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News briefs: November 20
Posted: Wed, Nov 21, 2001, 9:00 AM ET (1400 GMT)
  • A "medically insignificant" amount of anthrax was discovered at NASA Headquarters earlier this month, according to unpublished reports. The trace amount, identified by the Centers for Disease Control in tests performed in early November, is not considered a health risk, and no individuals have been infected.
  • NASA associate administrator Daniel Mulville has assumed the post of acting administrator of the agency. Mulville will serve until Sean O'Keefe, President Bush's nominee to succeed Dan Goldin, is confirmed by the Senate. However, since Congress is in holiday recess, Mulville is expected to remain acting administrator until early next year.
  • NASA's Cassini spacecraft will be used in an effort to detect gravity waves starting next week. Over a 40-day period scientists will measure the Doppler effect in radio transmissions between the Earth and Cassini, looking for variations that could be caused by gravity waves warping the space between the two. This experiment is expected to be ten times as sensitive as previous gravity wave detection efforts.
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