The European Southern Observatory (ESO) council has authorized phase one for constructing the world’s largest telescope. Project costs for phase one are an estimated one billion euros, or an estimated 1.3 billion US dollars, and is expected to begin operations in 2024.
The telescope, also known as the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT), is an optical and in fared telescope featuring a 39 meter aperture and will be capable of gathering images that are nearly 15 times sharper than those produced by the Hubble Space Telescope. It is being built atop of Cerro Armzones, a 10,000 foot mountain in Chile’s Atacama Desert, see details of the groundbreaking ceremony. The development of the E-ELT is anticipated to enable greater scientific discoveries as it relates to the field of exoplanets.