Modern Human Dilemma

At https://phys.org/print449151180.html ... as the argument on what constitutes a modern human heats up and the date to be assigned to their migration Out of Africa we now have another spanner in the works (or sort of as these are old humans with modern human embellishments.

Yellowstone Wolf

Wolves were re-introduced to the Yellowstone National Park in the mid 1990s and have generally received a good press (especially in TV wildlife programmes and in the media in general). The elk of the park are their chief prey animal and it was thought the re-introduction would alter their behaviour - creating a 'landscape of fear' as the saying goes (the wolf controlling elk numbers etc) - see www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/06/180622104544.htm ...

Fusion Energy

At www.space.com/40988-beam-target-fusion-reactor.html ... this is one the SIS chairman Tony Haynes (sadly, recently deceased) would have enthused about - a new approach that uses electrical and magnetic fields to create a hybrid fusion device. Could this possibly be the fusion break-through so eagerly sought after for so long? It is known as 'beam target fusion' as it does not try to fuse atoms but rather, hits a beam of atoms against a solid target - the atoms from the beam fuse with the atoms of the target.

Another Inconvenient Factoid

Why are Greenpeace and the WWF silent on the abuse of the ecosystem in Venezuela - or the ill treatment of the indigenous tribes in the interior. Go to https://phys.org/print449221890.html ... for the answer (or one version of the truth). It  sounds a bit like the bleating by the same organisations concerning palm oil plantations in Borneo and Indonesia - a trifle belated, one might say, especially as they had been involved in lobbying the European Union to use palm oil as a replacement for the wicked fossil fuel version of oil.

Noctilucent Tornado

At http://spaceweather.com/ (June 25th 2018) there is a nice image of noctilucent clouds over Meghara in Co Derry. It was taken by Martin McKenna who said, their brightness and complexity has been getting more enhanced since the solstice, with whirls and knots glowing electric blue above a yellow midnight sun horizon. The tornado was once such formation - morphing into a succession of dynamic shapes (a wdge, a funnel, angel wings, an electrified smoke ring, and finally a long rope that resembled a tornado, reaching towards the far side of the sky.

Venus atmosphere and rotation

Sent in by Gary. At www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-5869657/Hellish-atmosphere-Venus... .... researchers used computer simulation to model the atmosphere of Venus. A Japanese satellite, Akatsuki, witnessed a bow shaped cloud structure on Venus and their model says it can be explained by atmospheric waves forming over a mountainous region of the planet. Fast flowing winds interact with gases in the vicinity of the mountains in order to produce the cloud formation.

Antique CAGW

At https://malagabay.wordpress.com/2018/06/22/late-paleocene-thermal-maximum/ ... here we have a catastrophic event that has been apprehended by climate scientists in order to create a scare story over CAGW. The late Paleocene/Eocene boundary event is supposed to be a classic case of the earth over heating. As you might expect the CAGW adherents have proposed there wasa lethal injection of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere in order to account for the rise in temperatures.

Sprite at Night

   .... this image comes courtesy of http://spaceweather.com (June 23rd 2018) a sprite above a thundercloud taken by a pilot flying to Las Vegas from London, Brian Whittaker. The green bands are not auroral in nature but air glow - caused by chemical reactions in the upper atmosphere. Whittaker comments, the sprites are really high up in the atmosphere and he has probably missed them in the past by looking downwards.

Ice Man still a source of research

At www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-06/p-stf061318.php ... continuing study of the ice amn found in a melting glacier in the Alps a few years ago has found a different dimension to write about - his use of stone tools. The ice man dates back to around 3200BC (although now backdated by IntCal2013 a bit earlier). His stone tools were made of chert - a form of flint. It seems they originate from different locations in what is now the Trentino region of Italy. For the full paper go to http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0198292

Declining Insects

At https://wattsupwiththat.com/2018/06/20/study-bugs-hate-light-at-night-mo... ... the reason this has popped up on WattsUp is the fact that the researchers claim light pollution is a bigger factor than climate change for the ongoing decline in insect numbers. The interesting theory is advanced by scientists at a German institute of Freshwater Ecology and Fisheries (where one have thought the climate change meme would have taken precedent). They discovered a sharp decline in flying insects as a result of light pollution.