ESOcast 56: Gentle Giants in the Desert
29 april 2013
For our newest ESOcast, we pose this puzzle: how do you move a 100-tonne giant ALMA antenna 30 kilometres up onto the oxygen-starved Chajnantor Plateau, 5000 metres above sea level and finish the job with millimetre precision?
Thankfully we have Otto and Lore, the cutting-edge ALMA transporters. The numbers are staggering: 20 metres long, 10 metres wide, weighing 130 tonnes each, housing two blistering 700-horsepower engines and capable of reaching 20 kilometres/hour; Otto and Lore are moving megastructures.
More than just gigantic workhorses, Otto and Lore are also triumphs of precision — gently moving parts of the world’s largest astronomical project into place to a hair’s breadth precision.
To watch these gentle giants in action, follow the link to ESOcast 56.
The ESOcast is a video podcast series dedicated to bringing you the latest news and research from ESO — the European Southern Observatory.
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