You are browsing the archive for March 2011 - Page 2 of 3 - Dan's Wild Wild Science Journal.

15 March 2011

False Radiation Rumors Run Rampant

Whoever put this map out should face criminal charges IMHO There is no doubt that what is happening at the Fukushima Nuclear plant in Japan is alarming. I’ve even seen reliable reports that one of the containment vessels may have been damaged in an explosion early Tuesday, Japan time.  Unfortunately, some people are taking advantage of most people’s lack of any rudimentary knowledge about nuclear power to spread fear. There’s …


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14 March 2011

Your Chance to See Mercury

Most people have never seen the planet Mercury. It’s so close to the sun, that it’s always near the horizon at sunset or sunrise. This week is a really great viewing opportunity. Here’s where to look from the folks at Sky and Telescope Mag. If you have students in the house, you should grab a subscr.  and leave it around 😉 Little is known about Mercury and later this week …


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Yes, Another Explosion at Fukushima, but read this before you get too concerned.

The below is from Dr. Josef Oehmen of MIT. It was reproduced on Barry Brooks excellent blog Brave New Climate. Brooks is a climate science expert at the Univ. of Adelaide, and I read his posts frequently. Just click the image below to go to Brave New World. It will take you awhile to read, but you will then have a very good understanding of what is happening in Japan. You …


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13 March 2011

NASA Terra Satellite Shows Tsunami Flooding in Japan

Below is an image after the quake/tsunamis. Late Saturday, the USGS confirmed that GPS sensors indicate a movement of about 2.4 meters due to the quake. This is a large amount. This quake was on the subduction zone between the Pacific Plate and the North American Plate. The ocean off Japan is on the Pacific plate which is diving under the North American plate. This means the fault rupture was …


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12 March 2011

Massive Explosion Rocks Japan Nuclear Plant- Radiation Facts

  With the news this morning of an explosion at the Fukushima reactor in Japan, I thought I would repost something I wrote over a year ago on radiation. You are likely to hear about milli-rems and Sieverts on the news, and this should help you make sense of it. A physicist on the BBC has been quoted as saying that the explosion was probably a result of a core …


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11 March 2011

Tsunami Wave Height Map from NOAA

My fellow AGU bloggers have some really good info on the science behind the quake here. In particular, Callan Bentley’s Mountain Beltway and Dave Petley’s Landslide Blog. My Seismograph Story While at university in the late 1970’s, I worked at a seismic observatory in Oklahoma for a summer. It was a very fascinating experience and has turned out to be very helpful in my job as a meteorologist working in …


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Super Quake Spawns Massive Tsunami in Japan

  Update: Amazing video here: The strongest earthquake ever recorded in Japan struck at 0546 GMT Friday. It was 3:46 PM on a Friday afternoon and a massive tsunami struck minutes later. The damage you can see on TV (The BBC coverage is exc. as usual) but here is a little science behind why it happened.   Japan sits on top of three of the Earths Tectonic plates. Mount …


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10 March 2011

A Real Tornado and a Plastic One- Three Cool Videos!

An EF-2 tornado hit Theodore, Alabama on Wednesday and caused significant damage. The tornado was rated an EF-2 by meteorologists at the local NWS office in Mobile, and that indicates wind speeds of 180-218 km/hr (110-135 mph). The image below shows the track of the tornado. Notice the hardware store in the image (between the two EF-2 triangles). There were several security cameras running at the time the tornado hit …


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9 March 2011

Spotting A Tornado On Your iPhone-Part Two

  So what do you think? Is this a band of severe storms? For the most part they are just heavy, but there may be some strong winds in the line. Large tornadoes rarely come out of a line of storms like this.  Heavy rain and gusty winds are the main threat. In part one, I discussed using the Radar Scope app to tell if you are in the path …


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7 March 2011

Spotting A Tornado On Your iPhone

There are some fabulous apps now for mobile devices (like the iPhone and iPad) that give you real-time radar images. So here is a blog post on how to do some basic interpretation of what you are looking at, and whether or not it is dangerous. In other words, is that blob of red on my iPhone likely to blow me away! First, what app should you get? After reading …


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