Posts Tagged ‘ocean’

Meteor plunges into ocean lighting up Perth sky

July 2, 2012
Fire in the skyMETEORIC SNAP: A photo of the meteor over Cottesloe taken by PerthNow reader Gavin Trought just before sunset. Source: PerthNow
Meteor in Perth skyAMAZING VIEWS: This picture was posted to Twitter by Pip Moir. She wrote ” Very bizarre. View from cott. Looks like fire. What is that?!?” Source: PerthNow

THIS fiery streak in the sky amazed Perth beachgoers at sunset as a suspected meteor plunged into the ocean off the WA coast.

PerthNow reader Gavin Trought snapped the ‘fire in the sky’ as it appeared over Cottesloe just before sunset on Friday, with remnants of the phenomenon still visible in the sky this afternoon.

“The weird streak in the sky as seen from Cottesloe last night. I noticed it just before sunset,” he told us.

Perth journalist Pip Moir also posted the photo she took at Cottesloe Beach to Twitter shortly after 6pm as puzzled onlookers debated what caused the colourful phenomena.

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The Pacific Ocean Is Dying

Thursday, 17 May 2012

A Special Report On the Fukushima Nuclear Catastrophe

‘Just prior to the Supermoon of March 18th, 2011, the world witnessed a natural and manmade disaster of epic proportions. What transpired off the coast of Honshu Island, Japan on March 11 has forever altered the planet and irremediably affected the global environment. Whereas the earthquake and tsunami proved to be truly apocalyptic events for the people of Japan, the ongoing nuclear disaster at Fukushima is proving to be cataclysmic for the entire world.

Most of the world community is still unaware of the extremely profound and far-reaching effects that the Fukushima nuclear disaster has had. If the nations of the world really understood the implications of the actual ‘fallout’ – past, current and future – the current nuclear energy paradigm would be systematically shut down. For those of us who are in the know, it is incumbent upon each of us to disseminate the relevant information/data necessary to forever close down the nuclear power industry around the globe.’

Read more: The Pacific Ocean Is Dying

10 Things You Didn’t Know About Light

A week ago, who among us would have guessed that light, the universe’s ultimate speed demon, would be observed getting outpaced by a bunch of reckless neutrinos? Yes, these observations will obviously need to be checked and rechecked, but it just goes to show that you rarely know as much about something as you think you do.

So in the interest of keeping you all as educated on light as possible, here are ten little-known historical and scientific facts about everyone’s favorite source of illumination.

10) Light can make some people sneeze
Between 18% and 35% of the human population is estimated to be affected by a so-called “photic sneeze reflex,” a heritable condition that results in sneezing when the person is exposed to bright light.

The exact cause of the reflex is poorly understood, but people have been kicking around possible explanations for millennia; Aristotle, for example, chalked the reflex up to the heat of the sun on one’s nose, while most modern-day scientists posit that a cranial nerve responsible for facial sensation and motor control (that is in close proximity to the optic nerve) picks up on electrical signals intended for the optic nerve and tells the brain that there is an irritant in the nose that needs to be cleared out.

10 Things You Didn't Know About Light9) Plato thought that human vision was dependent upon light, but not in the way you’re imagining
In the 4th Century BC, Plato conceived of a so-called “extramission theory” of sight, wherein visual perception depends on light that emanates from the eyes and “seizes objects with its rays.”

Plato’s student, Aristotle, was among the first to reject the extramission theory and the idea of a so-called “active eye,” advocating instead a passive, “intromission” theory of vision, whereby the eyes receive information via rays of light as opposed to generating these rays on their own. (Image via.)

8) Einstein was not the first one to come up with a theory of relativity
Many people associate “the speed of light” with Einstein’s theory of relativity, but the concept of relativity did not originate with Einstein. Props for relativity actually go to none other than Galileo, who was the first to propose formally that you cannot tell if a room is at rest, or moving at a constant speed in one direction, by simply observing the motion of objects in the room.

What Einstein did do was bring Galileo’s conception of relativity up to speed by combining it with Newton’s work with gravity, and James Clerk Maxwell’s equations addressing electricity and magnetism (equations, it bears mentioning, that predicted that waves of electromagnetic fields move at 299 792 458 meters per second — i.e. the speed of light).

7) E=mc^2 was once m=(4/3)E/c^2
Einstein was not the first person to relate energy with mass. Between 1881 and 1905, several scientists — most notably phycisist J.J. Thomson and Friedrich Hasenohrl — derived numerous equations relating the apparent mass of radiation with its energy, concluding, for example, that m=(4/3)E/c^2. What Einstein did was recognize the equivalence of mass and energy, along with the importance of that relevance in light of relativity, which gave rise to the famous equation we all recognized today.




10 Things You Didn't Know About Light 6)The light from the aurorae is the result of solar wind
When solar winds from cosmic events like solar flaresreach Earth’s atmosphere, they interact with particles of oxygen atoms, causing them to emit stunning green lights like the ones captured by the International Space Station last week (featured here).


These waves of light — termed the aurora borealis and aurora australis (or northern lights and southern lights, respectively) — are typically green, but hues of blue and red can be emitted from atmospheric nitrogen atoms, as well.


10 Things You Didn't Know About Light5) Neutrinos aren’t the first things to apparently outpace the speed of light
The Hubble telescope has detected the existence of countless galaxies receding from our point in space at speeds in excess of the speed of light. However, this still does not violate Einstein’s theories on relativity because it is space — not the galaxies themselves — that is expanding away (a symptom of the Big Bang), and “carrying” the aforementioned galaxies along with it.

4) This expansion means there are some galaxies whose light we’ll never see
As far as we can tell, the Universe is expanding at an accelerating rate. On account of this, there are some who predict that many of the Universe’s galaxies will eventually be carried along by expanding space at a rate that will prevent their light from reaching us at any time in the infinite future.

10 Things You Didn't Know About Light3) Bioluminescence lights the ocean deep
More than half of the visible light spectrum is absorbed within three feet of the ocean’s surface; at a depth of 10 meters, less than 20% of the light that entered at the surface is still visible; by 100 meters, this percentage drops to 0.5%.

In fact, at depths of over 1000 meters — a region of the ocean dubbed the “aphotic zone” — there is no detectable light whatsoever. As a result, the largest source of light in the Earth’s oceans actually emanates from animals residing in its depths; marine biologists estimate that between 80 and 90 percent of deep-sea creatures are bioluminescent (image via).


10 Things You Didn't Know About Light2) Bioluminescence: also in humans!
Bioluminescene isn’t just for jellyfish and the notorious, nightmare-inducing Anglerfish; in fact, humans emit light, too.

All living creatures produce some amount of light as a result of metabolic biochemical reactions, even if this light is not readily visible. Back in 2009, a team of Japanese researchers reported that “the human body literally glimmers,” after using incredibly sensitive cameras (the light is a thousand times weaker than the human eye can perceive) to capture the first evidence of human bioluminescence, pictured here. It’s worth mentioning that images C, D, E, F, and G, are not thermal images, but actually pictures of emitted photon intensity over the course of an average day.

This time-dependent photon emission is illustrated in the chart shown in figure H. Figure I shows the thermal image you’re more accustomed to seeing.


10 Things You Didn't Know About Light1) It’s possible to trick your brain into seeing imaginary (and “impossible”) colors
Your brain uses what are known as “opponent channels” to receive and process light. On one hand, these opponent channels allow you to process visual information more efficiently (more on this here), but they also prevent you from seeing, for example, an object that is simultaneously emitting wavelengths that could be interpreted as blue and yellow — even if such a simultaneous, “impossible” color could potentially exist.

In theory, you can train yourself to see these and other so-called “imaginary” colors with a few simple tricks, which you can check out in our quick, how-to guide on seeing impossible and imaginary colors.

Republished from

Dive to ocean bottom was like trip to ‘another planet and back,’ Cameron says


In James Cameron’s fantasy films, like “Avatar” and “The Abyss,” the unexplored is splashed in color and fraught with alien danger. But on his dive to the deepest place on Earth, reality proved far different: white, barren and bland.

Yet otherworldly — and amazing.

“I felt like I literally, in the space of one day, had gone to another planet and come back,” Cameron said Monday after returning from the cold, dark place in the western Pacific Ocean, seven miles (11 1/4 kilometers) below the surface. “It was a very surreal day.”

Cameron is the first person to explore the deepest valley in the ocean since two men made a 20-minute foray there more than half a century ago. He spent about three hours gliding through the icy darkness, illuminated only by special lights on the one-man sub he helped design. That was only about half as long as planned because his battery ran low.

This deepest section of the 1,500-mile(2,415-kilometer)-long Mariana Trench is so untouched that at first it appeared dull. But there’s something oddly dark and compelling about the first snippets of video that Cameron shot. It’s not what you see, but where it puts you. There is a sense of aloneness that Cameron conveys in the wordless video showing his sub gliding across what he calls “the very soft, almost gelatinous flat plain.”

“My feeling was one of complete isolation from all of humanity,” Cameron said.

It may not have looked all that dramatic and, in a way, Cameron was “doing exploration with training wheels,” said Andy Bowen, who heads the deep submergence lab at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.

But it was an amazing start.

The images “do lack the visual impact of highly colorized 3D spectacular representations of the ocean,” Bowen said. But there are still “dramatic discoveries to be made.”

The minute-long snippet, released by trip sponsor National Geographic, is just a coming attraction. Cameron will keep diving in the area, some 200 miles (322 kilometers) southwest of the island of Guam, where the depth of the trench is called Challenger Deep. And he’s already filming it in 3D for later viewing.

To Cameron, the main thing was to appreciate just being there. He didn’t do that when he first dove to the wreck of the Titanic, and Apollo astronauts have said they never had time to savor where they were.

“There had to be a moment where I just stopped, and took it in, and said, `This is where I am; I’m at the bottom of the ocean, the deepest place on Earth. What does that mean?”‘ Cameron told reporters during a conference call.

“I just sat there looking out the window, looking at this barren, desolate lunar plain, appreciating,” Cameron said.

He also realized how alone he was, with that much water above him.

“It’s really the sense of isolation, more than anything, realizing how tiny you are down in this big, vast, black, unknown and unexplored place,” the “Titanic” director said.

Cameron said he had hoped to see some sort of strange deep sea creature that would excite the storyteller in him, but he didn’t.

He didn’t see tracks of small primitive sea animals on the ocean floor, as he did when he dove more than five miles (eight kilometers) down several weeks ago. All he saw was voracious shrimp-like critters no bigger than an inch (2.5 centimeters). In future missions, Cameron plans to bring “bait” — like chicken — to set out.

Cameron said the mission was all about exploration, science and discovery. He is the only person to dive there solo, using a lime-green sub called Deepsea Challenger. He is the first person to reach that depth — 35,576 feet (10,843.5 meters) — since it was initially explored in 1960.

There had been a race to reach the bottom among rich and famous adventurers. Sir Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group, has been building his own one-man sub to explore the ocean depths. Cameron’s dive was “a fantastic achievement,” Branson told The Associated Press.

Branson said he hoped to be the first to explore a different deep-sea location, diving later this year to the deepest part of the Atlantic, the Puerto Rican trench, which is only five miles from his home. Just shy of six miles deep, the area has not been explored yet.

Branson also hopes to join Cameron in a tandem dive of solo subs. “Together, we’ll make a formidable team,” he said.

While Cameron’s dive was far longer than that of U.S. Navy Capt. Don Walsh and Swiss engineer Jacques Piccard 52 years ago, he didn’t reach the trench walls because he was running low on battery power. He said he would return, as would the sub’s Australian co-designer, Ron Allum.

“I see this as the beginning,” Cameron said. “It’s not a one-time deal and then moving on. This is the beginning of opening up this new frontier.”

“To me, the story is in the people in their quest and curiosity and their attempt to understand.”

The trip to the deepest point took two hours and 36 minutes and started Sunday afternoon, U.S. East Coast time.

His return aboard his 12-ton sub was a “faster-than-expected 70-minute ascent,” according to National Geographic, which sponsored the expedition. Cameron is a National Geographic explorer-in-residence.

The only thing that went wrong was a hydraulic failure that kept Cameron from collecting rocks and critters and bringing them back to land.

Science like this takes time, but Cameron is committed to doing it, said Woods Hole’s Bowen, who ran a program that sent an unmanned sub to the same place in 2009.

“The reality of exploring such an environment is that at times it can be very boring; exploring these environments isn’t always about some dramatic highly visual discovery,” Bowen said. “The scientific process is exhausting and sometimes it takes a significant amount of sweat, if you will, to uncover secrets.”

Cameron did sweat — and shiver.

When the 6-foot-2 (1.87-meter) Cameron climbed into the cramped sub, his head hit one end and his feet the other. It was warm outside because it was near the equator; it was toasty inside, temperatures topping 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 Celsius), because of the heat given off by the sub’s electronics. It felt “like a sauna,” he said.

But as he plunged into the deep, it grew cold inside the sub as the waters outside dropped to around 36 degrees (2 Celsius), he said.

The pressure on the sub was immense — comparable to three SUVs resting on a toe. The super-strong sub shrank three inches under that pressure, Cameron said.

“It’s a very weird environment,” he said. “I can’t say it’s very comfortable. And you can’t stretch out.”

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Fukushima Disaster Contaminated Ocean with 50 Million Times Normal Radiation

December 15, 2011 Leave a comment

Wednesday, 14 December 2011 09:40

‘Things are suddenly heating up again with Fukushima. As we reported yesterday, the southern wall of Fukushima reactor #4 apparently collapsed over the past few days, calling into question the structural integrity of the remainder of the containment building.

The mainstream media has said absolutely nothing about this development, continuing its pattern of downplaying news involving Fukushima, radiation or the flawed structure of nuclear power plants. This is hardly surprising, given that many of the largest media outlets (such as NBC and MSNBC) are owned by corporations such as General Electric, the designer of many of the world’s nuclear power plants.’

Read more: Fukushima Disaster Contaminated Ocean with 50 Million Times Normal Radiation

Lost city found under the sea bed

July 12, 2011 2 comments

Posted on July 11, 2011 by Stewart
Under The Sea
Researchers scouring the ocean floor of the North Atlantic near Scotland have discovered what they are calling an “Atlantis-like” landscape underwater. One of the scientists said: “It looks for all the world like a map of a bit of a country onshore,” said Nicky White, the senior researcher. “It is like an ancient fossil landscape preserved 2 kilometers (1.2 miles) beneath the seabed.”

Such topography and evidence of a previously above-water seabed has been found in multiple locations in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans, as well as in parts of the Mediterranean Sea and under the Baltic Sea. Much of this area was once a thriving and civilized zone where people lived and worked.

A few years ago, a science vessel spotted a location near the North American continental shelf that was reported to look kike a bunch of skyscrapers, deep under the water. Of course, it was dismissed as an odd rock formation, much as the Face on Mars has been dismissed by science. When something does not fit in to standard history or geology, “accredited” scientists call it either a hoax or a rock formation. They never allow anything to upset their lock and key version of history and science.

Unfortunately for them, sometimes an artifact appears that cannot be explained. These mysteriously disappear from the news. However, an entire undersea city has been found off the coast of India which cannot be explained away. Geologists and seismologists say that it submerged with rising sea levels over time. Really? How? There was an Ice Age when this city flourished and sea levels were low. It didn’t just sink underwater one day.

There have been many cataclysms on the Earth in pre-historic times that were not documented since no one survived to write about it. The Bible mentions one flood. Evidence shows that there have been many such floods, tsunamis and landmasses sinking in many parts of the world. The Earth is a living mass that changes, just like people do.

If it happened before, it can happen again. Each time is different. We need to be watchful to the changes we see around us. Something is happening now. Does not matter if it is “natural” or “man-made”. The results are the same. Keep your ears and eyes open.