The world’s largest radio telescope is almost finished - and it’s going to try to make contact with extra-terrestrial life.
This fascinating video and stunning photos show how close the 500m wide Aperture Spherical Telescope, or “FAST”, is to completion.
The structure, in China, will be operational by September and key components have already been tested.
Spanning 1,640ft in diameter, the telescope is a £125 million initiative that has been under construction since 2011 in Pingtang County in China’s Guizhou Province.
The structure is being fitted with 4,500 shiny panels following a successful dry run of its hardware last November.
FAST is three miles away from the nearest inhabited town, meaning it will have the perfect radio silence needed to listen to listen to the skies above.
Officials moved some 9,000 from the region to make way for the radio telescope, which will be the biggest of its kind.
FAST hopes to help scientists discover new secrets of physics and dark matter, as well as investigating the potential for intelligent extra-terrestrial life.
The telescope will also be used to track spacecraft involved in China’s space programme.