Tag Archives | Weather
Via TED Talks:
Artist and TED Fellow Nathalie Miebach takes weather data from massive storms and turns it into complex sculptures that embody the forces of nature and time. These sculptures then become musical scores for a string quartet to play.
The mysterious spheres of jelly are “not meteorological” in nature. The whole thing smacks of a 90s Nickelodeon game show gone horribly awry. Via BBC:
A man in Dorset has been left mystified after tiny blue spheres fell from the sky into his garden. Steve Hornsby said [they] came raining down late on Thursday afternoon during a hail storm.
He found about a dozen of the balls in his garden. He said: “[They're] difficult to pick up, I had to get a spoon and flick them into a jam jar.” The Met Office said the jelly-like substance was “not meteorological”.
Mr Hornsby, a former aircraft engineer, said: “The sky went a really dark yellow colour…As I walked outside to go to the garage there was an instant hail storm for a few seconds and I thought, ‘what’s that in the grass’?”
Walking around his garden he found many more blue spheres were scattered across the grass.
Today has been the coolest day all week in the Northeast of the US. The Midwest, Northeast and Southern parts of the country have been experiencing consecutive days of high temperatures and humidity which have contributed to many deaths throughout the country. What is the cause of this cantankerous heat and is it an indication of future affects of global warming? The National Geographic reports:
A stubborn high-pressure system is the culprit behind the dangerously high heat wave that’s been baking much of the U.S., experts say.
The high-pressure system—a large area of dense air—is being held in place by upper-level winds known as the jet stream. Within the system, dense air sinks and becomes warmer, and since warm air can hold more moisture than cooler air, there’s also very high humidity. (Learn more about Earth’s atmosphere.)
Stationary high-pressure systems aren’t unusual during the summer, according to Eli Jacks, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland.
The Telegraph says we may enter a short mini-Ice Age in the next decade due to low solar activity. Consider it Mother Nature giving us a temporary reprieve from global warming so that we have time to set things right:
Sunspot activity, which follows an 11-year cycle, is due to peak in 2013 after which it will start to wane slightly. But astronomers think the next upswing will be less intensive than normal, or could fail to happen at all. That could affect weather on Earth because low solar activity has been linked to low global temperatures in the past.
Three studies, presented at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society’s solar physics division, all point towards declining sunspot activity into the next decade.
Between 1645 and 1715 almost no sunspots were observed, a solar period which came to be called the Maunder Minimum. During those decades Europe suffered frequent unusually harsh winters, and the time was later termed the Little Ice Age.
TEHRAN — Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Thursday accused Western countries of devising plans to “cause drought” in the Islamic republic, as he inaugurated a dam in a central province.
“Western countries have designed plans to cause drought in certain areas of the world, including Iran,” the official IRNA news agency quoted Ahmadinejad as saying in the central city of Arak in Markazi province.
“According to reports on climate, whose accuracy has been verified, European countries are using special equipment to force clouds to dump” their water on their continent, he said.
By doing so, “they prevent rain clouds from reaching regional countries, including Iran,” Ahmadinejad charged. Iran has experienced several droughts in recent years.
Of course, due to dangerous levels of pollution and radiation, by 2022 we will venture outdoors only for very brief periods. BLDG BLOG reveals the sky-architecture of the future:
“Artificial clouds” driven by solar-powered engines might be deployed at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar to help keep the stadiums from overheating. Each cloud, as a short video hosted over at the BBC explains, “is constructed from an advanced, lightweight, and strong carbon-fiber material.”
The interior of the cloud is injected with helium gas to make it float. The cloud hovers like a helicopter and is remotely controlled. In this way, the cloud hovers over the football ground, shielding it from direct sunlight and providing a favorable climatic environment. The cloud is also programmed to continuously change its shielding position according to the prevailing east-to-west path of the sun.
After all, I suppose it makes sense that the next step in temporary event architecture will be a remote-controlled swarm of rearrangeable horizontal and vertical surfaces, forming ceilings, roofs, walls, floors, ramps, and stairways.
A bizarre incident in Scotland as a school briefly was trapped beneath deluge of worms falling from the sky. The Scotsman reports:
A PE class had to run for cover as it started raining worms.
Teacher David Crichton was leading a group of pupils playing football at Galashiels Academy when dozens of the invertebrates began plummeting from the sky. The 22 second-year boys had to abandon their lesson.
Mr. Crichton said the children had just completed their warm-up when they began to hear “soft thudding” on the ground. The class then looked to the cloudless sky – and saw worms falling on to them.
The teacher scooped up handfuls of the worms that had fallen from the sky as proof they had landed on his class. Mr. Crichton said he and his colleagues eventually found about 120 worms after checking the artificial football pitch and tennis courts.
Showers of worms falling from the heavens have been reported in the past.
Geologists have known for years that tectonic plates affect climate patterns. Now they say that the opposite is also true, finding that intensifying climate events can move tectonic plates. Using models based on known monsoonal and plate movement patterns, geologists say that the Indian Plate has accelerated by about 20% over the past 10 million years. “The significance of this finding lies in recognising for the first time that long-term climate changes have the potential to act as a force and influence the motion of tectonic plates,” Australian National University researcher Giampiero Iaffaldano told COSMOS.
The researchers plugged information from research on monsoonal patterns and the Indian Plate’s movement into a model, which indicated that the monsoonal erosion that has battered the eastern Himalaya Mountains for the past 10 million years erodes enough material to account for the plate’s counter-clockwise rotation. By gradually shaving off rocks from the eastern flank and decreasing crustal thickness, the monsoonal rains essentially lighten the load on the eastern part of the Indian Plate, causing the plate to actually turn (at geological speed).
Mason Inman writes on National Geographic:
The world has gotten stormier over the past two decades — and the reason is a mystery, a new study says.
In the past 20 years, winds have picked up around 5 percent on average.
Extremely strong winds caused by storms have increased even faster, jumping 10 percent over 20 years, according to the new analysis of global satellite data.
The study, the first to look at wind speeds across such a large swath of the planet, bolsters some earlier findings, according to study leader Ian Young, of the Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne, Australia.
“Some regional studies had found similar results, so we suspected there may be an increasing trend,” Young said.