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News briefs: August 2
Posted: Sat, Aug 3, 2002, 12:10 PM ET (1610 GMT)
  • The US Senate confirmed the nomination of Frederick Gregory as deputy administrator of NASA late Thursday. Gregory will take office once the President has signed the letter of confirmation and has been sworn in. Gregory, the first African-American deputy administrator in NASA history, will act as the agency's chief operating officer, handling the day-to-day operations of the agency.
  • The first Atlas 5 and Delta 4 vehicles are making progress towards their first launches. Lockheed Martin completed a "President's Review" Wednesday, as Thomas Marsh, president of Lockheed's astronautics operations, formally approved plans to launch the first Atlas 5 on August 21. Boeing completed a cryogenic tanking test early Thursday of its first Delta 4 booster, filling and draining liquid oxygen from the booster. Boeing plans a series of tests, leading up to a test-firing of the booster's main engines, prior to its planned October 9 launch.
  • India is considering developing a military reconnaissance satellite in the near future, the news service reported Friday. Indian defense minister V.K. Aatre said that the spacecraft is still in the early planning stages, but could be similar to the Technology Experiment Satellite 1 (TES-1) imaging spacecraft launched last year. Officials with the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) said they have not been approached about launching such a satellite, and noted that ISRO is authorized only to launch civilian satellites.
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