Astronomers Create Detailed Plans for the Extremely Large Telescope (ELT) using LEGO®

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An example of a LEGO observatory
A team of astrnomers at the European Southern Observatory have been playing with LEGO® (Image credit: ESO/Frans Snik)

The European Southern Observatory (ESO) is building one of three next generation optical telescopes, called the Extremely Large Telescope (ELT). It will have a primary aperture that is 39 meters wide made of segmented mirrors. Astronomer Frans Snik and his team have created detailed LEGO® instructions for you to now build your own ELT. As both an astronomer and lover of LEGO®, I approve of this project.

The other two next generation optical telescopes are the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT), which has a 30 meter aperture, and the Giant Magellan Telescope (GMT). Canada is a full partner in the TMT, which is still in the planning phase.

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Astronomers Create Detailed Plans for the Extremely Large Telescope (ELT) using LEGO®
European Southern Observatory
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Jesse Rogerson, PhD

As a passionate science communicator, Jesse Rogerson loves promoting science literacy to the public. He frequently represents the Canada Aviation and Space Museum on television and radio, social media, and at conferences. A trained and practicing astrophysicist, Jesse holds a PhD in observational astrophysics from York University, and publishes his research in peer-reviewed journals. Jesse enjoys riding his motorcycle, board games, and ultimate frisbee.