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News briefs: November 26
Posted: Tue, Nov 27, 2001, 9:53 AM ET (1453 GMT)
  • C. Patrick DeWitt has been named as the new president of Space Systems/Loral, Space News reported Monday. He will succeed John M. Klineberg, who is retiring from the satellite manufacturer. DeWitt had been the executive vice president of SS/L.
  • NASA will make an announcement today about an extrasolar planet discovery during a 1 pm EST (1800 GMT) news conference. SpaceRef reports that the announcement is likely about the planet previously discovered orbiting HD 209458, or newly-discovered planets orbiting the same star.
  • The 2001 Mars Odyssey spacecraft has encountered an unusual polar vortex around Mars's north pole, reported Monday. The vortex is creating lower than normal atmospheric pressure in the area, but has not adversely affected the aerobraking the spacecraft is performing in that region to gradually circularize its orbit.
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news links
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National Academies: NASA needs a plan for Mars
The Planetary Society — 8:50 am ET (1250 GMT)

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