At the Arecibo radio telescope, a platform weighing hundreds of tons fell down Monday night. It probably destroyed a large part of the installation. Because the accident happened in the night, no one was injured.
The telescope was closed a few weeks ago. Arecibo was used, among other things, for research into the universe and to search for signals of extraterrestrial life. The telescope is operated by the NSF, which decided to dismantle the telescope last month after two accidents.
The telescope is known for several films, including James Bond’s GoldenEye and the film Contact, starring Jodie Foster. Watch the excerpt from the James Bond film below:
Arecibo was the largest telescope installation in the world until a few years ago. The dish measures 305 meters in diameter.
The telescope was badly damaged by a hurricane a few years ago. In August of this year, a cable with the main instruments snapped and in November another cable broke.
The damage was so great that Arecibo could no longer be saved. That is why it was already decided a few weeks ago that the installation would be dismantled.