Thursday, 20 August 2015

Trevelyan's Mainframe - FILE: Observatory, Arecibo / Twenty Years Removed

Deep within the Puerto Rican jungle, the world’s largest single-aperture telescope hangs as a testament to great, scientific achievement. It’s been a long twenty years since we last saw our girl, albeit in a rather bad, on the silver screen. Since then, the antenna cradle has been fully operational and holding up quite well (despite MI6’s best efforts). Your access codes for this file check out and you may proceed. The following data is what we have on the Arecibo Observatory, twenty years removed from its use in GOLDENEYE...

Ah, the glory days… This single-dish radio telescope located close to the equator, just south of Arecibo, Puerto Rico, was the key to securing Janus’ future. Alas, those days are far behind us, yet this marvel stands strong. However, if you are to continue through this file, basic information on this subject should be understood first. Being completed in 1963, the Arecibo Observatory (also known as the National Astronomy and Ionosphere Center) would face ongoing upgrades all the way through 2011. During these decades, the observatory was managed by the Cornell University (New York, USA). Now, the observatory is upheld and operated by several organizations conjointly including the Universities Space Research Association, Universidad Metropolitana of Puerto Rico, and SRI International (a nonprofit scientific research institute). In short, for the most part, this telescope is used for research in radio astronomy, radar astronomy, and atmospheric science.

Now, shall we continue? Following our use of the dish for the operation of satellite Mischa twenty years ago, our control and operations center has stayed fairly busy. The radio telescope and observatory would next appear in 1997 film, Contact, starring such talents as Jodie Foster, Matthew McConaughey, and James Woods. According to further intel, the film’s plot would be based on a scientist of the Arecibo Observatory making contact with life beyond Earth through the use of such technology. Garnering over one hundred and seventy million dollars worldwide, CONTACT would be considered a financial success after garnering over one hundred and seventy million dollars worldwide. The observatory and telescope can be seen several times in the film.

The next major mainframe entry concerning our facility is dated 1999, the year that the SETI@home program would make the Arecibo Observatory its base of operations. This attracted global attention, as the program’s main goal of discovering extraterrestrial life through radio evidence would greatly benefit. Most of this program’s data has since been collected through our dish, as the search for life beyond Earth continues today.

Research on our subject suggests that between 2001 and 2006, NASA decreased and eliminated much of its support funding of the planetary radar. Starting in 2007, a branch of NASA directly overseeing our facility would slowly cut the Arecibo Observatory’s research and renovation budget in half. With much financial support from the Puerto Rican government and the three current overseeing organizations, the National Astronomy and Ionosphere Center remained open for ongoing research and small programs.

Collected data shows that in 2009, Arecibo was back to making radio transmissions. A radio message containing the DNA sequence of RuBisCo protein used by plants to perform photosynthesis, appropriately named RuBisCo Stars, would be sent to the GJ 83.1, Teegarden’s, and Kappa Ceti stars. Hope is that any possible life beyond has the technology to receive such a message. Though, I’ll admit, it’s all somewhat over my head. You’d have to consult our associate, a Mr. Boris Grishenko, to elaborate any further on such entries.

Since then, data entries have been rather scarce. As of 2011, a new director of the facility had been selected, a certain Dr. Robert B. Kerr, out of the University of Michigan. Operations since his overtaking have been small, yet steady. We’ve had eyes on him since he stepped in.

Side notes within this file are plentiful, thanks to several of our operatives on the inside. Of course, every knowledgeable Janus operative is aware that the observatory’s Radio Telescope was featured in the 1997 movie-based videogame, GOLDENEYE 007, as the setting of the final core mission of the game. What happens at the end of that level is not to be discussed further, however… Also in 1997, the Ángel Ramos Foundation Visitor Center officially opened. This in-depth experience features interactive exhibits and displays surrounding the operations and theme of the radio telescope, astronomy, and atmospheric science. According to several entries here, admission is very reasonable for adults, seniors, children of all ages. In 2001, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers named the Arecibo Radio Telescope an IEEE Milestone for being a key historical achievement in electrical and electronic engineering. Further adding to the merit and importance of the site, the United States officially listed the National Astronomy and Ionosphere Center on the National Register for Historic Places in September of 2008. Our final entry here suggests that the Arecibo Radio Telescope would reemerge in videogame form as a tightly-based dish multiplayer map in DICE’s BATTLEFIELD 4. As a nod to the Janus Syndicate, the map is known as ‘Rogue Transmission’ and players are able to destroy the telescope entirely or have firefights atop the main transmitter via helicopter drop off.

In conclusion, I admit, I admire your choosing to pry deeper into the Janus mainframe, as you’ve just read through a file that lies among my personal favorites. As a matter of fact, if you wish to continue being an associate of the Janus Syndicate and having access to these files, I firmly suggest your scrape together ten dollars American and head to Arecibo, Puerto Rico. Janus will continue operating with a close eye on this facility, as it will be ours once more.

That’s about all we have. You have your visiting orders; see that they are carried out according to the collected data you so smartly just read through. If you don’t, you mistakenly risk being underequipped. As you venture from the cradle to the grave, watch your step out there, old boy… It may just be your last.

- End transmission, Trevelyan.

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