Home / China / Society

Pollution may close observatory

By CANG WEI | | Updated: 2013-03-27 10:46

The Purple Mountain Observatory has almost lost its ability to perform as a professional observation post and may change into a museum because of heavy air pollution in Nanjing, Jiangsu province, astronomers said.

According to the provincial meteorological center, the intensity of sunlight has decreased by 14 percent in the past 50 years. Compared with 10 years earlier, the number of days on which astronomical observations can effectively be practiced in a year has decreased by 50.

Also, because of the high concentration of PM2.5 (particles with less than 2.5 micrometers in diameter), the observatory needs to spend large amounts of money to clean the professional equipment.

According to Liu Yu, an expert from the National Astronomical Observatories, it costs more than 100,000 yuan ($16,000) to clean a large-diameter reflecting telescope each time. The lenses of telescopes may need to be cleaned every week to guarantee normal use.

Editor's picks
Copyright 1995 - . All rights reserved. The content (including but not limited to text, photo, multimedia information, etc) published in this site belongs to China Daily Information Co (CDIC). Without written authorization from CDIC, such content shall not be republished or used in any form. Note: Browsers with 1024*768 or higher resolution are suggested for this site.
License for publishing multimedia online 0108263

Registration Number: 130349