Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Improved Solar Cell Power Production: "Solar ‘towers’ beat panels by up to 20x"

It seems, based on this story by ScienceBlog, that 3D Solar structures offer more efficiency than normal flat ones, especially in higher latitudes.

That story is based on Solar Energy Generation in Three Dimensions, by Marco Bernardi, Nicola Ferralis, Jin H. Wan, Rachelle Villalon, Jeffrey C. Grossman.

Solar Energy Generation in Three Dimensions abstract here, full PDF here.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

From Journal Nature: Satellites expose 8,000 years of civilization


I started in the hard sciences, and I still have a lot of passion for Astronomy & Physics, though my degree is in Anthropology.

So stories like this, that combine Satellites, Technology, and Anthropology always draw my attention, I have been waiting in anticipation for advancements like this to bring new types of data to light.

This Nature article quotes Jason Ur, as saying, “Traditional archaeology goes straight to the biggest features — the palaces or cities.

I am not sure if that is really true in the first place, reality is you go were something has been found, or that you believe something can be found, and you have the funding to pursue.

Additionally, in Archaeology, you need a significant sample of data, in order to draw many conclusions, and working in a large site is more time and resource efficient.

Part of the reason I am excited by this article, it actually provides a large amount of data in itself, and it also points to additional areas to study, on the ground, with traditional techniques.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Colossal Squid

I saw the summaries of this BBC story, about the eyes of Giant Squid, some time ago, looked at it closely for the first time today, no puns intended.

I had not realized before this that the Giant Squid is not the largest.

That privilege belongs to the Colossal Squid as far as we know.

This is best site I have found, http://squid.tepapa.govt.nz/ it was referenced at link below.

This site, http://blog.tepapa.govt.nz/2008/04/30/hooks-and-suckers/ shows good pictures of the hooks or claws from on the arms of the Colossal Squid.

I find cephalopods among the most interesting and intriguing of sea creatures, my favorites are the Cuttlefish.

See also http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deep-sea_gigantism