China Successfully Launches Rover Mission!

China has launched a lunar rover, only the third country to do so after the United States and the Soviet Union.  The rover, named Jade Rabbit (called Yutu in Chinese) is solar-powered, has 6 wheels and four cameras.  It also has mechanical arms that can dig soil samples up to 30 meters deep.  It can travel up to 200 meters per hour and weighs 120 kg.

Yatu’s mission is to explore the moon’s surface and look for natural resources.  The rover was able to send photos of itself back to Earth.  A rover “selfie.”  Link

China's lunar rover, Yatu
China’s lunar rover, Yatu

 

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China Airport Boom!

Construction is underway at the new Hefei Xinqiao airport and its four runways, in Hefei, east China’s Anhui province on March 14, 2012

 

China Airport Boom: Will There Be a Bust?

Daxing airport (On the outskirts of Beijing) will cover more than 90 square kilometers and boast nine runaways by 2030, with an annual capacity of 80 million passengers. At that size, it would surpass both Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta airport and London Heathrow airport to become the busiest aviation hub in the world. Daxing’s price tag? $12.66 billion.
Read more: http://world.time.com/2012/11/02/china-airport-boom-will-there-be-a-bust/#ixzz2B6tZpHtJ

Meteorite Information

Amazing!  Hammer stones are meteorites that have hit man-made objects, which increases their value.

Great NPR story on meteorites

Awhile back, in the 90’s, a family in suburban Seattle had what they thought was a meteorite crash through their roof and land in their living room.  It was green and started melting before authorities could arrive.  Turns out it was a backed up toilet, leaking sewage on the outside of an  airliner descending into Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.  As the mass warmed up, it started to emit a foul smell.  These folks thought they had a hammer-stone meteorite, but actually had a chunk of frozen, jetliner, toilet water.  But hey, we are still talking about them! 

Article on the situation

More on the frozen poop

Alaskan Way Viaduct/Tunnel, Seattle Dig

Alaska Way Viaduct Seattle- damaged and doomed
Alaskan Way Viaduct Seattle- damaged and doomed

Any person can drive a piece of crap car or truck along the Alaskan Way Viaduct in Seattle and get the best view in town.  To the west is Elliott Bay, with ferries, sailboats and the pristine Olympic Mountains in the background.  To the east are the skyscrapers and towers of downtown Seattle.  100,000 vehicles per day use the north-south Highway 99, relieving congestion on the already too-crowded Interstate-5, also a north-south thoroughfare.  Somehow, the real estate developers and the mayor have convinced Governor Gregoire and the others in power that we should build a tunnel.  This more expensive option will open up the existing buildings to the panoramic views of the waterfront, and keep the rest of us peons out of their eyesight.    What a sad decision.  Learn from others, check out the Big Dig in Boston. 

Viaduct- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alaskan_Way_Viaduct

Tunnel- http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2008619010_webviaduct12m.html

Big Dig- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Dig_(Boston,_Massachusetts)