‘Abandoned’ NASA telescope, ‘unbelievable’
NASA’s “Abandoning” Reflector Telescope was “unbelieveable,” the head of a US-based telescope group told The Associated Press.
The telescope was to be used to study distant stars, but was abandoned after a federal court ruled it was unconstitutional.
It was due to be demolished and the property sold but was instead auctioned off by the U.S. government in 2017.
It is still under construction and remains to be seen what will be built there.
The $15 million project is slated to be finished in 2021.
The telescope, which was to have cost $12 million, is now under construction in Florida, according to a report in the AP.
The Reflector telescope was the largest astronomical telescope ever built, measuring more than 18 feet (5 meters) tall, 2,300 feet (880 meters) long and 1,500 feet (610 meters) wide.
It also carried instruments to examine distant planets, stars and dark matter.
The telescopes primary purpose was to study objects that are so faint that they are invisible to the naked eye, including planets and comets.
The observatory was originally meant to detect the faint light from planets and other faint objects that were too far away to be detected with the naked eyes, according the AP report.
The US government is not using the Reflector as a source of light for astrophysics research.
Instead, it is using it as a tool to study stars and galaxies that are far away, the AP reported.
A large telescope in Australia also was abandoned due to a court ruling.
The government is hoping to build a $2 billion, 7-metre (22-foot) telescope at an undisclosed location in Western Australia.