Farewell to the Arecibo Space Observatory with sad messages
The US National Science Foundation announced that the Arecibo Space Observatory, which has been in service for 57 years in Puerto Rico, will be dismantled as it threatens to collapse after two of its support wires are cut off. Arecibo is one of the largest observatories in the world and has made major contributions to space exploration.
On August 10, one of the support wires was cut, and the other followed on November 6, and they are two wires connected to the observatory equipment, which weighs 900 tons, and are located above the reflective plate, which has a diameter of 305 meters.
Engineers expressed their fear of disconnection of other wires at any time, given that the remaining wires are weak, which connect the equipment of the observatory to 3 towers, and this makes attempts to repair very dangerous.
The American Science Foundation agreed to dismantle the observatory through the engineering company that inspected it and recommended the controlled demolition of it.
The director of the National Science Foundation, Sethuraman Panchanathan, said that the observatory's priority is "for the safety of workers, employees and visitors, which makes this decision necessary, albeit unfortunate."
The professional and amateur astronomers who have used the observatory for decades in their work have published a torrent of expressions of sadness and longing to the famous telescope, under the hashtag "What Arecibo Means for Me".
Local astronomer Kevin Ortiz Ceballos wrote, "Arecibo is more than an observatory, as it is the real reason" for his astronomy.
"I'm disappointed, my heart shattered," Karen Masters, a professor of astronomy at Haverford College in Pennsylvania, added, adding a picture of her with her child near the reflective plate in 2008.