This Northeastern physicist is revolutionizing astronomy with unprecedented dark matter mapping through space observatory in Chile

A new astronomical observatory nearing completion atop a desert mountain in northern Chile will reveal the workings of the universe as never before.

It might even revolutionize our understanding of the mysterious forces shaping the cosmos, such as dark energy, says Northeastern assistant physics professor Jonathan Blazek.

With a telescope as wide as a tennis court and the world’s largest digital camera — about the size of an SUV — the Vera C. Rubin Observatory will collect data and images from the entire visible Southern Hemisphere sky every three nights for a decade.

“This lets you map out large chunks of sky very quickly,” says Blazek, adding that the quality of the images will be “unprecedented.”

The deep and wide survey of the skies is called the Legacy Survey of Space and Time, or LSST. Some are calling it the greatest time-lapse movie ever made, and it’s easy to see why.

The LSST will identify a mind-boggling 10 million changes in the sky every night and discover billions of new stars and galaxies as well as cosmic explosions known as supernovae.

Read more from Northeastern Global News.

Illustration by Renee Zhang/Northeastern University

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