Home

Push Start

1 Comment

Russia: Passengers ‘get out and push’ frozen plane

Homeward bound: Frozen brake pads were no match for these passengers

Passengers due to take a flight in Siberia had to get out and push the aircraft after its brake pads froze solid, it’s reported.

The plane was trying to take off from the Russian town of Igarka, but was unable to move after the temperature fell to -52C.

Source: BBCNews Read more

Gravity-free espresso

Leave a comment

Making gravity-free espresso in space really is rocket science

Specially designed ‘ISSpresso’ machine overcomes absence of gravity by firing pressurised water through capsule of coffee

The ISSpresso machine weighs about 20kg – the same as all the science instruments on the Philae comet lander put together. Photograph: Lavazza

Perhaps one of the last barriers to the human conquest of space has been removed; a space-rated espresso machine has now been delivered to the International Space Station (ISS).

The device was made by two Turin-based companies, Lavazza Coffee and engineering firm Argotec. It is called the ISSpresso and was delivered by Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti in the early hours of Monday morning, when her Soyuz space capsule docked at the orbiting habitat.

Making coffee in space is difficult, especially espresso, which relies on 94°C water being passed through ground coffee under high pressure.

On Earth this is achieved with the help of gravity. The ground coffee is placed in a perforated container, the water is heated and shot on to the coffee to drip into the cup. In space there is no up and down, so things don’t naturally fall.

Source: TheGuardian Read more

The meaning of Mongol

Leave a comment

Uuganaa with her Mongolian parents and niece

Uuganaa Ramsay was raised in Mongolia but now lives in Scotland. She has recently been exploring why her ethnicity is linked to Down’s syndrome, a condition diagnosed in her son.

“I don’t like that word,” says a woman sitting opposite me on the train, pointing at the title of the book I am holding. “Horrible word.”

It’s my memoir, but she doesn’t know that. It was me who gave it the one-word title, Mongol.

I chose it because it has a deep meaning for me. It’s the word I grew up using to describe who I am, reading it in poems, singing it in songs, writing stories with it and drawing pictures about it – it represents my identity and culture.

“Where are you originally from?’ the lady asks. “Mongolia,” I say. “Oh, of course. Of course you are,” she says. I could see in her face that she had realised something that was now obvious but hadn’t previously occurred to her.

The word Mongol is rarely used politely these days and is often unpleasantly shortened to “mong” but how on Earth did my ethnic identity end up becoming a slang word for stupid? Even worse, used by comedians to “push boundaries”.

Source: BBCNews Read more

Awesome

Leave a comment

blue_space_by_whendell-d79zabi

Extreme commute: From New Zealand to rural Iceland

Leave a comment

Shawn Parkinson and other Kiwi butchers work for two months for SAH Products in Blondous, Iceland

Every year, several dozen butchers make an epic commute – from provincial New Zealand to rural Iceland – for just two months’ work. It’s at the extreme end of the trend for fly-in fly-out workers.

As work commutes go, Shawn Parkinson’s journey takes some beating.

Dannevirke to Auckland – six-hour drive. Auckland to Sydney – three-hour flight. Sydney to Dubai – 14 and a half hours in the air. Dubai to London – seven-hour flight. London to Reykjavik – almost three hours’ flying time. Reykjavik to Blonduos, north-west Iceland – three-hour drive.

Two months later, he repeats all 22,300km (about 13,850 miles) on the return leg.

Every September, he and 30 other New Zealand butchers travel to Iceland for its lamb processing season. It’s an annual trek Mr Parkinson has made for the past seven years.

“My friends say ‘Iceland? What do you kill there – seals?’ Nah, they’ve got their own breed of sheep.”

‘Experience of a lifetime’

For him, this far-flung short-term contract is a no-brainer.

“We’d be out of work if we stayed in New Zealand at this time of year. It’s off-season. We’re laid off,” he tells me during his morning break at the SAH Products slaughterhouse near Blonduos.

“This is the experience of a lifetime. It’s the other side of the world and you can still get a bit of work.”

Source: BBCNews Read more

Giant fluorescent pink slug

6 Comments

Kaputar_pink_slug

Triboniophorus aff. graeffei

Now on the endangered species list…

Medieval Festival in Reims Champagne

2 Comments

Originally posted on Cooking Class:

20140810-193701.jpgJune 2014. I am a big GOT and LOTR rings fan. The geek inside of me loves medieval films and books. Luckily we were in Reims Champagne in time for the Medieval Festival.  It was held at the perimeters of the grand Notre-Dame de Reims. The kings of France were crowned in this cathedral. People came in costumes like knights, serfs, magicians, ladies, elves, and more. I wish I wore a costume too!  There were concerts, booths, magic shows and tournaments.  Booths were selling medieval food and merchandising.  Some participants pitched tents and cooked their own food to reenact this era. It was20140810-194128.jpg20140810-193623.jpg20140810-193549.jpg20140810-193436.jpg20140810-193403.jpg20140810-193318.jpg20140810-193341.jpg so festive!

View original

Older Entries

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,062 other followers

%d bloggers like this: