Now that it is complete, developers hope the project will soon be up in the air.
Saint Louis University’s first spacecraft that has been designed, built, tested and operated by students at Parks College of Engineering, Aviation and Technology, is tentatively scheduled for launch today (Tuesday) from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport in Virginia.
The Air Force Research Laboratory and NASA Missouri Space Grant funded the project development and the launch of COPPER is sponsored by NASA.
COPPER's mission is to test the effectiveness of a commercial infrared camera for in-space navigation and object detection, as well as observing the Earth in the infrared spectrum.
Parks College students will operate COPPER for 12 months from a radio control station in McDonnell-Douglas Hall on the SLU campus.
The spacecraft will naturally fall from orbit in about four years. More than 50 undergraduate and graduate students worked to create COPPER over the past three years.
There's good news for Missouri's unemployment numbers. According to the Missouri Department of Economic Development, the unemployment rate fell sharply in both September and October. The unemployment rate was 6.9 percent in September and 6.5 percent in October, which is the lowest unemployment rate since 2008. This is the 50th consecutive month that Missouri's unemployment rate was lower than the national average. In September, the trade, transportation and utilities sectors showed the most growth, while October saw growth in professional, scientific, and technical services.
Illinois Governor Pat Quinn added six counties to the state's list of disaster areas following violent storms and tornadoes on Sunday.
The declaration increases the number of counties needing state and federal funds to 13. The National Weather Service has issued a preliminary finding that 11 tornadoes ripped through the state, with at least two designated as EF-4's.
The state disaster declaration makes available a wide variety of state resources that can help affected communities respond and recover from the storms.
Volunteer efforts are also well underway to assist the victims. Those who wish to volunteer should NOT go to the disaster scene, but rather, visit Ready.illinois.gov for information on specific sites that can utilize volunteers.
White supremacist Joseph Franklin is scheduled to die by lethal injection at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday. Missouri Governor Jay Nixon refused Monday to grant him clemency.
While serving time for three other murders, Franklin confessed to killing 42 year old Gerald Gordon in a sniper attack outside a Richmond Heights synagogue in 1977. It's the only murder for which he received the death penalty.
The condemned man spoke with Fox 2 News Monday. Franklin says he hasn't reached out to Gordon's wife, because he doesn't want to upset her. "But I would apologize to her right now," he said. "Tell her I'm sorry for the horrible crime that I committed and ask for her forgiveness."
Franklin admitted that he does deserve to die for his crime. He said he's in a completely different place now, mentally. He described himself as "indoctrinated" at the time of the murder. "My mind was just all messed up after having read a whole lot of Nazi literature."
In 1994 Major Rick Zweifel of the Richmond Heights Police Department took Franklin's confession. Zweifel says that Franklin expressed regret that he hadn't kill more people. "He's upset it's against the law," Zweifel said. "And when I questioned him about what do you mean it's against the law? He says killing Jews."
Franklin has exhausted his appeals, but has filed a lawsuit to stop his execution based on the method Missouri officials plan to employ.
If the lawsuit fails, Franklin's execution will be the first performed under Missouri's new drug protocol and the first in the state in three years.