TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Tizer » 15 Jul 2017, 10:27

`Technology which makes electricity from urine also kills pathogens' LINK
Scientists in Bristol have shown that a special process they have developed in which wastewater flows through a series of cells filled with electroactive microbes can be used to attack and destroy Salmonella bacteria.

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Tizer » 20 Jul 2017, 09:01

The earliest date for the presence of Aboriginal people in Australia has been pushed back even further. This is going to modify our ideas on the chronology of the `out of Africa' theory of human evolution and dispersal which assumes that it began about 60,000 years ago. There have been some hints that the dispersal occurred earlier and this would probably need to be the case if we assume that Australia's Aboriginal people also descend from African stock.
`Rock find 'rewrites' Australian human history' LINK

More on the plastic pollution of our planet...
`Earth is becoming 'Planet Plastic' LINK
US scientists have calculated the total amount of plastic ever made and put the number at 8.3 billion tonnes. It is an astonishing mass of material that has essentially been created only in the last 65 years or so. The 8.3 billion tonnes is as heavy as 25,000 Empire State Buildings in New York, or a billion elephants. The great issue is that plastic items, like packaging, tend to be used for very short periods before being discarded. More than 70% of the total production is now in waste streams, sent largely to landfill - although too much of it just litters the wider environment, including the oceans. "We are rapidly heading towards 'Planet Plastic', and if we don't want to live on that kind of world then we may have to rethink how we use some materials, in particular plastic," Dr Roland Geyer told BBC News.

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Stanley » 21 Jul 2017, 04:00

I heard both those reports Tiz. The earlier date for Aborigines in Oz is fascinating, the statistics on plastic horrifying! Are we fit to live on Earth?
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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Tizer » 21 Jul 2017, 11:27

No, I reckon we'll be invaded by little green environmentalist aliens in solar powered spaceships who'll take over and show us how to look after the planet.

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by chinatyke » 21 Jul 2017, 14:01

So we have made 8.3 x 10^9 tonnes of plastic from oil or coal which comes from where? And the Earth weighs 6 x 10^24 tonnes, so 1 part in 10^15 is now plastic instead of coal or oil. Lets go back to glass bottles and chopping down trees for wrapping paper and have taxes on plastic as well as carbon. I refuse to worry about these things when half the population of Africa is descending upon Europe.
Believe me, if you lived in the tropics you wouldn't have the notion that plastic is indestructable, even carrier bags soon turn to dust in the sun. So the solution is send it to Africa to fill the empty spaces the migrants create.

How do I come up with these solutions, I should be in Parliament. Or the loony bin. Not much difference.

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Tizer » 21 Jul 2017, 14:51

The carrier bag might turn to dust but the dust is still a long-chain polymer that's not broken down quickly and it will hang around in the environment being absorbed by animals. On a geological time scale it doesn't matter; the dust would be carried along and eventually subducted under an opposing tectonic plate where it would be subjected to enormous temperatures and high pressure and be effectively converted to carbon and water. But we don't live on a geological time scale. In fact our civilisation seems to exist in an ever shortening time scale, such that the carrier bag might outlive us!

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Stanley » 22 Jul 2017, 03:58

That is a plausible theory and a very disturbing thought Tiz. What a mundane source of nemesis!
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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by chinatyke » 22 Jul 2017, 05:05

Tizer wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 14:51
... where it would be subjected to enormous temperatures and high pressure and be effectively converted to carbon and water.
Or oil and coal! - the full cycle.

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Tizer » 22 Jul 2017, 09:11

Quite right China - in a couple of hundred million year's time the earth might be ready to cope with another human-type fossil fuel binge!

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by chinatyke » 22 Jul 2017, 09:41

Tizer wrote:
22 Jul 2017, 09:11
Quite right China - in a couple of hundred million year's time the earth might be ready to cope with another human-type fossil fuel binge!
I'll try not to worry about that one either. :biggrin2:

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Stanley » 29 Jul 2017, 05:29

I was reminded this morning of the global water shortage. It goes under the radar most of the time but is incredibly important.
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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Bodger » 31 Jul 2017, 07:42

Tizer re alcohol proof on labels, I seem to recall that most spirits whiskey gin etc. used to be marked 70 / 80 % , you could even buy Polish White Spirit @ 100 / 150 %, but now 30 / 40 % is the current marking. Did the strength change or the way they record it, or is it my old age and imagination !

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Tripps » 31 Jul 2017, 08:58

As I understand it - proof and percentage alcohol (Alcohol by Volume) are not the same. I think ABV is about half of the proof figure . So a typical 80 proof is about 40% ABV.
Born to be mild. . .

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Tizer » 31 Jul 2017, 09:24

Bodger, it's not your imagination and I'm sure old age is not applicable to you! To some extent the strength of alcoholic spirits has been reduced by the profiteering drinks companies.. but the main difference is, as Tripps notes, the UK now uses `alcohol by volume' (ABV) to measure and express alcohol content of spirits rather than the old `proof'. You'll be familiar with how alcoholic strength was assessed in the old days when `proof' of strength was obtained by soaking gunpowder with the spirit then trying to ignite it. The magic formula for relating proof to ABV is 7/4 (7 divided by 4). A spirit with 40% ABV will be 7/4 x 40 = 70% proof. A lot of the spirits that used to be 40% ABV are now weaker at about 36% ABV which is 63% proof. Our formula is too difficult for the Americans so they use a simple (`doubling') and 50% ABV is 100% proof. :extrawink:

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Bodger » 31 Jul 2017, 13:50

Thank you gentlemen

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Tizer » 02 Aug 2017, 08:20

There's been a lot in the news about woolly bears (tardigrades) recently and here's the latest from the BBC news site....
`Secrets of the world's toughest creatures revealed' LINK

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Stanley » 03 Aug 2017, 02:46

There's some weird stuff out there! How big are they? I must have come into contact with them at some time or another, we were always playing in ponds.......
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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Tizer » 03 Oct 2017, 08:29

Stanley wrote:
03 Aug 2017, 02:46
How big are they?
They range from 0.1 to 1.5mm in length so you can be excused for missing them!

It's the 50th anniversary of the publication of the paper that led us to accept the theory of plate tectonics...
`Plate tectonics: When we discovered how the Earth really works' LINK

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Stanley » 04 Oct 2017, 03:44

I heard the man on R4 yesterday and what an unassuming bloke he is. I warmed to him straight away.
THIS BBC report of the Nobel Prize won by the 3 American scientists who devised the experiment that measured and proved the existence of space gravity ripples grabbed me. Einstein thought that they existed but could never be detected because they are so incredibly minute. I don't understand how they did it but love the fact that they succeeded.
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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Tizer » 13 Oct 2017, 09:05

Tizer wrote:
21 Apr 2014, 10:39
...The ozone hole began to disappear but it's returning due to the surge in use of CFCs in the Far East countries as vast numbers of people become able to afford fridges and deodorant sprays. The ozone hole was worst in the southern hemisphere but it's now happening in the northern too and the effects are creeping down towards the equator.
I wrote the above post three and a half years ago and where have we got to now?...
"Ozone layer recovery could be delayed by 30 years' LINK
`Rising global emissions of some chlorine-containing chemicals could slow the progress made in healing the ozone layer. A study found the substances, widely used for paint stripping and in the manufacture of PVC, are increasing much faster than previously thought. Mainly produced in China, these compounds are not currently regulated. Experts say their continued use could set back the closing of the ozone hole by up to 30 years...."

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by chinatyke » 13 Oct 2017, 10:54

Tizer wrote:
13 Oct 2017, 09:05
A study found the substances, widely used for paint stripping and in the manufacture of PVC, ... Mainly produced in China, these compounds are not currently regulated.
Anti-China propaganda once again! PVC is produced and used Worldwide. In fact, Shintech in the United States, a subsidiary of Shin-Etsu, a Japanese company, is the world’s largest PVC manufacturer. Maybe it should have said China is mainly responsible for leakage to the atmosphere if this is the proven case.

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Stanley » 14 Oct 2017, 03:19

Whoever is responsible, I wish they'd stop!
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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Tizer » 15 Oct 2017, 11:43

A major advance in our ability to monitor CO2 in the atmosphere...
`Nasa carbon space observatory 'watches Earth breathe'' LINK

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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Stanley » 16 Oct 2017, 03:42

Amazing what good things we can do when we try!
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Re: TIZER'S SCIENCE NEWS

Post by Stanley » 17 Oct 2017, 05:48

I think this is the right place for this..... I was watching a programme that looked at the 1987 hurricane damage and revisited locations where ancient woodlands were almost totally destroyed. At the time expert advice was to replant and the public supported this as well but a forestry manager on a large estate that was badly hit said that what they learned was that the best way to recovery was to leave the woods to regenerate naturally. He said it wasn't the same mix as before but the recovery has been remarkable and of course, very cheap! Nature has it's own way of dealing with these events.
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