Very Large Array – NM

Very Large Array (VLA) New Mexico Desert

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Welcome to this weeks episode of AudioTrek… Desert winds at the VLA in New Mexico.

So, what is a Very Large Array or VLA? Out in the desert of New Mexico, on the Plains of San Augustin, about a two-hour drive from Albuquerque are 27 Large Radio Telescopes, each Dish is 25 meters or 82 feet across.

Why here? This is a flat stretch of desert far from major cities. The Plains are ringed by mountains, which act like a natural fortress of rock that keeps out much of the radio interference from cities even hundreds of miles away.

I’ll admit, the movie Contact with Jody Foster was the first time I became aware of this area. While driving across the Country I was going to be in Albuquerque and thought it would be fun to check out the following morning.

The weather was stormy, but the storms were almost like a “ring” around the area. While I could see rain falling from a cloud in the distance, there was no rain at the site itself. Yes, it was a windy day and what you will hear is mostly wind with a few local birds here and there. The Video-Cast is entertaining as the storm clouds over the mountains blow by and thankfully, the Radio Telescopes were re-aligned a couple of times while I was there.

So, here you go… a little escape to the New Mexican Desert!

AudioTrek… Relax. Explore. Meditate. Sleep.


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