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South African Telescope
The South African Large Telescope (SALT) was inaugurated in November 2005 at the SA Astronomical Observatory, Sutherland, Northern Cape. Image taken 17th March 2007 by Nigel Benetton

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The Southern African Large Telescope

The Southern African Large Telescope (SALT) is the largest single optical telescope in the southern hemisphere and among the largest in the world. It has a hexagonal primary mirror array 11 metres across, comprising 91 individual 1m hexagonal mirrors.

SALT is situated at the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO) field station near the small town of Sutherland, in the Northern Cape province, about 400 kilometres from Cape Town. SALT is funded by a consortium of international partners from South Africa, the United States, Germany, Poland, India, the United Kingdom and New Zealand. The telescope has been in full science operation since 2011 and is realising its huge potential as Africa’s Giant Eye on the Universe.

Last updated: Tuesday, 10th August 2021