China claims major energy breakthrough with ‘flammable ice’

May 19, 2017 by  
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China has claimed a major energy breakthrough, but its eco credentials are dubious at best. Researchers say they managed to extract gas from flammable ice in the South China Sea. A frozen mix of natural gas and water known as methane hydrates, the ‘breakthrough’ is expected to revolutionize the future of energy . We’re not sure that’s a good idea. Flammable ice could be our planet’s final great source of carbon-based fuel , according to the BBC. Vast deposits can be found under essentially every ocean. But it’s incredibly difficult to extract gas from flammable ice – in part because it catches fire so easily – a lighter held up next to the ice will do the trick. Related: Japan Successfully Taps ‘Flammable Ice’ as an Energy Source for the First Time Japan so far has led the way in working to mine the potential energy source, but China’s latest efforts could mark a milestone on the path to extracting gas from methane hydrates. Chinese media said the country had succeeded in extracting an average of 16,000 cubic meters of gas per day in the South China Sea. Scientist Praveen Linga of the National University of Singapore told the BBC, “Compared with the results we have seen from Japanese research, the Chinese scientists have managed to extract much more gas in their efforts. So in that sense it is indeed a major step towards making gas extraction from methane hydrates viable.” But Linga warns extraction must be done carefully. Methane could escape from the methane hydrates during extraction, which could harm the planet as methane holds greater potential to affect climate change than carbon dioxide, according to the BBC. It’s hard to tell if flammable ice extraction will fall into the pitfalls of the oil and gas industry, with greed taking precedence over our planet. The BBC also described flammable ice as a very energy intensive source of fuel. Linga says there’s still a long way to go, and he said realistic commercial options might be ready in 2025 at the earliest. Via the BBC Images via William Winters, USGS and U.S. Geological Survey on Flickr

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China claims major energy breakthrough with ‘flammable ice’

Blackbodys luminous LED FIRE RING turns head at London Design 2016

September 26, 2016 by  
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There is a lot to soak in at the London Design Festival , yet the sparkling FIRE RING display by Blackbody catches the eye immediately. Luminous OLED lights of varying colors hang delicately from overhead, mimicking the dance between warm and cool hues seen in a flickering flame. Blackbody has impressed us before with its dazzling installations at the Milan Furniture Fair and ICFF in 2013 , as well as at Wanted Design 2014 . They do not disappoint with their latest creation, which is similar in design to the renewed I.RAIN product series. The use of 100 percent recyclable Organic Light-Emitting Diode (OLED) fixtures means a lightweight, glare-free, and heat-free glow that is as environmentally responsible as it is beautiful. Related: Blackbody’s stunning OLED chandeliers welcome visitors to Wanted Design 2014 Each member of the I.RAIN family can be customized in a variety of finishes: white painted brass, brass, glass, copper, chrome and black nickel. The unique design of FIRE RING , however, is like no other, producing the imagery of “a fire projecting numbers of sparks.” We spotted the stunning display at designjunction , in its newly relocated spot in King’s Cross. +Blackbody + London Design Festival Images via Inhabitat,  Maison & Objet

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Blackbodys luminous LED FIRE RING turns head at London Design 2016

Over 82,000 people evacuated as wildfire engulfs Southern California

August 17, 2016 by  
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Yesterday a fire started near San Bernardino in Southern California . In just one hour, the fire leaped from two acres to 1,000 acres. By evening, the fire, called the Blue Cut Fire, reached at least 15,000 acres, and authorities advised 82,640 people to evacuate their homes as a result. Around 34,500 homes may be affected by the Blue Cut Fire. According to a Tuesday night tweet from CAL FIRE Chief of Public Information Daniel Berlant, the fire was not at all contained. United States Forest Service spokesperson Bill Poole described the fire as ” very aggressive .” Related: Lethal extreme heat and wildfires scorch the American southwest California’s governor Jerry Brown proclaimed a state of emergency for San Bernardino County. In the proclamation, Brown linked the fire to the drought that “has caused millions of trees to die” and has “increased the severity and spread of fires throughout the State.” California has suffered through drought for around five years now, and the summer heat and wind has exacerbated the wildfire season. Around 700 firefighters are currently working to contain the fire. Helicopters dumped water and planes sprayed flame retardant. At one harrowing point, the fire trapped six firefighters. Though they were able to find shelter and make it to safety, two had to be treated for minor injuries. So far there have been no reported civilian injuries. Authorities closed part of Interstate 15, a primary route between Las Vegas and Southern California, in the face of the Blue Cut Fire. Local news station NBC Los Angeles captured a terrifying ” firenado ” on camera and said the fire is burning “out of control.” Other fires continue to burn in the dry state as well. According to recent tweets from Berlant, the Clayton Fire in Lake County is 40 percent contained and the Chimney Fire in San Luis Obispo County is 20 percent contained . As of Tuesday there are 8,500 firefighters battling “six large wildfires” in California. Via The New York Times Images via CAL FIRE PIO Berlant on Twitter and screenshot

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Over 82,000 people evacuated as wildfire engulfs Southern California

Uncontained sand fire forces thousands of California residents to flee their homes

July 25, 2016 by  
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Wildfires in southern California are once again forcing residents to evacuate their homes, with more than 18 homes reportedly destroyed so far in the Santa Clarita Valley in Los Angeles county. The Sand Fire, as it has been called, is currently only 10 percent contained, according to local fire authorities, and still poses a threat to thousands of homes in the area. Government officials had originally planned to allow residents to re-enter their homes over the weekend, but shifting winds caused the fire to grow faster than expected. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tgtooSQaQm0 So far, the Sand Fire has completely destroyed 18 homes and damaged one other in the neighborhoods of Sand Canyon, Bear Divide, and Little Tujunga. Tens of thousands of residents were forced to evacuate over the weekend. Currently, another 2,000 homes in the town of Acton are in the fire’s path, if it maintains its current course. “That fire came through like a freight train,” John Tripp, incident commander with the Los Angeles County Fire Department, told the local ABC affiliate. “We’ve never seen a fire come into Sand Canyon like that and neither have those residents.” Related: 8 of the world’s most devastating wildfires Los Angeles County sheriff’s department found a burned body in a car within the evacuation zone over the weekend, according to spokesperson Lt. Rob Hahnlein. He said it’s too early in the investigation to make a determination about the fire’s relationship to the person’s death. KTLA reported , though, that the man’s home was among those that were destroyed by the rapidly moving fire. A virtual army of firefighting teams have been dispatched to battle the blaze, including 1,673 firefighters, 122 engines, eight fixed-wing air-tankers, and six heavy heli-tankers. As of Monday morning, the U.S. Forest Service is reporting that the fire is only about 10 percent contained, leaving a lot of potential damage on the horizon as dry conditions and shifting winds help fuel the destructive force. Outside of the direct threat from the flames, the Sand Fire has contributed to LA’s poor air quality, as this week’s gusty winds continue to spread ash and debris from the fires throughout the county. Via LA Times Images via rlyboredok/Twitter

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Uncontained sand fire forces thousands of California residents to flee their homes

Firefighters say drones are getting in the way of battling California’s wildfires

July 21, 2015 by  
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Wildfires regularly rage in California over the hot and dry summer months, but this year firefighters are finding an additional obstacle:  drones . Firefighters have been working overtime to put out what has been clocked as the worst wildfire season thus far. But emergency aircrafts are reporting that news drones have been doing more harm then good, getting in the way of those who are trying to put out the fires. During the devastating fire in Los Angeles that torched vehicles on I-15, firefighters reported that drones prevented them from doing their job for nearly a half hour while the fire raged out of control. Read the rest of Firefighters say drones are getting in the way of battling California’s wildfires

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How to build the perfect fire, according to a Duke University engineer

June 10, 2015 by  
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Have you ever wondered how to build the perfect fire? Adrian Bejan, a professor of mechanical engineering at Duke University , knows how, and has shared his secrets in a new study published in Nature Scientific Reports . Bejan says with all variables equal, the best fire is the one that is as tall as it is wide. Read the rest of How to build the perfect fire, according to a Duke University engineer Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: bonfire , camp fire , constructal law , design law , duke university study , efficiency in design , fire , fire pit , fire shape , how to build the perfect fire

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Metal-clad House L is a contemporary holiday retreat in Finland

June 10, 2015 by  
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Read the rest of Metal-clad House L is a contemporary holiday retreat in Finland Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Anssi Lassila , birch veneer , Contemporary House , farmhouse renovation , galvanized sheet metal , House L , House L by OOPEAA , locally sourced materials , metal clad cabin , OOPEAA , radially sawn spruce , salvaged materials , Suoni

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At this “cat library,” you can check out a kitten for the day

June 10, 2015 by  
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Most people don’t want their officemates to make a lot of noise during the workday, and it’d be pretty nutty to glance over and see a colleague batting at a felt mouse stuffed with catnip. Yet, if you could share your office with a kitten , all would be right in the world. Employees of Dona Ana County, New Mexico can take advantage of a “cat library” that allows them to do just that—borrow a kitten for the day to share their office space. For those of us who don’t work there, workplace negotiations are in order. Read the rest of At this “cat library,” you can check out a kitten for the day Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: animal service center of masilla valley , cat library , cats for adoption , dona ana county , kittens for adoption , kitty kondo , las cruces , New Mexico , new mexico cat library , shelter animals , shelter kittens , tiffany tillison

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At this “cat library,” you can check out a kitten for the day

6 Cozy Campfire Recipes for Fall

October 15, 2014 by  
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Read the rest of 6 Cozy Campfire Recipes for Fall Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: apple , apples , baked apples , baked potatoes , berry cobbler , blueberry , camp , campfire , camping , coal potatoes , cobbler , cooking , cooking outdoors , cooking over a fire , DIY , fall , fire , food , fruit cobbler , grill , grilled pineapple , grilling , how-to , open fire , paella , pineapple , recipe , shakshouka , shakshuka , wood stove

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Nuclear Batteries Could be Longer Lasting and More Efficient

October 15, 2014 by  
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Batteries are essential items for everyday life , but they are notoriously bad for the environment and hard to dispose of, but researchers think that nuclear batteries could change that. A team of scientists and researchers from the University of Missouri believe they have created a long-lasting and efficient nuclear battery thanks to a new water-based solution. They hope that the new battery would be able to be used in everything from cars to future manned space flight. Read the rest of Nuclear Batteries Could be Longer Lasting and More Efficient Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: batteries , battery power , nuclear batteries , nuclear energy , nuclear power , spaceflight , university of missouri , water solution

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