Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Stirling engine model [image credit: Wikipedia]


‘A Stirling engine is a closed-cycle regenerative heat engine with a permanently gaseous working fluid’ – Wikipedia.

GLENN RESEARCH CENTER, Ohio — If you are wanting to perform some science at Neptune, or Pluto, or beyond in the dark depths of the outer solar system, your spacecraft is going to need power for a very long time, says Spaceflight Insider.

Engineers at NASA’s Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio, are working to make that happen, and have been at it for a very long time.

The engineering team in NASA Glenn’s Thermal Energy Conversion Branch recently set a run-time record for a free-piston Stirling engine at full power.

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Sabine Pass LNG Terminal, Louisiana [image credit: naturalgasnow.org]


The US President just became a successful natural gas salesman, after complaining that Germany was too dependent on Russian gas.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker made the announcement during his visit to the White House yesterday, reports Energy Live News.

The European Union plans to import more liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the US to diversify its energy supply.

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Siberian permafrost [image credit: Julian Murton / BBC]


One small wriggle for a worm, one giant…etc. This discovery has novelty value and should stir the imaginations of sci-fi writers, whatever its real significance may be.

The Siberian Times reports: Nematodes moving and eating again for the first time since the Pleistocene age in major scientific breakthrough, say experts.

The roundworms from two areas of Siberia came back to life in Petri dishes, says a new scientific study.

‘We have obtained the first data demonstrating the capability of multicellular organisms for longterm cryobiosis in permafrost deposits of the Arctic,’ states a report from Russian scientists from four institutions in collaboration with Princetown University.

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Shale gas drilling site [image credit: BBC]


After years of wrangling, the UK (or at least England) seems to have at last run out of ways to avoid tapping in to the wealth that is the gas under the nation’s feet, in this case anyway. Why import what can be produced at home?
H/T The GWPF

Shale gas developer Cuadrilla on Tuesday became the first operator in Britain to receive final consent from the government to frack an onshore horizontal exploration well, reports Reuters.

The government said it had granted approval for so-called hydraulic fracturing to take place at Cuadrilla’s Preston New Road site in northwest England.

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They say all good things come to an end, and in this case the rug is being pulled away from support for various types of renewable project including small-scale solar systems, as PEI reports. Cue the usual wailing about the harmless trace gas carbon dioxide, as ever falsely described as ‘carbon emissions’. Coincidentally perhaps, the closure date coincides with the UK’s exit from the European Union.

Renewables and sustainability groups have reacted with fury to proposals by the UK government to scrap subsidies for green energy projects.

The feed-in tariffs scheme is the government’s subsidy scheme for small-scale low-carbon installations.

A consultation paper published yesterday sets out a proposal to close the export tariff alongside the generation tariff on 31 March 2019.

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Newgrange UNESCO World Heritage Site


The story of an amazing chance discovery by amateur drone enthusiasts at the UNESCO world heritage site near Newgrange in Ireland this week.

“What the f*** is that?”

It materialised out of almost nowhere, reports ScienceAlert.

Thousands of years after disappearing from human sight and knowledge, an ancient ‘henge’ site has been discovered hidden within the archaeological landscape of Ireland’s Brú na Bóinne.

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Planned nuclear power station at Hinkley Point


One less headache for the UK government’s dogma-driven energy policymakers to grapple with, as renewables fanatics get the legal brush-off on this occasion.

An Austrian appeal against the UK Government’s funding for the Hinkley Point C nuclear power station has been dismissed by the EU court, reports Energy Live News.

The European Court of Justice ruled the government’s contribution to the new nuclear plant in Somerset – being developed by French utility EDF and China General Nuclear Power – does not violate EU rules.

The Austrian Government had sought to overturn the decision as it argued the support contradicted EU policy of backing renewable forms of generation.

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Ructions as poor financial management and zero dollars from the US drain the UN’s so-called ‘green climate fund’. Even agreeing an agenda was a major struggle.
H/T Steve Milloy

Rich and poor country representatives clash over policy priorities and replenishment at Green Climate Fund board meeting, reports Climate Change News.

Update on Wednesday 4 July: UN climate fund chief resigns for personal reasons while board meeting collapses

Disputes between rich and poor nations at the UN’s flagship climate fund are intensifying as the money runs low.

A meeting of the Green Climate Fund (GCF) board in Songdo started unevenly on Sunday, as co-chair Paul Oquist was detained by political turmoil in Nicaragua, leaving Sweden’s Lennart Båge to run the session single-handed.

With developing countries complaining their priorities were not properly represented, it took nearly two days to agree on the agenda for the meeting.

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Baidu’s self-driving mini bus on show in Shanghai.


The march of the robots gets wheels.

One of China’s biggest technology companies has declared it has begun mass production of a self-driving bus, reports BBC News.

Baidu made the announcement after building its 100th Apolong vehicle at its factory in the country’s south-eastern Fujian province.

It said the vehicles would initially be put to commercial use within Chinese cities but added it was also targeting foreign markets.

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Hockey stick or not? Tell the truth


This is not necessarily the end of the appeals process, but it looks like progress.

H/T The GWPF

Press Release from FME Law
July 3, 2018

One thousand seven hundred and sixty-three days ago, on behalf of its client, the Free Market Environmental Law Clinic, PLLC (FME Law) asked the University of Arizona to hand over public records that would expose to the world the genesis of what some consider the most influential scientific publication of that decade – the Mann-Bradley-Hughes temperature reconstruction that looks like a hockey stick.

The University refused.

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Bank station on the Central Line


This has little or nothing to do with the weather. Ingenious engineers needed to find ways to take some of the heat off London’s perspiring Central Line travellers.

The London Underground is hot. But nowhere is hotter than the Central line, which is routinely so hot that it exceeds the EU limit at which it is legal to transport cows, sheep and pigs, says Wired UK.
. . .
Cooling the Central line in particular presents an almost impossible puzzle for TfL [Transport for London] to solve.

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UK beer sales restricted amid CO2 shortage

Posted: June 26, 2018 by oldbrew in humour, News
Tags:


Bad news for beer-loving football fans in the UK as the World Cup progresses. This is the same gas that climate-obsessed governments want to spend a fortune of our taxes – some from beer – on capturing and burying. You couldn’t make it up.

Food wholesaler Booker is rationing beer and cider because of a shortage of CO2 used in carbonated drinks, reports BBC News.

The Tesco-owned retailer, which is used by bars, restaurants and traders, is capping customers to 10 cases of beer, and five of cider or soft drinks.

It is more evidence that a scarcity of CO2 is hurting the food and drink sectors, and comes after Heineken and Coca-Cola faced disruption.

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Dead in the water: Swansea tidal lagoon [image credit: BBC]


In the end this project was just too expensive and too risky it seems. Even wind power offered better value, and without the 90-year subsidy commitment.

A decision by the UK government not to back the world’s first tidal power lagoon could have been made 18 months ago, according to the man who led an independent review into the plans.

Charles Hendry backed the £1.3bn Swansea Bay project in his government-commissioned review of January 2017.

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Climate miserablists wail, but public demand and commercial reality have taken priority. The skies over west London are set to become even busier. Air travel is expanding worldwide and protesters can’t change that, but the location is still controversial for some.

MPs have backed controversial plans to build a third runway at London’s Heathrow airport, reports BBC News.

The government won a key vote in the Commons by 415 votes to 119 – a majority of 296.

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An ambitious attempt to extort vast sums of money from the oil industry, by using the US legal system to bypass normal democratic political process on the pretext of supposed climate problems, has drawn an expensive blank in court.
H/T The GWPF.

San Francisco (AP) — A U.S. judge who held a hearing about climate change that received widespread attention ruled Monday that Congress and the president were best suited to address the contribution of fossil fuels to global warming, throwing out lawsuits that sought to hold big oil companies liable for the Earth’s changing environment.

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New York’s other Battery: Battery Park in Manhattan (image credit: Gryffindor @ Wikipedia)


New York expects to change its future weather by installing lots of expensive mega-batteries, according to the Governor. But is fear of a harmless trace gas essential to life more like superstition than science?

The state has set a target to install 1.5GW of batteries by 2025, reports Energy Live News.

New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo has announced an ‘Energy Storage Roadmap’ to guide the state toward its energy storage target of 1.5GW by 2025.

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Thumbs down for Paris e_car scheme [image credit: businessinsider.com]


Another ‘green’ fantasy bites the dust in the face of old-fashioned economic realities. Once again, without massive subsidies of public money the numbers just didn’t add up. Calling a taxi seems to have won the day. Now it’s see-you-in-court time as recriminations kick off.

The city of Paris is pulling the plug on an electric car-sharing system once hailed as the future of urban transport, with officials voting to cancel the contract in the face of mounting losses, as Phys.org reports.

The more than 4,000 silver Autolib hatchbacks had become a fixture on the streets of the French capital, with docking stations for the electric vehicles found every few blocks.

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Borrowing Hollywood titles like ‘a clear and present danger’ isn’t going to overcome the fact that colourful predictions made about the climate by modellers and climate alarmists in general have failed to materialise. BBC – take note.

‘It is propagandizing’ – Daily Caller reporting.

Republican senators asked federal investigators to look into whether or not several National Science Foundation (NSF) grants broke federal law, including funding projects lawmakers sought to “influence political and social debate” on global warming.

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Avinor’s electric plane [image credit: inhabitat.com]


It’s tiny, hard to get into and battery weight is still a major problem, but the latest ‘green’ toy has got off the ground. However, Norway is also one of the world’s leading oil and gas exporters. Crude oil and natural gas accounted for 40% of the country’s total export value in 2015.

OSLO (Reuters) — Norway tested a two-seater electric plane on Monday and predicted a start to passenger flights by 2025 if new aviation technologies match a green shift that has made Norwegians the world’s top buyers of electric cars.

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London’s ‘Gherkin’ [image credit: BBC]


The idea here is that a new type of triple-glazed window would be of identical width and similar weight to an equivalent double-glazed one, thus minimizing compatibility issues.

About $20 billion worth of energy leaks out of windows in the United States each winter—and that’s with double-paned insulating windows installed on a majority of buildings, says TechXplore.

The Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) is now working with manufacturers to bring to market a “super window” that is at least twice as insulating as 99 percent of the windows for sale today and will be ready to achieve mass-market status.

The “thin triple” super window design doubles the thermal performance of current Energy Star-rated double-glazed windows and is seven times more insulating than a single-glazed window.

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