back to article Crikey, that's FAST: China clocks 84 pulsars in 2 years using world's largest radio telescope

The world's largest single-dish radio telescope, an enormous white circle half a kilometre in diameter, has helped scientists uncover 84 new pulsars since it began collecting data two years ago. Jiang Peng, chief engineer at the Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical Radio Telescope (FAST) in Guizhou Province, southwest China, …

  1. Blockchain commentard Silver badge

    Frequency range also means they can pick up FM radio stations from anywhere in the world (and beyond!!). Wonder if I can get local planning permission for that kind of aerial :-)

    1. Tigra 07 Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      RE: Blockchain

      Mount it to one of those colourful plastic kids slides in your back garden and you can plausibly deny that it's a permanent structure when the Council come knocking.

    2. Korev Silver badge
      Joke

      Popping one in my office would finally give me a semi-decent signal...

      1. Tigra 07 Silver badge
        Trollface

        RE: Korev

        You're on the 3 network?

  2. Aladdin Sane Silver badge
  3. KittenHuffer

    In one way pulsars are not the great hope they used to be

    In the early days of pulsar discovery it was hoped that pulsars would be a useful way to find your way around the galaxy. The golden discs on the Voyager spacecraft actually contain pulsar maps that can be used to identify the location of our solar system.

    Unfortunately, it is now known that pulsars precess over time and the area of space swept by their radio beams changes. This means that by the time (40k+ years) any LGM get their hands on those discs they will be useless as a way of finding the remains of our civilisation.

    Though even if they could find our solar system they’d probably just find TWO Venus like planets amongst the rocky worlds of the inner system.

    1. KittenHuffer

      Re: In one way pulsars are not the great hope they used to be

      Now that's a down vote that I really don't understand.

      I suppose it could be from one of the "Global warming is fake news!" crowd. But then if they're smart enough to have spotted that tucked away in my comment I'd have thought they were smart enough to realise it's real.

      Anybody else have any ideas what I did or said to offend?

      1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

        Re: In one way pulsars are not the great hope they used to be

        There are some people who'll downvote you just because you've commented.

        1. KittenHuffer

          Re: In one way pulsars are not the great hope they used to be

          I suppose the haters gotta hate!

      2. Wellyboot Silver badge

        Re: In one way pulsars are not the great hope they used to be

        This is an interweb forum, our simple existence as commentards will cause offence under some rocks.

        edit: started this, got distracted and Aladdin beat me to the post.

      3. Christoph Silver badge

        Re: In one way pulsars are not the great hope they used to be

        I very frequently get single downvotes for entirely innocuous comments.

        There seems to be at least one person who gets their kicks by random downvotes.

        1. Evil Auditor Silver badge

          Re: In one way pulsars are not the great hope they used to be

          It's just the reader from Down Under. As any fule kno everything is reversed down there. That downvote is actually an upvote from an Aussie. Ask dropbear for it must kno.

        2. Toni the terrible

          Re: In one way pulsars are not the great hope they used to be

          ...and random up votes too

      4. DougS Silver badge

        Re: In one way pulsars are not the great hope they used to be

        Probably someone who didn't like your AGW comment at the end.

        1. Spherical Cow Bronze badge

          Re: In one way pulsars are not the great hope they used to be

          There may be a downvote bot.

    2. Toni the terrible
      Alien

      Re: In one way pulsars are not the great hope they used to be

      Good, I am relieved. Always thought that telling ET where we are was a ever so large mistake

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: In one way pulsars are not the great hope they used to be

        In reality, ET is going to be governed by the same limits and laws of physics as we are.

        With no access to FTL travel, they will stop their plans of world domination, when they realise it's hard to drop tactical nukes that don't also take out our KFC supplies. After 1000s of years, the'd be desperate for a quick snack!

        We always suspected there to be a reason KFC is both so greatly desired, yet so rarely found. They only place them outside strategic locations. ;)

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not very exciting, let me know when ET picks up the phone.

    It also hold the record as the World's biggest wok

    1. Christoph Silver badge
      Coat

      It's stuffed full of electronics.

      So it's an e-Wok.

  5. ACcc
    Coat

    Acronym

    Anyone else have the sneaking suspicion that they only added the word 'Spherical' to the acronym when someone pointed out what is spelt out without it?

    Mine's the one with the gas mask in the pocket ->

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. W.S.Gosset Bronze badge

      Re: Acronym

      Many moons ago, a chap I knew at uni was with engineering in the Victorian railways and did a big presentation on the then-proposed high-speed link between Melbourne & Sydney. As a laugh, his team presented it under, and suggested, the title Fast Alternative Rail Transport.

      Unfortunately, the senior managers (A) didn't get it, (B) loved the name.

      ... He had to take them aside later and gently point out what its acronym was.

      1. Stoneshop Silver badge

        Re: Acronym

        As a laugh, his team presented it under, and suggested, the title Fast Alternative Rail Transport.

        Back in the day, DEC had a moniker for a certain range of systems: Reliability, Adaptability, Maintainability and Performance, so RAMP.

        That didn't go well[0] when Sales came visiting at Philips Eindhoven.

        [0] nl: ramp --> en: disaster

  6. IGotOut

    Quick

    We need some of this pulsars and if we can't get them we need to stop the Chinese having access to them. Got it, we'll make it a national security issue.....

    1. Sanctimonious Prick
      Angel

      Re: Quick

      Trump: right! Stop selling China radio frequencies. That'll work.

    2. spold Bronze badge

      Re: Quick

      Many Chinese books and documents show that the pulsars have always belonged to China.

      ;-)

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