Tuesday, March 19, 2013
Just the Facts?: Earthquakes Turn Water Into Gold -- The Truth Is Out There -- Cat Turns 27 Years Old
Earthquakes turn water into gold
Gold could be deposited almost instantaneously in the Earth's crust during earthquakes, say Australian researchers.
The researchers have found gold is formed when an earthquake widens a fluid-filled rock fracture, causing a drop in pressure, which in turn allows gold dissolved in the fluid to rapidly leach out.
Their study, reported in the journal Nature Geoscience, explains how the metal changes from a soluble state to concentrated deposits.
"[This process] may underpin the formation of up to 80 per cent of the world's gold deposits," they write.
Much of the world's gold is found in quartz veins that formed during periods of mountain building up to three billion years ago and was deposited by large volumes of water along deep, seismically active faults.
The veins were formed under fluctuating pressures during earthquakes, but until now, the magnitude of these pressure shifts and how they influence the formation of gold was unknown.
Dr. Dion Weatherley of the University of Queensland and Professor Richard Henley from the Australian National University, developed a mathematical model to see how different earthquake magnitudes affect fluid-filled rock fractures.
They found that a sudden drop in pressure in the fracture causes the fluid inside to expand and vaporise — a process known as flash vaporization.
"The change in the volume of the fracture causes a change in fluid pressure," explains Weatherley.
"The fluid becomes supersaturated at the low pressures and the various minerals that are dissolved will precipitate out very rapidly."
Different minerals are known to precipitate out of fluids at specific pressures.
Weatherley and Henley found the ability of minerals to dissolve out of the water grew quickly even for relatively small earthquakes.
While a single event may not deposit significant levels of gold, successive earthquakes in the same area can cause a build up of these deposits within the fracture eventually leading to economically viable gold concentrations, say the researchers.
The bulk of gold mined today has been found where deposits are exposed on or near the surface.
According to Weatherley, geologists believe they've explored the majority of the dry part of the planet, and now have to start looking for deposits which are hidden in deeper parts of the crust.
That requires more knowledge on the geological processes that have been occurring in that part of the world.
"When we know what forms a deposit, we can go looking for ancillary tell-tale signs of where those kind of mechanisms may have been occurring both in the recent past and through geological time," says Weatherley.
"This may assist in future gold exploration efforts." - CBC
The truth is out there: aliens visit to help, and use the loo
There have been many interesting presentations at the Mitchell Theatre over the years.
There was the Tom Keneally Anniversary Lecture and a talk on the building of the Harbour Bridge, and last month Peter FitzSimons spoke about his latest book, Eureka.
But the lecture scheduled at the Pitt Street venue next month is in a different realm.
Aliens. Tall, white ones, at that.
Charles Hall, a nuclear physicist, ex-military American weather specialist and author is touring Australia with his claims that the United States military has been in contact with an alien species for years.
He says the aliens would dress as humans and visit Las Vegas.
''In 1964, when I was a weather observer at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada, I witnessed interactions between the military and a group of mysterious tall, white, human-like extra-terrestrials,'' the Vietnam veteran said from his home in Albuquerque.
''Their craft are capable of travelling faster than the speed of light because Einstein was wrong about relativity.''
Mr Hall said no cameras were allowed at the site, which has since been wiped off the map.
When he arrived, a colleague had wanted to lock them in the weather station and not go to the other end of the building ''because that's where he had encountered them. There was a group of five, two men and three women, and they had come to go to the bathroom.
''When you encounter the 'tall whites' it's such a shock, you are not sure if you are looking at a ghost or an angel, or if you are dreaming,'' he said.
Mr Hall said he had contact with three types of aliens - the ''tall whites'' (about 2.5 metres tall), ''greys'' (with yellow/orange skin) and the ''Norwegians with 24 teeth'', who look like humans and speak English.
They were principally involved in technology transfers with the US military, and tall whites would dress like humans and go to shows at Caesar's Palace.
Mr Hall said he originally penned his experiences into a fictional book to disguise the identities of those involved - but what was written was true. He said US officials had kept it all quiet because people weren't ''emotionally ready'' to accept alien life forms.
Mariana Flynn, the president of UFO Research Centre NSW, believed Mr Hall had encountered aliens. ''The topic is a red rag to a bull to some people, particularly those in authority,'' she said.
The lecture and book signing is on April 6. - SMH
Atlantis, Alien Visitation and Genetic Manipulation
The Ancient Alien Question: A New Inquiry Into the Existence, Evidence, and Influence of Ancient Visitors
NYU student invents wound-closing goo
A brainy NYU student has cooked up a magic gel that he says can stop even heavy bleeding — an invention that could make routine bandages obsolete.
Joe Landolina, 20, an Ulster County native and NYU junior, says his Veti-Gel almost instantly closes and begins healing even major wounds to internal organs and key arteries.
“There’s really no way to quickly stop bleeding except to hold lots of gauze on a wound,” Landolina told The Post. “I thought if you could pour this gel into a wound, it would solidify and stop the bleeding.”
Landolina, who is simultaneously pursuing a bachelor’s degree in biomolecular and chemical engineering and a master’s in biomedical engineering, created the substance with Isaac Miller, a 2013 NYU grad.
The precocious entrepreneur first honed his scientific chops working at his grandparents’ winery, Baldwin Vineyards, in upstate Pine Bush. - NYPost
Penis Stealing 'On The Rise' In African Countryside
The economy is still in shambles, drones could be surveying your house any day now and to make matters worse, penis stealing is 'on the rise'.
Alternet's headline warns, "Penis Snatching on the Rise -- Africa’s Genital-Stealing Crime Wave Hits the Countryside."
The story comes from UC Berkley anthropologist Louisa Lombard, who writes in Pacific Standard Magazine that reports of penis theft, typically confined to urban areas in West and Central Africa, have now spread to Tiringoulou, a "peanut-growing hamlet" in the Central African Republic that's "so small and poor it barely has a market."
Though Lombard admits she has never witnessed someone's manhood getting snatched, she spoke with "several eyewitnesses" who assured her this crime is all too real.
Some thieves are out to cash in on the "illicit and lucrative trade in organs," residents told Lombard.
Reports of penis larceny are older than Christ.
Harper's traces the first accounts of penis disappearance to China around 300 b.c., "when the mortal dangers of suo-yang, or 'shrinking penis,” were briefly sketched in the Nei Ching, the Yellow Emperor’s Classic Text of Internal Medicine."
The last penis stealing incident to grab worldwide headlines also took place in China. In July, 2012, Fei Lin of Niqiao village was sleeping when thieves reportedly put a bag over his head and then cut off and took little Fei.
Police suspected the heist was carried out by the jealous husbands of women Lin was rumored to have slept with. - THP
27-Year-Old British Cat May Be The World's Oldest
On March 6, a British cat called Wadsworth celebrated his 27th birthday, possibly making him the world's oldest feline.
Waddy, as he is more commonly known, is named after the British beer. He has lived with owner Ann Munday in Bedfordshire, England, since 1986. She adopted the cat when he was just 4 weeks old and had apparently been thrown out by his previous owners for being too small.
"When I got him I think he must have been the runt of the litter, he’s got no claws on his back feet,” Munday told Bedford Today.
"He was very poorly and sick when we got him," she told BBC. "He was back and forth to the vets in the first few weeks, he was full of infection."
Gill Monsell, Waddy's vet, says that the cat is largely healthy with only a few old-age ailments like hyperthyroidism. "Mrs. Munday does a fantastic job of treating him and he is very stable on the medication."
‘I’ve always had cats, but he is an absolute dream," Munday told Metro. "He has been a fantastic companion since my husband died 13 years ago."
At 125 cat years, it's no surprise that Waddy has slowed his pace a little. Munday describes him as a "little old man" who mainly eats and sleeps.
It is likely that Waddy is the oldest cat in England and possibly in the world. However, the title of oldest cat ever goes to Creme Puff from Texas, who was 38 when she passed away in 2005. - THP