Chaos in the airspace over Europe

Following the eruption of Eyjafjallajökull on 20 March 2010, air traffic has been suspended in large parts of Europe. The eruption of the Icelandic glacial volcano had thrown a huge ash cloud kilometres high into the atmosphere. The volcanic eruption led to the longest-ever traffic ban in European airspace from 15 April 2010. Tens of

Landslide disaster

Terrible devastation was caused by a landslide in the Schwyz district on 2 September. Late in the afternoon, after heavy rainfall, a rocky peak of the Rossberg broke off. The earth masses underneath started to slide and buried the villages of Goldau and Röthen as well as parts of Lauerz and Buosingen within a few

Breathtaking: Mount Everest conquered without oxygen equipment!

No sensible person would have thought it possible: Reinhold Messner and Peter Habeler have climbed the highest mountain on earth without oxygen equipment. Completely exhausted but happy, the two extreme mountaineers arrived at base camp yesterday. Their summit attempt on Everest begins on 8 May, at half past five in the morning, after an icy

The sun rises at the edge of the world

For a long time, the inhabitants of Qaanaaq have persevered in complete darkness. Now, in mid-February, the moment they have been looking forward to for months has arrived. Despite the freezing cold of minus 35 degrees Celsius, they have gathered at midday. As the first rays of sunlight shine into their faces, the people sing

Alarm in the Alps

It is the mightiest of all Alpine glaciers: the Aletsch Glacier in the Bernese Alps is over 23 kilometres long. Its ice cover is up to 900 metres thick. For now! Because the white splendour of the glaciers could soon be history. For decades, researchers have been observing that the ice masses are shrinking. On

How to Detect that a Problem is Not Bounded with the Simplex Method

The Simplex Method is an algorithm that allows us to solve Linear Programming models that in certain occasions allows us to identify exceptional cases such as infinite optimal solutions or that the problem is not bounded. In this context the Simplex Method rescues the conditions established in the Fundamental Theorem of Linear Programming. In the

The Canadian Shield

The Canadian Shield refers to the exposed part of the continental crust underlying most of North America. This crust, the “North American craton”, extends from northern Mexico to Greenland and is composed of hard rocks that are at least a billion years old. The rocks of the North American Craton, with the exception of those

Marine surface currents

What can debris tell us about surface currents? The ocean surface is in motion. One way to realize that is when you dump something into the ocean. Where does it end up? The tsunami that hit Japan in March 2011 washed a lot of stuff into the ocean. The image above is a model created

What are the relative contributions of planets to the Milankovitch Cycles?

Asked by: George Long What contributes to Milankovitch cycles? This wobble is due to tidal forces caused by the gravitational influences of the Sun and Moon that cause Earth to bulge at the equator, affecting its rotation. The trend in the direction of this wobble relative to the fixed positions of stars is known as

What is the reason why there are radiosonde measurements in the atmosphere?

Asked by: George Long What is the purpose of a radiosonde? The radiosonde is a small instrument package that is suspended below balloon filled with either hydrogen or helium. As the radiosonde is carried aloft it measures pressure, temperature, and relative humidity. How does a radiosonde help predict the weather? A transmitter on the radiosonde

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