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4 buildings at observatory in Arizona lost in wildfire

The Contreras Fire in the Baboquivari Mountains burned through the Kitt Peak National...
The Contreras Fire in the Baboquivari Mountains burned through the Kitt Peak National Observatory on Friday morning, June 17.(Kitt Peak National Observatory)
Published: Jun. 18, 2022 at 2:01 PM MST
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TUCSON, AZ (AP) - Four non-scientific buildings at the Kitt Peak National Observatory southwest of Tucson have been lost in the Contreras wildfire, but early indications show other buildings on the property don’t appear to be damaged. Buell T. Jannuzi, who leads the Department of Astronomy at the University of Arizona, said the fire didn’t appear to have damaged the telescope and science buildings, though a closer examination of the site hadn’t yet been made due to safety concerns.

Crews were planning to assess the damage at the observatory later Saturday if conditions allowed for safe entry into the area. The university is a tenant of the observatory and has had a telescope at the site since 1962.

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