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Good bye Arecibo...


Externet
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8 hours ago, Danijel Gorupec said:

Why the antenna broke - funds withdrawal or incompetent/malicious management? It does not look like an accident to me.

Why not? Time is a savage mistress that deteriorates all things. Despite regular maintenance, the dish is quite old and in a very difficult location to service and tend. There's no need to assume malice or ill intent when nature herself is the most likely cause. 

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Several recent hurricanes in the region contributed to the failure. 

Earthquakes helped too;  'Maria' hurricane in 2017;  In August 2020 a suspension cable broke starting the end :

WEBAreciboDishDamage.jpg

 

7 November 2020. The broken cable shown hanging down :

arecibocloseup_1200p_0.jpg?itok=JrUP1bKz

Edited by Externet
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23 minutes ago, iNow said:

Why not? Time is a savage mistress that deteriorates all things. Despite regular maintenance, the dish is quite old and in a very difficult location to service and tend. There's no need to assume malice or ill intent when nature herself is the most likely cause. 

I don't assume malice, but I would accept only few reasons for the wreckage:

- an earlier decision that maintenance expenses are too heavy and the telescope is to be left-on-its-own

- a beyond-design-basis event

If a maintenance program was in operation, then it was inadequate. Maintenance should maintain.

 

The reason I mention this is because the above photo can be used by anti-scientists for their agenda ("look how they spend your money"). If the telescope was intentionally abandoned, that must be clearly communicated to the public.

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There are two ways to look at this and I'm going with "Nobody got hurt and it's a great opportunity to modernise this facility which has been an epic emblem of astronomy for eighty years".

 

Is anyone with me?

Incidentally, when it was built in 1960 there was rather less focus on ensuring that planned maintenance could be done safely.

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33 minutes ago, John Cuthber said:

There are two ways to look at this and I'm going with "Nobody got hurt and it's a great opportunity to modernise this facility which has been an epic emblem of astronomy for eighty years".

 

Is anyone with me?

I agree

 

Quote


Incidentally, when it was built in 1960 there was rather less focus on ensuring that planned maintenance could be done safely.

No doubt. And also, I wonder what the planned lifetime of the facility was. There aren’t that many scientific instruments, especially at this scale, that are designed to last as long as this did. Not without large-scale overhauls

 

edit: The instrument was designed to have a ten-year lifetime.

http://www.naic.edu/~newslet/no37/NAICNo37.pdf

(That’s not to say that this was never extended)

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3 hours ago, John Cuthber said:

There are two ways to look at this and I'm going with "Nobody got hurt and it's a great opportunity to modernise this facility which has been an epic emblem of astronomy for eighty years".

Exactly my thoughts.

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38 minutes ago, John Cuthber said:

Quick thank you for not taking the piss out of my grasp of arithmetic. Sixty years, not 80.

No need to thank us. It is Christmas (almost).. :)

 

Edited by Sensei
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  • 2 weeks later...
On 12/4/2020 at 9:33 AM, iNow said:

Why not? Time is a savage mistress that deteriorates all things. Despite regular maintenance, the dish is quite old and in a very difficult location to service and tend. There's no need to assume malice or ill intent when nature herself is the most likely cause.

True

Edited by AtomicMX
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8 hours ago, Externet said:

Can someone explain the convenience of making this one spherical instead of parabolic ?

I think the Arecibo one was spherical too.
It' might be something to do with the lack of steering.
With a sphere it points in all directions- you just need to move the receiver.

But a paraboloid has a single axis that you have to line up with the target.

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20 hours ago, John Cuthber said:

I think the Arecibo one was spherical too.
It' might be something to do with the lack of steering.
With a sphere it points in all directions- you just need to move the receiver.

But a paraboloid has a single axis that you have to line up with the target.

Yes, this is also my understanding. In fact, as I understand, the PingTang telescope can never use its whole dish to listen a single (point) source.

But I don't understand what is the advantage, if any, in comparison to a synchronized array of small movable-dish telescopes? The price?

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