Little Earth painting

A couple of years ago I painted this picture of Earth. I was trying to get the shading right so the clouds sit above the surface was difficult. This is North America, Canada and part of Mexico and the Caribbean.

I hope the cloud shapes work and you can see the weather patterns. I wonder if anyone would be interested in paintings of worlds. It’s something I’m interested in. I’ve painted pictures of Jupiter and other astronomical images. I don’t use an airbrush for painting so it’s quite hard to get the granularity and softness of space and planets.

Birthday balloon

Helium is the second element in the periodic table, atomic number two. It was first discovered when they measured the spectrum of the Sun. It was found as a line in the spectrum that did not appear to be on Earth.

Balloons like this are filled with this dwindling resource, if I remember correctly it’s from a place in America. I think there is a world shortage.

Helium is the second lightest element, but unlike Hydrogen which is the lightest, it doesn’t react with anything. So Helium stays on its own, it escapes out of our atmosphere. Hydrogen on the other hand reacts with many elements and this results in H2O, water, as two hydrogen atoms link with one oxygen.

Coventry University had a whole series of videos on YouTube that was about the elements if I remember. It was very interesting and they discussed all the elements in the periodic table. It was presented by a professor with mad grey curly hair….

Clocks went back

I forgot to put the clocks back last night. No real problem, it just meant I got an extra hour in bed. What does sadden me is that it’s 5.15pm and its already dark. Sometimes in the winter months it feels like you never see the sun. It hides behind the clouds, keeping its light lost in their faces.

As the year turns in the northern hemisphere the sun sinks further south, rising in an arc that tops at an angle, so consequently there is less daylight. In the southern hemisphere the earth is tipped towards the sun bringing more light to that part of the world.

Celestial mechanics is interesting. The fact that the earth is tipped on its axis is the cause. If the earth was upright all parts would have exactly 12 hours of daylight and night, there would be no seasons. But the angle of the earth would wobble more without the moon. It helps stabilise its orbit around the sun. Look things up, find things out, you might be surprised!

Cop26

Glasgow is about to host the climate change talks between nations to discuss how to prevent the increase in Earth’s temperature going on average higher than 1.5°C above pre industrial times.

Average means across the whole globe. But some area have been experiencing the rise of temperatures more. For instance a high temperature of over 18°C in Antarctica was recorded this year.

In other places people are trying to live at 50°C, halfway to boiling point. Weather systems are getting more fierce, hurricanes, tornadoes, typhoons, forest fires, the melting of the permafrost. The extinction of insects and other animals and plants as they fail to survive the hotter conditions is increasingly worrying. The years after 2000 have been the hottest on record.

Let us hope that the politicians come together, stop denying climate change and get organised. Otherwise…. I don’t know.

Well done Captain Kirk!

The drawing of Captain Kirk I did years ago. Now William Shatner, who played him in the Star Trek sci-fi series in the 1960’s, has flown up in a rocket and reached the edge of space.

60 miles up, a ten minute flight. But he’s 90 years old and he has done it! The oldest person/ actor/ sci-fi star to hitch a ride above the Earth. Well done x

Life above 50°

Can we survive global warming? As the world joins in a conference about it this November, reports continue about wildfires, carbon dioxide and methane emissions and damage to our natural environment.

Big business still seems to want to expand their production. Buy more stuff… Sell more cars… But using energy and resources is not going to help.

If temperatures go higher the worry is that there will be a runaway greenhouse effect. The result is a degradation of our environment. Water shortages, increased air pollution, damage to the health of not just us, but the whole planet. We are currently using more resources than the planet can provide.

I think humans can be incredibly generous, thoughtful, considerate. We can work together to stop the damage. Not in the future, but now. I do hope we realise that before it’s too late.

Forest fires.

The world watches as forests burn. In the Amazon, around the Mediterranean. In the North where the temperatures have soared.

We have been told by scientists and young adults alike, but many turn their backs to the truth. Climate crisis deniers are like ancient Nero, fiddling while Rome burned.

We must take action now. Reduce our carbon footprints. Even in small ways we can help. One degree less on the thermostat, walking instead of driving, house insulation and double glazing. Not much in scheme of things, better than nothing. Now we are used to Zoom why not meet on line? Ask the important questions. Do we need the car today, can you replace things when they wear out with second hand, pre loved items. There are so many people on the Earth, let’s be fair, share, and waste less.

Setting Moon

Seen a couple of nights ago, a blurry setting Moon, chasing the Sun round the sky.

You can tell what angle the Moon is to the Sun because of the angle of the curve on the sunlit side. As the Moon waxes and wanes the position of the Sun can be worked out, full Moon=the Sun is on the other side of the Earth, a sliver of Moon, the Moon is in between the Earth and the Sun. Eclipse? If the Moon Eclipses the Sun it is directly between the other two bodies. If the Moon turns bright red its the Earth getting between the Moon and Sun, its only really then that you can see the curvature of the Moons surface, whichis usually so reflective that it looks bright and flat.

I guess this is the most number of times I’ve written ‘”Moon” in a blog!

Moonish

Full moon through a dirty window. It’s blueish hue reminds me of those old songs, moon spoon, June, tunes of the past.

A glowing cold ball in the sky. Full now, but no longer linked to lunatics and howling wolves. Perhaps the fluorescent glow from sodium lights has drowned out its flooding influence.

But the tides still turn under its gravity, pulled upwards, the sea rises with the moon above it, while on the opposite side of the Earth the sea is held less firmly and slacken into another bulge. That is why there are two high tides and low tides a day.

And the Moon is tidally locked with Earth, so one side always faces us now. The Moon may be the result of a cataclysmic impact when a small planet struck Earth a glancing blow and lifted matter from Earth into the sky. The matter from the collision coalesced into the Moon and its orbit around Earth began. Now it is gradually moving away, a few centimeters a year. As it orbits Earth it is gradually slowing our spin. We used to make one rotation of the planet in around Twenty three hours. Now we have slowed to twenty four.

Moon. So much to learn.