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The temporary closure of a New Mexico observatory last week led to a wide theories, especially after reports that federal authorities were involved.
The Sunspot Solar Observatory, located in the vicinity of the Sacramento Mountains, and concluded on an unspecified security issue, the facility said in a statement posted on Facebook on Sunday.
“Sunspot apologizes for the continuation of the closure of the facilities,” the statement said. “The Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA) is the approach of a safety problem at the National Solar Observatory facility at Sacramento Peak, New Mexico and has decided to temporarily leave the facility by way of precaution.
“AURA, that the management of Sacramento Peak with the financial support of the National Science Foundation (NSF), is working with the appropriate authorities on this issue. We have no further comments at this time.”
Otero County Sheriff Benny House told the Alamogordo Daily News of the past week, the sheriff’s office was asked to stand by and said that the FBI was involved.
“The FBI refuses to tell us what’s going on,” House told the newspaper. “We have people there (Sunspots) that asked us to stand by while they evacuate. No one would really elaborate on any of the circumstances why. The FBI were there. What their purpose was, no one will say.”
House said that there are a lot of unanswered questions about Sunspots closure.
“But for the FBI to do that quickly and be so secretive about it, there was a lot of things happen,” House told the newspaper. “There was a Blackhawk helicopter, a lot of people around antennas and work crews on the towers, but no one would tell us anything.”
It was unclear when the observatory was open again and the employees decided to evacuate the facility as a “precaution” AURA spokeswoman Shari Lifson told the Alamogordo Daily News. Lifson couldn’t comment on whether the FBI was involved.
Frank Fisher, an FBI spokesman, could not confirm or deny that the agency’s involvement, according to the Albuquerque Journal.
The mysterious nature of the closure led to all sorts of speculation on the internet.
“If the aliens invade, we have nowhere to evacuate to anyway; the truth shall be our fate,” Gene Alexander wrote on the observatory’s Facebook page, according to the Kansas City Star.
“There was a Blackhawk helicopter, a lot of people around antennas and work crews on the towers, but no one would tell us anything.”
– Otero County Sheriff Benny House
“Maybe a celestial body that we haven’t encountered in a long time, for thousands of years is finally back in our solar system,” John Pleites-Sandoval hypothesis.
What the observatory, a staff member told the Albuquerque Journal that they were not too concerned just yet because she didn’t have enough information.
“That is what happens when you do something and don’t tell anybody why,” the employee said.
Ryan Gaydos is an editor for Fox News. Follow him on Twitter @RyanGaydos.