A collision with a piece of space debris created a tiny but significant hole in the shuttle Atlantis, NASA officials said Thursday. The damage was slight and posed no danger to the crew. However, a NASA spokesman called it "the second-most-damaging particle that we've encountered in the program."
The Transportation Security Administration has named James P. Schear the new federal security director at Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport. Schear currently oversees screening and compliance issues as the general manager for plans and programs with TSA's security operations office.
The Navy hopes to develop a global military and commercial identification and tracking system on the ocean. "There used to be a mind-set that you could go to sea and hide," U.S. Navy Vice Adm. John Morgan, deputy naval operations chief for information, plans and strategy told a Defense Writers Group meeting. "We want to introduce transparency at sea."
Northwest Airlines has ordered 72 commuter planes, and its new Compass Airlines subsidy will fly half of them. Northwest says half of the planes are Embraer 175s, and half are Bombardier CRJ900s. Northwest CEO Doug Steenland says lower fuel consumption and maintenance costs with the updated fleet will mean big savings for the airline.
Rolls Royce says delays in production of the Airbus A380 will force it to suspend production of its Trent 900 engine for 12 months. At this point, it is unclear if the company will cut jobs. "We are waiting for more details about requirements from Airbus," Rolls-Royce says. "Once we are clear on that and any potential impact on future workload, we will consult with the unions."