RIP Arecibo 11/01/1963 - 12/01/2020

Scott Manley speaks on the overnight events here

Hits me like the shuttles did. The world is a little less magical today. Farewell Arecibo


Looks like it was in need of investment for some time.
Haven’t done tons of research @MrBeauregardebut was it still in operation at the time?

There was an initial cable seperation a few weeks ago. Until that event it was still in operation.

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It definitely needed money. NSF couldn’t afford it on their own abcd NASA purportedly declined to become invested in its upkeep

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Such a shame, the things it’s seen and events it’s been part of.
It’s a shame but hopefully someone will step forward with investment.

Rumor has it NASA plans to build a radio telescope in a crater on the moon. No idea when or if that will ever be possible. :new_moon:

That’s a shame.

They had already made the decision to decommision it weeks ago because of the risk of collapse. This is a fast turnaround to get to an actual full failure, but if it wasn’t worth repairing before this happened, surely it is even less likely now… At this point they will probably just let the wilderness grow over it.

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The Webb telescope is sucking up a lot of money, and NASA always has to prioritise until it gets enough funding to not have to.

This design had a unique strength and a unique weakness. The strength was it’s resolving power, it’s physical size. It’s weakness was caused by that strength that it was pointing pretty much in a narrow circle determined by the planet’s rotation, and to move that focus involved the very things which failed here, the moving of the focal point on the three struts.

Sad its gone, science benefits from diversity of sources of data.

I heard the news, such a shame

It was our only really potent radar telescope. It did radio well, but radio is passive so it can leverage interferometry. Arecibo could actively ping objects. And it was so BIG. It’s like standing at the foot of a Saturn V, except you’re at the top and you realize you were walking over the dish for minutes before you got to thr dome.

Space telescopes are better, they’re the future without exception. But you can’t see it. The love of science in children is born in experience and sensation. But now I’m pretending I’m a poet, sure sign I need to end this post