Jodrell Bank to be HQ for Square Kilometre Array

Last updated at 16:28
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Ricky finds out what Jodrell Bank will be doing

The UK has been chosen as the new headquarters for the world's biggest radio space telescope.

The Square Kilometre Array (SKA) project will be based at the Jodrell Bank Observatory in Cheshire.

Although the actual satellite dishes will be based in South Africa and Australia, the headquarters at Jodrell Bank will control what they observe.

The SKA project will try to find out the answers to some of the biggest questions in space.

What will the Square Kilometre Array do?

The SKA will probe the early universe, test the theory of gravity and even search for alien life.

Lovell dish at Jodrell BankGetty Images
Jodrell Bank will control dishes thousands of miles away

Hundreds of satellite dishes on two different continents will combine to form a huge radio telescope.

It will have a collecting area of one million square metres (the square kilometre of the name), which is equivalent to 200 football pitches.

It will be more sensitive than any existing radio telescope, including the Hubble space telescope.