Contract worth EUR 42 million received from European Southern Observatory ESO in Garching

MT Aerospace AG materially involved in the world’s largest radio telescope project

MT Aerospace AG, a subsidiary of OHB Technology AG (ISIN: DE0005936124), has received a contract worth EUR 42 million from the European Southern Observatory ESO in Garching near Munich. The contract is for the large-scale international research project called ALMA, short for Atacama Large Millimeter Array, the largest and most spectacular radio telescope project to date. This telescope, with which astronomers plan to observe the genesis of galaxies and planets, comprises 50 individual antennae with a mirror diameter of 12 m and will be located at an altitude of 5,000 m on the Chajnantor plateau in Chile. North America and Europe will each be contributing half to financing and building ALMA, with the Japanese also involved in the project.

The European part is being financed by ESO, Garching. Yesterday, a contract was signed between ESO and the ALMA European Consortium for the delivery and assembly of 25 antennae with an option for a further seven with an additional EUR 10 million contract value. The European consortium will be lead-managed by Alcatel Alenia Space. Within the consortium, Mainz-based MT Aerospace is responsible for supplying the antenna mounts and for assembling and putting them into operation on site in Chile. Of the total project volume of around EUR 147 million, MT Aerospace’s stake is worth EUR 42 million. The contract will remain in force until 2011.

The “Antenna Mechatronics” Group at MT Aerospace in Mainz can look back on many years of experience and enjoys worldwide renown for its expertise in designing and implementing complex mechatronic systems. At the moment, the group is playing a key role in most of the major radio telescopes currently being constructed, such as the 40 m radio telescope in Spain, the 50 m millimeter wave radio telescope in Mexico, the 64 m radio telescope in Sardinia and the construction of a 6 m subreflector with an active surface for the Effelsberg 100 m radio telescope.

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