Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Lightning and Neutrons


-: inexplicata of the day :-
Lightning strikes produce free neutrons, and we're not sure how
Scientists confirm that lightning strikes generate low energy neutrons, but eliminate both of the explanations we had for how this might work.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Haiku Break

A haiku poem by Hiryoshi Tagawa (1914-1999) goes: 
"The green man at the emergency exit/ Always fleeing." 
The familiar pictogram of a running figure was created in Japan and became an international symbol for emergency exits. 

Thursday, March 22, 2012

dharma power

Buddhist federation speaks out against nuclear power
The Japan Buddhist Federation has called for a society that does not depend on nuclear power not to repeat the mistake Buddhist organizations made…

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Port of Morrow, Ashes to Ashes


Singer, songwriter and driving creative force James Mercer discusses changing lineups and embracing vintage sounds on a long-awaited new album.

I got on my physical bicycle tonight and physically rode down to the physical Tower Records in my physical neighborhood and physically bought (with physical money) the physical CD (also Pink Martini & Saori Yuki '1969' which is also an Oregon band BTW), brought the music back home and ripped it the old fashioned way like it was 1999.

James Mercer of The Shins perform LIVE acoustic, in the KEXP studios!

More videos are online now at the KEXP Blog: http://blog.kexp.org/2012/02/29/live-video-james-mercer-of-the-shins/

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

One Spent Fuel Pool Has More Radioactive Cesium-137 Than Every Nuclear Bomb Ever Exploded In The Atmosphere

Nuclear Engineer Arnie Gundersen: Fukushima Meltdown Could Result in 1 Million Cases of Cancer

The Obama administration is backing an expansion of nuclear power plants, but…

"I’m on record as saying that we should close the 23 reactors with the Mark I design. … These containment vents prove to fail three times out of three. …

In addition, the fuel is stored on the roof, essentially, in unshielded, unprotected areas. And there’s more nuclear cesium-137 in the fuel pool at the plant in Pilgrim, Massachusetts, than was ever released by every nuclear bomb ever exploded in the atmosphere. So we have an enormous inventory of nuclear material way up on the roofs of these buildings, and I think it’s time to close these Mark 1s down, because of those two design features."

Thursday, March 08, 2012

Electro-magnetic coupling of the Sun-Earth system

NASA SDO - X5.4-class Solar Flare, March 7, 2012
Right at midnight UT time the active region 1429 unleashed a powerful X5.4-class solar flare. X-class flares are the strongest of the flares. They are major ...


Seven centuries of records of ancient earthquakes in the Mediterranean region show that the century-scale variations in the number of strong earthquakes closely follow the secular cycle of solar activity. Two well expressed maxima in the global yearly number of earthquakes are seen in the 11-year sunspot cycle - onc coinciding with sunspotmaximum, and the other on the descending phase of solar activity. A day to day study of the number of earthquakes worldwide reveals that the arrival to the Earh of high speed solar streams is related to significantly greater probability of earthquake occurrence.
The possible mechanism includes deposition of solar wind energy into the polar ionosphere where it drives ionospheric convection and auroral electrojets, generating in ‘turn atmospheric gravity waves that interact with neutral winds and deposit their momentum in the neutral atmosphere, increasing the transfer of air masses and disturbing of the pressure balance on tectonic plates.
The main sources of high speed solar streams are the solar coronal mass ejections which have a maximum in the sunspot maximum, and the coronal holes with a maximum on the descending phase of solar activity. Both
coronal holes and CMEs are monitored hy satellite-home
and ground-based instruments, which makes possible to
predict periods of enhanced seismic risk.


Solar CME speed and geomagnetics. Interesting. (I don't understand it either.) Now I wonder if there could be something to the folk reports of "earthquake clouds".


It has been determined that in the period of solar activity increase (11-year cycles) there increase seismic and volcanic activities in the compression zone of Earth and at the same time there decreases the activity in the tension zones of Earth.
On the basis of the discovered stable 11-year and 22-year cyclicalities in the seismic and volcanic activities and their high correlation with solar activity there has been made the long-term forecast until 2018. The next maximum of seismic and volcanic activity with very high amplitude for the compression zones of Earth is forecasted for the period 2012-2015.

Just the abstract:

Solar activities play significant roles in electromagnetic coupling of the Sun - Earth system. By comparing the 11-year sunspot cycles and global earthquake events during 1963 to 2010 period, it is possible to reveal the correlation of solar and seismic activities. In the present paper, the monthly values of sunspot cycles number 20 to 23 and earthquake events at different magnitude scales were analyzed to examine the relationship of these values and to understand the coupling mechanisms in solar and geomagnetic activities. The sunspot numbers are obtained from Marshall Space Flight Center, NASA database, and earthquake events are extracted from Advanced National Seismic System (ANSS) database. We found a significant correlation between high speed solar wind (HSSW) and great earthquake events (M ≥ 6.0 Richter scale).

The answer, my friend, is blowing in the high-speed solar wind. And stop thinking dirty thoughts about those coupling mechanisms.