Leah Beeferman

Monitoring the architecture of science: a studious, imaginative investigation of space-bound and land-based far-traveling and distant-looking orbiting and non-orbiting structures

an ongoing weekly project distributed by e-mail running from February 2009 to February 2010.


Public weather data analyzed by NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) – collected from thousands of meteorological stations worldwide, satellite measurements of sea surface temperature, and Antarctic research station data – shows 2009 to be the second warmest year yet recorded

NASA’s Active Cavity Radiometer Irradiance Monitor Satellite (ACRIMSAT) enters its tenth year of monitoring the amount of solar energy reaching the Earth, discovering ties to global warming

On Tuesday December 8, 2009, the Large Hadron Collider produced the highest energy particle collisions ever achieved inside a laboratory

On October 12, 2009, NASA launches Operation Ice Bridge, a 158-foot long DC-8 airplane laboratory containing instruments to map changes in sea ice and ice sheets during up to 17 flights over Western Antarctica, the Antarctic Peninsula, and Coastal areas; its data will also provide insight into the shape of the terrain below the ice, something not easily observable by satellites in orbit

Data collected using the Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory (LIGO) located in Hanford, Washington, USA and Livingston, Louisiana, USA and the Virgo Collaboration based in Cascina, Italy, suggests far fewer gravitational waves were produced by the Big Bang than once assumed

The Catalina Sky Survey (CSS) – three jointly-operated telescopes in Arizona, USA and Coonabarabran, Australia – will soon become the Catalina Real-Time Transient Survey (CRTS), a reorganization indicative of a shift in astronomy towards the search for objects that change on short timescales: for example, a star which dims by 7500% in just 10 minutes and fully recovers only 10 minutes later

On January 2, 2004, NASA’s Stardust spacecraft passed through the WILD-2 (pronounced VILT-2) comet and gathered samples of its dense gases and dust in a collection grid filled with Aerogel B and sent back to Earth in 2006 on a special capsule; in August 2009, scientists report finding glycine, an amino acid, among the samples brought home

Mid-month data recording the mean orbital height of the International Space Station (ISS) shows the station to be considerably lower in altitude in July than after a January “re-boost”, a standard decline in altitude caused by fluctuating amounts of atmospheric drag

Wednesday, July 8, 2009 marked the end of repairs on and successful pressure testing of the Large Hadron Collider’s (LHC) sector 3-4; repairs in other sectors of the machine, however, will prevent overall restart and beam injection from happening until mid-November

On Sunday, July 26, 2009, the Canberra (Australia) Deep Space Communication Complex – one of NASA’s three worldwide Deep Space Network (DSN) stations collectively providing continuous spacecraft monitoring – communicated with at least ten spacecraft using its four highly sensitive radio antennas

With new software loaded onto a computer aboard the International Space Station, “Interplanetary Internet” becomes a reality – revolutionizing communication between Earth and instruments flying in space

A GPS satellite, launched in March 2009, remains out of service due to technical problems: signal distortions that render navigation measurements slightly inaccurate and thus unreliable

On June 29, 2009 at 11:45 GMT, one of NOAA’s eastern Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites (GOES) documents the water vapor winds over the southern hemisphere – an ongoing image-taking process repeatedly performed every six hours

Using its Moderate Resolution Spectrometer (MODIS), NASA’s AQUA satellite detects fluorescent red light emitted from Earth’s ocean photoplankton providing valuable data on the health of the oceans and the plant life within

TACSAT3, an experimental tactical satellite designed by the US Military towards integrating low-cost space technology onto “tactical battlefields”, is set to launch around 8PM on Tuesday, May 5, from Pad 0B at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport on Wallops Island, Virginia

Drifting more than 4,461,000km from Earth and communicating with a round-trip light time of 29.7 seconds, the Kepler Space Telescope is turned on: it receives a 100 degree field of view containing 14 million stars, 100,000 of which are considered “ideal candidates” for Earth-sized planet-searching

Locating the production sites of the industrial team responsible for designing and building the European Space Agency’s Herschel Space Observatory, the largest ever infrared space observatory at the time of its launch, May 6 2009, part 2 of 2

Locating the production sites of the industrial team responsible for designing and building the European Space Agency’s Herschel Space Observatory, the largest ever infrared space observatory at the time of its launch later in 2009, part 1 of 2

The Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory (STEREO) – a pair of nearly identical space-based observatories, one ahead of the earth in its orbit, the other behind – continues beyond its two year mission to observe and document the sun and its coronal mass ejections (CMEs), powerful eruptions spewing up to 10 million tons of the sun’s atmosphere into interplanetary space at speeds up to 1 million miles per hour

By analyzing data from optical satellite instruments such as ASTER (Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer) – an imaging device flying on the Terra satellite launched in 1999 – GLIMS (Global Land Ice Measurements from Space) monitors over 52,000 of Earth’s glaciers

Leyte Geothermal Prodction Field, Philippines, made up of the 112.5 megawatt (MW) Tongonan Production Field, the 132.0MW Upper Mahiao Power Plant, the 232.0MW Malitbog Power Plant, the 180.0MW Mahanagdong “A” and “B” power plants, and 51.0MW optimization plants – the largest wet steam producing field in the world – generates electricity from geothermal sources to send to Cebu and Luzon, Philippines, via submarine cables

The National Ignition Facility (NIF) in Livermore, CA will use 192 focused and energy-amplified laser beams to create a mini-star for a fraction of a second, in hopes to generate useable energy