Thursday, June 24, 2010

Solar Music

For the first time ever, musical sounds resonating from the longitudinal vibrations of the Sun's atmosphere have been captured by scientists. Combining complicated mathematics and information acquired by satellite, a team of solar physicists from the University of Sheffield have revealed these harmonious sounds caused by the movement of giant magnetic loops in the solar corona, the outermost layer of the Sun's atmosphere. Play the video below to listen!

Professor Robertus von Fáy-Siebenbürgen from the University of Sheffield's Department of Applied Mathematics said: "The results of our latest coronal research, presented in the Parliament at Westminster, allow us to gain a fundamentally new insight into the fascinating but at the same time very mysterious solar atmosphere. I'm most proud to have such talented young scientists within my research group and department."

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Google Naptime

We've all heard about the perks for working at Google's head-office. One of their recent addition allows employees to catch some rest with technologically advanced MetroNap Energy Pods. Thousands of hours went into designing these easy-to-install nap stations. Pressure is taken off the cardiac system by elevating the feet, relaxing the back muscles, and slightly bending the knees. The sphere creates a semi-private atmosphere without completely enclosing the individual into a cave of claustrophobia. A music player with built in headphones mutes distractions from the outside world, and setting the timer wakes users with a series of lights and vibrations to avoid oversleeping.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Bike On Ink Cartridges

Recycle, Reuse, Ride! Australia's West MacDonnell National Park just built a staggering 17 km bike path completely out of recycled ink cartridges to connect Alice Springs and Simpsons Gap. This new biking route along with a second viewing platform at Ormiston Gorge are part of the Henderson Governments $8 million tourism stimulus package. The projects were both completed by local contractors at a low cost of $330,000.

Australian newspaper Centralian Advocate added:

Parks and Wildlife Minister Karl Hampton stated, "Every year more than 120,000 people visit the magnificent West MacDonnell National Park, and by investing in our parks we are able to ensure visitors have a unique experience while we protect our environment... In keeping with our government's commitment to sustainable development, the bridge is made from recycled plastic decking or Replas, saving landfill, trees and ensuring a longer life with less maintenance. Alice Springs has a great bike culture and with the upgrades complete, residents can enjoy a short ride after school or work or longer weekend explorations, while tourists can get to know and enjoy the natural environment around the town."

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Guatemala Sinkhole


Earlier this week a massive sinkhole opened up in Guatemala, which managed to suck up a three story building during the process. The hole, located in the dense downtown core of Guatemala City, is 30 meters across and 60 meters deep. This is the second major sinkhole in Guatemala to open up in the last three years.

A sinkhole is a naturally occurring cavity in the ground, frequently found in limestone bedrock, which is caused by water erosion as the liquid travels from the surface to the depths beneath. They often vary in size from less than a meter to several hundred meters both in diameter and depth. This hole in particular comes in the wake of Tropical Storm Agatha. The image above was released by the nation's own government to show the tremendous effects of the deadly storm. The video below (RussiaTV) shows footage of the sinkhole as well as some additional images: