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December 07, 2003

NASA Checks Out ISS After Strange Noise

Spy Satellites Among Assets Used To Eyeball Station Remember that strange noise heard by Astronaut Michael Foale and Cosmonaut Alexander Kaleri aboard the International Space Station not long ago? Whatever it was, NASA is now relatively comfortable that there was no damage to the station. It sounded something like a tin can being crunched up. While it was quickly determined that the sound wasn't related to a collision in space, the question remains -- just what was it?

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Score One For Air Marshals

After a warning from prison officials in Washington state, several air marshals (shown training, right) Thursday stopped a released inmate as he reportedly tried to storm the cockpit. The marshals were aboard NWA Flight 924 bound from Honolulu to Seattle. The 29-year old suspect, whose identity is being withheld pending arraignment, got up two-and-a-half hours into the flight and bumped into an elderly female passenger. Witnesses say he shouted, "Where's my shirt?" and then rushed toward the cockpit demanding to see the captain.

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India Develops Cryogenic Rockets

India says it's test-fired a rocket motor fueled solely by hyper-cooled liquid fuel, giving it the capability to boost space vehicles just about anywhere they want to go, from high Earth orbit to the moon. It can also be used to fuel intercontinental ballistic missiles. The Indian Space Research Organization issued a statement Friday, saying it had fired its liquid-fueled rocket motor for a total of 17-minutes. That's about five minutes more than needed for an average flight into high orbit.

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First Flight: F-16 Block 60

The newest, most advanced Lockheed Martin F-16 completed a successful first flight Friday. The aircraft is the first of the Block 60 line, which has been designated the F-16E/F version. It is the first of 80 F-16E/F Block 60 aircraft being produced for the United Arab Emirates (UAE) under an order placed in early 2000. "The first flight of the new F-16E/F is a major milestone in the long F-16 legacy," said Dain M. Hancock, president of Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company. "With the Block 60, we have introduced a whole new generation of capability that sets the current world standard for multirole fighters."

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Three Dead In UK Aviation Accident

Three people are dead after a GA aircraft crashed on landing near Oxford, England. The unidentified Belgian pilot was reportedly trying to land at Kidlington Airport in Oxfordshire Saturday. "The plane crashed as it was coming into the airport," said a Thames Valley Police spokeswoman. "We can confirm that three people died. There are no survivors." The two other victims were identified by the French news agency, AFP, as Paul-Louis Halley, 69, and his wife Annick, 63. They're among the top shareholders in Carrefour, the world's second largest retailer. Paul-Louis was also co-founder of the Promodes fashion group.

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PA TFR: 12/08

Political/VIP TFR NOTAM: 3/1539 Issued: 12/05/2003 21:07 Effective: 12/08/2003 12:40 - 12/08/2003 13:25 State: PA Facility: ZOB - CLEVELAND (ARTCC),OH. Type: VIP Description: LATROBE, PENNSYLVANIA, DECEMBER 8, 2003 LOCAL.

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Two New Teams Join X Prize Competition

Total Now At 26 Teams  Space Transport Corporation of Washington State with team leaders Eric Meir and Phillip Storm plans to launch an unpiloted  3-stage rocket to space altitude within the next 60 days. On November 22nd the High Altitude Research Corporation, Inc. (HARC) announced its entry into the X PRIZE Competition during an unveiling of its working model X PRIZE entry at group’s Huntsville (AL) research and development facility...

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Aero-News Quote Of The Day (12.07.03)

"This was not just an 'around the airfield' exercise. We flew some important test points and made this a meaningful flight-test sortie. Not only was this important historically, it was the first and crucial element of our flight-test program." Source: Steve Barter, chief test pilot, Lockheed-Martin, after the first flight of the F-16E/F Friday.

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Upgraded: AMR's James Beer

AMR Corporation, the parent of American Airlines, Friday named James Beer, 42, as senior vice president-Finance and chief financial officer. Filling a previously announced vacancy, Beer, currently vice president-Europe and Asia for AMR Corp. subsidiary American Airlines, will immediately begin the transition to his new role. Two existing American Airlines officers will also move into new roles. Craig S. Kreeger, 44, who presently serves as vice president and general sales manager, will become vice president-Europe and Asia. C. David Cush, 43, who most recently oversaw the strategic reorganization of the St. Louis hub, will become vice president and general sales manager.

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