The Far Side of the Moon May Someday Have Its Own Telescope, Thanks to NASA Funding
By Katherine J. Wu/Smithsonianmag.com
The far side of the moon is protected from all the noisy, wavelength-jamming signals our planet emits. That’s why NASA recently decided to fund a project that could someday put a powerful radio telescope on the moon’s far side, reports Becky Ferreira for Vice.
Positioned with a clear shot of the cosmos, this observatory could collect ultra-long, low-frequency wavelengths—some of the faintest and most difficult-to-detect signals reverberating through space. According to Gizmodo’s George Dvorsky, some of these elusive wavelengths are left over from the universe’s earliest days, stretching back many billions of years, and could give researchers a glimpse into the birth of the cosmos.
Earthbound telescopes have so far struggled to home in on these mysterious signals, which get drowned out by human-made radio transmissions. Long wavelengths, especially those above 10 meters (33 feet) in length, also have a tough time penetrating our planet’s thick atmosphere, Yasemin Saplakoglu reports for Space.com. Even telescopes aboard Earth-orbiting satellites sometimes struggle to acquire data amidst the din.