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Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

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Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Old 12-02-20, 02:02 AM
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Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Wow.

Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

A huge radio telescope in Puerto Rico that has long played a key role in astronomical discoveries collapsed on Tuesday, officials said. The Arecibo Observatory, made famous as the backdrop for a pivotal scene in the James Bond film "GoldenEye" and other Hollywood hits, had been shuttered since August after an auxiliary cable snapped and caused a 100-foot gash on the reflector dish.

Then a main cable broke in early November, leading the National Science Foundation to declare just weeks later that it planned to close the radio telescope because the damage was too great.
Old 12-02-20, 03:57 AM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

That’s too bad. Arecibo has earned a place in science history.

It also played a role in an early X-Files episode, though I don’t think they filmed anything on location in Puerto Rico.
Old 12-02-20, 07:28 AM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Visited there on one of my trips to PR. It was pretty cool to visit and sad it won't be there for future people to see.
Old 12-02-20, 07:35 AM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Sean Bean broke it, make him pay for it.
Old 12-02-20, 08:41 AM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

I remember it best in the movie Contact. Sad to see this happen, but it was too dangerous for workers to attempt repair.
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Old 12-02-20, 09:15 AM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

It was coming soon. Two cables had broken, and at least one more was coming apart. It was too dangerous to attempt to repair.

As the world's biggest radar gun, it was doing work that no other telescope could do. It was how we learned that Mercury rotated instead of always facing the Sun. It had scanned the surface of Venus. It was very good at seeing the speed and direction of potential Near Earth Objects.

It was photogenic, so lots of people recognize it from movies.
Old 12-02-20, 12:45 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

As a science enthusiast, this is really sad to hear. So much great work was done there. Maybe in the future we might have the means to fix it.
Old 12-02-20, 05:42 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Let's spend some of our far, far misspent tax dolllars to rebuild it, and cut out a bit of the bloat elsewhere. It is so iconic, it is hard to believe this has happened.
Old 12-02-20, 06:47 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Originally Posted by zyzzle View Post
Let's spend some of our far, far misspent tax dolllars to rebuild it, and cut out a bit of the bloat elsewhere. It is so iconic, it is hard to believe this has happened.
According to one YouTube channel, maintenance dollars spent on Arecibo was some of the bloat that was cut.
Old 12-02-20, 07:01 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Found it.

Arecibo was designed by a scientist at Cornell University, which operated the facility until 2011, with the National Science Foundation (NSF) as the observatory's main funder. Facing increasing budget pressure, the NSF gradually phased out its funding, transferring operations first to SRI International and then to the University of Central Florida, although the NSF still owns the site.

But the past few years have been difficult on the observatory. In 2014, a strong earthquake damaged parts of the facility, including a cable that the facility's managers were hoping to replace later this year. In 2017, Hurricane Maria battered Puerto Rico but mostly spared Arecibo. The observatory's helipad and well water were vital resources for those living near the facility. Outside astronomers had to wait over a week to learn that the observatory was still standing.
https://www.space.com/arecibo-observ...us-damage.html

They had to wait six years to replace a cable damaged by an earthquake.
Old 12-02-20, 07:48 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Crap... Well waiting 6 years to replace a cable (which was never replaced, due to this catastrophe) = never rebuilding.

Last edited by zyzzle; 12-02-20 at 08:08 PM.
Old 12-02-20, 08:03 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Somebody's triggered.


Last edited by AGuyNamedMike; 12-03-20 at 02:01 PM. Reason: to add emoji
Old 12-03-20, 01:19 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

There is video of the collapse, sad but amazing to see the collapse happen on camera.
Old 12-03-20, 02:12 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Yeah, video here: https://arstechnica.com/science/2020...ables-snapped/

And I agree with your assessment.
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Old 12-03-20, 04:33 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

What always boggles my mind is the weight of some of the stuff that we build. This object weighed what...980 tons(!!!), so nearly 2 million U.S. pounds right? Crazy to think of something with that weight crashing down to the dish/jungle below.

I remember many years back that there was a story blurb on the news channel I was watching about a concrete freeway overpass that fell onto some cars below and at least one person survived which was a miracle because the overpass weighed something like 90 tons, and I thought that was insanely heavy.
Old 12-03-20, 06:26 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Originally Posted by E Unit View Post
Sean Bean broke it, make him pay for it.
Off with his head!
Old 12-03-20, 06:35 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

I wonder if an enterprising NSF staffer will propose selling off some of the surviving thousands of aluminum dish panels to interested collectors? I'd pay $300 (shipping included) for one and put it in my mancave.
Old 12-03-20, 08:36 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Two different camera angles.

Old 12-08-20, 12:33 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Originally Posted by Inhumans99 View Post
There is video of the collapse, sad but amazing to see the collapse happen on camera.
It's like watching "Life After People" in real time.
Old 12-08-20, 03:26 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

I visited it about 12 years ago and it was not in good shape at that point. The island is still recovering from Maria and fuckwit Trump deciding to not help the island, cutting funding and aid or at least delaying it has meant the island suffering has been prolonged.
The day this island gets recognized as part of the US (which it is) will be a great day as its treated as anything but that most of the time by the mainland.
Old 12-08-20, 05:44 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Actual video.

RIP.


Old 12-09-20, 11:13 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Did Bond really destroy the Arecibo observatory to kill one bad guy? It's like Team America in Paris.
Old 12-09-20, 11:37 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Get this guy.


Old 12-10-20, 12:34 AM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

I heard they closed it so I thought it was intentionally destroyed. I guess on the bright side it saves a lot of money in terms of demolition? Hopefully it will be replaced.
Old 12-10-20, 01:25 PM
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Re: Iconic Arecibo Observatory radio telescope collapses

Originally Posted by tanman View Post
I heard they closed it so I thought it was intentionally destroyed. I guess on the bright side it saves a lot of money in terms of demolition? Hopefully it will be replaced.
I don't know about that. Things are usually more dangerous and difficult to properly demolish if they weren't taken down intentionally.

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