Is Cloud Seeding Really Beneficial?

Cloud seeding is process of spreading chemicals like dry ice to forcefully make clouds undergo precipitation to form frozen ice drops that will defrost & become water droplets as they fall. The seeding is done from the earth or more efficiently by plane.

Rain itself starts as a liquid not far from freezing, forming ice crystals in the clouds high above. Seeding speeds up and expands this sequence generating more and more crystals.

The issue, and skepticism, with whether this process does indeed work is that it’s carried out on clouds that are showing signs of potential rainfall, and one cannot be sure as to whether they would have rained without the encouragement. Success has been claimed in a wide range of ‘dry’ countries including Australia and the UAE.

The benefit of this would be that those areas with little rainfall and the risk of drought could be saved as they actually still have water held in the air which could create rainfall.

The science behind it is that the ‘seeds’ themselves pull the water from the air and have it bind to the chemicals which in turn crystallizes and forms the aforementioned crystals. The inventor of Cloud Seeding, Mr. Vincent Schaefer carried out the first successful experiment of his idea in 1946.

The scientific benefits and belief in cloud seeding was huge, during the 1960s in the US a project named ‘Stormfury’ was undertaken to try and weaken cyclones and at the time they thought it was worthy enough to test this method on a range of Atlantic hurricanes before they realized the system was ineffective as the hurricanes themselves just don’t contain enough water.

The most impressive claim of recent years though has to come from China, who say that in 2008 during the Beijing Olympics they used this process in reverse to actually stop rain forming and keep it dry over the event!

So there we have it, not only have we created driverless cars and self-regulating ‘smart’ homes, we have now quit literally harnessed the power of rainfall… potentially.

Interesting Facts About Graffiti

The first known example of “modern style” graffiti is found in the ancient Greek city of Ephesus. The graffiti shows a handprint resembling a heart, along with a footprint and a number which indicated that a brothel was nearby.

The first known graffiti artist was Mr. Darryl McCray, street named Cornbread. In the late 1960’s, he and a group of friends started tagging their nicknames on walls around Philadelphia, which instigated the modern graffiti movement

Graffiti used to be a term used to refer to inscriptions and figure drawings found on the walls of ancient ruins. The eruption of Mount Vesuvius preserved the graffiti in Pompeii.

Graffiti as it’s known today started in Philadelphia in the late 1960s. Originally, graffiti was mainly used to make political statements and mark gang territory.

Most graffiti artists wish to be called “writers” and accompany their work with a unique “tag.” This is especially true for graffiti artists who want public recognition.

Many graffiti artists remain anonymous to protect their identity and reputation, as well as avoid legal consequences. Banksy is the most popular graffiti artist, known for his stencil art with political and anti-war themes. His work can be seen worldwide.

The world record for the longest graffiti scroll is 7,366 feet and 9 inches. It was done in Dubai in 2014 by over 100 artists, and contained scenes of history for the United Arab Emirates in celebration for their 43 rd United Arab Emirates Union Day.

Graffiti bombing is when a large graffiti piece is put up over a short period of time. Train bombing is one common form, where a group of writers will quickly cover a train in graffiti before the authorities arrive.

There is a difference between graffiti and street art. In graffiti, the writers are generally not interested in the public understanding their work, instead they use it to speak to other writers. Street art is used to engage everyone.

What Happens While You Sleep

Getting an adequate amount of sleep is a crucial component of good health. You are probably well aware that your body requires sleep every night to function properly and maintain your health, but you may not realize how much goes on while you are sleeping.

Your Body Temperature Drops Significantly, reducing the rate at which it burns calories and releases melatonin, a hormone that plays a key role in your circadian rhythm.

Toxins are Cleansed as the body filters and clears damaged molecules. These processes allow the body and brain to rejuvenate. Without sufficient sleep, the brain is unable to purge toxins leading to an increase is neurological deterioration.

You Lose Weight due to expelling humid air and losing water through perspiration. As opposed to during the day, there is no consumption of food or beverages to offset this effect. This leads to a decrease in pounds. Your body also regulates hunger hormones and you are better equipped to fight off junk food cravings if you got an appropriate amount of sleep the night before.

You Dream during the night but you may be surprised to learn how much you dream. We can spend as many as 2 hours dreaming each night.

Your body actually experiences an increase in height while you sleep. When you are laying down, the discs in your spine decompress and rehydrate causing them to get bigger and slightly boost your height.

Your Skin is Boosted by collagen – a protein that contributes to youthful, healthy skin – which is produced at an increased rate while you sleep. It is stimulated by growth hormones that are released as you snooze. Higher levels of collagen promote more resilient, vibrant skin.

You Wake Up Often During the night – up to 15 times – each hour. This usually occurs when we are shifting to a different sleep stage. The periods of wakefulness are usually so brief that we do not remember them.

Amazing Facts About Saturn’s Rings

Saturn, like the other planets, has rings – but the one thing that differentiates Saturn is the sheer outstanding beauty its rings possess. Comprised of mainly hydrogen and helium, this planet can hold 22,600 of our moons inside the planet itself..

Saturn’s rings are made up of chunks of ice and rock in a swirling wind that’s capable of reaching 1,100 mph. These chunk range from a grain of sand to 30 ft.wide, spanning thousands of miles. The chunks are thought to be the remains of space debris caught in the pull of the planet.

The Cassini-Huygens spacecraft was the first of NASA’s probes to actually reach Saturn’s orbit in 2004. The spacecraft found the rings contain vertical clumps of rock reaching over 2 miles high, and this silenced the idea that the rings contained small singular particles.

The ultra-thin nature of the rings is caused by the particles striking together and dropping down as those particles at the top tend to have a lot more energy than those closer to the center. As the particles crash, energy is lost and they drop lower into the ring giving it a thinner range.

When Saturn’s rings were first discovered in 1610 by Galileo, he thought they looked more like ears or handles than rings. In 1656 Christiaan Huygens discovered the ears weren’t in fact arm-like but circled the planet in a thin ring.

As the years went on, we learned more, including the fact that the ‘thin ring’ mentioned was actually a range of rings. Containing a phenomenon known as “Spokes”. These Spokes are strange markings that appear across the rings in minutes and last a few hours at most before disappearing. They were first recognized by the Voyager Spacecraft and again in 1981 by Voyager 2. The markings themselves are stopped from forming if sunlight hits the rings, a feature that baffled the Cassini craft in 2004 as they were photographing the rings when they were in the sun.

Crazy Expensive (And Weird!) Foods

Rich people are weird, everyone acknowledges it. When you have money to literally light your cigars with, you end up spending it some pretty odd, and sometimes pretty incredible things. When you can afford the most expensive foods in the world, for example, you might find yourself paying $75 for a bag of coffee or $1,000 for a pound of mushrooms! Read on for some of the most expensive (and weirdest) foods world-wide!

The coffee we mentioned is Civet coffee, and, well… it may be the oddest item on our list. A civet is an animal that looks like a cat but is more closely related to a mongoose, and they eat coffee berries among other things. They discard the whole means through their… ahem… waste, which is then collected, cleaned, and dry roasted for what is apparently a very smooth and less bitter cup of coffee… at $75 / 9oz.

Saffron may be the most expensive spice; the distinctive red “strings” can go for about $300 / oz! However, the world’s most expensive food goes to Belugan caviar, which comes from a sturgeon native to Iran a kilogram of the stuff goes for around $28K (maybe because it’s made from a fish native to a desert region)!!

Truffles are a known delicacy of the rich, and as we mentioned, Japanese black truffles (also called Matsasuke) go for about $1,000 / lb! However, some varieties of white truffles go for almost $1,400, making it a very expensive fungi! Which of these would you try if you were crazy rich?