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News briefs: May 6
Posted: Tue, May 7, 2002, 11:42 AM ET (1542 GMT)
  • SPACEHAB announced a net profit of $66,000, or $0.01 per basic share, for its fiscal third quarter on Monday. The commercial space company credited a financial recovery plan initiated last January for the improved results. The company still has a $2.1 million loss to date for the 2002 fiscal year, which started July 1, 2001.
  • The Defense Department may boost the power of GPS signals as a way to prevent any future attempts to jam the signal, the Associated Press reported Monday. The military is considering spending $200 million to upgrade eight GPS satellites yet to be launched with more powerful transmitters. The boosted signal may not be available to civilian GPS users, however.
  • A new breed of comet hunter has emerged: people who do not use telescopes but instead monitor images from the NASA-ESA SOHO spacecraft posted on the Web. People studying images from the spacecraft, which is primarily designed to observe the Sun, have discovered over 430 comets. The SOHO project has recently established a contest for people to predict when the 500th comet will be discovered in SOHO images.
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