Governor Rick Perry on hand at the unveiling of a mockup of XCOR's "Lynx" spacecraft at MAF in 2012.

Governor Rick Perry on hand at the unveiling of a mockup of XCOR's "Lynx" spacecraft at MAF in 2012.

Midland Airport Gets the Go-Ahead to Launch Space Flights

On Wednesday, the Federal Aviation Administration approved a spaceport license application for the Midland International Airport (MAF), making the airport the first of its kind to be federally-licensed for commercial air and space flights.

“We are the 9th spaceport in the United States, but the first one that [also] has commercial service operations,” says Marv Esterly, Director of Airports at Midland International.

Esterly was on hand in Washington, D.C. to accept the license approval.

The Midland Development Corporation (MDC) announced the news Wednesday morning, noting that the airport will now be called the “Midland International Air & Space Port.” The MDC tweeted a photo of Esterly in Washington:

 

Esterly says the news is “truly exciting,” and that the arrival of the private space industry to Midland could mean new revenue streams for the airport.


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The study explored different scenarios that may have accounted for elevated methane in the groundwater. (Thomas Darrah/OSU)

The study explored different scenarios that may have accounted for elevated methane in the groundwater. (Thomas Darrah/OSU)

Research Links Drilling Activities to Water Contamination in North Texas

For years, some residents of Parker County in North Texas have believed that nearby gas drilling was responsible for high levels of methane in neighborhood water wells. Research published today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences appears to back that up.

The study looked at water contamination in Texas and Pennsylvania. It suggests that faulty cement jobs on drilling wells could be at fault in North Texas. Cement is poured between the rock wall and the steel tubing of oil and gas wells to block contaminants.

“We think either there isn’t enough cement in this location or more likely there are cracks or imperfections in that cement. That’s what allowed the strong gas to move up through the well and then out into peoples drinking water,” says Robert Jackson, a professor of environmental sciences at Stanford, who co-authored of the study.


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A guard stands wait outside of the deportation processing center in San Salvador. Jose was bused here in August after being caught in Mexico. (Jude Joffe-Block)

A guard stands wait outside of the deportation processing center in San Salvador. Jose was bused here in August after being caught in Mexico. (Jude Joffe-Block)

The Day After Deportation: Salvadoran Teen Returns To The Town He Fled

American immigration courts are gearing up to decide the fate of tens of thousands of children from Central America who came to the United States border in recent months. Meanwhile, Mexico has been cracking down on these migrants en route north, and is already sending children back to their home countries.

REPORTING FROM EL SALVADOR — There’s an important bridge in this rural town in the Salvadoran state of La Paz.

Locals say the bridge divides the town between two rival gangs, on one side a gang tied to MS-13, and on the other, one affiliated with Calle 18 — commonly translated as the 18th Street gang.

These gangs originated in Los Angeles and have overrun El Salvador.

On the day that we visited this bridge, a man on a bike rode up, staring at us. He was wearing the white Nike shoes that only gangsters wear here. He stopped near us, still staring, and made a call on his cell phone.

This seriously spooked our driver, who is from the capital San Salvador. He motioned for me to stop recording and get in the car.

We drove away quickly to avoid any possible trouble.

But for many who live here, getting away from the gangs isn’t so simple.

“The way things are now, going out into the street means danger, or death,” said José, a 16-year-old from this town who tried escaping to the United States twice this summer.


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KXWT Presents Mark Russell

Comedian and political satirist Mark Russell will be in concert on Thursday, September 18 at 7 p.m. at the Wagner & Brown Auditorium at Midland College.

Tickets are $60 and are general admission.

You can get tickets by calling 432-580-9130
or Click here to purchase them online.

*All proceeds from this will benefit KXWT 91.3 FM

Libby Campbell, executive director of the West Texas Food Bank and Robert Manelis, GM Permian Production Unit at BHP Billiton.

Libby Campbell, executive director of the West Texas Food Bank and Robert Manelis, GM Permian Production Unit at BHP Billiton.

BHP Billiton Announces Partnership with West Texas Food Bank

Robert Manelis, general manager of the Permian Production Unit of BHP Billiton, sat down to talk with KXWT General Manager Tom Michael to talk about two big philanthropic announcements the company made that support the work of the West Texas Food Bank.

Governor Rick Perry on hand at the unveiling of a mockup of XCOR's "Lynx" spacecraft at MAF in 2012.
The study explored different scenarios that may have accounted for elevated methane in the groundwater. (Thomas Darrah/OSU)
A guard stands wait outside of the deportation processing center in San Salvador. Jose was bused here in August after being caught in Mexico. (Jude Joffe-Block)
20100729_susan_graham_33
(Nick Knupffer via Flickr)
20100729_susan_graham_33

This Opera Star Is Tired of Texas Stereotypes

The Midland Odessa Symphony and Chorale begins its 52nd season on Saturday, Sept. 13, with an opera performance by mezzo-soprano Susan Graham. Tom Michael reports on this West Texas connection to the wide world of opera.

Susan Graham is known as “America’s Favorite Mezzo.” She’s won a Grammy Award and she’s sung at every major opera house in the world.

“You know when I was young, part of what attracted me to be an opera singer was that it seemed impossible.”

That impossible dream began in West Texas. Today Graham is known as an expert in the French repertoire. France even awarded her with the Legion of Honor.

“You know when you’re a kid and you dream of things very far away from West Texas. Mine always seemed to have an Eiffel Tower in it.”

Graham gets back to her hometown of Midland when she can. Her mother lives there. In 2006, the mayor proclaimed the 5th of September as Susan Graham Day.

“I have my background in Midland to thank for, really, for the life I have now, because I go all over the world to sing opera. Everyday is a pinch-me moment.”

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(Nick Knupffer via Flickr)

President Obama to Address Nation on ISIS at 8 PM

We will carry President Obama’s address to the nation on the U.S. strategy for dealing with the Islamic militant group ISIS (also known as the Islamic State or ISIL) this evening. The president is expected to speak at 8 p.m. CST.

You can hear the speech by clicking here, or by tuning into 93.5 FM or 91.7 FM in Alpine.

You can also find live streaming video through the official White House website here, or online from most national news outlets.

We will resume our regular broadcast schedule when the president concludes his speech.

NPR’s Greg Myre reports on the approach the president is likely to take in combating ISIS:

“Obama will be looking to build on this success and is expected to broaden the air campaign in Iraq while possibly extending it to Syria. In both countries, Islamic State fighters are vulnerable and exposed when moving over flat desert terrain to and from the cities they control along the Tigris and Euphrates rivers.

But air power has its limits. Bombing alone is unlikely to chase the Islamic State out of big cities like Mosul, and the president has emphatically ruled out sending in ground troops.”

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Toys and toiletries left behind by migrants moving across the banks of the Rio Grande River near Hidalgo, Texas. (Mónica Ortiz Uribe)

Multiple Reasons Drive Decrease In Central Americans At The Border

NEAR HIDALGO, Texas —People in South Texas are still catching their breath after the recent surge of illegal border crossers from Central America. That sudden spike has declined significantly since the peak of summer.

Cicadas hummed and giant reeds rustled at the banks of the Rio Grande. The faint jabber of a loudspeaker echoed from a nearby Mexican village known as a staging ground for migrants headed north. Below, a trail cut through the thick brush on both sides of the river bank, evidence of human movement.

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Booster Shot: An Examination of Arthritis

This is Booster Shot, your monthly look at personal health. On this show, we talk to Vijay Borra, an orthopedic surgeon at Medical Center Hospital in Odessa, about arthritis.

Arthritis is actually a catch-all for more than 100 different diseases and conditions. The two most common are osteoarthritis – caused by wear-and-tear or an injury to your joints – and rheumatoid arthritis – when your body’s immune system attacks the lining around your joints.

Surgery is the last option but for mild cases, over the counter drugs can help with pain and inflammation. Even though it sounds simple, weight loss and regular exercise are recommended to improve flexibility and reduce pain.

 

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Texas MountainTrail

Texas Mountain Trail’s Community Calendar

From a disc golf tournament to Grandparents of the Year awards, check out all the best events from the Basin to the Border. This calendar is underwritten by Texas Mountain Trail.

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