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Decommisioning of Arecibo Radio Telescope




 
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Author Topic: Decommisioning of Arecibo Radio Telescope  (Read 7003 times)
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W1RKW
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« on: November 20, 2020, 10:29:23 AM »


https://spacenews.com/nsf-to-decommission-arecibo-radio-telescope/?fbclid=IwAR01gBdA2xMpfMo1e5L1iDM6RnDKhvFYBWu7qN_inxDMLl4G-YgQNpFi5d8
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Bob
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« Reply #1 on: November 20, 2020, 02:57:36 PM »

That is a real shame.  Embarrassed
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« Reply #2 on: November 20, 2020, 03:13:14 PM »

It fall down - go boom  - Lots of scrap metal to sell.

The one in China, now certified and fully operational as of January 2020, is now the largest single dish radio telescope in the world. Its dish diameter is actually 200 meters greater then the one in Arecibo.
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2019-09/caos-cse090919.php

I guess James Bond will have to visit this one too  Cheesy

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Pete, WA2CWA - "A Cluttered Desk is a Sign of Genius"
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« Reply #3 on: November 21, 2020, 02:48:43 AM »

No doubt all the radio gear at Arecibo is spoken for or will be spirited away in some or another manner perhaps by an institution or government. I would love to know what is in use, or what was in use until the disaster. What a shame for the free world to lose that installation. How long until the forest reclaims it?
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W1ITT
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« Reply #4 on: November 21, 2020, 05:12:04 AM »

I have visited the Arecibo dish site twice.  It's very cool, and has an excellent visitor facility with a variety of displays from elementary to rather technical.  When you get there, you have to leave your cell phone off and back in the car to minimize RF smog.  Then you walk up a couple hundred feet of steep road to the main building  The control console room is separated from the visitor area by large glass walls. but you can see all sorts of signal processing stuff in racks, and people doing cool things at the console. 
One of the main feeds at the focal point is a 438 mhz unit but they have, at least on one occasion, fired it up on 432 moonbounce..
As expected, the island atmosphere is very corrosive and cable maintenance obviously wasn't enough.  I'd hate to be the fellow who had to climb out there and replace a thimble.  The new Chinese dish is pretty impressive, but the Arecibo operation was still doing some good science.  It's a shame to lose it.
A few years ago, my Dear Sweetie and I were watching a rerun of 007's Goldeneye on TV.  She was impressed that I had been to such a great nerd spot.  Chicks dig that stuff.
73 de Norm W1ITT
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« Reply #5 on: November 21, 2020, 09:21:46 AM »

I remember reading about that in some Time/Life Astronomy book in 5th grade. I thought it was awesome the way they used the contour of the land to 'make it fit'! I thought this was also used to communicate to Voyager 1/2 explorers now out in to 'outer space'. Something tells me this asset is too valuable to go to waste and will be hopefully retrofitted. I hate to think that we would be relying on the Chinese to communicate to those satellites!
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Mike(y)/W3SLK
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« Reply #6 on: November 21, 2020, 12:00:57 PM »

Mike.. Much of the deep space communication and control uplink with the way far out space probes is done out of a site in Australia, the name of which escapes me.  There's also a big dish in Spain. The advantage of those two sites is that they are steerable over a wide range, as opposed to Arecibo which has minimal moving of the feed.
The "soil" up there at Arecibo is karst, a high calcium material that hard and rough.  The site was originally a fairly good natural dish, but there was additional excavation involved.  The roads up to site are all paved and go past many houses that are right up to the edge of the road but they are twisty and turny.  I can't imagine what the truck drivers had to go through carrying all that equipment and structural material up there.  It's nerve wracking in an automobile.  That vehicle that James Bond had was definitely the better choice.
73 de Norm W1ITT
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« Reply #7 on: November 21, 2020, 12:12:25 PM »


Imho, something smells bad on this one.

Cables don't suddenly snap, unless nobody is paying attention to their
condition. Note all the suspension bridges in the world? No snapped cables
so far??

No money?
Horsepucky.

They likely could have raised the money with a "GoFundMe" or similar.
Not to mention a reasonable campaign to "entice" the lawmakers who were/are
set to blow up to 3 TRILLION DOLLARS "stimulating" the so-called economy.

Something seems very very off about this...
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K1JJ
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« Reply #8 on: November 21, 2020, 11:06:31 PM »

No more Arecibo?   Are we still going to Mars?    Are we still going to land a woman on the moon by 2024?  Is there still going to be a Space Force?  Will NASA stay funded?

(sigh....)


T
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Steve - K4HX
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« Reply #9 on: November 21, 2020, 11:27:42 PM »

It's not the end. The VLBA has been in operation since 1993 and is still active. It's far more versatile than Aricebo. Thye had used Arecibo in the array (along with a dish in Germany) to increase sensitivity.
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« Reply #10 on: November 22, 2020, 12:16:14 AM »

No more Arecibo?   Are we still going to Mars?    Are we still going to land a woman on the moon by 2024?  Is there still going to be a Space Force?  Will NASA stay funded?

(sigh....)
T

How many people even know we have a U. S. Space force:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Space_Force



Women have already been to Mars:



BUT WE REALLY NEED TO KNOW - WILL WE HAVE GREAT F2 PROPAGATION IN THIS NEW SUNSPOT CYCLE
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« Reply #11 on: November 22, 2020, 11:18:58 AM »

Norm said:
Quote
...Mike.. Much of the deep space communication and control uplink with the way far out space probes is done out of a site in Australia, the name of which escapes me. ...

Yeah and there was an issue with either the antenna or the receiver that they lost contact for a while with the probes. It was supposed to be a back-up for the Arecibo one if I remember reading the article correctly because they discussed the maintenance on Arecibo prior to this weeks developments.
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Mike(y)/W3SLK
Invisible airwaves crackle with life, bright antenna bristle with the energy. Emotional feedback, on timeless wavelength, bearing a gift beyond lights, almost free.... Spirit of Radio/Rush
W1RKW
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« Reply #12 on: November 22, 2020, 04:15:53 PM »

This is a good read on the history of Voyager 1 and 2. Talks about the spacecraft and comms systems.

https://voyager.gsfc.nasa.gov/Library/DeepCommo_Chapter3--141029.pdf
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Bob
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His fear was when I turned it on for the first time life on earth would come to a stand still.
nq5t
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« Reply #13 on: December 01, 2020, 10:35:05 AM »

The suspended platform collapsed over night last night. 
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Sam KS2AM
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« Reply #14 on: December 01, 2020, 12:31:24 PM »

Before and after



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« Reply #15 on: December 01, 2020, 09:36:52 PM »

Ouch! That's going to keep your pan fish down for a while!
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Mike(y)/W3SLK
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Tom WA3KLR
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« Reply #16 on: December 02, 2020, 11:22:26 AM »

Here is a 3 minute video of the damage, helicopter view.  Communications is mostly in Spanish.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tkfFuz13dYE&feature=youtu.be
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73 de Tom WA3KLR  AMI # 77   Amplitude Modulation - a force Now and for the Future!
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« Reply #17 on: December 03, 2020, 09:25:34 AM »

I wonder if part of the dish isn't still usable....??
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Tom WA3KLR
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« Reply #18 on: December 03, 2020, 10:54:57 AM »

Thinking like a true ham, Steve!
Happy holidays.
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73 de Tom WA3KLR  AMI # 77   Amplitude Modulation - a force Now and for the Future!
Sam KS2AM
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« Reply #19 on: December 03, 2020, 10:57:27 AM »

I believe that they were planning to decommission it anyways.

Might only useable for James Bond films now.

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« Reply #20 on: December 03, 2020, 12:33:24 PM »

Thinking like a true ham, Steve!
Happy holidays.
Yeah...a little hammy hambone action.....would be cool..
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Sam KS2AM
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« Reply #21 on: December 03, 2020, 03:04:02 PM »

Video of the collapse.   ooops.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gGGoXRAIwtw
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« Reply #22 on: December 03, 2020, 04:34:12 PM »

Video of the collapse.   ooops.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gGGoXRAIwtw
So that drone just happened to be in  the air during the collapse?  great pictures...the guy taking the pictures must have felt helpless to do anything..

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Sam KS2AM
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« Reply #23 on: December 03, 2020, 04:50:40 PM »

Video of the collapse.   ooops.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gGGoXRAIwtw
So that drone just happened to be in  the air during the collapse?  great pictures...the guy taking the pictures must have felt helpless to do anything..



They had been monitoring it continuously from fixed and drone cameras since the initial failure. They were trying to figure out what they might do about stabilizing the whole thing before the inevitable collapse.
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K1JJ
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« Reply #24 on: December 03, 2020, 06:11:55 PM »

Ya know, the first time I saw that newer tower rigging with the suspended steel structure a couple decades ago I got a bad feeling. There is a tremendous load holding up a "house" like that ... like somebody doing an iron cross on the rings.  Probably a better solution would be a huge, single, strapping center tower support, self supporting. The radio dome could be offset from the tower for a clear shot down into the apex.  Just like we see radio telescope offset dishes do now.   What would be lost in aperture would be gained getting rid of all the cables and wires causing array blockage and interference. And, a superior physical structure.

Better yet, take some of that Washington slush money and build a new one out in the  New Mexico or Arizona desert. Modern 2020, first class equipment.   Imagine one the size of the big meteor crater in AZ?  Make it easier for USA scientists to access.

T
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Use an "AM Courtesy Filter" to limit transmit audio bandwidth  +-4.5 KHz, +-6.0 KHz or +-8.0 KHz when needed. 

Nothing like a new homebrew rig. Come into the shack, flip on the switches and everything works perfectly.

And, nothing like an old dog.
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