A 10,000-foot mountain in northern Chile will have its top blown off Thursday to make room for a telescope officials say will be the “world’s biggest eye on the sky.”
Cerro Armazones will have its peak cleared to install the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT), the main mirror of which will measure almost 130 feet, making it the largest optical/near-infrared telescope in the world according to the European Space Agency (ESO).
The ESO said the E-ELT will “tackle some of the biggest scientific challenges of our time,” by “allowing detailed studies of subjects including planets around other stars, the first objects in the universe, super-massive black holes, and the nature and distribution of the dark matter and dark energy which dominate the universe.”
Its first use is expected in the early part of the next decade. The mountain’s detonation is scheduled for 2:10 p.m. ET.