A few years ago researchers using the radio-based Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) performed an extraordinary observation, the likes of which remains a dream for most other astronomers. The EHT team announced in April 2019 that it had successfully imaged the shadow of a supermassive black hole in a nearby galaxy by combining observations from eight different radio telescopes spread across our planet. This technique, called interferometry, effectively gave the EHT the resolution, or the ability to distinguish sources in the sky, of an Earth-sized telescope. At the optical wavelengths underpinning the gorgeous pictures from the Hubble Space Telescope and many other famed facilities, today’s interferometers can only combine light from instruments that are a few hundred meters apart at most. That may be set to change as astronomers turn to quantum physicists for help to start connecting optical telescopes that are tens, even hundreds, of kilometers away from one another.
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