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News briefs: March 7
Posted: Fri, Mar 8, 2002, 7:36 AM ET (1236 GMT)
  • SES Global announced Thursday that it was canceling orders for two more satellites, Space News reported. The two satellites, GE 3i and GE 4i, were ordered from Alcatel by GE Americom prior to its merger with SES. SES canceled two other Alcatel satellites four months ago, saying there were not needed as the merged company consolidated its assets and realigned its business priorities.
  • The color of the universe is a shade of beige, not blue, astronomers said Thursday. In January astronomers said that if all the light from 200,000 galaxies surveyed by an Australian telescope were combined, it would produce a share of greenish-blue. However, they said Thursday that they had miscalibrated their colors, and found that the correct color was a pinkish-beige color like that used on many appliances.
  • A team of British astronomers believe that they are just months away from taking the first direct image of an extrasolar planet, New Scientist reported Thursday. Astronomers plan to look at white dwarfs, whose light is dim enough that it should allow astronomers using large Earth-based telescopes to see planets at least five AUs from the star. Astronomers plan to search using the twin Gemini 8-meter telescopes in Hawaii and Chile and think they may make a discovery within six months.
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