The Nationwide Science Basis launched a video that reveals the 60-year-old Arecibo Radio Observatory’s collapse.
From Ars Technica:
As you possibly can see from the video, the drone was inspecting the world the place the cables looped over the assist towers. Particularly, it was inspecting the tower that had supported the one major cable that had failed earlier—observe that one of many gaps that the cables move by is unoccupied. Whereas it was filming, particular person wires within the cable began snapping, and the cable failed utterly shortly afterward. The remaining connection seen there, which was related to the scientific instrumentation, survived a bit longer earlier than the plunging platform pulled it aside.
Within the second phase of video, the view from the customer’s middle reveals how the failure of the cables at that tower affected the remainder of the system. With one of many three assist anchors gone, the instrument platform dropped towards the dish in between the remaining two. This created off-axis forces that prompted the tops of these towers to be wrenched off the remainder, leading to about 60 toes of strengthened concrete plunging to the bottom under. On the similar time, backstay cables that ran from the tower to the bottom got here free and swung round wildly.