexican Telescope Launched 150

SilentOneNCW writes "A new telescope has been unveiled in Mexico by President Vicente Fox. The Large Millimeter Telescope will be used to pick up electromagnetic radiation known as millimetre waves emitted 13 billion years ago, when the first stars burst into existence, astrophysicists say. The $128M telescope is a joint project between Mexico and the US. With an antenna diameter of 164 feet, the LMT dwarfs existing millimetre-wave telescopes and should be able to pick up signals from the faintest objects in outer space."
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Giant Mexican Telescope Launched

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  • by Salvance ( 1014001 ) * on Friday November 24, 2006 @02:48PM (#16976780) Homepage Journal
    If they are trying to impress people with its size, you'd think they'd come up with a better name than "The Large Millimeter Telescope".
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by IdleTime ( 561841 )
      You have never seen a Mexican Millimeter I can see...
    • by __aaclcg7560 ( 824291 ) on Friday November 24, 2006 @02:52PM (#16976820)
      The Mucho Grande Telescope? Sounds like something you get at Taco Bell, either off the menu or in the restroom.
      • Telescope Surpeme? Si!
      • Looks like someone decided to Supersize that order.
      • by Simon Garlick ( 104721 ) on Friday November 24, 2006 @06:48PM (#16978820)
        The reality that an underdeveloped country like Mexico is placing such a high importance on scientific research while the the United States of Jesusland lobotomizes itself really burns, doesn't it? A Third World country is trying to work out how the Universe works while the USA is teaching its children that everything was created by an invisible superhero who lives in the sky.

        But don't let me interrupt you. Please continue making jokes about Taco Bell.

        • Even though I agree with your post in general, Mexico is not [] considered a third world contry. According to Wikipedia, Mexico is a Newly Industrialized Country [] (NIC). This may not matter much, but I think it weakens your argument somewhat.

          • 40% of Mexicans live in poverty (Mexican poverty, which is something most people in developped countries can't some times even imagine).

            Although it is always good news that a 3rd world country invests in science and technology (instead of nuclear bombs or nuclear technology with military intents) that should not stop us to describe the economic and social situation on those countries accurately.

            Just google about Oaxaca to find out how "Newly Industrialized" we really are....
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by G3CK0 ( 708703 )
          While I understand the frustration at the idiot comments that have been posted so far, I think you are way off base in regards to the scientific research and education that goes on in the US. If you were too lazy to read the article before responding, the summary even states that the US has supplied funding for this project.

          While it is amazing that Mexico has built a new LMT, I feel obligated to remind you of the multiple telescopes the US operates such as Gemini [], KECK [], NASA IRTF [], CSO [], SMA [], NRAO []. These a
        • The reality that an underdeveloped country like Mexico is placing such a high importance on scientific research while the the United States of Jesusland lobotomizes itself really burns, doesn't it?
          Try at least reading the summary next time genius:

          The $128M telescope is a joint project between Mexico and the US.
        • Wow, that's a really insightful post on just how far out of whack Mexico's priorities are. Rather than providing a decent quality of life to prevent hundreds of thousands of their citizens from hopping fences and risking their lives to enter the US, Presidente Fox chooses to big El Telescopo Grande! What a bonus for Mexican citizens.

            It really shocks me just how fucktarded comments are on Slashdot sometimes.
          • It is bad enough that countries like Mexico did not invest on science for decades to suggest they should keep doing so.

            THe MExican people is better server by raising the standards of living and by investing in science.

            Science and technology adds expertise needed to attract jobs with high added value. THere is no better investment in order to help the population to stand on their own feet (we have many Engineers and technicians that are unemployed or driving taxis to survive, projects like thes allows them t
        • If you read the article, you would realize that this was a joint project between the US and Mexico.
        • by Guppy06 ( 410832 )
          From TFblurb:

          "The $128M telescope is a joint project between Mexico and the US."

          This is less "ZOMG! Decline and fall!" and more "Mauna Kea/Arecibo/etc. are getting crowded and we ran out of sovereign US territory."
      • Do you want to supersize your telescope ???
    • by sporkme ( 983186 ) *
      Giant Mexican anything is an alarming headline! At first I thought a new mutated species of something had been discovered, and was set to enslave us.
      The Large Millimeter Telescope (LMT), which cost $120m, was partly funded by the US.
      What other space and astrology projects does Mexico host?
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by moco ( 222985 )
        For starters, UNAM, the largest university in mexico has it's institute of astronomy here [].

        There are lots of observatories around mexico, it seems they like astronomy because of all that prehispanic tradition. Anyway, i live in mexico and this telescope was big news last night. The name in spanish is "Gran Telescopio Milimetrico" which translates better (IMO) to "Great Milimetric Telescope".
        • by genooma ( 856335 )
          I think that "Big Milimetric Telescope" would be less ambiguous than "great" in the context it was used.
    • Launched -- How? (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      The telescope is built on the 4,580m (15,026ft) summit of an extinct volcano called Sierra Negra - the fifth highest peak in Mexico

      Oh, so they plan to use that old extinct volcano comes to life and launches the telescope propulsion technique. Isn't that kind of optimitistic?
    • by Tablizer ( 95088 )
      If they are trying to impress people with its size, you'd think they'd come up with a better name than "The Large Millimeter Telescope".

      Some millimeters are longer than others? No wonder we kept losing Mars probes in the 90's.
  • The Telescope will break open on reentry and spill out tonnes of delicious CANDY!
  • Huge Cloth (Score:5, Funny)

    by camperdave ( 969942 ) on Friday November 24, 2006 @03:00PM (#16976906) Journal
    They unveiled that monster? They must have lots of cloth if they were able to veil something of that size.
  • Grrr! (Score:3, Funny)

    by Mikachu ( 972457 ) <burke.jeremiahj@gmail. c o m> on Friday November 24, 2006 @03:03PM (#16976926) Homepage

    The telescope is built on the 4,580m (15,026ft) summit of an extinct volcano called Sierra Negra - the fifth highest peak in Mexico.

    I'll get you, Powerpuff Girls!
  • by 0jjjjjjjjjj0 ( 1024211 ) on Friday November 24, 2006 @03:07PM (#16976966) Homepage Journal
    Actually, it's much more interesting to look at the project's page [] than just read an article about it.

    Some highlights of the anticipated LMT research are outlined below:
    • * solar-system planetesimals & planets
    • * extra-solar protoplanetary-disks
    • * individual Galactic star-forming regions
    • * the Galactic nucleus
    • * local galaxies
    • * active galactic nuclei
    • * high-redshift dusty starburst galaxies
    • * clusters of galaxies and their large-scale distribution.

    This is a rather exciting endeavour for those with interest in anything "out there" as equipment of this magnitude is not readily available. Digging into the "building blocks" of inner and outer space, and everything in between, will no doubt yield some interesting surprises, as Hubble continues to do.

    • by NixieBunny ( 859050 ) on Friday November 24, 2006 @03:40PM (#16977238) Homepage
      I work on a couple telescopes of this type in Arizona, the old NRAO 12 meter scope on Kitt Peak and the 10 meter submillimeter scope on Mt. Graham. See them here. [] It's true that there aren't many scopes of this type available. There are a couple in Europe and one on Mauna Kea in Hawaii.

      The NSF has sunk nearly all their money into the ALMA array in Chile, and we get the scraps. That's unfortunate because they'll never let students near the ALMA array, since it will cost gazillions of dollars per hour to operate. So it's nice to see another single-dish millimeter wave scope opening.

      • There's two submillimetre telescopes on Mauna Kea - the Caltech Submillimeter Observatory (where I did my PhD observing) and the James Clarke Maxwell Telescope.
  • by jpellino ( 202698 ) on Friday November 24, 2006 @03:20PM (#16977062)
    Damn. Here I've been using the regular-sized ones all this time...

  • by xxxJonBoyxxx ( 565205 ) on Friday November 24, 2006 @03:21PM (#16977066)
    I don't think the telescope was "launched"; the pic in the article suggests it's a big radio disk attached firmly to the ground.
    • I don't think the telescope was "launched"; the pic in the article suggests it's a big radio disk attached firmly to the ground.

      I was confused by that too. I guess they mean the project was launched. My first thought was "Mexico has rocket technology???". (Not that Mexicans are incapabale of technical innovation, I just don't recall hearing about any rocket launches they've over done.)
    • I don't think the telescope was "launched"; the pic in the article suggests it's a big radio disk attached firmly to the ground.
      So no software has ever been 'launched' either then.
  • Hmmm.... (Score:4, Funny)

    by pr0nbot ( 313417 ) on Friday November 24, 2006 @03:31PM (#16977170)
    Hmm... What could the Mexicans need the world's biggest mirror for...
    • Maybe for picking up milimetre waves, but more likely it's for focusing the sun's rays to cook the wold's largest chalupa. Mmmm...
    • by Hugonz ( 20064 )
      Sell it to the japanese...
    • And what the heck did Mexico actually contribute?! They don't bother to employ their people, but they can do little pet projects like this? Just when their govt couldn't act any more irresponsibly....
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by wakaramon ( 301145 )
        Mexico paid 70% of the 120 million USD of the project. You may want to learn that 12% of US citizens live under poverty line... so following your argumente the US should solve that problem instead of keeping "pet projects" like Irak...
  • Well God bless her and all who sail in her....
  • Are they doing the same thing that George Smoot did when he won the Nobel Prize?

    He found/mapped out Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation, the radiation left over from the expansion and cooling of the universe right after the big bang. It sounds as though the Mexican telescope is doing the same thing...
  • I'm sure "Large Millimeter Telescope" is just the crude English translation of a Spanish term meaning "The Anaconda of Astronomy."
  • They are probably using it this very second to scan for weaknesses in the American Over-Reactive Border Fence System.
    • by Tablizer ( 95088 )
      They are probably using it this very second to scan for weaknesses in the American Over-Reactive Border Fence System.

      Over-reactive? Why do we have 12+ million illegals if they are "over-reactive"? Give them all the goddam caffein they want.
      • Yeah, and while we're giving them all the caffeine they want, we can finally give the white men all of those minimum-wage jobs cleaning the side of the road that those fraking Mexicans are taking too! The nerve of those people... feeding their families. We should shoot all of 'em.
        • This is such a silly argument that I just felt compelled to respond to it.

          Look, if there are things that people here in the U.S. don't want to do -- legal residents or citizens -- then it doesn't make it right to import illegal workers. What should happen, is the prevailing wage for that job should go up. I absolutely guarantee you, that Americans have no problem picking up garbage off the side of the road, just like there's no shortage of garbage collectors in New York City; they just want to get paid $60,
  • The reason it wasn't launched yet is because they are still trying to get a visa or work-permit to the telescope.
  • Poverty, crime, and corruption are major problems over there and they are wasting money on a space program? I know if I was running the country and people were trying to leave for the US en masse I would probably focus my attention on domestic issues instead of launching a space program which would be decades behind the most established programs in the US and Russia.
    • by geekoid ( 135745 )
      You mean like creating jobs? Like tech jobs?
      If only there was a way to do that, oh well, I guess we will waste money on a space program.

      You might want to take 2 seconds and think about how you would implement changes to get a decent income to all your people before deriding this and wanting some sort of magic bullet.

    • I have mod points, and I was just going to smack you down, but that wouldn't be the best way to respond to you.

      First, this is not a space program. The summary is misleading by using the word launched. This is a earthbound telescope.

      Next, the reason that they are doing is this is because they are investing in the future. There are thousands of Mexicans who do have the skills and education to use this, and those people can earn more money, pay more taxes, and encourage others to achieve. Hopefully som

    • Hey, they make fine fireworks. Tie a couple of those suckers together and you have a reasonable two stage rocket. Now they need to work on it not hitting the building next door. See! Plenty of space for our program. Oh. You meant higher than that tree over there?
    • by wolenczak ( 517857 ) <[gro.aretoc] [ta] [ocap]> on Friday November 24, 2006 @05:41PM (#16978262) Homepage
      Poverty, crime, and corruption ??? You are talking about Louisiana right?
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      You're responding to a post about a:

      (*) Technical innovation in a developing country
      ( ) Product shipped to a developing market
      ( ) General discussion about IT in the devbeloping world

      The location is:

      ( ) Africa
      ( ) India
      ( ) Bangladesh
      ( ) China
      ( ) Somewhere else in Asia
      ( ) South America
      ( ) Central America
      (*) Other __Mexico___

      You're objecting to it on the basis that:

      (*) Poverty hasn't been eliminated in that country yet
      ( ) American jobs will be lost

      Your argument is bogus because:

      (*) Poverty hasn't been eliminat
  • The Large Millimeter Telescopewill

    Someone isn't using the spellcheck in FF2..
    • Actually I was. I just didn't notice that one. Also, it's driving me crazy with English/American spellings -- note millimeter/millimetre is spelt both ways. Sorry, Slashdot, I'll look more closely next time.
  • This angers me. (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Elandur ( 912973 )
    Mexico has much better things they could do with the money. Instead of spending all of that on a telescope program (Which will undoubtedly need a LOT more money for upkeep, operation and maintenance), they should spend it trying to get their people out of poverty. Maybe then they'll stop crossing the border illegally. And as for the US support of the program (The article said it was a joint effort), we should NOT be helping them. Mexicos leadership doesn't give a damn about all of the illegal immigrants co
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by geekoid ( 135745 )
      The in won't be in there best interest to try and prevent there poorest from coming over here.

      The support infrastructure for any space program requires higher paid employees, which means more money for spending, which means more jobs.

      We should help them get good economical growth. That is the ONLY way to stop ilegal immigration.

      As I'm sure you don't relize, illegal imigration is not as bad as people like to spout off about.

      Did you know there are farms in new Mexico that pay 10.70 an hour with benefits and t
    • Lets stop building centers of technological excellence in Mexico so all those technicians and Engineers are unemployed.

      You would be surprised of how many of those illegal immigrants that so many US people dislike so much (in spite of keeping entire US industries up and running) are unemployed technicians and even Engineers (I should know, my uncle, with a degree in Engineering, was an illegal worker for a while, later on he became the most respected Engineer in a car manufacturing plant in Mexico, where he
  • Now I know what those motherfuckers are buying with all the jobs they're stealing!
    • Stealing? The right name for that is "capitalism", man :-) Ask your boss if he prefers one american "Sun Certified Java Programmer" or four mexicans/brazilians/indians "Sun Certified Java Programmer". Isn't the answer obvious?
  • by ChibiOne ( 716763 ) on Friday November 24, 2006 @05:51PM (#16978350)
    I was surprised to find less than 5 interesting and well-modded comments in this discussion. Most of you just made fun of the misleading headline, the rest made racist comments or criticized the Mexican government for spending funds in scientific research, instead of spening it in "more important things".

    While I do agree that there are a lot of problems in Mexico, I also understand that scientific research is key for a country's development. As someone else already pointed out, skilled Mexicans will work at this telscope facilites, further exapnding knowledge and research, supporting the development of even more Mexican scientists.

    Also of mention, should you'd read the fscking article, you'd realize it's not a space telescope, but rather a ground-based one.

    And, what's with the racist comments? So it's not ok to make ethnic remarks about "african-americans", "native-americans" or "the latino population in the US", but it's perfectly fine to poke at your Mexican neighbors? What a bunch of hypocrats.
    • by geekoid ( 135745 )
      it is sad.
      Please remember that these post may not be from Americans.

      Also, people like to get other peoples goat.

      But yeah, it is disappointing.
  • To summarize (Score:5, Insightful)

    by oliderid ( 710055 ) on Friday November 24, 2006 @05:57PM (#16978392) Journal
    If you ever wondered why Americans are considered ignorant and arrogant abroad, just read this thread.

  • That should go nicely with all of those 'Mexican Space Shuttles' (construction worker slang for porta-potties)

  • "Barlows? We ain't got no Barlows. We don't need no Barlows. I don't have to show you any stinking Barlows."
  • I've just been scrolling through some of the comments on this thread. Absolutely disgusting. Interesting to see how racism is alive and well, even among people that are supposedly better educated. Aside from the standard ignorance ("hi-tech industry should be kept out of impoverished countries, the people can only get out of poverty by working in low-skilled, low-paid agriculture and manufacturing") I am struck by the willingness of some people to openly make fun of the concept of people with a slightly
    • I was just going to ignore all this stuff until I read through a couple of these shocked and horrified posts. But glancing through the garbage that resides at 0 and below, I really don't find anything particularly unusual or frankly shocking for that level. You know what -1 posts are like on Slashdot and they're meeting expectations.
  • is it shaped like a cigar?
  • I thought we had enough pictures of the Sombrero Galaxy by now ?
  • All their women make porn and use drugs. Best of all we export the coca that fucks their brains!
  • that launch was...
  • I had no idea that telescopes had nationality or ethnicity. I just sorta thought they were tools.
  • look like a giant burrito?

Reactor error - core dumped!