July 2014
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Also In This Issue Moving Forward Together
Public sanitation workers in Calif. win first contract. read_more

Trimming the Competition
Conn. tree trimmers prune, strip and climb to market dominance. read_more

Outsourcing Decent Jobs
States drop employees for low-paying contractors. read_more

Intercontinental Ties
Siemens workers trade solidarity, ideas read_more

North of 49°
First District Launches National Marketing Campaign read_more

Au nord du 49° parallèle
Le Premier District lance sa campagne de promotion nationale read_more





  Cover Photo

The Telescope That Will
See the First Stars

IBEW Members Build — And Try to Break — The Next Hubble

NASA is betting nearly $8 billion on the skill and competence of nearly 250 members of Baltimore Local 1501, the engineers and technicians working on the James Webb Space Telescope at the Goddard Space Flight Center.

The Webb telescope is one of NASA's largest, most expensive missions ever, the successor to the path-breaking Hubble Telescope. Components for the telescope have been under construction in 27 states and 14 countries for nearly a decade, but in recent months, many of those components have come to Goddard, and assembly for the October 2018 launch has begun.

Using an array of infrared sensors and a mirror nearly six times larger than Hubble's, the Webb telescope is designed to find and study the oldest, farthest, faintest objects in the universe to answer some of the most basic questions about how stars ignited, galaxies formed and planets coalesced out of the echo of the Big Bang.

"Its purpose is to address the deepest questions we have: Where did we come from? Are we alone?" said Amber Straughn, deputy project scientist at Goddard.

But for the telescope's four sensors to see into the early life of the universe, they will need to be cooled to only a few degrees above absolute zero, which is only possible far away from the heat emitted by the sun, the Earth or even the moon. Hubble orbits 375 miles up; the Webb telescope will be sent more than 1 million miles away, four times farther than the moon. So far that if anything goes wrong, if something on the telescope breaks, doesn't line up or unfold correctly, if none of the systems on board can fix it, no rescue or repair mission will be possible. read_more

  Local Lines

Officers Column Hill: 'All of Us Are Necessary' read_more
Chilia: We're Spreading
the News read_more

CircuitsDownload the New
Spanish Train-Maker is Leaving Wis.;
Obama Appoints Presidential Emergency Board;
Video on the Go: 'Trimming the Competition';
Bill Would Create Jobs,
Save Energy;
Three Generations Strong read_more

Organizing WireIll. ADT Techs Negotiating First Contract read_more

In MemoriamMay 2014 read_more

Who We AreSolar Entrepreneur to Power Up Nigerian Orphanage read_more

LettersA Mandate for Single Payer?;
Why Vote Republican?;
Labor Education Starts at Home read_more