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Showing posts from March 3, 2015

New NASA Soil Moisture Mapper Completes Key Milestone

by Staff Writers
Pasadena CA (JPL) Feb 26, 2015

NASA's Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) mission will produce high-resolution global maps of soil moisture to track water availability around our planet and guide policy decisions. Image courtesy NASA/JPL-Caltech.

Mission controllers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, today sent commands to unfurl the massive 20-foot-wide (6-meter) reflector antenna on NASA's new Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) observatory, launched Jan. 31.

The deployment of the mesh reflector antenna, which supports the collection of SMAP's radar and radiometer instrument measurements in space, marks a key milestone in commissioning the satellite. SMAP will soon begin its three-year science mission to map global soil moisture and detect whether soils are frozen or thawed.

SMAP will help scientists understand the links in Earth's water, energy and carbon cycles, help reduce uncertainties in predicting weather and climate, a…

MEXICO MANGO MAFIA : Mango Exporter Birthday-Boy Mayor Gives Robin Hood Defense for Stealing

Hilario Ramírez Villanueva Offers"Drink, Some Noise, and a Taco" for 25,000 Guests


MARCH 3, 2015 AT 8:38 AM

Hilario Ramírez Villanueva, the eccentric mayor of San Blas city in the Mexican state of Nayarit (northwest), celebrated his 44th birthday on Saturday, February 28, and with a notorious party. 

At a cost of MEX$15 million (US$1 million) and with over 25,000 partygoers, he let his hair down with a young lady attendee and confessed to stealing from his constituents.

The mayor said that his friends and followers donated the 50,000 servings of beer, 50 cattle for the preparation of the birria — a traditional Mexican dish prepared with various sauces and peppers — and coordinated a live performance of the band El Recodo.

Ramírez Villanueva, who won reelection in his town on July 7, 2014, with 40.32 percent of the votes, opened the party up to the general public.

The mayor became famous across Mexico last year when he arrived at a public event riding a horse and throwin…