The world’s second-largest gamma-ray telescope, known as the Major Atmospheric Cherenkov Experiment Telescope (MACE), will go live this year, reports ThePrint.
The Cerenkov telescope is also the highest in the world, located in Hanle, Ladakh at an altitude of 4,300 meters above sea level. It has a 21-meter diameter, a few meters short of the world’s largest telescope of the same class — High Energy Stereoscopic System (HESS) located in Namibia.
The telescope, which captures huge energy emitting gamma-ray photons, is a combined effort by the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) and Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC).
Nilay Bhatt, a researcher at BARC, said that trial runs are being carried out and the world will likely see major scientific results in a year or two.
MACE works by imagining the very short flashes of Cherenkov radiation; a phenomenon where charged particle glows when they pass through a non-conducting medium under certain conditions.
The Cerenkov telescope will enable Indian astronomers to study high energy gamma rays emitted from celestial events across space such as the explosion of stars, matter falling into the black hole and more.
MACE is part of seven telescopes installed in the location that will help astronomers to study gamma rays emissions from the celestial objects which might give a clue to the origin of cosmic rays and how emissions work in these processes.