China's large exoplanet-hunting telescope to be operational in 2026

Xinhua
A large spectroscopic telescope, designed to search for exoplanets, is scheduled to be completed and put into operation in northwest China in 2026.
Xinhua

A large spectroscopic telescope, designed to search for exoplanets, is scheduled to be completed and put into operation in northwest China in 2026, said its developer Shanghai Jiao Tong University.

The telescope, named Jiaotong University Spectroscopic Telescope, will be built on Saishiteng Mountain near the town of Lenghu, where Qinghai Province has set up an astronomy observation site.

With an aperture of 4.4 meters, the telescope can facilitate rapid switching between target sources, which enables timely spectral observations. According to scientists, it is expected to achieve a series of breakthrough research results in several fields, including time-domain astronomy and exoplanet exploration.

"The telescope will remain the most dominant spectral telescope in China for a considerable period of time," the university said in a statement.

Its high-precision spectrometer will enable simultaneous multi-target and high-precision spectral observations, making it the first of its kind worldwide. The telescope is expected to significantly enhance the efficiency of exoplanet detection, the telescope developer highlighted.

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