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Crews work to contain southern Arizona wildfire burning near Biosphere 2 science facility

ORACLE, Ariz. (AP) — Firefighters on Sunday were trying to contain a wildfire in southern Arizona that’s burning about a half-mile (0.80 kilometer) from the Biosphere 2 science facility.

The wildfire broke out Sunday morning northwest of Oracle Junction and north of metro Tucson, Arizona State Forestry officials said.

The fire’s cause wasn’t immediately known and had spread to about 30 acres (12 hectares) by Sunday afternoon.

Crews from the State Forestry, Golder Ranch Fire District and Northwest Fire District said they are working to contain the fire and keep it from reaching the Biosphere facility.

State Forestry launched single-engine air tankers to assist with suppression.

No evacuations have been ordered at this time, according to authorities.

Biosphere 2 was built between 1987 and 1991 as a way to test the viability of closed ecological systems and human life in outer space. The tests were held twice in the early 1990s.

The facility currently is owned and operated by the University of Arizona in Tucson.

Article Topic Follows: AP Arizona

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