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Arecibo radio telescope to close down - Printable Version

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Arecibo radio telescope to close down - Kyng - 11-20-2020

Puerto Rico https://www.theguardian.com/science/2020/nov/20/us-to-shut-down-famed-huge-arecibo-space-telescope-in-puerto-rico-jungle Puerto Rico

A huge US space telescope nestled deep in the Puerto Rican jungle will be shut down after suffering two destructive mishaps in recent months, ending 57 years of astronomical discoveries.

Operations at the Arecibo observatory, one of the largest in the world, were halted in August when one of its supportive cables slipped loose from its socket, falling and gashing a 30-metre (100ft) hole in its 305m-wide (1,000ft) reflector dish.

Another cable then broke earlier this month, tearing a new hole in the dish and damaging nearby cables as engineers scrambled to devise a plan to preserve the crippled structure.

The accidents at the site – also famed as the setting for James Bond movie GoldenEye, as well as Contact starring Jodie Foster – prompted the US National Science Foundation (NSF), an independent government agency, to call time on the facility.



So sad to see this iconic structure in such a state of disrepair - and sadder still to hear that the damage caused three months ago has proven to be terminal :'( .

Thanks for all the science over the past nearly-50 years, I guess.


RE: Arecibo radio telescope to close down - Spook of the lost - 11-20-2020

It's not terminal, it's just not cost effective to repair it.

sucks because I wanted to go see it someday...

maybe some repairs can be made in the future to bring it back online...

or maybe it will go up for sale?.
one can only hope.

Gods know I'd be lending it to seti if I owned it lol.


RE: Arecibo radio telescope to close down - Kyng - 11-21-2020

(11-20-2020, 07:59 PM)Spook of the lost Wrote: It's not terminal, it's just not cost effective to repair it.

sucks because I wanted to go see it someday...

maybe some repairs can be made in the future to bring it back online...

or maybe it will go up for sale?.
one can only hope.

Gods know I'd be lending it to seti if I owned it lol.

Pretty much the same thing for all practical purposes, as far as I'm concerned :P . If it's beyond economic repair, then the result is the same as if it was terminal: it doesn't get used any more.

I had heard that they're planning to dismantle it :'( . But, I hope they're going to replace it with another telescope, rather than just leaving the area bare.


RE: Arecibo radio telescope to close down - Spook of the lost - 11-22-2020

@ Kyng they could make it into a museum, or a landmark.


RE: Arecibo radio telescope to close down - Kyng - 11-22-2020

I suppose the museum is possible - although, it's difficult to see how to make it work, with the dish itself being either dismantled or in a state of disrepair, and all the other facilities still being in active use.

Perhaps they could just give it a partial cosmetic restoration, or turn it into some kind of art piece?


RE: Arecibo radio telescope to close down - Spook of the lost - 11-22-2020

See now we're talking, that dish has history, it's famous, it was in movies and tv shows, it should be preserved  :P


RE: Arecibo radio telescope to close down - Lurkerish Allsorts - 11-22-2020

I feel old now that the article didn't mention it also being in an Episode of The XFiles.


RE: Arecibo radio telescope to close down - Spook of the lost - 11-22-2020

@ Lurkerish Allsorts see that was the first thing that came to mind, not contact lol.


RE: Arecibo radio telescope to close down - GrieferLord - 11-22-2020

was also in BF3 as a map in multiplayer, you could destroy some cables and cause the dish to crumble in a similar way.


RE: Arecibo radio telescope to close down - Kyng - 12-01-2020

Well... the telescope is gone now :'( . One of the remaining cables seems to have snapped - and so, the receiver and its entire support structure have collapsed onto the dish:

https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020/12/arecibo-telescope-collapses-ending-57-year-run

It pains me to say this, but...

R.I.P. Arebico radio telescope
1963-2020