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Mt. Wilson Web camera goes down

September 1, 2009 | 10:49 pm

The UCLA-operated Web camera based at the Mt. Wilson Observatory has ceased functioning due to a server problem, most likely caused by a backfire damaging phone lines that provide Internet service from the site, according to a statement posted on the Web site.

The webcam had functioned for several days as a window onto the observatory as the Station fire has moved closer and closer. Authorities say the fire could overtake the observatory and communications complex by Wednesday morning. 

The last image uploaded to the site was taken at 1:49 p.m., and showed smoke surrounding an array of antennas.

-- Monte Morin