After years of financial uncertainty and weeks of hardship caused by Hurricane Maria, staff at the legendary Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico were relieved to find out Thursday that their telescope will remain operational.
For about a decade, the National Science Foundation, which owns the observatory and supplies about two-thirds of its $12 million budget, had been mulling downsizing or even shuttering the telescope to free up funds for other projects. Instead, the NSF will continue scientific operations at the facility in collaboration with an unnamed partner organization, according to a Record of Decision signed this week.
Arecibo sustained $4 million to $8 million in damage during the hurricane, according James Ulvestad, acting assistant director for the agency’s mathematical and physical sciences directorate. Some scientists worried that would weaken the case for keeping the observatory operational.
Read More – Washington post: http://wapo.st/2zeMDGG