OCTOBER 2007 http://graa.gsfc.nasa.gov 23rd Year of Publication
your calendar for the GRAA Luncheon at 11:30 a.m.
Our featured speaker will be Phillip A. Sabelhaus, Project Manager
for the James Webb Space Telescope.
He will provide attendees with an update on the status and current
challenges facing the project. Reservations
are required, so please call
|November 13||Mark your calendar for the GRAA Luncheon at 11:30 a.m.|
|December 11||There will be no December luncheon due to the many holiday-related activities scheduled throughout December.|
COMMENTS FROM RON BROWNING, GRAA PRESIDENT: Dr. Jack Tueller, a physicist from the Astrophysics Sciences Division and team leader for a group of scientists analyzing observations from the Goddard-sponsored SWIFT Project (a medium-sized explorer satellite) designed to study Gamma Ray Bursts (GRB’s), provided an insightful presentation at the September GRAA Luncheon. He explained that SWIFT also makes observations of X-rays, visible light, and infrared light. These capabilities and those of other satellites, as well as research from collaborative investigators, make new findings and comprehensive studies possible. Dr. Tueller presented numerous observations from SWIFT data and discussed the implications of GRB’s (e.g., the effects of Gamma Ray received on Earth). Most Gamma Rays are screened out by the Earth’s atmosphere, especially the ozone layer. However, major bursts could severely disrupt the dynamics and chemistry of the atmosphere as we know it, destroy the ozone layer, and cause significant climate changes. Some of the many findings are preliminary, especially because they are new (e.g., the recently-found 44 sources of X-ray emissions from black holes). The X-ray emissions led the investigative team to form the preliminary conclusion that there may be a new class of Active Galactic Nuclei that was previously undiscovered! The Burst Alert Telescope instrument aboard SWIFT provided the capability to observe and further research this potential significant discovery. Dr. Tueller’s presentation and his willingness to field questions from the luncheon crowd were greatly appreciated.
NEW GROUND BROKEN ON THE CENTER:
On July 16th, a bevy of Congressmen and NASA officials
were present on Goddard’s East Campus to break ground for the new environmentally
friendly sciences building. The
three-story office and laboratory building, known as the “
CELEBRATION OF GILBERT MEAD’S LIFE:
If you did not attend the
TREASURER’S REPORT: Bob Wigand reports tax-deductible donations were received from the following members: Robert and Lucille Bourdeau, David Douds, William Elsen, Anthony Grandi, Dale and Sandra Harris, Henry Hoffman, Robert and Pat Mackey, Paul Martin, and Ralph Shapiro.
RECENT RETIREES: John R. Bryan, June Flickinger, Mark R. Fontaine, Connie S. Higgs, Donna M. Sadof, John R. Thurber, and Carolyn L. Wisenauer.
THOUGHT FOR THE MONTH: Junk is something you’ve kept for years and throw away three weeks before you need it.
GRAA NEWSLETTER MAILINGS: If you no longer wish to receive GRAA mailings, please send a note to our Lanham address or an e-mail to Dave Moulton at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have moved or want to make corrections to the address on your mailing label, write to our Lanham address or send an e-mail to Strat Laios at email@example.com. If you already receive your newsletter via e-mail, please let Strat know when your address changes. If you do not yet receive the newsletter via e-mail, but are interested in doing so, let Strat know.
FROM THE GODDARD ARCHIVES - IT HAPPENED IN OCTOBER:
§ October 22, 1977: Delta launched the International Sun/Earth Explorer (ISEE) satellites 1 and 2 (also known as A and B), a joint project between Goddard and the European Space Agency. The purposes of the mission were: 1) to investigate solar-terrestrial relationships at the outermost boundaries of the Earth’s magnetosphere; 2) to examine in detail the structure of the solar wind near the Earth and the shock wave that forms the interface between the solar wind and the Earth’s magnetosphere; 3) to investigate motions of and mechanisms operating in the plasma sheets; and 4) to continue the investigation of cosmic rays and solar flare effects in the interplanetary region. Both ISEE 1 and ISEE 2 re-entered the Earth’s atmosphere on September 26, 1987. Seventeen of 21 on-board experiments were operational at the end.
REMEMBERING OUR FORMER COLLEAGUES:
John Flowers, from
George D. Hinshelwood, of
Arnett Knapp, of
LETTERS, WE GET LETTERS:
§ Hager Blair wrote, “I want to thank all folks, past and present, for the work they put in with the GRAA. I had much pleasure with the newsletters, keeping up with lots of old friends, etc. GSFC was in good hands in earlier years and I know it is the same today with the just as talented new crew.”
§ Bill Elsen wrote, “The enclosed check is just a small donation to help with the increased expenses.”
§ Dale and Sandra Harris wrote, “We enjoy your publication. Enclosed is a contribution to help offset expenditures.”
Bob and Pat Mackey wrote, “We’re
here in sunny/hot
§ Ralph Shapiro wrote, “Keep up the good work running the GRAA. I hope to stop by one of the luncheon meetings to see you. A small donation is enclosed to keep GRAA going.”
GEWA’S LATEST MAD PRODUCTION: Goddard’s Music and Drama (MAD) Club proudly announces ticket sales for its fall musical, Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “Carousel.” Call for ticket information at 240-475-8800 or purchase them online at http://www.madtheater.org/orderform.htm. The buffet dinner will feature Pork Tenderloin, Stuffed Chicken Breast and Vegetable Pasta Alfredo, along with bread, salad, dessert, and unlimited beverages (beer, wine, soda, coffee, tea). Tickets are $30 for the show and dinner and $19 for the show only (with complimentary beverages). Sixteen performances are scheduled from October 19th through November 17th. Make reservations now for MAD’s 36th dinner theater production.