News Briefs from July 27, 2014

‘Holy grail’ of battery design achieved: Stable lithium anode

Researchers report that they have taken a big step toward accomplishing what battery designers have been trying to do for decades — design a pure lithium anode. All batteries have three basic components: an electrolyte to provide electrons, an anode to discharge those electrons, and a cathode to receive them. The nanosphere layer of a newly created battery design resembles a honeycomb: it creates a flexible, uniform and non-reactive film that protects the unstable lithium from the drawbacks that have made it such a challenge…Read more from ScienceDaily

New Briefs from July 24, 2014

NASA: Civilization Was Almost Wiped Out In July 2012

The danger to modern civilization posed by solar flares is starting to get real attention well beyond prepper circles. Witness this Washington Post article and Hacker News thread on a recent NASA report on the massive July 2012 solar flare that missed earth by a week.

First, the NASA report:

“In my view the July 2012 storm was in all respects at least as strong as the 1859 Carrington event,” says Baker. “The only difference is, it missed.”

In February 2014, physicist Pete Riley of Predictive Science Inc. published a paper in Space Weather entitled “On the probability of occurrence of extreme space weather events.” In it, he analyzed records of solar storms going back 50+ years. By extrapolating the frequency of ordinary storms to the extreme, he calculated the odds that a Carrington-class storm would hit Earth in the next ten years.

The answer: 12%.

“Initially, I was quite surprised that the odds were so high, but the statistics appear to be correct,” says Riley. “It is a sobering figure.”

…Says Baker, “we need to be prepared.”

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Scientists know it as the deadliest volcano on Earth. You know it…as Yellowstone

Supervolcano is a television docufiction film that was first aired in the United Kingdom on 13 March 2005, and released by the BBC on 10 April 2005 on the Discovery Channel. It is centered on the speculated and potential eruption of the volcanic caldera of Yellowstone National Park…more info from the BBC

For some reason, I’ll let you draw your own conclusions, this movie is not available on Region 1 DVDs. Fortunately a very enterprising person, Brian Foster, posted the whole movie on YouTube in seven parts. Enjoy!

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