Tag Archives: Earth

Skylab Is Launched (1973)


Skylab Is Launched (1973)

Launched into orbit in 1973, Skylab was the first US space station. It carried a laboratory for studying the human body’s adaptation to weightlessness and a powerful solar telescope. Three successive astronaut crews conducted research aboard Skylab for a total of 171 days in 1973–74. Though Skylab was intended to be reused, increased solar activity caused its orbit to degrade faster than expected. In 1979, the 75-tonne station reentered Earth’s atmosphere and broke up. Where did the debris land? More… Discuss

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today’s birthday: Athanasius Kircher (1601?)


Athanasius Kircher (1601?)

One of history’s great polymaths, Kircher was a German archeologist, mathematician, biologist, astronomer, musicologist, and physicist who knew Hebrew, Aramaic, Coptic, Persian, Latin, Greek, and various modern languages. He tried to decipher one of the most ancient writing systems—Egyptian hieroglyphics—but most of his thoughts on the subject proved incorrect. An avid inventor, he built playful devices including a talking and eavesdropping statue that used a primitive intercom, and what else? More… Discuss

this day in the yesteryear: Hydrogen Bomb Lost in the Ocean (1958)


Hydrogen Bomb Lost in the Ocean (1958)

The Tybee Bomb is a 7,600-pound (3,500-kg) nuclear bomb containing 400 pounds (180 kg) of conventional high explosives and highly enriched uranium. During a simulated combat mission, the B-47 bomber carrying it collided with an F-86 fighter plane, and the bomb was jettisoned and lost. It is presumed to be somewhere in Wassaw Sound, off the shores of Georgia’s Tybee Island, but recovery efforts have been unsuccessful. In 2004, a retired air force pilot made what discovery in the case? More… Discuss

today’s Hholiday/observance: NASA Day of Remembrance (2015)


NASA Day of Remembrance (2015)

NASA established the Day of Remembrance to honor those who have died in America‘s space program. The day focuses on those who died in three NASA space tragedies: the Apollo 1 fire on January 27, 1967; the Shuttle Challenger disaster of January 28, 1986; and the Shuttle Columbia tragedy of February 1, 2003. The day also remembers NASA employees who died in training and maintenance accidents. NASA headquarters observes the day with a roll call of all those who have died. At Cape Canaveral in Florida, a moment of silence is observed at noon. More… Discuss

Sandstone


Sandstone

Sandstone is a sedimentary rock formed when

English: A classification chart of sedimentary...

English: A classification chart of sedimentary rocks. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

grains of sand have been cemented together by a material such as silica, iron oxide, or calcium carbonate. It usually consists mainly of quartz and can vary in color from yellow or red to gray or brown. Sandstone’s porous nature makes it ideal for aquifers, and it is also widely used in construction and industry. Why is sandstone commonly used for decorative features in buildings? More… Discuss

this pressed for your awareness: 10 Household Products That Have KILLED People – Likes


10 Household Products That Have KILLED People – Likes.

Visit, subscribe, enjoy: Valentina Lisitsa, Pianist on YouTube


Valentina Lisitsa pianist visit her YouTube Channel

Valentina Lisitsa pianist visit her YouTube Channel (Click to access YouTube Channel)

A great cartoon by @varvel just now — Arnold Melm (@countUP)


#JeSuisCharlie, one of the most popular hashtags ever, was in 3.4 million tweets in 24 hours — Conrad Hackett (@conradhackett)


Secrets of the Longest-Living Mammal Revealed


Secrets of the Longest-Living Mammal Revealed

The genome of the bowhead whale was released this week by scientists who say that it may hold the key to longer and healthier lives for humans. The bowhead whale is the largest animal whose genome has been sequenced. It lives longer than any other mammal, with a lifespan of up to 200 years. Scientists studying its genome found significant differences in genes related to cell cycle, DNA repair, and aging process compared to other mammals. Although it has about 1,000 times as many cells as a human, its cells have a far more efficient anti-tumor response. More… Discuss

today in the yesteryear: Sputnik 1 Falls to Earth (1958)


Sputnik 1 Falls to Earth (1958)

Sputnik 1 was the first artificial satellite to be put into orbit. It was launched by the Soviet Union in October 1957 and acted as the starting gun for the Space Race. The first Sputnik, Russian for “fellow traveler,” was able to transmit radio signals for 22 days, emitting a beeping sound heard around the world. The US created NASA in October 1958, largely in response to this momentous occasion. How did US President Dwight Eisenhower react when he got word of Sputnik? More… Discuss

news-nature: Fish Filmed at Record Depth


Fish Filmed at Record Depth

Researchers exploring the depths of the Mariana Trench recently set the record for deepest fish ever filmed—and then broke the record during the same study. The two newly discovered species of snailfish were filmed by a team from the University of Aberdeen in Scotland using several remotely controlled submersibles. The second fish was filmed more than five miles below the surface—a depth of 8,145 meters. Researchers say the fish is very fragile and does not like look like any known species. More… Discuss

Redwoods


Redwoods

Redwoods are the tallest living trees, often exceeding 300 ft (90 m) in height. Nearly exterminated by the ice sheets of the glacial ages, redwoods are found only in a narrow strip near the Pacific coast of the northwest US. They take up to 500 years to reach maturity, and some are known to be more than 1,500 years old. As redwoods age, their lower limbs fall away, leaving a columnar trunk that can reach a diameter of more than 20 ft (6 m). What is the largest tree in the world? More… Discuss

The Saguaro


The Saguaro

The saguaro is a large, candelabra-shaped cactus that can grow up to 50 feet (15 m). Native to the deserts of Mexico and the southwestern US, it takes up to 75 years to develop but can live more than 200 years and can weigh up to 10 tons (9,000 kg). This mammoth typically dies by being uprooted by wind or washouts. It produces edible red fruits and white flowers that bloom at night but remain open into the next day. What are “saguaro boots,” and how have they been used by Native Americans? More… Discuss

Japan’s Underwater City


Japan’s Underwater City

A Japanese construction firm with a penchant for pie-in-the-sky projects has a new plan: an underwater city. The Shimizu Corporation, a prominent builder that once pitched a space hotel, has proposed an undersea spiral off the coast of Japan that would stretch 2.8 miles (4.5 km) down to the sea floor. A habitable zone would be situated in a massive sphere just below the surface, and energy would be generated by thermal energy conversion and by using micro-organisms to turn carbon dioxide into methane. However, the company says the required technology won’t be ready for another 15 years. More… Discuss

this pressed for your curious mind: 13 of the Most Amazing Things Discovered in Space This Year | WIRED (I thought they found Santa too, or did they?)


In April, astronomers discovered the first Earth-size planet within a star’s habitable zone, the region where liquid water can exist. This artist’s concept shows the planet, dubbed Kepler-186f, which is 1.1 times the size of Earth. The ultimate goal is to find another planet just like Earth, and this one—although more like a cousin than a twin—is close. NASA Ames/SETI Institute/JPL-Caltech

Scientists discovered some pretty amazing things in space this year. There were yet more planets, including the first Earth-like one in a star’s habitable zone. Astronomers found what might be a black-hole triplet, stars in the midst of merging into one giant one, and a star made of diamond.

More Best of 2014:

The Best and Worst of Science in 2014

These Are Our Favorite Maps of the Year

The Best Science Visualizations of 2014

But some of the most exciting things were found right in our own solar system. These discoveries include the first rings ever seen around an asteroid, plumes of water vapor spewing out from the dwarf planet Ceres, a disintegrating asteroid, and what appears to be a new dwarf planet billions of miles away. Oh, and we landed on a comet for the first time. Here are some of the most fantastic

via 13 of the Most Amazing Things Discovered in Space This Year | WIRED.

The Secret World of Dragonflies|National Geographic: Season’s Greetings from EUZICASA!


The Secret World of Dragonflies

Environment: Plastics Pervade Planet’s Oceans


Plastics Pervade Planet’s Oceans

The world’s oceans are clogged with 269,000 tons of plastic objects, according to a new report by a group of marine researchers. The estimate is based on data from 24 expeditions over six years, during which they studied gyres—regions with extremely strong currents—in the Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian Oceans. When a large plastic object is introduced into the ocean, it often gets sucked into the whirling currents of a gyre. These objects are then eroded into “microplastics.” According to the researchers, these particles account for more than 90 percent of the plastic in the ocean. More… Discuss

An iPhone that Always Lands on Its Feet?


An iPhone that Always Lands on Its Feet?

Future generations of iPhones might have cat-like reflexes—and fewer cracked screens—thanks to a newly patented system by Apple that would allow the devices to land harmlessly when dropped. The proposed technology would employ the iPhone’s GPS, gyroscope, and accelerometer to detect the speed and angle at which it is falling and then reorient the device to land on its back or side, rather than on its screen. Apple is not alone in developing protection methods for smartphone accidents. In 2012, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos patented a system of tiny airbags that would deploy from a dropped phone. More… Discuss

Original ‘Little Prince’ illustration to be auctioned


Original Little Prince Illustration to be auctioned

Original ‘Little Prince’ illustration to be auctioned

Original ‘Little Prince’ illustration to be auctioned

this day in the yesteryear: First Serving Female British MP Elected (1919)


First Serving Female British MP Elected (1919)

American-born Nancy Witcher Astor, or Viscountess Astor, was the second woman elected to the British Parliament‘s House of Commons and the first to actually serve. She concentrated on women’s issues, temperance, and child welfare and was reelected many times, serving until 1945. Astor attracted a great deal of attention, much of it for her caustic and witty comments. She reportedly once said to Winston Churchill, “If you were my husband, I’d poison your tea!” What was his alleged response? More… Discuss

quotation: If we don’t end war, war will end us. H.G. Wells


If we don’t end war, war will end us.

H.G. Wells (1866-1946) Discuss

Is it OK to leave objects on the Moon?


 

Is it OK to leave objects on the Moon?
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/blogs-magazine-monitor-30130941

 

word: ubiquitous


ubiquitous 

Definition: (adjective) Being or seeming to be everywhere at the same time.
Synonyms: omnipresent
Usage: She is the most ubiquitous media personality around. Discuss

The Northern Lights


 

Northern lights over Kulusuk, Greenland

Northern lights over Kulusuk, Greenland (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Northern Lights

 

The northern lights, or aurora borealis, are a luminous display of various forms and colors in the night sky of the Northern Hemisphere. They are caused by

Plasmasphere

Plasmasphere (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

high-speed electrons and protons from the Sun, which are trapped in the radiation belt above Earth and channeled toward the polar regions by Earth’s magnetic field. These electrically charged particles enter the atmosphere and collide with air molecules, exciting them to luminosity. Who coined the name “aurora borealis” for this phenomenon? More… Discuss

 

Google Exec Overtakes Baumgartner, Claims Skydive Records


Google Exec Overtakes Baumgartner, Claims Skydive Records

A Google executive has broken the world altitude record for skydiving set by Felix Baumgartner in a much-hyped 2012 jump. The 57-year-old senior Google vice president, Alan Eustace, jumped from an altitude of 135,890 feet, nearly 8,000 feet higher than Baumgartner, hitting a peak velocity of 822 mph (1,321 km/h) during his 123,414-foot freefall—both record numbers as well. As Eustace plummeted toward Earth from the edge of space, observers on the ground heard the sonic boom triggered at the moment his body exceeded the speed of sound. More… Discuss

word: apogee


apogee 

Definition: (noun) The farthest or highest point; the apex.
Synonyms: summit, height, peak, climax, pinnacle, zenith, acme
Usage: It took many years for the industry to reach its apogee, but only a few more for it to become defunct. Discuss.


Wildlife Declined By More than Half in 40 Years

Human activities have dramatically altered the balance of life on Earth, according to a report by the Zoological Society of London. Wildlife populations around the globe have plummeted by more than half over just the past four decades, and the decline shows no signs of letting up any time soon. When broken down by habitat type, the data show that terrestrial and marine species both declined by 39 percent between 1970 and 2010, while freshwater species suffered a staggering 76 percent drop. The report calls “unsustainable human consumption” leading to habitat loss and degradation the greatest threat to biodiversity on our planet. More… Discuss

today event/celebration: Autumnal Equinox


Autumnal Equinox

English: The Earth at the start of the 4 (astr...

English: The Earth at the start of the 4 (astronomical) seasons as seen from the north and ignoring the atmosphere (no clouds, no twilight). Português: A Terra no início das 4 estações (astronômicas) como vista do norte e ignorando a atmosfera (sem nuvens, sem crepúsculo). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The sun crosses the plane of the earth’s equator twice a year: on or about March 21 (Vernal Equinox) and again six months later, on or about September 22 or 23 (Autumnal Equinox). On these two occasions, night and day are of equal length all over the world. In the Northern Hemisphere, September 22 or 23 is the first day of autumn. Autumnal Equinox Day is a national holiday in Japan, observed on either September 23 or 24 to celebrate the arrival of autumn and to honor family ancestors. More… Discuss

environment/endangered species: California Blue Whale Makes a Comeback


California Blue Whale Makes a Comeback

Once teetering on the brink of extinction, the California blue whale has recovered in an unprecedented way—reaching about 97 percent of historic population levels. Researchers estimate that there are now 2,200 of these whales in existence. It is the only population of blue whale known to have rebounded from the ravages of whaling. The blue whale is the largest known animal on Earth, growing to nearly 100 feet (30 meters) in length and weighing in at 190 tons (172 tonnes), twice as much as the largest known dinosaur. More… Discuss

today’s birthday: Georges Cuvier (1769)


Georges Cuvier (1769)

Cuvier was a renowned French naturalist and zoologist considered the founder of comparative anatomy. He rejected the theory of evolution and instead embraced catastrophism, which proposes that geological changes on Earth have been caused by sudden upheaval rather than by gradual and continuing processes. He also greatly advanced the science of paleontology by reconstructing the soft parts of fossils deduced from their skeletal remains. What extinct flying reptile did Cuvier identify and name? More… Discuss

July One of Hottest Months on Record


July One of Hottest Months on Record

The eastern US and central Asia had a significantly cooler-than-average July, but they were the only two regions on Earth that did. For the globe as a whole, it was the fourth-hottest month on record—surpassed only by the Julys of 1998, 2005, and 2010—and the 353rd consecutive month with an above average global temperature. The blistering July temperatures came hot on the heels of both the hottest May and hottest June ever recorded. More… Discuss

Seismology


Seismology

Seismology is the scientific study of earthquakes—their origins, geographic distribution, and effects. Much of what we now know about the composition of the Earth and its internal structure comes from seismologic research. In recent years, seismologists have focused intense efforts on developing ways to predict earthquakes in hopes of minimizing casualties caused by seismic events. Unfortunately, a reliable method has yet to be developed. Why were six seismologists recently indicted in Italy? More… Discuss

Gene from Extinct Humans Helps Tibetans Breathe Easy


Gene from Extinct Humans Helps Tibetans Breathe Easy

The genetic adaptation that allows Tibetans to survive and live comfortably at altitudes that would make most other humans on Earth terribly sick came from an extinct species of human. The variant of the EPAS-1 gene carried by nearly 90 percent of Tibetans closely matches that of the extinct Denisovan people. This gene is involved in regulating hemoglobin production and helps the body produce enough red blood cells to cope with low oxygen levels but not so many as to dangerously thicken the blood. The findings suggest that at some point in the history of the Tibetan people, their ancestors mated with Denisovans, thereby acquiring this adaptation. More… Discuss

Encumbered not, poetic thought by George-B (The smudge and other poems


Encumbered not, poetic thought by George-B  (The smudge and other poems)

Unnoticed, silence breathed its way in:

can you watch now the growing grass,
the snowflakes parachutes landing and,
dust settling on top of dusty old, furniture tops?

almost instantaneously
night had moved over everything:

can you see now the shadows,
and the listless moon in owe,
eyeing the blue, as if…its dust,
were not to remain undisturbed
eons ahead,
except for a few boot prints…
cold of course, and odorless, and sterile…
encumbered not…

Photo: Earth and moon seen from space shuttle

this day in history: Pioneer 10 – First Craft to Leave Solar System, Perhaps (1983)


Pioneer 10: First Craft to Leave Solar System, Perhaps (1983)

Launched in 1972, Pioneer 10 was the first spacecraft to travel through the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter and to make up-close observations of Jupiter, capturing images that were later sent back to Earth. It passed the orbit of Neptune in 1983 and became by some definitions the first artificial object to leave our solar system. By February 1998, the probe was over 7.5 billion miles from Earth but lost its title as the most distant man-made object to what craft? More… Discuss

quotation: Funny how the new things are the old things. Rudyard Kipling


Funny how the new things are the old things.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) Discuss

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news: Monster Dinosaur Find in Argentina


Monster Dinosaur Find in Argentina

Paleontologists have unearthed evidence in Argentina of what may have been the largest creature ever to walk the Earth. The fossilized bones, believed to be those of a previously unknown species of herbivorous titanosaur that roamed the forests of Patagonia some 95 to 100 million years ago, suggest it was 130 ft (40 m) long from head to tail, stood 65 ft (20 m) tall, and weighed a whopping 85 tons—the equivalent of 14 African elephants. More… Discuss

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BEHIND THE SCENES: COSMOS: A SPACETIME ODYSSEY: One Stroke of Genius


[youtube.com/watch?v=kpQgfR6H5Yo]

BEHIND THE SCENES: COSMOS: A SPACETIME ODYSSEY: One Stroke of Genius

Michael Faraday’s story shows us how just one stroke of genius can change the world.
COSMOS: A SPACETIME ODYSSEY AIRS MONDAYS AT 9P.

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TODAY’S HOLIDAY: EARTH DAY


Earth Day

The first Earth Day was observed on April 22, 1970, to draw public attention to the need for cleaning up the Earth’s air and water and for conserving our natural resources. Earth Day is now observed regularly throughout the United States and in many other countries. Typical ways of celebrating Earth Day includeplanting trees, picking up roadside trash, and conducting various programs for recycling and conservation. Schoolchildren may be asked to use only recyclable containers for their snacks and lunches, and families often try to give up wasteful habits. More… Discuss

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TODAY’S SAINT: ST. BERTHOLD March 29


SAINT OF THE DAY

March 29 Saint of the Day

ST. BERTHOLD
March 29: Considered by some historians to be the founder of the Carmelite … Read More

March
29
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THIS DAY IN THE YESTERYEAR: HALE-BOPP COMET MAKES CLOSEST APPROACH TO EARTH (1997)


Hale-Bopp Comet Makes Closest Approach to Earth (1997)

Likely the most widely observed comet of the 20th century, Hale-Bopp—named for American astronomers Alan Hale and Thomas Bopp—was visible to the naked eye for a record 18 months, observable even from large cities with light-polluted skies. The comet’s passage excited stargazers but also incited various conspiracy theories. The notion that it was followed by an alien spacecraft inspired a mass suicide among members of the Heaven’s Gate cult. When will Hale-Bopp return to the inner solar systemMore… Discuss

 

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THIS DAY IN THE YESTERYEAR: APOLLO 9 SAFELY RETURNS TO EARTH (1969)


Apollo 9 Safely Returns to Earth (1969)

Apollo 9 was the third manned mission in the Apollo program and consisted of a 10-day Earth-orbital mission. It was the second manned flight of the Saturn V launch vehicle and the first manned flight of the Apollo Lunar Module. During the mission, the crew tested a new spacesuit, which was the first to possess its own life support system. This meant that astronauts no longer had to rely on an umbilical connection to the spacecraft. Why did the crew name their command module “Gumdrop”? More… Discuss

 

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TODAY’S BIRTHDAY: YURI GAGARIN (1934)


Yuri Gagarin (1934)

Gagarin was a Russian cosmonaut who, in 1961, became the first human being to successfully travel into space. Gagarin circled the Earth once during his 1-hour-and-48-minute flight aboard the Vostok 1. His success is believed to have ushered in the modern era of man in space, and Gagarin toured widely to promote the Soviet achievement. Ironically, he died in a plane crash seven years later. What factors did Soviet officials consider when choosing Gagarin for the historic space flightMore… Discuss

 

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GLOBAL BIOMASS


Global Biomass

Biomass is the total amount of living organisms in a given area, expressed in terms of living weight per unit area. It can include microorganisms, plants, and animals. An amazing amount of biomass is created by the approximately 10 quintillion insects living at any one time. In fact, the almost one million known insect species comprise 300 times the total weight of Earth’s human population. What other single class of organisms makes up a staggering 25% of the global biomass? More… Discuss

 

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ARTICLE: ASTRONOMICAL TRANSIT


Astronomical Transit

An astronomical transit is the passage of a celestial body or satellite across the face of a relatively larger body. Transits are not the same thing as the familiar solar or lunar eclipse. In an eclipse, a large celestial body hides a major part of a smaller body. In an astronomical transit, a small body crosses in front of a larger one. An astronomical transit can involve two planets, but this has not been observed on Earth since 1818. When will the next planetary transit be visible from Earth? More… Discuss

 

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WORD: CONTRARIOUS


contrarious 

Definition: (adjective) Difficult to deal with.
Synonyms: cross-grained
Usage: I do not know how people tolerate teenage girls; they are the most contrarious creatures ever to walk the Earth! Discuss.

 

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New Widget at EuZicAsa – New resources: The Smithsonian: ENCYCLOPEDIA OF LIFE – Collections of Sounds


Sound from Amphibians of Panama: Túngara Frogs (Engystomops pustulosus)

 Encyclopedia of Life

The Smithsonian: Collections of Sounds

Word: ASTOUND


astound 

Definition: (verb) Affect with wonder.
Synonyms: amazeastonish
Usage: I used to believe that nothing could astound me, but daredevil skydiver Felix Baumgartner proved me wrong when he jumped from a balloon 24 miles above the EarthDiscuss.

 

Song to the Moon – Antonín Dvořák



See lyrics translated into English below.

Soprano Renee Fleming sings this aria. Dvorak’s composition relies upon expansive arpeggiated chords to capture the fairy tale ambiance of Rusalka. The amicable old Spirit of the Lake, Jezibab, is enjoying the singing of the Wood Nymphs, when his daughter, Rusalka, sadly approaches him. She admits that she has fallen in love with a handsome prince. Yearning to know the bliss of union with him, she wishes to become human. Deeply saddened, the Spirit of the Lake consents to her request, and leaves. All alone, Rusalka sings this magnificent aria and shares the secrets of her longing to the moon.

Featuring the paintings and artwork of William Bouguereau, Paul Cezanne, Claude Monet, J.W. Waterhouse, Armand Guillaumin, and Spadecaller.

Lyrics (translation)

Silver moon upon the deep dark sky,
Through the vast night pierce your rays.
This sleeping world you wander by,
Smiling on man’s homes and ways.
Oh moon ere past you glide, tell me,
Tell me, oh where does my loved one bide?
Oh moon ere past you glide, tell me
Tell me, oh where does my loved one bide?
Tell him, oh tell him, my silver moon,
Mine are the arms that shall hold him,
That between waking and sleeping he may
Think of the love that enfolds him,
May between waking and sleeping
Think of the love that enfolds him.
Light his path far away, light his path,
Tell him, oh tell him who does for him stay!
Human soul, should it dream of me, Let my memory wakened be.
Moon, moon, oh do not wane, do not wane,
Moon, oh moon, do not wane….