Friday, October 22, 2010

Friday Hope Blogging

The United States is dismantling its remaining B-53s:

Outside of the nuclear weapons communities, little notice was paid last week to the announcement that authorization had finally come through to begin dismantling the last of the minivan-size B-53s, the most powerful thermonuclear bombs ever deployed in the active U.S. stockpile.

A terror weapon if there ever was one, the 10,000-pound B-53 was designed to deliver an explosion of nine megatons. That is the equivalent of 9 million pounds of TNT, or 600 times the power of the bomb that destroyed Hiroshima.

(h/t: Cheryl.)

An Israeli company is creating a solar generator with 72-percent conversion efficiency:

The difference between the new 3rd generation generators and the 2nd generation generators is that the new model is a combined heat and power, concentrated PV and solar thermal system. What this means is that not only does the system convert solar energy into electricity, it also converts any heat captured in the mirror collectors into electrical and thermal power.

I'm fairly impressed by the appearance of this Dutch waste-to-power plant:

The plant will use the latest and most efficient techniques to process 260,000 to 350,000 tons of waste per year. In turn, this will generate enough electricity for 60,000 households each year....

[Erick] Van Egeraat’s design of the plant makes the incinerator not just a power station, but also an icon on the horizon. Circular openings in the building’s aluminum facade serve to transform the station into a beacon at night, when light from the facility shines through the exterior.

Not just that, but the design allows the light to start as a spark before growing into a ‘flame’ that covers the entire building, before transforming into ‘embers’. Quite a design feat for an incinerator.

To put it another way, Erick van Egeraat is the Albert Speer of envirofascism! Give that idea to a roomful of speedfreak monkeys with typewriters, and you'd have an article by Jonah Goldberg within the hour.

Argentina has created a new law to protect its glaciers:

The law...prohibits the release, dispersal or disposal of substances or contaminants, chemicals or waste of any kind or size in glaciers and periglacial environments. It also prohibited the exploration and explotaition of mines.

Telementoring could help surgeons in remote areas to perform more complex operations:
Telementoring may be an effective way for subspecialist surgeons to assist remotely located general surgeons in the care of patients in need of emergency subspecialty surgical procedures, according to new research findings published in the September issue of the Journal of the American College of Surgeons....

In a civilian setting, telementoring could have wide-ranging applications for general surgeons in rural medical centers where they must treat a wide range of conditions, often without the breadth of subspecialty expertise needed for all cases.

The word on the street is, you can keep dung out of your drinking water by constructing a vertico-horizontal lattice of crosslinked metallic or xyloid palings characterized by a periodic pattern of spatially homogeneous, gas-permeable interstices. If correct, this would force us to reconsider the basic assumptions of Crosby and Andrews (1944):
Simply fencing off streams and drainage ditches so farm animals can't deposit manure in and around them could cut levels of faecal pollution dramatically, according to scientists. This would protect the health of people exposed to river water and help Britain comply with EU rules on water quality.
It might be worth a shot, I suppose. In related news, a new study in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry says stop running with scissors, or you'll put your eye out.

The moon may be capable of supporting golf courses:
[A]fter a year of analysis NASA today announced that its LCROSS lunar-impact probe mission found up to a billion gallons of water ice in the floor of a permanently-shadowed crater near the moon's south pole.

That's enough, said researchers, to fill 1,500 Olympic-size swimming pools, all from one crater.

Researchers have discovered a fish that dwells 1.75 leagues under the sea:
Fish were not expected to be able to survive so deep, but scientists have captured footage of a new species of a scavenger-hunting snailfish swimming at an astounding 7,000 meters below the surface. The video, taken from an 8,000 meter-deep sea trench in the Southeast Pacific Ocean, showed a level of biodiversity that surprised seasoned marine biologist, who have previously surveyed five other deep sea trenches.

"Our findings […] will prompt a rethink into marine populations at extreme depths," said Alan Jamieson from the University of Aberdeen's Oceanlab, who led the expedition.
A common virus could kill cancer cells:

By the age of five, most people have been exposed to the virus, called reovirus. For some, it can trigger brief episodes of coughing or diarrhea while many other don't develop any symptoms. The body simply overpowers the virus. But what scientists have discovered is that the virus grows like gangbusters inside tumor cells with a specific malfunction that leads to tumor growth. That finding led researchers to ask: Is it possible to use the virus as a treatment?

Amanda Udis-Kessler responds to Albert Mohler:

You describe yourself as a “Christian committed to biblical truth.” To prevent the Tyler Clementis of the world from jumping off bridges, you have to become a Christian as committed to human flourishing as you are to biblical truth – to walk the hard path of Jesus, not the easier one that the Pharisees are presented as following....

You ask in your open letter whether there is anyone who could have stood between that boy and that bridge. The answer is yes. There is exactly one person who could have stood between that boy and that bridge, and that person is you.

(Via Truth Wins Out.)

The New York Subway. Around the world in 65 photos. The tomb of Rudj-Ka. The tippling woodpecker. Kindergarten weaving. And the evolution of type.

De 78 rpm a 33 1/3 rpm. 20 cartazes de filmes B dos anos 1930. The Great White Silence. Views of Moscow from 500 feet. Water skeletons. A mosquito's heart. The Stock Project. And human-animal relations in photo postcards, 1905-1935.

:Photoschau, photomicrography and Polyorama. Globe poster specimens. The Crystal Palace. Activities for the afterlife. And paintings by Leah Fusco.

And a short film.

(Painting at top: "Raita" by Vilho Lampi, 1934. Via wood s lot.)

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