at T minus 3 hours and counting with good weather – how nifty.
Atlantis is on schedule for 2.20 pm launch today.
It is on the launch pad right this minute on the NASA channel.
Space shuttle set for Friday liftoff
Kennedy Space Center, Florida (CNN) — The Space Shuttle Atlantis is on schedule for a Friday afternoon liftoff from Kennedy Space Center in Florida, NASA said.
The commentator for NASA is telling about the fueling and whatnot – very cool.
Atlantis is set to launch at 2:20 p.m. EDT on May 14, delivering the Russian-built Mini Research Module to the Space Station.
› Shuttle Section | › Interactive Timeline | › TV Schedule | › Share Comments | › @NASA_Astronauts→
Atlantis’ Tanking Begins1 hour ago
The Space Shuttle Program Mission Management Team …
Now, the descriptions of all the toys and goodies going up to the space station and that it is the first time a Russian module will be taken up to the station?
Hmmmm….. very interesting – the astronauts are getting dressed out – they will be boarding at 11 am. –
132nd flight for the program? I’ll have to look that up.
They just ought to Endeavor going out for its mission in November – only two more left. The Atlantis had its first mission 25 years ago? Wow.
Now, they have a clip of the Atlantis and its history. Nifty.
April 13, 1985 – was brought online for its maiden voyage on October 3, 1985
Today is May 14, 2010 – there is a photo from satellite on the NASA site of the oil spill on May 11.
Date: 2010/131 – 05/11
|Pixel size: 1km | 500m | 250m|
18 :55 UTC
Oil slick in the Gulf of Mexico
on this page – is a bigger one – three days ago
The shape of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico continues to change with the movement of the waters. The latest NASA visible satellite image of the slick on May 11 at 18:55 UTC (2:55 p.m. EDT) resembles a swan. The satellite image was captured by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer Instrument that flies aboard NASA’s Aqua satellite. The oil slick appears as a dull gray on the water’s surface. Image Credit: NASA Goddard / MODIS Rapid Response Team Text Credit: NASA Goddard / Rob Gutro
Oil Spill Features
NASA Langley scientists made research flights over the Gulf of Mexico to investigate uses of satellites for monitoring the thickness and dispersal of oil spills and the oil’s impact on marine life.
NASA has mobilized its remote-sensing assets to help assess the spread and impact of the Deepwater Horizon BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico at the request of U.S. disaster response agencies.
April 29, 2010 – NASA photo of the spill found on the page linked below it –
April 25, 2010 image of the oil spill from NASA –
Oil Slick Spreads off Gulf Coast
NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this image of the Gulf of Mexico on April 25, 2010 using its Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument. With the Mississippi Delta on the left, the silvery swirling oil slick from the April 20 explosion and subsequent sinking of the Deepwater Horizon drilling platform is highly visible. The rig was located roughly 50 miles southeast of the coast of Louisiana.
The oil slick may be particularly obvious because it is occurring in the sunglint area, where the mirror-like reflection of the Sun off the water gives the Gulf of Mexico a washed-out look. Oil slicks are notoriously difficult to spot in natural-color (photo-like) satellite imagery because a thin sheen of oil only slightly darkens the already dark blue background of the ocean. Under unique viewing conditions, oil slicks can become visible in photo-like images, but usually, radar imagery is needed to clearly see a spill from space.
Image Credit: NASA/MODIS Rapid Response Team
Explosion, Leak at Gulf of Mexico Oil Well
SANCHEZ: They keep telling us they’re going to try something they think will work, it doesn’t work, and then they prepare to do something else.
MYERS: Rick, let me tell you about some of the other thing.
People are getting their hair cut because they are going to sprinkle the hair in the Gulf of Mexico because hair will absorb the oil. A company in Quebec is shredding peat moss because they can spread peat moss on the oil. It will absorb the oil, not absorb water. It’s hydrophobic, so it’s not going to wet, but it’s going to absorb all the oil. Then how do you pick it up?
MYERS: They are going to put hay on the beaches. There are so many other things they’re going to try.
SANCHEZ: Here’s the other problem. BP to a certain extent is doing some of this. They’re saying, yes, it’s our oil, but it wasn’t our oil rig and somebody else was processing the lines that were coming out of there.
(out of order)
MYERS: Well, I think that that was his way of saying, I’m not taking the fifth, but I — yes, I think he just didn’t want to say yes. And I don’t know why just yes, no, put question mark on the one.
But that’s OK. You know what? The shrimping industry will be affected for a very long time, and he didn’t want to be able to say, no, we’re not pay this for — you don’t want to say, we’re going to pay for 25 years.
SANCHEZ: Bottom line, this is a stalemate, really. We have oil leaking in the Gulf.
SANCHEZ: But why are they being asked now? And any good, self- respecting journalist and any good, self-respecting lawmaker and any good, self-respecting agency director who’s responsible for this type of story should be kicking themselves in the butt right now and saying, why didn’t I think of this three, four years ago, when I saw them putting these wells in?
SANCHEZ: Because this happens to us all the time in this country.
MYERS: It has not — this is the first one that’s failed like this. This is the problem. Had we had one that failed that didn’t put down four million gallons of oil already and they could have fixed it, then they would have had a go-to plan.
SANCHEZ: But this is one of the only ones that’s 5,000 feet down. That’s what makes the difference.
MYERS: No, no, no, no, no.
SANCHEZ: Well, the guy told us yesterday, he said, yes, we have got a few who are more deep, but this is about as deep as it gets for these guys.
MYERS: Well, no, Chevron has them deeper. There are — this is not…
SANCHEZ: This close to the Gulf?
MYERS: Absolutely, in the Gulf, absolutely. This is not the only rodeo out there. This may not be the only problem out there.
(CROSSTALK) SANCHEZ: And how long before Chevron has this kind of problem?
MYERS: This may not be the only blowout preventer that doesn’t blowout-prevent.
(then later on the same show – same day – a ways on into the show – )
SANCHEZ: Yes. That’s a good point. Great story.
BALDWIN: And I brought you some souvenirs.
SANCHEZ: Oh, this is from your trip.
Thank you, Craig.
So, this is the actual oil. You know, we’ve seen the video down along the Gulf.
I went out to the Chandeleur Islands a couple of days ago, and I scooped up a big — there’s my arm scooping up the mess. This is the bottle.
BALDWIN: That is the oily water. And we have since had it tested by a chemical lab in Ocean Springs, Mississippi, and this is what I got. SANCHEZ: What is this?
BALDWIN: That is the extracted oil. And the chemist told me —
SANCHEZ: So this is the water?
BALDWIN: This is the oily water. Through an extraction process, they produced that tiny vial of oil.
SANCHEZ: Turn it around.
BALDWIN: And he told me of all the samples he had gathered thus far, this is the most potent sample. Brought it in for you.
SANCHEZ: This is the actual oil.
BALDWIN: That is the oil.
You know, we were talking to some ship captains, and I think they were sort of hoping that it was — oh, it smells.
SANCHEZ: Oh! Oh! Oh!
BALDWIN: It smells like dead fish, doesn’t it? Yes.
SANCHEZ: Oh, my gosh!
BALDWIN: But you know what? When I was out there and I was scooping up —
SANCHEZ: Craig, come here. No, come here. Craig, come here.
BALDWIN: Poor Craig. This is what you get when you work on the Rick Sanchez show.
SANCHEZ: Can you believe that? I have never in all my life —
BALDWIN: Yes. But it doesn’t smell like oil. It just smells rank, but it’s not oil.
SANCHEZ: No, that won’t affect the tourism industry.
BALDWIN: There you go. That’s my gift to you, sir.
SANCHEZ: Wow! Rancid!
Here, smell this. Smell this.
BALDWIN: Oh, Chad.
CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: What is that? This is the light sweet?
MYERS: Oh, my gosh. Dude, that is a bad movie. That is a bad movie.
SANCHEZ: Have a sip.
BALDWIN: We’re getting wrapped.
SANCHEZ: Wow. Oh!
MYERS: Oh, done.
BALDWIN: On that note —
BALDWIN: Something’s fishy in here. I’m leaving. Bye.
SANCHEZ: Thank you. Good stuff. Appreciate it.
MYERS: Oh, man. That was terrible.
(I popped that in there because I’ve just been meaning to go and get it – to share it. But, the video is even better, couldn’t find it right off but it’s on there somewhere – maybe they will play it again. That was good tv, my note)
* Found one more –
Projection for May 14, 2010 (from NOAA site)
24 Hour Trajectory Map: Jump down to Current Trajectory Maps on this page for full-sized versions.
Response to date
- Total response vessels: 526
- Containment boom deployed: over 1.1 million feet
- Containment boom available: over 300,000 feet
- Sorbent boom deployed: over 320,000 feet
- Sorbent boom available: over 850,000 feet
- Boom deployed: over 1.4 million feet (regular plus sorbent and fire boom)
- Boom available: over 1 million feet (regular plus sorbent and fire boom)
- Oily water recovered: more than 5 million gallons
- Dispersant used: over 475,000 gallons
- Dispersant available: more than 215,000 gallons
- Overall personnel responding: more than 13,000
NOAA’s Damage Assessment Remediation and Restoration Program (DARRP) is conducting a Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA). From past experience, NOAA is concerned about oil impacts to fish, shellfish, marine mammals, turtles, birds and other sensitive resources, as well as their habitats, including wetlands, mudflats, beaches, bottom sediments and the water column. Any lost uses of these resources, for example, fishery and beach closures, will also be evaluated. The focus currently is to assemble existing data on resources and their habitats and collect baseline (pre-spill impact) data. Data on oiled resources and habitats are also being collected.
Oil clean up technologies ‘primitive,’ experts say
(CNN) — Oil industry experts said there is no sure-fire way to stop the massive amount of oil gushing into the Gulf of Mexico.
If there were, BP wouldn’t still be grasping for a solution.
“That’s because pollution cleanup technology is primitive,” said Robert Bea, a University of California-Berkeley professor who directs the university’s Center for Catastrophic Risk Management. He worked for decades as a risk assessor to oil companies, including BP in the 1990s.
The science of cleaning up oil spills has remained largely the same since the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster, said Bea, who worked on that 11-million-gallon spill in Prince William Sound that blackened 1,500 miles of Alaska’s coastline.
Meanwhile, a Coast Guard effort to mitigate effects of the slick by using what a spokesman called a “historically proven technique” of burning the oil and sending the resulting smoke and soot out to sea proved less effective than was hoped. BP has been using using a chemical dispersant, Corexit, to try to break up the oil. The substance was synthesized by Exxon and has been the industry’s go-to dispersant for years, Bea said.
It dilutes oil the way soap breaks up dirt on the body. However Corexit, whose makeup isn’t disclosed by its manufacturer because of trade secrets, could be extremely toxic in large quantities, Bea said.
“We [in the oil industry] would always say, ‘If you touch it, smell it, breathe it, eat it, you better see a doctor quick,” he said. “That’s a quick tip to me that my friends, the bluefin tuna, are going to be just as sensitive. The victims of this disaster will be aquatic life.”
Corexit 9500 includes petroleum distillates, propylene glycol and a proprietary organic sulfonic salt and can cause eye or skin irritation with prolonged contact, according to its material data safety sheet. The document warns that “repeated or prolonged exposure may irritate the respiratory tract.”
( . . . )
Ed Overton, a Louisiana State University environmental sciences professor, agrees with Bea that pollution cleanup technology is woefully behind the times.
“Testing has for years been not as sophisticated” within the oil industry as he and other environmental scientists would like, Overton said. A wave pool in Leonardo, New Jersey, is used to test the effectiveness of dispersants. The pool is 203 meters long by 20 meters wide by 3.4 meters deep, and is filled with 2.6 million gallons of saltwater.
“They can spray oil on the dispersants and measure how much gets into the water,” Overton said. “But at best, that’s still a fairly crude way to test the effectiveness of these chemicals because it’s done under one set of wave conditions.”
Rep. Lois Capps pointed to a document provided by Transocean stating that floating booms used to clean up oil spills only contain about 15 percent of the oil, a rate that has not improved since a Union Oil spill in 1969 off Santa Barbara, California — in Capps’ Congressional district — released about 200,000 gallons of crude over a 10-day period.
Capps asked oil executives why the technologies haven’t improved if “the technologies have been perfected to get down there and [to get oil]. …Why was there not equivalent technology developed to clean up after a spill, whether a small spill or a huge spill, at the very same time, using some of the profits that have been generated in each of the companies that you represent?”
(you’d have to read this to believe it – the oil industry response is on this page – go see it and I’m sure its on the video clips of the hearing in Congress over on CSPAN – it would be funny, if it weren’t so pathetic and has caused fortunes to be lost and grotesque aberrations of damage to be done over such vast areas – not only in the Gulf of Mexico but elsewhere too. People are under the mistaken impression that this has never happened before or lately and that’s just not true, my note)
Deepwater Horizon Rig Disaster Threatens Drilling (Update1)
By Peter Coy and Stanley Reed
May 7 (Bloomberg)
Until now, Gulf oil production had been expanding, with serious spills rare. Catastrophic accidents had been relegated to history by such gear as “blowout preventers” designed to shut off wells when pressures get out of control.
These valves and shears were the last line of defense. The federal Minerals Management Service, which regulates offshore oil and gas production and collects reports on spills as small as a single barrel, was so confident of the system that it exempted BP from filing an environmental-impact statement for the Macondo (Deepwater Horizon) operation.
The MMS commissioned studies on creative ways to cope with massive well blowouts and never implemented them. It promulgated rules and allowed the oil industry to obey them on a voluntary basis. “It turns out, by the way, that oil rigs today generally don’t cause spills,” Obama said on April 2. “They are technologically very advanced.”
This isn’t exactly a fresh idea: In 1979, Brown & Root lowered a 40-foot-wide “steel sombrero” over the blowing Ixtoc I well in the Bay of Campeche, Mexico, which spilled 35 million barrels before the sombrero helped stanch the flow. ( – the spill being capped date in one source gave started in 1979, capped in 1980 – I don’t think that was Dec and Jan – and the 35 million barrels estimate could very well be in the low-ball range knowing how they’ve been going about it, my note – cd9)
Over the years, researchers funded by the MMS have proposed a variety of ideas for coping with well blowouts; few have gotten past the drawing board.
In 1985, Brown & Root recommended that an oil tanker be retrofitted to collect huge volumes of oil and seawater funneled from a blown well and to pump the liquid into separating tanks. Estimated cost: $59 million.
Without commenting on the merits of that particular idea, industry consultant Robert Peterson said it’s common for the industry to neglect promising innovations.
Lab to Application
“The transfer of the technology from the lab to a commercial application is where you see the highest mortality rate in terms of good ideas,” said Peterson, a Houston-based oil and gas expert at Charles River Associates. A spokesman for the Minerals Management Service did not respond to questions about past research.
The MMS’s own statisticians have never flagged the possibility of a serious spill. By design, the department’s Oil- Spill Risk Analysis model focuses on the likely frequency of spills rather than how big one might get. Projecting from the history of small spills over the past several decades, the MMS in 2007 predicted five spills of 10,000 barrels or more per 100 billion barrels of oil produced.
( . . . )
The routine spills that the MMS used to calibrate its prediction model “have no bearing on dealing with major spills, predicting their frequency, or getting ready for them,” said Zvi Ziegler, a mathematician at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa, Israel. The MMS press office did not return calls asking about the agency’s statistical methodology.
Atlantis and the STS-132 crew will deliver an Integrated Cargo Carrier and a Russian-built Mini Research Module to the International Space Station.
05.13.10 – Media are invited to cover the Lunabotics Mining Competition, May 27-28 at the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame near NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, Fla.
current info about Gulf of Mexico conditions
Dr. Larry Robinson Confirmed as Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
May 7, 2010
Dr. Larry Robinson, confirmed as Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. (Credit: FAMU)
The U.S. Senate confirmed Dr. Larry Robinson by unanimous consent Thursday to serve as assistant secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Robinson will help guide policy and program direction for NOAA’s conservation, protection and resource management priorities.
NOAA helps protect, restore, and manage the use of ocean, coastal and Great Lakes’ resources through an ecosystem-based approach to management.
“Protecting valuable coastal ecosystems and marine life while promoting resilient coastal communities is critical to the economic well-being and health of the nation,” U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke said. “Dr. Robinson has broad, interdisciplinary scientific expertise in marine and coastal ecosystems and understands how they contribute to economic and societal health. His proven capability as a visionary leader and experience integrating many complex program objectives will advance NOAA’s efforts to ensure the health and vitality of coastal communities and the resources on which they depend.”
In his new position, Robinson will support and manage NOAA’s coastal and marine programs, including marine sanctuaries for preserving areas of special national significance, fisheries management to sustain economic prosperity, and nautical charts for safe navigation. He will also support NOAA’s participation as a lead agency in President Obama’s Ocean Policy Task Force.
“Once he is sworn in next week, Dr. Robinson will go to the Gulf Coast, where he will help coordinate NOAA’s scientific resources throughout the region,” said Jane Lubchenco, Ph.D., under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA Administrator. “With a background in coastal resource management and the environmental sciences, as well as his personal familiarity with the region’s ecosystems and communities, he will significantly further the federal government’s response to the spill’s effects.”
“Having spent so many years working on ocean and coastal ecosystem issues, I am excited to be joining NOAA at this dynamic and challenging time,” said Dr. Robinson. “As we confront climate change and other threats to our coastal communities, I look forward to helping develop and implement national ocean policy, and working with fishing communities and councils around the country to effectively manage our valuable fisheries. There is so much important work to be done that benefits the economy, the environment and our communities.”
About Dr. Larry Robinson
Dr. Larry Robinson was the vice president for research and a professor in the Environmental Sciences Institute at Florida A&M University (FAMU). Since 2001, he has served as director of the NOAA Environmental Cooperative Science Center (ECSC) headquartered at FAMU, which consists of a broad, multi-institutional consortium of predominantly minority-serving institutions. ECSC’s multifaceted program has made a significant contribution to the promotion of diversity in the scientific workforce — especially within NOAA — due, in large part, to Dr. Robinson’s outstanding leadership.
Between 1984 and 1997, Dr. Robinson served as a research scientist and a group leader at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. His work there included detection and assessment of special nuclear materials and application of nuclear methods in nonproliferation, environmental science, forensic science and the assessment of high purity materials. From 1997 to 2003, Dr. Robinson directed FAMU’s Environmental Sciences Institute where he led efforts to establish bachelor and doctoral degree programs. In 2007, he became the first African-American to serve as the science advisor to the United States Department of Agriculture’s Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service.
Dr. Robinson graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Memphis State University in 1979, and earned a doctorate in nuclear chemistry from Washington University in St. Louis in 1984.
NOAA understands and predicts changes in the Earth’s environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and conserves and manages our coastal and marine resources. Visit us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/usnoaagov
Japan’s space program faces many challenges
The Yomiuri Shimbun
Publication Date : 23-04-2010
Astronaut Naoko Yamazaki has returned to Earth after completing her mission at the International Space Station.
Yamazaki is the first Japanese mother to have gone into space. After she returned, she was reunited with her husband and daughter, who supported her from Earth while she was on her 15-day mission aboard the space shuttle Discovery. We would like to thank Yamazaki for her sterling efforts.
The space shuttle fleet, which has been in service for about 30 years, will be retired this year. The latest flight was the last to carry a Japanese astronaut into space.
She even managed to find the time to put on a kimono and play the koto while she was in orbit.
Calls for review growing
What does Japan hope to achieve in space? Japan has long considered its involvement in the international partnership behind the ISS to be a central pillar of its manned space activity. But recently, calls for a review of this policy have been getting louder.
A typical example is the proposal compiled this week by a panel of experts for Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Minister Seiji Maehara, who is in charge of space development. The panel recommended the government reexamine the benefits of the current space development program.
Japan has attached great importance to being part of the international team involved with the ISS, primarily because it is more efficient–in both money and time–than singlehandedly developing a manned craft for space exploration. The government believed this strategy would provide valuable experience in space activities.
MODIS Today: USA Composite – May 13, 2010 (133)
(yesterdays picture of the US and clouds – including the Gulf of Mexico)
Goodies from the European Space Agency –
wallpapers and calendars for the computer with nifty space stuff on them.
<img src=”http://www.esa.int/export/dmmg/lview1.gif” alt=”view” width=”34″ height=”16″
WallpaperMay 2010 – Wallpaper
(check all the pages listed at the bottom of the images)
My Note –
The Space Shuttle Atlantis crew is being show getting seated in the shuttle cockpit – on the NASA channel with them getting ready to go – way cool – very nifty – happening right now.
My Note after the launch, etc. –
Well, I watched the astronauts get into the capsule and get strapped in. I did get to see the two pilots in the front get out the flatboard mirror and show off their faces with big smiles and a thumbs up. I was all nice and snuggly under my cotton blanket with the fan blowing a nice cool breeze over me to watch the launch and then fell asleep and missed it. – And, missed it. I can’t believe it but I did.
And, then I woke up the moment the briefing started. I got to hear the very first questions and grabbed my cards to take notes, then got up and went into the other room, watched the entire briefing and took notes. But, I missed the launch. I’m still waiting to see it in a clip on CNN right now.
I did just get to see the story about the oil spill on Wolf Blitzer (CNN) and that clip of President Obama talking about the oil spill debacle which I had waited for all morning and missed too – when it was happening, despite channel surfing between news, the space shuttle launch and channel 30’s CSPAN broadcast. Oh well. That’s the way it is sometimes. I was catching a catnap despite my best efforts and then work called and woke me in time to catch the briefing – which was the last briefing for the launch of the Atlantis, but more importantly, was a frank and honest discussion of the future space program.
The questions asked were amazing and the answers were a little disappointing, not because they weren’t good – but because of the finality of what they know about it and the questionable future of low-orbit manned space flight. There had always been the promise that the space shuttle would be the manned space flight option that would take all of us into space to see it at a rate that most everybody could afford similar to air travel. And, it just never did that.
In the James Bond feature, Moonraker, there is a scene with the couples riding in the bay of the space shuttle as if it is an airliner and that was always the dream of it going back to its beginnings when artists’ renderings were made to look that way of its potential. But, that never happened.
And now the world’s hopes for manned space flight of a similar nature to the space shuttle rely upon the US soil and its commercial efforts to provide the same thing effectively, efficiently, safely despite not being a mature program and successfully. –
It seems pretty scary and if-fy to me. But, then – the greatest thing I noticed about the space shuttle Atlantis on the launch pad, was how scary that looked as raggedy as it is now with more travel time and distance and stresses than most ships at sea are allowed to tolerate before being replaced. Anyway, that’s what I thought as I found myself saying another prayer for the astronauts to get back safely, just in case they needed an extra one.
When I said “and then work called and woke me,” in the text above – I meant that a part of my work called to me and work woke me from a sound sleep the moment that the space shuttle after launch briefing, started. I don’t work, in anybody’s estimation, because there isn’t pay coming to me for what I do – at least there hasn’t been thus far and consequently, it doesn’t count as work. But, it is my work and when the most critical things are happening that involve it, there is a call inside that I just can’t avoid and don’t know that I would want to ignore, anyway.
There is obviously (and it was said, too), a profound discouragement for all the NASA personnel that have conscientiously devoted their lives, the best of their minds and talents, along with their best efforts to the space shuttle program that it would be fruitful, safe and magnificent. They succeeded to make it just that way, too. And, now just about the time they’ve figured out what might go awry such that it can be fixed before it happens because of the maturity of the program and its support teams – the fleet is being retired.
That is hard to fathom. I’ve known it for awhile – probably for longer than most people because it was of interest to me every one of the times the program was on the budget chopping block one more time. But, then it is time to redistribute those talents and develop new programs of manned space flight, new vehicle configurations, new systems to propel them more safely and effectively (and more economically, in all likelihood), and to incorporate the new things that are known today that were not know when it was originally developed.
There have cohesively evolved into new ways of approaching the systems, many new breakthroughs and understandings that must be involved in the development of a manned space flight system from the ground up, for its vehicles and for its back-up support systems. I understand that. It is just a shame to see what we’ve already produced so elegantly and marvelously go by the wayside before moving forward with the next generation of NASA and international space programs’ engineering concepts.
my note – cricketdiane
My Other Note –
About the oil spill coverage that I’ve seen over the last little bit on CNN – on Rick’s List and then on Wolf Blitzer – including the clip of President Obama’s statement and noticeable aggravation about it – I want to say this.
In the immediate hours following the video of the oil gushing out of the pipe on the seabed released by BP, I think it was later the same night – a few hours later – there was a statement circulating the news broadcasts by a BP executive or expert that said the clip showing a mix of natural gas release and crude oil meant less crude oil was being released than they had projected.
I know that is a long sentence, however – I’m trying to say that it is “staged” in a sense. The BP group picked which video clip to release. They picked one that specifically showed a momentary release of methane along with a changeover during those 30 seconds, to the crude oil cloud thrusting out of the pipe. It is not necessarily indicative of what flow rates have been coming out of the pipe because they (at BP), wouldn’t have the incentive (apparently) to release a clear indication if the flow was even greater than that and more cohesively and constantly crude oil in every other video clip of it.
So, first they picked the video clip to release. They chose which one. The basis of their choice was that which could be projected later in the media as an indication (because of the mix of methane gushing out in the clip at one point), of a lower volume of curdling clouds of crude oil than what is true, whatever that is. Then, a few hours later – a prepared public relations effort was made to get it into the media that the indicator of importance was the release and mix of natural gas included in the gushing oil video clip. And, then they made sure that analysis of whomever it was – got out to all the stations, broadcasters and media outlets online with favorite viral efficiency.
Boy, were they in for a surprise.
The other thing I noticed was the degree to which those in the oil industry stumbled over their words when asked about the rate of flow being estimated at 70,000 – 1,200,000 barrels a day – by scientists and mathematically inclined engineers. They not only stumble when speaking their answers about it, but they didn’t face the person they were answering from the point at which they are answering about that.
There is one of those kinds of things that sticks in my mind, that question of how is it possible for me to know a rate of flow volume equation, Professor Wereley of Purdue University knows a common method to equate the volume and make a very accurate estimation of that volume – the engineering, science, chemistry, oceanography, fluid mechanics, civil engineering, nautical engineering, mathematics and aeronautic engineering groups in every university, high school, college, technical school, and business involved in these things knows of these equations.
So, how is it that BP and their engineers could possibly not know how to do that, not have the equipment and software to make those calculations, not own a slide rule to make those calculations – and tell us there is no known way to do that? If it is to be believed – any of us can look up on wikipedia how to do it, but BP execs and engineering groups CAN’T BE EXPECTED to get it right or know that exists anywhere in the world.
– cricketdiane, 05-14-10
I have a thermodynamics book around here somewhere underfoot that proves they are lying. Any fluid dynamics concept in use before the mass availability of computers – including those used around the turn of the century for the determination of volumes in steam dynamics, heat and temp, pressure and volume equations generally used at the time for science and engineering show the manners in which (now with computers) mass and volumes are found by mechanically estimated equations. (That’s not mechanically as a result of using a computer or a slide rule, in fact – it is a mechanically produced equation quantity based on the known 2-dimensional components of a system, a fluid, a pressure, a gas, a strong effluent, a steam, a propulsion process for getting a train or old-fashioned ocean liner down the “road,” so to speak.) Who the hell do they think they are?
The part that I wrote about the slide rule insinuating that there was a time predating it – may not be true. To hear my Dad tell it, the slide rule came over on the boat with Noah.
Not able to calculate volume because it is in two-dimensional image fields, that has been the best belly laugh I’ve had in a long time. That is so good.
The idea of environmental policy for the oil industry and BP, TransOcean, Halliburton and other petroleum industry professionals in the United States is apparently, “Ocean – big place.”
Who are these people?
Is their pr department doing their engineering and their engineering department being pressed into public relations instead of outlandish things like equations and engineering? Design considerations aside, are these technologies they are using genuinely the identical ones and the same mitigation techniques in use that predated the Exxon Valdez accident? Are the same 1985 plans in place with very little upgrades despite all the things that have been known and studied, designed and researched, and discovered since then? And, that being the truth, despite generations of government regulating authorities being turned over and several career generations of employees in the oil industries and despite all the other accidents and horrors that have been happening throughout this time from the petroleum industry and its allied contractors? I don’t get that part. How is that even possible?
Okay, I get stuck on stupid, too. But to that extent, for that long, about that many things in an industry that makes the profits and has the resources that they do? Even I know better than that as a possibility of the truth. They have been making choices to continue doing it this way even when they did know better and each time reality reached up and bit them on the ass about doing it that way – they hired lawyers, lobbyists, attended legislative committee hearings about it with answers delineated by public relations specialists and attorneys, and they utilized mass perception campaigns through those public relations companies to mask the truth about the ways they were doing it and the dangers of it.
There have been people making statements on some of the blogs and comments that I’ve seen who still believe there have been no accidents since the Exxon Valdez spill, not just of that magnitude – but not at all. How is that possible? To me, that is indicative of the perception management campaign over the course of this time that has been, if not blatantly hiding the truth, then certainly framing it falsely and intentionally in the minds of the American people, and our Legislators, and our government officials, and our State government decision-makers. That is …. there are not words for it.
Some jackass the other day said that there were not outcries in the public when the oil strikes of Oklahoma and Texas and elsewhere on the lands of the United States made ecological and communal disasters. Well, that’s just not true either. There were outcries. They were gonna hang some of those sons of a bitches that fouled up their lands and air and killed their cattle and destroyed the water in their wells. They were getting their guns and a rope to hang em.
And there was a story on the history channel or one of those cable stations about the Rockefellers of Standard Oil fame, wasn’t it – and old man Rockefeller took the unusual idea from a public relations man about giving out dimes to children in his older years to change the public’s opinion of him and of what he had done. That wasn’t because of all the money he had. It wasn’t because of his family’s holdings or use of their power and money and prestige. It was because people were pissed off at the ways they did it and the damages that it caused doing it that way.
It is a wonder to me that the people whose communities were fouled and family farms made uninhabitable and whose businesses were destroyed by a lot of the oil industry practices didn’t hang more of them. But, then as now – the big companies and those who are doing these foul things know that most people won’t get up and go get a rope and hang their sorry asses for doing it. Most people won’t even get up and get mad about it until its too late to fix anything about it and that’s okay.
But these who would take advantage of us – know that, and use it in their favor to go farther than is rational, to wander back and forth over the line of criminality and evil without conscience or regard, and don’t mind fouling, destroying, killing or otherwise decimating resources that don’t belong to them – including the land, the air, the ocean, the rivers, the wildlife, the economy, people’s lives, or whatever else the hell it is. That is the bigger problem, not that there isn’t retribution of some kind sooner or later – but rather that the “not doing it that way in the first place” part is missing.
At some point recently – over the last twenty years more or less, corporate entities were given the same rights as if they are an individual – as guaranteed by our Constitution. But, the problem with that is – many corporate entities are not given to the considerations of conscience that an identity which is an individual has (most of the time.) That is a definite problem.
These corporates act as an entity in a manner and process that can only be called anti-social and psychotic. They don’t mind literally killing people in their employment through their refusal to adhere to the most common sense and base level of safety measures. They don’t mind destroying, maiming, permanently harming, disabling, discrediting, undermining, decimating, killing permanently damaging or doing anything else that is in the immediate advantage they want to gain.
That isn’t an entity or (if it were a person), that is healthy, rational, sensible, intelligent, intelligently operated, conscientious, or in fact, sane. That is psychotic. As in corporate tyrant that is psychotic, unprincipled, overly driven by greed to the exclusion of all other rational conditions or reasonable considerations, and unfettered by accountability, responsibility, consequences or dire results in any practical sense – that is genuinely psychotic and dangerous.
It is pervasive in a multitude of industrial and financial giant corporations as everyone has been realizing at every stage of this process as the scales have fallen from our eyes, our ears and from our minds. But, still there are some that listen to the threats that these industries make which say they will take their toys and our money – and go somewhere else. They threaten to gouge us for our own resources to be available to us whether it is petroleum or hedge funds or banks or chemical pesticide industries or whatever it is, and they threaten to take their financial support from our legislators, states and elected decision-makers, as well as from our academics that support them.
And, they threaten to destroy our livelihoods by taking their businesses elsewhere causing the sure suffering of unemployment and some communities’ destitution. And, they threaten to stick the stock holders and not have the profits to share the dividends that had been enjoyed before the “safety measures” had to be endured by their corporate interests and used in their facilities.
They, in this case – are corporations acting in manners, processes and with decision-making that can only be considered as psychotic. And it is the truth, that it is not the only way to do it. There were company interests that could profit admirably with actions that were loyal to people’s interests affected by them, too – whether employees, or communities surrounding their plants, or future generations that would either endure or enjoy the fruits and harvests of their corporate activities. I take it that the business community doesn’t think so. Interests that run contrary to their own – are demised, regardless of that demise being people’s deaths resulting or that demise being both economic and every kind of environmental damage being caused without challenge or repair.
But, why should they listen to me? Who am I to say something? I don’t have college degrees with fifteen letters after my name. I didn’t go to Harvard business school, or Yale, or Princeton or MIT. I don’t have enough greed for money maybe to be healthy about it, although I am not without greed for knowledge and other things at times. Who am I for them to listen to me about it? What could I possibly know? But, then – wait a minute.
Are their decisions affecting me? Yes.
Are their actions impacting me (and sometimes in very negative ways)?
Have their corporate choices taken from me that which I cannot replace and taken from my family and my children those things which didn’t belong to the corporation but to all of us?
Have their corporate interests served to permanently destroy things or have very nearly destroyed things that are valued by me and that I have a right to enjoy?
Can I fix what they have done and restore it to its rightful place and condition?
Maybe together we can. Maybe not, whether doing it together or not – we may not ever be able to do anything to fix it, regardless of how much we do.
Have these corporations left damages, dangers and disasters that I, my children, my family, my communities and my nation must now endure – as far as the eye can see or the mind know?
Yes, definitely and in every practical sense – yes – day in and day out, absolutely, Yes.
Ha – that answers the question then. I’m not going to waste a rope or a perfectly good bullet on anybody that costs more than a roll of toilet paper. And that isn’t because I’m poor – its because I’m rational.
And, in every rational sense – I do have the right, the credentials, the expertise, and the knowledge base adequate to say something accurate and true about these things.
I do have the informational resources available to be part of the solutions. And, I do have the vested interest in it that even these corporate entities do not have.
So, the get a rope thing aside, I’m getting out my encyclopedia and throwing the book at these sons of bitches.
Rational or not – I choose to believe that together, we can restore these things that the corporations, including the oil industries and the financial industries and others, have destroyed in this world and in our nation. I do choose to believe that and act on it.
And, I do it for one reason basically. There was a time in my life when bad things had happened that were cruel and wrong to an extreme. I kept asking and asking everyone I could get to stand still – why did they do this, why did they do this? Finally, someone said to me, “they did it because they can.”
Well, I can too, then. I can choose to do good things – just cause I can, and for no other consideration or excuse or good reason or rationale. And, further, if the “bad guys” can do things just because they can, then I can do good and great things, just because I can. And, that’s what I’m going to engage myself in doing.
I hope you will join me in these efforts wherever you are and with what is at hand – grab a dictionary, grab an encyclopedia, figure out something that works, tell somebody about things you’ve thought about that could work, jump in their and help fix it from wherever you are with whatever you’ve got.
Let’s willingly suspend doubt and disbelief about being as good as or not as good as the experts in any respect and jump in there with the sons of bitches to get some solutions that work on these substantial and dangerous problems we face as a nation. Even I can take a child’s bathtub submarine toy and explain what happens when you put a straw into a gushing stream of fluid and gas mixed together thrusting out of a confined opening. That isn’t rocket science.
Even I can open a science book, an encyclopedia, wikipedia, websites, books on fluid thermodynamics or physics sites on the internet and see that there exists equations to measure adequately and compute the flow of damn near anything, – and that it can be done in several “dimensions” – including two.
– cricketdiane, 05-14-10
on the way to other things – be back in awhile (cd9)