How The Arecibo Telescope Could Help Save The World

  • Published on May 8, 2017
  • The radio telescope at the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico can do something that most radio telescopes can't: it can transmit. And that's useful for something other than sending messages to the stars: it might just help save the world one day.
    More about the Arecibo Observatory:
    Behind the Scenes, including helmet-cam footage of the walk to the telescope, over on the Park Bench:
    Camera and audio mix: Matt Gray
    Animation: Mat Hill
    Edited by: Michelle Martin @mrsmmartin
    I'm at
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Comments • 703

  • Tom Scott
    Tom Scott  2 years ago +2197

    A bit of context here: I've wanted to go here for... I don't know, about twenty years? But it was too far away, too expensive, too inconvenient, and there's no way they'd allow tourists onto the platform itself. And then, a few months ago, I got an email from one of the scientists there, asking if I wanted to film with them. Getting to do ridiculous things like this is one of the reasons I make videos, and I really am so, so thankful to everyone involved!

    • S S
      S S Year ago

      This is awesome stuff! Not only is this great stuff to learn about, working there is probably pretty thankless so it's good to see scientists getting recognition.

    • Mark Niedermann
      Mark Niedermann Year ago

      You have to go back and report on the hurricane damage!

    • Reed Harston
      Reed Harston Year ago

      Or play 007 Goldeneye for the N64. ;) As mentioned in a comment farther down the page, Goldeneye had a scene filmed at that exact telescope.

    • TheVocoderGuy
      TheVocoderGuy 2 years ago +1

      Thanks for doing what you do, it always brightens my day when one of your videos pops up in my news feed.
      Keep on educating!

    • Arnau Palencia
      Arnau Palencia 2 years ago +2

      for all those who want to visit it but just can't. Play the map called Rogue Transmission in Battlefield 4 it's almots identical

  • Robbie López wolf
    Robbie López wolf 6 days ago

    The greatest American masterpiece In History in the world 🇺🇸🇵🇷

  • William Dorward
    William Dorward 12 days ago

    Rouge transmission

  • Andrew Castillo
    Andrew Castillo 18 days ago

    I’ve been there

  • Rat Boy
    Rat Boy 2 months ago +1


  • Jan-Åke Svensson
    Jan-Åke Svensson 2 months ago

    Fyll det med vatten eftersom om du ligger i ett badkar så hör du bättre om du har huvudet under vattenytan och tänk på valarna. Arkiv x

  • Rik
    Rik 2 months ago

    GladOS os that you?

  • Scot Chatterson
    Scot Chatterson 3 months ago

    Does all that dirt and debris not affect the measurements?

  • Matt Buck
    Matt Buck 5 months ago

    For England, Tom.

  • Abyssal
    Abyssal 6 months ago

    thas a big camera

  • se7en
    se7en 6 months ago

    Wish the videos were 10 mins long

  • Nick Thorne
    Nick Thorne 6 months ago

    Best level on Goldeneye on the N64

  • Keven Klayne
    Keven Klayne 6 months ago

    I fell in love with this structure ever since I saw the movie GoldenEye.

  • Kemal Rifky
    Kemal Rifky 6 months ago

    Its been destroyed

  • Communist Panda
    Communist Panda 7 months ago


  • Voice Muted
    Voice Muted 8 months ago

    Where was that Goldeneye scene filmed at?

  • Alex
    Alex 8 months ago

    "For england, james..."

  • Johnny Rutz
    Johnny Rutz 9 months ago

    Is the LARGEST not one of the largest

  • Good Boy
    Good Boy 11 months ago

    Is it that telescope that I destroy every round in Battlefield 4?

  • Bienveillance 6183
    Bienveillance 6183 11 months ago

    How many red shirts do you have?

  • Robert G
    Robert G Year ago


  • lukkyluciano
    lukkyluciano Year ago

    how did he not mention Goldeneye?

  • Sobertag
    Sobertag Year ago

    BF4 anyone?

  • Heru- deshet
    Heru- deshet Year ago

    It's been damaged. The planet is screwed.

  • Burning Wang
    Burning Wang Year ago

    Love the sound of London traffic in the background

  • Tiefkühlen
    Tiefkühlen Year ago

    Puerto Rico Independence 🇵🇷

  • freetrader
    freetrader Year ago +1

    I took an "origins of the universe" college elective with one of the telescope's previous directors. It's sad how the NSF is not going to fund the telescope anymore. The world might not be saved, after all.

  • 007bistromath
    007bistromath Year ago

    oh hey, this is the thing I pushed Alec Trevelyan off of

  • E Mcclellan
    E Mcclellan Year ago

    Is that the telescope that was used in the end of Goldeneye?

  • San Jones
    San Jones Year ago


  • Sam
    Sam Year ago

    Incredibly sad the damage they sustained from the storms this year, though pretty fortunate you were able to get there before it did.

  • cityraildude
    cityraildude Year ago

    That's interesting. Is there a Southern Hemisphere equivilant?

  • George Rogers
    George Rogers Year ago

    Didn't Sean Bean die here, once? xD

  • Novaturient
    Novaturient Year ago

    Cheers from puerto rico

  • JP05CPSN
    JP05CPSN Year ago

    I have no idea how you manage to swing access to all of these places.

  • Kaneda
    Kaneda Year ago

    Is that that one map in battlefield 4???

  • Kyle Stearnes
    Kyle Stearnes Year ago +2

    Pretty sure this was badly damaged during the hurricanes.

    • Gordon Taylor
      Gordon Taylor Year ago

      It actually didn't get hit as badly as much of the rest of the island, but a huge problem is finding the money to pay for repairs - they don't have it right now, and it's unlikely anyone will step up to provide it. You can read more here:

  • Oskari M
    Oskari M Year ago

    Suomalainen kansainvälisessä juutuupissa! Torille!

  • Katie
    Katie Year ago

    In some alternative timeline, Trevelyan is still running around those platforms

  • Gamefreak974
    Gamefreak974 Year ago

    I wanna be a part of cool stuff like this.

  • xxxrossomaticxxx
    xxxrossomaticxxx Year ago

    why does it look like crap and run down

  • Edgar Gonzalez
    Edgar Gonzalez Year ago


  • Danilo H
    Danilo H Year ago

    rogue transmission? wait thats in china

  • dr techtek
    dr techtek Year ago

    the film contact :P

  • Stupetin
    Stupetin Year ago

    2:12 suomalainen mainittu, torilla tavataan !

  • Guillaume Ohz
    Guillaume Ohz Year ago


  • Bodhi McNally
    Bodhi McNally Year ago +2

    Anyone here from Matt and Tom's video where tom says he messed up a line in this video?

  • PimDoos
    PimDoos Year ago +1

    Only now that you mentioned it on the park bench I noticed the edit, nicely done

  • Super Catman
    Super Catman Year ago +2

    I couldn't even tell you recorded part of the intro's audio in central London

  • The Default Guy
    The Default Guy Year ago

    ayy i went there

  • Jacob Smith
    Jacob Smith Year ago

    i thought that that thing was familiar, then i played that map on BF4

  • LookRain
    LookRain Year ago

    It looks like something from a sci fi movie

  • oderbang
    oderbang Year ago

    Golden-eye is all i can think of watching this !

  • LitenAlskare
    LitenAlskare Year ago +1

    At 3:18 with the towers and how the ladders are structured, then the view of the dish I realized it was the basis of a bf4 map. I was a sniper in bf4 and I never went up on those towers, but when I started noticing peoppe getting uo there I learned the structure and committed it to memory

  • Zonies Coasters
    Zonies Coasters Year ago +1

    did you load up rouge transmission in a private server or did you manage to find an empty one?

  • Zonies Coasters
    Zonies Coasters Year ago +1

    does the mobile AA spawn underneath it?

  • Zonies Coasters
    Zonies Coasters Year ago

    can you flood the dish and disguise it as a lake?

  • Stofzuigerzak
    Stofzuigerzak Year ago

    Rogue Transmission


  • Spaghetti & MeatBalls

    this was that place in one of the James Bond movies

  • Apokalypzx
    Apokalypzx Year ago

    They should have sent a poet...

  • Mike Cowen
    Mike Cowen Year ago +1

    Surprised nobody asked if you can get HBO with that thing...

  • SlayTheRake
    SlayTheRake Year ago

    Looks like Goldeneye

  • Swapnil Lonkar
    Swapnil Lonkar Year ago

    Thank god we dont have to send bruce wills... ;)

  • Hero Slippy
    Hero Slippy Year ago

    I am not sure if I want to build/design one of those or be the person that uses it.

  • Rockmyballsplease

    same shirt again, mate!?

  • Belligerent Theo
    Belligerent Theo Year ago

    Didn't know so much work went into Rogue Transmission.....
    Thought it was just like every other map on Bf4

  • Andrew White
    Andrew White Year ago

    why would anyone dislike this?

  • paul cooney
    paul cooney Year ago

    Rogue transmission bf4...

  • Xeno426
    Xeno426 2 years ago

    "For England, James?"

  • limbo
    limbo 2 years ago

    The lady sounds kind of like Hila Klein.

  • Hidden Mask
    Hidden Mask 2 years ago

    *remembers trying to collapse something like this in Battlefield 4*

  • thegreentaxi
    thegreentaxi 2 years ago

    I believe I've blown that thing up in Just Cause 2

    • Eira
      Eira Year ago

      Yep, the PAN MILSAT Base is based on this dish

  • formerly 987946216430
    formerly 987946216430 2 years ago +2

    hah, too cute. We won't have to send Bruce Willis into space to deflect the asteroid. hah

  • Scootaloo
    Scootaloo 2 years ago

    I remember when I first learned of this telescope. I first saw it on Goldeneye back on the Nintendo 64. :D

  • RedTrueBlue
    RedTrueBlue 2 years ago

    For England, James?

  • WhiteChaos
    WhiteChaos 2 years ago

    One of my favorite Battlefield 4 maps!

  • Walter Marlin
    Walter Marlin 2 years ago

    2:52 Hey. Does that thing pick up cellphone transmissions?

  • Rock Balancer
    Rock Balancer 2 years ago

    this video is fake, that's the set of james bond goldeneye....... jk tom love your stuff dude

  • QuietDuplicity
    QuietDuplicity 2 years ago

    Nouns, adverbs, adjective here and there...

  • oDs Canadiann
    oDs Canadiann 2 years ago

    it's that battlefield 4 map XD

  • Jarka
    Jarka 2 years ago


  • Alfonso Mendoza
    Alfonso Mendoza 2 years ago

    Looks like that one Golden Eye multiplayer level

  • DontMockMySmock
    DontMockMySmock 2 years ago

    I remember killing 006 here

  • Thomas Wilson
    Thomas Wilson 2 years ago

    Where is it ?

  • alban maillere
    alban maillere 2 years ago

    brilliant, as always ...

  • Richard Georg Bayer
    Richard Georg Bayer 2 years ago

    Thumbs up for Bruce Willis pun :-D

  • Andrew Foss
    Andrew Foss 2 years ago

    Called it. :D

  • Estevan
    Estevan 2 years ago

    is there wifi up there

  • quiqueboricua
    quiqueboricua 2 years ago

    AMAZING! You went to Arecibo, Puerto Rico! This video was most needed to show the world the importance of Arecibo Radiotelescope. I visited it around 20 times when I was younger and always amazed me. The next time that you visit the Island send me a message and I can arrange visits to other places. Like always, great content!

  • DriftKingNL
    DriftKingNL 2 years ago

    We don't need to send Bruce Willis to space anymore to save us. All we have to do is send Justin Bieber music to the asteroid and it will run away in fear.

  • Adam Snape
    Adam Snape 2 years ago

    James bond saved the world here. Something you might not know.

  • Chaz Hinkley
    Chaz Hinkley 2 years ago

    "For England James?"

  • Draconicrose Gaming
    Draconicrose Gaming 2 years ago

    Oooh I think I feel better knowing we have the means to detect and deflect asteroids now. This is an important place.

  • Coda Mission
    Coda Mission 2 years ago

    For all you Battlefield fans, yes, that's Rogue Transmissions

  • o0prince
    o0prince 2 years ago

    The scary thing is I can understand everything they said o.0

  • 7six2
    7six2 2 years ago

    Love Sniping from them towers

  • P3F Alien
    P3F Alien 2 years ago

    It was good to know it was not going to hit Earth so we didn't have to send.........Bruce Willis.. :D ROFL !!! wasn't expecting that

  • de0509
    de0509 2 years ago

    Actually shouldnt it be super possible to not have to send any actors to deflect an asteroid and simply just beam a signal just enough to deflect it over the course of a few years, since this telescope is also capable of transmitting? Perhaps just takes a genius physicist to figure out the details

  • ShengJun101
    ShengJun101 2 years ago

    goldeneye anyone?

  • Bobby Lean
    Bobby Lean 2 years ago

    Not impossible on camera...just use a banana for scale