Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Falling satellite has U.S. among its targets

Satellite likely to crash overnight

A 6-ton NASA satellite on a collision course with Earth clung to space Friday, apparently flipping position in its ever-lower orbit and stalling its death plunge. The Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite, or UARS, was targeted to crash through the atmosphere sometime Friday night or early today, putting Canada, Africa and Australia in its potential crosshairs, although most of the satellite should burn up during re-entry. For the U.S., the possible strike zone skirted Washington state. Late Friday night, NASA said it expected the satellite to come crashing down between 11:45 p.m. and 12:45 a.m. EDT. For updates, check

Slow growth in centenarians

More Americans are living to be 100, but not as many as expected. The Census Bureau predicted six years ago that the country would be home to 114,000 centenarians by 2010. The actual number was 53,364, the census reported recently. That represented an increase of 5.8 percent since 2000, compared with a 9.7 percent gain in the nation's population as a whole. Still, the population of centenarians showed major gains in the last century. In 1950 there were just 2,300 people estimated to be 100 and older. The number jumped 35 percent in 2000 to 50,454, from 37,306 in 1990.

Cola giants fight on D.C. front

Pepsi and Coca-Cola are neck-and-neck in Washington when it comes to spending on lobbying and campaign contributions. The watchdog Center for Responsive Politics reported that Pepsi last year spent about $6.8 million on lobbying compared to about $5.8 million by Coke. This year, Coca-Cola is blowing past Pepsi, shelling out $3.4 million through June compared to Pepsi's $1.9 million. Coke has the edge in political donations with $206,000: Democrats got 41 percent and Republicans 59 percent. Pepsi poured just $189,000 into coffers this year: Democrats got 54 percent and Republicans 46 percent.

Protests end dog meat festival

A 600-year-old Chinese tradition of dog eating collided this week with modern concepts about animal rights, and this time, modernity won. Authorities canceled a three-day festival planned for mid October in Jinhua, Zhejiang province, after tens of thousands of people who organized over the Internet complained. Legend has it that a Ming dynasty military hero who was trying to capture Jinhua in 1389 decided to kill all the dogs so they wouldn't bark at night.

Falling satellite has U.S. among its targets 09/23/11 [Last modified: Saturday, September 24, 2011 1:48am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. North Korean missile launch may be testing rivals, not technology


    SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea's latest missile test Monday may have less to do with perfecting its weapons technology than with showing U.S. and South Korean forces in the region that it can strike them at will.

    A woman watches a TV screen showing a file footage of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, at Seoul Train Station in Seoul, South Korea, Monday,. North Korea fired a short-range ballistic missile that landed in Japan's maritime economic zone Monday, officials said, the latest in a string of test launches as the North seeks to build nuclear-tipped ICBMs that can reach the U.S. mainland. [AP Photo/Lee Jin-man]
  2. PolitiFact: Fact-checking Samantha Bee on Florida felonies

    State Roundup

    Comedian Samantha Bee traveled to Florida, where she says "retirees and democracy go to die," to shed light on how the state makes it difficult for felons to regain the right to vote.

    Samantha Bee hosts Full Frontal with Samantha Bee on TBS. Bee portrayed some of Florida’s felonies as not so serious on her show.
  3. For some, Memorial Day comes around more than just once a year


    ST. PETERSBURG — It is shortly before nine on a Friday morning, and the heat is already approaching unbearable levels at Bay Pines National Cemetery.

    Iles carefully digs up the St. Augustine grass so that it will continue to grow when it is placed back on the gravesite. He tries not to disturb the root base.
  4. State budget uncertainty has school districts 'very concerned'


    While waiting for Gov. Rick Scott to approve or veto the Legislature's education budget, the people in charge of school district checkbooks are trying hard to find a bottom line.

    It has not been easy.

    The unsettled nature of Florida’s education budget has left school districts with questions about how they will make ends meet next year. []
  5. Ernest Hooper: Removing Confederate symbols doesn't eliminate persistent mindset

    Human Interest

    The debate has begun about removing a Confederate statue from outside the Hillsborough County Courthouse, and its removal is long overdue.

    Robert E. Lee Elementary, 305 E. Columbus Drive in Tampa, originally opened its doors in the early 1910s as the Michigan Avenue Grammar School. [Times file]