President Bush has ordered the Pentagon to use a Navy missile to attempt to destroy a broken U.S. spy satellite–minimizing the risk to humans from its toxic fuel–by intercepting it just before it re-enters the atmosphere, officials said Thursday.
Missile to destroy plummeting satellite
WASHINGTON-President Bush has ordered the Pentagon to use a Navy missile to attempt to destroy a broken U.S. spy satellite–minimizing the risk to humans from its toxic fuel–by intercepting it just before it re-enters the atmosphere, officials said Thursday.
The effort–the first of its kind–will be undertaken because of the potential that people in the area where the satellite would otherwise crash could be harmed, the officials said.
Deputy National Security Adviser James Jeffrey did not say when the attempted intercept would be conducted, but the satellite is expected to hit Earth during the first week of March.
“This is all about trying to reduce the danger to human beings,” Jeffrey said.
Gen. James Cartwright, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said at the same briefing that the “window of opportunity” for such a shootdown, presumably to be launched from a Navy ship, will open in the next three or four days and last for seven or eight days. He did not say whether the Pentagon has decided on an exact launch date.
Rec center update meeting next week
A meeting to inform the Portland State community of the construction progress for the new recreation center will be held next week.
The Student Rec Center Committee is organizing and hosting the open-house event, which will be held in Smith Memorial Student Union, room 296, Tuesday, Feb. 19 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Committee members will be on hand to answer questions regarding the future rec center and its construction. Slide shows, pictures, videos and graphical models will also be on display, according to the Campus Recreation website.
Another function of the meeting is to recruit students, faculty and staff who wish to partake in the project by serving on the Student Rec Center Committee.
The rec center is slated to open in winter 2010. Standing six stories tall and measuring 100,000 square feet, the rec center will house Portland State Campus Recreation, including the Outdoor Program, intramural sports, more than 30 recreation clubs, aquatics, personal fitness programs and exercise equipment.
Waste down in week one of RecycleMania
Portland State placed 22nd in the “Waste Minimization” category out of 80 schools for the first week of RecycleMania 2008, a national recycling competition among colleges.
A total of 80,250 pounds of waste was generated during the first week of competition, compared to 30,375 pounds of recyclable material.
PSU is ranked 90th of 147 schools in the “Per Capita Classic” category, which ranks schools based on the amount of recycled material per person on campus. The average amount of recycled material per person was 1.2 pounds, and 5.1 pounds of waste generated per person. This is one pound of trash per person less than PSU’s average during week one of RecycleMania 2007.
Julia Person, a graduate research assistant coordinating this year’s effort, said the Sustainability Office is focused on waste minimization. She said PSU has a chance to reach the top-10 next week, and that she is telling participants to bear that in mind.
“We’re doing great so far, but we can do better, and I think it’s important for all students and staff to generate as little garbage as possible,” Person said.
SLMS offers free tax-preparation service
Students and others can participate in a free tax-preparation help service now until April 15, run by the PSU Student Legal and Mediation Services and other groups on campus.
The first come, first served service will offer help from trained volunteers on filing your state or federal tax returns, according to a press release. The PSU Student Legal and Mediation Services group is running the event with help from the Beta Alpha Psi Accounting Fraternity, CASH Oregon and the AARP.
The volunteer preparers can also offer free electronic tax filing, the press release states.
The service will be offered at the School of Business Administration, room 350 on Tuesdays, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
For more information on what to bring to the tax preparation, visit www.irs.gov/individuals/index.html and click on the “free tax preparation for you by volunteers” link.
Contact JR Tarabocchia at 503-725-4556 with any questions.
–Stover E. Harger III