Washington D.C. – England has its history. Italy has its art. Egypt has its pyramids. But, the United States of America has the great American outdoors. This week, the U.S. Senate passed legislation that will be the biggest help to our national parks, including the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, in half a century.
The U.S. Department of Energy awarded $20 million to the new Oak Ridge Institute at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville to expand the university’s partnership with Oak Ridge National Laboratory to train the next generation of American scientists and engineers.
Clarksville, TN – The next meeting of the Clarksville (TN) Civil War Roundtable will be on Wednesday, March 18th, 2015 at the Bone & Joint Center, 980 Professional Park Drive, right across the street from Gateway Medical Center. This is just off Dunlop Lane and Holiday Drive and only a few minutes east of Governor’s Square mall.
The meeting begins at 7:00pm and is always open to the public. Members please bring a friend or two – new recruits are always welcomed.
Topic: “The 1st Michigan Engineers & Mechanics in Middle Tennessee”
Col. William P. Innes – Commanding Office, 1st Michigan Engineers. October 1861 – November 1864
Washington, D.C. – NASA’s Orion spacecraft continues on the agency’s journey to Mars as engineers analyze data from the spacecraft’s December flight test and make progress developing and building the spacecraft for its first mission atop NASA Space Launch System (SLS) heavy-lift rocket. On future missions, Orion will send astronauts to an asteroid and onward toward the Red Planet.
At machine houses across the country, elements of the primary structure for the next Orion to fly in space are coming together. Avionics components are being built and simulators for the ESA (European Space Agency)-built service module that will house the spacecraft’s propulsion and solar arrays are being delivered.
The United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy rocket with NASA’s Orion spacecraft mounted atop, lifts off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station’s Space Launch Complex 37 at at 7:05am EST, Friday, Dec. 5, 2014, in Florida. (NASA/Bill Ingalls)
Wolfsburg, Germany – Within the framework of its Strategy 2018 plan, the Volkswagen Group is expanding its industrial footprint in the US. The Board of Directors of Volkswagen Group of America has decided to award the production of the new midsize SUV to the Chattanooga plant in Tennessee.
The Group will be investing a total of approximately US$900 million (€643 million) in the production of a newly developed, seven-passenger SUV, and creating 2,000 additional jobs in the US. About US$600 million (€432 million) will be invested in Tennessee.
Written by Whitney Clavin
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Pasadena, CA – Now approaching its 10th anniversary, NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope has evolved into a premier observatory for an endeavor not envisioned in its original design: the study of worlds around other stars, called exoplanets.
While the engineers and scientists who built Spitzer did not have this goal in mind, their visionary work made this unexpected capability possible. Thanks to the extraordinary stability of its design and a series of subsequent engineering reworks, the space telescope now has observational powers far beyond its original limits and expectations.
Over its ten years in space, NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope has evolved into a premier tool for studying exoplanets. The engineers and scientists behind Spitzer did not have this goal in mind when they designed the observatory back in the 1990s. But thanks to its extraordinary stability, and a series of engineering reworks after launch, Spitzer now has observational powers far beyond its original limits and expectations. (NASA/JPL-Caltech)
Written by Sgt. Leejay Lockhart
101st Sustainment Brigade, 101st Airborne Division (AA) Public Affairs
Fort Campbell, KY – The U.S. Army just marked its 238th birthday and in its centuries of existence, it has developed a strong tradition of service and sacrifice for the nation.
It is fairly unique in that it is an organization of organizations, each having their own history, accolades and traditions that contribute to the greater whole.
Streamers of battles won, campaigns fought and accomplishments earned crown unit flags with a mane of colors. Those strands of cloth are one way to both respect the valor of earlier soldiers and a way to pass down unit traditions and ideals.
Lt. Col. Phillip J. Borders, the commander of the 326th Engineer Battalion, 101st Sustainment Brigade, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), encourages officers from his battalion before the 2013 Eagle Challenge Fitness Tour 12k obstacle course, June 8, at Fort Campbell. He advises his young officers that learning is their first job. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Leejay Lockhart, 101st Sustainment Brigade Public Affairs)
Written by Sgt. Joe Padula
2nd Brigade Combat Team PAO, 101st Airborne Division
Fort Campbell, KY – “Fire in the hole! Fire in the hole, Fire in the hole!” screams a combat engineer, then the sound of a soft click leaves his hands and then a deafening boom; a secured doorway is no more.
A combat engineer, also known as a Sapper, is a Soldier who performs an array of construction and demolition duties under combat conditions. They are trained in constructing and breaching trenches, building bunkers, creating tank traps and fortifications, constructing and/or demolishing bridges, roads and now perhaps most commonly known as the guys who cleared land mines and IED’s from routes in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Combat Engineers from Company A, 2nd Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), construct an 11-Row Wire Obstacle for both time and efficiency during the Fort Campbell Sapper Stakes 2012 held at the post’s Demolition Range 39 and Training Area 44, Oct. 23rd-24th. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Joe Padula, 2nd BCT PAO, 101st Abn. Div.)
Written by Rob Gutro
NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center
Greenbelt, MD – National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) GOES-13 weather satellite has been temporarily substituted with the back-up GOES satellite as engineers work to fix the satellite’s issues.
NOAA’s Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite, GOES-13 sits in a fixed orbit over the eastern U.S. and provides continuous coverage of weather systems over the continental U.S. and the Atlantic Ocean basin.
According to NOAA, the GOES-13 Imager went out of service since September 23rd, 2012 at 2122 UTC (5:22pm EDT), and the GOES-13 Sounder went out of service on September 23rd, 2012 at 1126 UTC (7:26am EDT).
Artist’s conception of the GOES-13 satellite. The Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite known as GOES-13 became the official GOES-EAST satellite on April 14th, 2010. GOES-13 was moved from on-orbit storage and into active duty. (Credit: NASA)
Written by Jia-Rui C. Cook
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Pasadena, CA – Engineers working on NASA’s Dawn spacecraft are assessing the status of a reaction wheel — part of a system that helps the spacecraft point precisely — after onboard software powered it off on August 8th.
Dawn’s mission is to study the geology and geochemistry of the giant asteroid Vesta and dwarf planet Ceres, the two most massive objects in the main asteroid belt. Dawn is now using its thrusters to point at Earth for communications. The rest of the spacecraft is otherwise healthy.
This artist’s concept shows NASA’s Dawn spacecraft orbiting the giant asteroid Vesta. The depiction of Vesta is based on images obtained by Dawn’s framing cameras. (Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech)