This massive solar farm in the desert will provide power for more than million people

On Thursday, at the foot of the Sahara Desert, the future of solar energy made its grand debut. That afternoon, Morocco’s King Mohammed VI fired up Noor 1, the first section of the country’s massive, groundbreaking solar power plant. Expected to cover an area of roughly 6,000 acres by 2018, the solar plant is set to become the biggest in the world once finished. It will eventually provide enough power for about 1.1 million people.

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Folding human brain in 3D

The distinctive troughs and crests of the human brain are not present in most animals; highly folded brains are seen only in a handful of species, including some primates, dolphins, elephants and pigs. In humans, folding begins in fetal brains around the 20th week of gestation and is completed only when the child is about a year and a half.

Why the brain is folded can be rationalized easily from an evolutionary perspective; folded brains likely evolved to fit a large cortex into a small volume with the benefit of reducing neuronal wiring length and improving cognitive function.

Less understood is how the brain folds. Several hypotheses have been proposed but none have been directly used to make testable predictions. Now, researchers at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences collaborating with scientists in Finland and France have shown that while many molecular processes are important in determining cellular events, what ultimately causes the brain to fold is a simple mechanical instability associated with buckling.

Source: Harvard University 


hubble’s panorama of the carina nebula, some 7500 light years away from earth, and about fifty light years in length here. stars old and new illuminate clouds of cosmic dust and gas, like the clumping hydrogen from which they were born.
the top star seen at the bisection of the first two panels, part of the eta carinae binary star system (most stars are in binary systems), is estimated to be more than a hundred times the mass of the sun - large enough to go supernoava in about a million years.
it also produces four million times as much light as the sun, and was once the second brightest star in the night sky. but surrounding dust and gas has dimmed our view of the star, though it’s still visible in the night sky to all but those in the most light polluted cities.
he fifth panel shows ‘the mystic mountain,’ where nascent stars in the cloud are spewing hot ionized gas and dust at 850,000 miles an hour . eventually, the ultraviolet radiation from these stars will blow away the dust, leaving visible the stars, like the cluster seen at the top of the panel, which were formed only half a million years ago.


First trip out.  This is a baby Phidippus Regius, just after leaving the sac in search of food, for the first time in it’s life.  I took a few of the babies, and gave them some heat and light and let them roam around and accomplish their first few jumps.  This is one experiencing its’ first taste of freedom.  Barely a speck, these shots are in the 5x life size range.


What is Zika Virus?

Zika virus is spread to people through mosquito bites. The most common symptoms of Zika virus disease are fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis (red eyes). The illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting from several days to a week. Severe disease requiring hospitalization is uncommon.

In May 2015, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) issued an alert regarding the first confirmed Zika virus infection in Brazil. The outbreak in Brazil led to reports of Guillain-Barré syndrome and pregnant women giving birth to babies with birth defects and poor pregnancy outcomes.

Read more about Zika Virus at Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Infographic by VisualBest (Santosh Kushwaha)


A stately creature

The largest jellyfish species on our planet is a beastie that loves frigid waters, both northern and southern, and is known as the Lion’s Mane or hair jelly (though Pastafarians might join me in seeing another living representation of their deity, to accompany the sinophore we shared at http://on.fb.me/1P4kLBu). With a bell up to 2.5 metres across and clustered tentacles up to 37 metres long (more than a blue whale), these predators drift around the world’s icy seas eating fish and other small marine creatures that it stings with its tentacles, stunning them while it engulfs them in its maw.

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