LCRT

Lunar Crater Radio Telescope (LCRT) on the Far-Side of the Moon

An ultra-long-wavelength radio telescope on the far-side of the Moon has tremendous advantages compared to Earth-based and Earth-orbiting telescopes, including: (i) Such a telescope can observe the universe at wavelengths greater than 10m (i.e., frequencies below 30MHz), which are reflected by the Earth’s ionosphere and are hitherto largely unexplored by humans, and (ii) the Moon acts as a physical shield that isolates the lunar-surface telescope from radio interferences/noises from Earth-based sources, ionosphere, Earth-orbiting satellites, and Sun’s radio-noise during the lunar night. We propose to deploy a 1km-diameter wire-mesh using wallclimbing DuAxel robots in a 3-5km-diameter lunar crater on the far-side, with suitable depth-to-diameter ratio, to form a sphericalcap reflector. This Lunar Crater Radio Telescope (LCRT), with 1km diameter, will be the largest filled-aperture radio telescope in the Solar System! LCRT could enable tremendous scientific discoveries in the field of cosmology by observing the early universe in the 10– 50m wavelength band (i.e., 6–30MHz frequency band), which has not been explored by humans till-date.

NASA NIAC Phase 1 Announcement, NASA NIAC Press Release

NASA NIAC Phase 2 Announcement

JPL Media article on LCRT

LCRT overview

Notional view of LCRT on the far-side of the Moon

Concept of Operations

Concept of operations for building LCRT

LCRT is on the front cover of the Jan 2021 issue of the prestigious journal Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A, which is a special issue on “Astronomy from the Moon: the next decades

Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A Front Cover

Front Cover, “Astronomy from the Moon: the next decades”, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A

We would like to thank Vladimir Vustyansky for the LCRT Concept Art below.

LCRT Concept Art (Top View)

LCRT Concept Art (View from Crater Rim)

LCRT Concept Art (View from Crater Rim)

LCRT Concept Art (View near Crater)

LCRT Concept Art (View near Crater)

LCRT Concept Art (View inside Crater)

LCRT Concept Art (View inside Crater)

LCRT Concept Art (View near Crater with Sunrise)

LCRT Concept Art (View near Crater with Sunrise)

LCRT Concept Art (View with Sunrise)

LCRT Concept Art (View with Sunrise)

LCRT Concept Art (View with Sunrise 2)

LCRT Concept Art (View with Sunrise 2)

LCRT Concept Art (View with Sunrise 3)

LCRT Concept Art (View with Sunrise 3)

LCRT Concept Art (View from Crater Rim 2)

LCRT Concept Art (View from Crater Rim 2)

LCRT Sunrise Squared

LCRT Concept Art Square (View with Sunrise)

Outreach Events

1. SciFi to SciFact! An Online Special Event, Flandrau Science Center & Planetarium, University of Arizona

SciFi to SciFact

SciFi to SciFact! An Online Special Event (link)

2. Space Handshake, Scientific Experiments which seems like SCI-FI

Space Handshake

Space Handshake (link)

3. Event Horizon Youtube Channel: Can We Put a Radio Telescope on the Far Side of the Moon? With Saptarshi Bandyopadhyay

4. Synergy, NIT Trichi Guest lecture on LCRT:

5. Astronomy on Tap – Lunar Telescopes & Airborne Telescopes:

6. From Science Fiction to Science Fact 2021, Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago

 

 

Publications

  1. S. Bandyopadhyay, J. Lazio, P. Goldsmith, P. McGarey, A. Goel, R. Rafizadeh, M. Delapierre, M. Arya, N. Chahat, A. Stoica, M. Quadrelli, I. Nesnas, K. Jenks, G. Hallinan, R. Wilson, “Lunar Crater Radio Telescope (LCRT) on the Far Side of the Moon”, NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) Phase 1 Report, 2021. (PDF)
  2. S. Bandyopadhyay, P. McGarey, A. Goel, R. Rafizadeh, M. Delapierre, M. Arya, J. Lazio, P. Goldsmith, N. Chahat, A. Stoica, M. Quadrelli, I. Nesnas, K. Jenks, G. Hallinan, “Conceptual Design of the Lunar Crater Radio Telescope (LCRT) on the Far Side of the Moon”, IEEE Aerospace Conference, Online, Mar. 2021. (PDF)
  3. A. Goel, S. Bandyopadhyay, P. McGarey, R. Rafizadeh, P. Goldsmith, J. Lazio, A. Stoica, M. Quadrelli, I. Nesnas, G. Hallinan, “Ultra-Long Wavelength Radio Astronomy using the Lunar Crater Radio Telescope (LCRT) on the Farside of the Moon”, American Geophysical Union (AGU) Fall Meeting, Online, Dec. 2020. [Abstract only] (AGU Poster URL)
  4. P. McGarey, S. Bandyopadhyay, R. Rafizadeh, A. Goel, M. Arya, I. Nesnas, J. Lazio, P. Goldsmith, A. Stoica, M. Quadrelli, G. Hallinan, “A Concept For The Deployment Of A Large Lunar Crater Radio Telescope On The Moon Using Teams Of Tethered Robots”, International Symposium on Artificial Intelligence, Robotics and Automation in Space (i-SAIRAS), Online, Oct. 2020. (PDF)
  5. S. Bandyopadhyay, R. Rafizadeh, J. Lazio, P. Goldsmith, P. McGarey, A. Stoica, M. Quadrelli, I. Nesnas, G. Hallinan, “Conceptual Design of the Lunar Crater Radio Telescope (LCRT) on the Far Side of the Moon”, AIAA ASCEND, Virtual, Nov. 2020. [Abstract only]  (Youtube Video URL)
  6. S. Bandyopadhyay, J. Lazio, A. Stoica, P. Goldsmith, B. Blair, M. Quadrelli, J.-P. de la Croix, A. Rahmani, “Conceptual Ideas for Radio Telescope on the Far Side of the Moon,” IEEE Aerospace Conference, Big Sky, MT, Mar. 2018. (DOI)