Aurora Spring

Every March, aurora spring taunts science. Persistent cheekiness flies in the face of conventional wisdom – inexplicably, sudden auroras erupt with alarming intensity.  “Auroral substorms” herald the return of northern hemisphere Spring. In 2007 NASA launched the THEMIS mission (Time History of Events and Macroscale Interactions during Substorms), five identical satellites lined up to detect streams of plasma and cosmic particles.

“The satellites have detected magnetic ‘ropes’ connecting Earth’s upper atmosphere directly to the Sun,” says Dave Sibeck, project scientist for the mission at the Goddard Space Flight Center. “We believe that solar wind particles flow in along these ropes, providing energy for geomagnetic storms and auroras.”

Leaving science to hunt substorm’s elusive key – treat yourself to four and a half minutes of the “world’s first real time northern lights”. Unadulterated, void of timelapse pageantry – a catch your breath audience with aurora spring.

Ted Cruz – Please Stay Away From Canada

I don’t wish to be unkind. Americans have enough on their minds with the Trump show. Re-posting my impression of Ted Cruz, thoughts formed long before Trump reared his ugly head, is intended to give bat shit an extra helping of guano.


Our world is a weird and wonderful place – I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried.

Ted Cruz is a Texas Republican elected to the U.S. senate; he’s also holding dual Canadian/American citizenship. Born 1970 in Calgary, Alberta to a Cuban father and American mother – he left Canada at age four, America has been his home ever since. He has served as the Texas Solicitor General, Director of Policy at the Federal Trade Commission, Associate Deputy Attorney General for the federal Dept. of Justice, Domestic Policy Advisor to George W. Bush in the 2000 Bush/Cheney campaign, taught U.S. Supreme Court litigation as a Law Professor at the University of Texas, and is endorsed by the Tea Party and Republican Liberty Caucus.

His father – Rafael Cruz – left Cuba as a teenager, finding his way to Texas where he attended school. Prior to leaving Cuba he supported…

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Had We Paid Attention to Frank Shuman….


“One thing I feel sure of is that the human race must finally utilize direct sun power or revert to barbarianism” – Frank Shuman (1862-1918)

Frank Shuman was an American visionary – part engineer, part inventor – a man in the wrong place at the wrong time. In 1897, Shuman demonstrated a “solar engine” constructed at his home. By reflecting sunlight onto cubes filled with ether, a substance with a lower boiling point than water, pipes inside the cubes created steam which powered a toy engine continuously for two years.

In 1908 he formed the Sun Power Company with the intention of building large power plants. By now his improved system of reflecting solar energy with mirrors meant water could be used instead of ether. He invented a low pressure steam turbine that processed energy 4 times faster than any turbine of the day. Patented in 1912 and featured in…

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Eagle Nebula

7000 light years from Earth, constellation Serpens harbors a gaseous cluster of stars known as the Eagle Nebula. In 1995, Jeff Hester and Paul Scowen used the Hubble telescope to capture iconic images of Eagle’s northeast quadrant. Unimaginably vast columns of dense hydrogen molecules and cosmic dust. Stalwart sentries, resolute as globules wider than our solar system evaporate from twisted crowns. “Pillars Of Creation” embodies cosmic wonder, but for the Hubble Space Telescope, wonder would be harder to find.

Female Revolutionaries

Ponder International Women’s Day, ask yourself why women need a day of recognition. Let others quibble about reasons for lack of International Men’s Day or international days paying lip service to minorities. Forget social conscience lip service paid to atrocities and injustice. Dismiss tired debate of pay and gender equality. Take a moment, click on the link below and understand why women kick ass.