“It’s a huge loss,” said Carmen Pantoja, an astronomer and professor at the University of Puerto Rico who used the telescope for her doctorate. Friedman ran up a small hill near his home and confirmed his suspicions: A cloud of dust hung in the air where the structure once stood, demolishing hopes held by some scientists that the telescope could somehow be repaired. The Arecibo Observatory telescope in Puerto Rico is damaged after its 900-ton receiver platform fell more than 400 feet onto the reflector dish. Engineers had pronounced the second-largest radio dish in the world to be on the brink of collapse and too dangerous to try to repair. About 250 scientists worldwide had been using the observatory when it closed in August, including Mendez, who was studying stars to detect habitable planets. Live Puerto Rico radio stations online. In a year full of terrible new sorrows and burdens, the collapse of Arecibo Observatory 's iconic radio telescope feels like a particularly brutal loss to Puerto Ricans. A spokesman for the observatory said there would be no immediate comment, and a spokeswoman for the University of Central Florida did not return requests for comment. A giant radio telescope in the Caribbean Island of Puerto Rico, which has been used to make Nobel Prize winning discoveries, has collapsed. By continuing to use this website, you agree to our policies regarding the use of cookies. I knew exactly what it was,” said Jonathan Friedman, who worked for 26 years as a senior research associate at the observatory and still lives near it. Cable failures endanger renowned Puerto Rico radio telescope. Tweet this! Business Insider. It had endured hurricanes, tropical humidity and a recent string of earthquakes in its 57 years of operation. Deliver a safe, effective COVID-19 vaccine in less than a year? The National Science Foundation, which owns the observatory that is managed by the University of Central Florida, said crews who evaluated the structure after the first incident determined that the remaining cables could handle the additional weight. Impossible. “I was screaming. The U.S. National Science Foundation had earlier announced that the Arecibo Observatory would be closed. These four states have been hit hard by COVID-19 yet balked at strict mask mandates. A huge, already damaged radio telescope in Puerto Rico that has played a key role in astronomical discoveries for more than half a century completely collapsed on Tuesday. It also served as a training ground for graduate students and drew about 90,000 visitors a year. Astronomers knew the clock was ticking for the iconic Arecibo radio telescope in Puerto Rico. Then a main cable broke in early November. Audience Relations, CBC P.O. “It was a chapter of my life.”. Meet Moncef Slaoui. FILE - In this Tuesday, Aug. 11, 2020 file photo, provided by the Arecibo Observatory, shows the damage done by a broken cable that supported a metal platform, creating a 100-foot (30-meter) gash to the radio telescope's reflector dish in Arecibo, Puerto Rico. Scientists worldwide had been petitioning U.S. officials and others to reverse the NSF's decision to close the observatory. A huge radio telescope in Puerto Rico that has played a key role in astronomical discoveries for more than half a century collapsed on Tuesday, officials said. The telescope has been used to track asteroids on a path to Earth, conduct research that led to a Nobel Prize and determine if a planet is potentially habitable. ", Yeah here is @SciBry’s before and after. The telescope’s 900-ton receiver platform fell onto the reflector dish more than 400 feet below. The National Science Foundation, which owns the observatory that is managed by the University of Central Florida, said crews who evaluated the structure after the first incident determined that the remaining cables could handle the additional weight. The NSF said at the time that it intended to eventually reopen the visitor center and restore operations at the observatory’s remaining assets, including its two LIDAR facilities used for upper atmospheric and ionospheric research, including analyzing cloud cover and precipitation data. The Arecibo Observatory had been shuttered since August after an auxiliary cable snapped and caused a 100-foot gash on the reflector dish. Platform workers make their way up a cable car to the Arecibo telescope in Arecibo, Puerto Rico in 2007. What a terrible, heart-breaking day for them all. ARECIBO, PUERTO RICO -- A huge, already damaged radio telescope in Puerto Rico that has played a key role in astronomical discoveries for more than half a century collapsed on Tuesday. An auxiliary cable snapped in August, causing a 100-foot gash on the 1,000-foot-wide dish and damaged the receiver platform that hung above it. "I am one of those students who visited it when young and got inspired," said Abel Mendez, a physics and astrobiology professor at the University of Puerto Rico at Arecibo who has used the telescope for research. By DÁNICA COTO November 15, 2020 GMT. Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted. The radio telescope in Puerto Rico has to come down before it collapses. SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — The National Science Foundation announced Thursday that it will close the huge telescope at the renowned Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico … 1 of 2. Located in Arecibo, Puerto Rico, the telescope was used for radio astronomy, atmospheric science, and even the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI). Listen to your favorite Puerto Rico music for free without registering at Onlineradiobox.com. It also served as a training ground for graduate students and drew about 90,000 visitors a year. I don't have words to express it. Thousands of people have worked hard and passionately to keep #Arecibo observatory at the forefront of planetary science and planetary defense. Scientists had used the telescope to study pulsars to detect gravitational waves as well as search for neutral hydrogen, which can reveal how certain cosmic structures are formed. The second-largest radio telescope in the world is no more. SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Puerto Rico's huge Arecibo radio telescope to close; a blow to search for planets, asteroids, extraterrestrial life. Giant telescope in Puerto Rico has collapsed after multiple damage. 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