The Arecibo Observatory

The Arecibo Observatory, situated in Arecibo, Puerto Rico is a massive radio telescope managed by several national research institutions. Initially constructed in 1963, the telescope stands at 1,000 feet (305 m). Up until 2016, the scope held the record as the largest single-aperture telescope in the world. Scientists conduct three types of research: radar astronomy, atmospheric science and radio astronomy. Researchers interested in using the observatory must first submit a proposal. An independent scientific board then evaluates the proposition. The observatory also plays a role in media culture, appearing in video games, films and television productions. Several important scientific findings have been made using the facilities. In 1964, a scientist named Gordon Pettengill and his team discovered that the time required for Mercury to complete a full rotation was 88 days, not 59. Researchers also captured the first ever-recorded image of an asteroid in 1989.