I am delaying my posting about New Zealand to comment on a different kind of travel – a huge blip of energy-charged gas is travelling from the sun and should be reaching us at over 3 million kph today, Sunday, some time. http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/sun-shoots-a-fastball-at-earth-but-minimal-impact-expected-on-satellites-power-grid/2012/01/20/gIQA5KiBEQ_story.html?wpisrc=nl_headlines
No worries, mate, it’s not one of the biggest ever seen or ever expected. It’s the biggest since we experienced those three in August (and what happened in August? Nothing that I recall, except that I travelled safely to Australia with no delays or detours…oh, wait, that was a first…..). Next year will apparently be peak-ier, since the sun’s burping activities seem to go in 11 year cycles.
Hey, hey, hey, perhaps the Mayans were close enough. Perhaps this was the last trip out for the Kaapse Klopse. http://www.hayibo.com/desperate-capetonians-scan-mayan-calendar-for-destruction-of-minstrels/
Anyway, the most interesting part of the story, for me, is that there is a Orbital Debris Newsletter. http://www.orbitaldebris.jsc.nasa.gov/newsletter/pdfs/ODQNv16i1.pdf
Who knew? I think I will subscribe. Apparently high sunspot activity is GOOD for burning up junk we leave in outer space. Now that we have filled up all those landfills, I reckon that we just have time to drag up all the stuff that people can’t be bothered to refuse-reuse-recycle, to be burnt away in 2013.
Uh, oh, I just got further into the OD newsletter. If the sunspot doesn’t burn up the debris, the consequent changes in the earth’s atmosphere can cause space debris to fall back to earth. This does not sound like a Good Thing at all.
And if you don’t get round to the OD article “On the Probability of Random Debris Reentry Occurring on Land or Water”, which actually reads like a Hayibo spoof in its utter earnestness of spending thousands proving the obvious, then all I can say is…. Keep out of the swimming pool today, folks, hot as it may be.
No photos today. I haven’t taken any of outer space myself yet, and I’m taking SOPA and PIPA very seriously.