Pandemic COVID-19 led to a stop of work of over 120 of the largest ground-based telescopes. In the ranks was only automated systems and telescopes, and the world’s largest working optical telescope is now 10-meter telescope Hobby-Eberly in Texas, reported on the journal’s website Astronomy.com.
The spread of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 have greatly influenced the activity as aerospace agencies and other enterprises of many countries. So, because of the case of infection by a member of the mission control center of the European space Agency had to temporarily take a few space stations in safe mode. The pandemic has already led to the bankruptcy of the company OneWeb, the transfer for 2022 start new stage of the project “Eczemas” and the suspension of work at NASA on a new launch vehicle SLS.
However, more damage inflicted, the pandemic observational astronomy, as a ground-based Observatory was forced to cancel all public events and to transfer employees to remote mode or to shut down temporarily. Was stopped the work of gravitational wave observatories LIGO and VIRGO, telescopes of the European southern Observatory (both optical and system of radio telescopes ALMA). A monitoring campaign of the Telescope the event horizon (EHT), which was scheduled for March-April 2020 was postponed for the next year.
Currently in the world has suspended its work more than 120 of the largest ground-based telescopes, among them the famous telescopes Keck, “Gemini”, “Subaru”, Magellan telescopes, the Large Binocular telescope, the Great Canary telescope and many others. Stopped flying the stratospheric Observatory SOFIA. Continue your work only fully automated system, such as Pan-STARRS, Zwicky Transient Facility, Catalina Sky Survey or telescopes of the Las Cumbres Observatory. System radio telescopes VLA (Very Large Array) and VLBA (Very Long Baseline Array) also conduct surveillance through remote access.
The largest optical telescope, still operating in the Eastern hemisphere of the Earth, has now become a twenty-footn Big azimuthal telescope in the Caucasus mountains. The biggest optical telescope of the remaining building in the world — the ten-meter telescope Hobby-Eberly in Texas. In his dispatch is only one astronomer who collected the control system of the telescope of several old computer monitors, which he found in the vault, and set on a folding card table.