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    Russia to build telescope superior to Hubble - expert

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    Russia will build a deep space exploration telescope that will outstrip the U.S.-made Hubble Space Telescope, a Russian astronomer said Tuesday.

    MOSCOW, November 21 (RIA Novosti) - Russia will build a deep space exploration telescope that will outstrip the U.S.-made Hubble Space Telescope, a Russian astronomer said Tuesday.

    Hubble, orbited in 1990, has been the most successful and expensive project in astrophysics, costing over $6 billion.

    "In cooperation with our colleagues from Germany, the United Kingdom, China and Spain, we have set ourselves the task of building the Spectrum-Ultraviolet telescope, which will surpass Hubble in some aspects," Boris Shustov, director of the Astronomy Institute at the Russian Academy of Sciences, told a news conference.

    The expert said the telescope, with a 170-centimeter diameter antenna, will explore the structure of the universe in the ultraviolet spectrum.

    Shustov said that under the government's federal space program for 2006-2012, Russia is to implement two other large projects - the launch of telescopes operating in other spectrums, the Spectrum-Radioastron and the Spectrum-X-Ray-Gamma.

    The Spectrum-X-Ray-Gamma telescope will study galactic clusters, and consequently, the structure of the universe.

    The Spectrum-Radioastron aims to study the structure of galactic and extra-galactic radio wave sources, their internal processes and other processes occurring near them. It will comprise a space telescope and a ground tracking station.

    "If the antenna of the radio-telescope is 300,000 kilometers (187,500 miles) from the Earth, and the other telescope is on the Earth, they will represent one gigantic telescope," Shustov said. "The Spectrum-Radioastron project will make it possible to read a newspaper on the Moon."

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