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Astronomers help spot Earth-crossing asteroids.
Oct 9, 2003 The US government passed four new bills by voice vote that promote space and astronomy. The Commercial Space Act of 2003 hopes to better regulate commercial space launches, such as sub-orbital tourist flights. The Charles `Pete' Conrad astronomy Awards Act will encourage amateur Astronomers to help spot potential Earth-crossing asteroids. The Remote Sensing Applications Act of 2003 will provide funding for satellite images to support various projects. And the Human Space Flight Independent Investigation Commission Act of 2003 will establish and independent commission to investigate future disasters, like the loss of Columbia.
Oct 9, 2003 NASA has picked Allied Aerospace to continue the development of its X-34C experimental aircraft. The $150 million contract will have Allied create three flight-ready demonstrator vehicles that will fly more than 8,000 kilometres per hour; or seven times the speed of sound. The vehicle is intended to demonstrate a working scramjet engine, which pulls part of its fuel from the air - making it smaller and more efficient. The demonstration aircraft will be launched atop a Pegasus rocked and raised to Mach 5; then they'll disengage and speed up to Mach 7 under their own power.
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