In Focus

Exploring the universe with ALMA

Exploring the universe with ALMA

Klüber Lubrication has succeeded in gaining access to one of the most spectacular scientific projects of recent times, with an order heading to the ALMA super-telescope.

Klüber Lubrication Chile: lubricants for super-telescope

The Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) is a revolutionary radio telescope. It has 66 high-precision antennas working in coordination, achieving an unprecedented level of detail with the objects observed in the universe.

Located in Chile's Atacama Desert at 5,000 m above sea level, it is an ideal place for astronomical observations because it is one of the driest and most atmospherically stable spots in the world.

The super-telescope is providing information about how stars and planets are formed and about the complex chemistry of the universe. ALMA – an international collaboration between Europe, the USA, Canada, East Asia and Chile – is currently one of the Earth's largest astronomy projects and is opening a window onto the universe in search of the origins of our cosmos.


Interview: Ms. Ivana Epis (Marketing & Communication KLSAM) spoke to Mr. Antonio Sepúlveda (Technical Consultant at KLCHILE) about the ALMA Observatory.

Ivana Epis: Was there a tender which led to our Klübersynth GH-6680 and ISOFLEX LDS 18 Special A products being applied on this highly innovative project?

Antonio Sepúlveda: No, the OEM recommends Klüber Lubrication and other brands in its installation manual. And because Klüber had previously collaborated with other observatories, ALMA was familiar with our products.

Which observatory is using Klüber Lubrication products?

We have been working with the European Southern Observatory (ESO), a European organisation which is also involved in ALMA, since 2011.

What is special about this project?

The ALMA astronomical observatory, with its powerful parabolic antennas, is the only set of telescopes of its kind in the world. It is setting new standards in astronomy: it even captures the light from some of the coldest objects in the universe, and it provides detailed images of star and planet formation.

And why are Klüber lubricants the right choice?

Like the lenses in a camera, these high-precision instruments and their components which are subjected to extreme mechanical forces require special greases and lubricants that guarantee that they will start reliably and work perfectly. Our solutions meet the toughest challenges – extreme cold, altitude, airborne dust – superbly, and they are the key to success.

Ivana Epis, KLSAM

Crédito: ALMA (ESO / NAOJ / NRAO), W. Garnier
Agradecimiento: General Dynamics C4 Systems