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US to shut down famed huge Arecibo space telescope in Puerto Rico jungle

The observatory has played a key part in space exploration – and a few movies – but two accidents have rendered the 305m-wide instrument unsafe

A huge US space telescope nestled deep in the Puerto Rican jungle will be shut down after suffering two destructive mishaps in recent months, ending 57 years of astronomical discoveries.

Operations at the Arecibo observatory, one of the largest in the world, were halted in August when one of its supportive cables slipped loose from its socket, falling and gashing a 30-metre (100ft) hole in its 305m-wide (1,000ft) reflector dish.

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