Daily Archives: October 21, 2011

Oregon Space Grant Consortium Funded Projects and Faculty in the News

International Space Station research projects from a student team at Jackson Middle School in Portland, Oregon and Dr. Mark Weislogel, professor of Mechanical Engineering at Portland State University, were noted in recent national news.

Challenge to Students: Have Space Station Run Your Experiment” published by the New York Times on October 10, announced the new SpaceLab science contest for students. Citing a protein crystal growth experiment designed by Jackson Middle School and funded by Oregon Space Grant, the article emphasizes the impact such small scale projects can have on students.

An Oregonian article, “Portland State University research team conducts experiment live on International Space Station” published on October 14, identifies both Jackson Middle School and Dr. Mark Weislogel as Oregonians engaged in active International Space Station research. Weislogel, a former NASA employee and faculty advisor for the Jackson Middle School team, is currently directing a capillary flow project on the ISS.

Don’t Forget to Look Up This Weekend! – Oct 21-23, 2011

(from our friends at OMSI)

Busy weekend ahead up in the sky with the peak of the Orionid Meteor Shower tonight and the ROSAT re–entry sometime on October 23.

Another Falling Satellite
The massive ROSAT X-ray space telescope is making its final spiralling orbits around Earth. Most experts agree that re-entry will occur during the early hours of Oct. 23rd over a still-unknown region of our planet. Meanwhile, the satellite can still be seen slicing brightly through the night sky

According to the DLR (the German space agency), which operated the observatory while it was active in the 1990s, as many as 30 pieces of debris could reach Earth’s surface. Of particular concern is the telescope’s heat-resistant mirror assembly — 1.6 metric tons in all — which could hit the ground intact at hundreds of miles per hour. Odds favor an ocean splashdown or a land impact in sparsely inhabited wilderness. Check Space Weather for viewing times in your area. http://spaceweather.com/

Orionid Meteor Shower
Today Earth is entering a stream of debris from Halley’s comet, source of the annual Orionid meteor shower. Forecasters expect the shower to peak on Saturday morning, Oct. 22nd, with more than 15 meteors per hour. Check SpaceWeather for links to a live meteor radar, sky maps and observing tips. http://spaceweather.com

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