Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Seasonal Change:Fall Webworm Appears in North America,But Poses Little Risk

The early hours today were cool enough for a jacket,a foretaste of meteorological autumn,which begins on 1 September.Walking by a stand of mature timber this late July morning in Northern Maryland,I also noted one of the earliest indicia of seasonal change:fall webworm on the ends of a few branches.These silky webs are spun by larvae of the fall webworm moth (Hyphantria cunea) to protect themselves while they feed on the leaves of some 90 species of deciduous trees.The trees range from hickory and walnut to cherry and birch.In the event,they only rarely defoliate a tree,and even when they do,it usually isn't fatal.The worst thing about it is that the webs may be seen as unattractive.*
The webs can extend up to three feet at the ends of branches.In my experience,you  normally only see a few webs here and there on a given stand of timber-at least at this latitude.Should you wish to remove the webs,one way is to lop the affected branch tips off and crush the caterpillars.You can also tear a hole in the webs so predators such as birds and wasps can eat the caterpillars,or spray pesticides-but these are always best kept as a last resort.Most people in North America just tolerate them as a sign of approaching autumn.*
When they are full,the larvae pupate in a cocoon under leaf litter or in cracks and crevices in the soil,emerging as white moths-or white with black wing spots-late the following spring.The larvae themselves are greenish or yellowish with white hairs and black dots along their backs.*
Dear readers,at this point in July,we are more than halfway through the year,so please remember to support this blog by clicking on an ad now and again.And thanks so much for being a reader.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

20 July,Mother Maria Skobtsova, New-Martyr of France - Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America - reading

Mother Maria Skobtsova, New-Martyr of France - Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America

20 July,The Glorious Prophet Elias (Elijah) - Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America - reading and hymns

The Glorious Prophet Elias (Elijah) - Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America

NASA Engineer Profiles Goddard Space Flight Center - large STEM facility manages multiple lines of inquiry

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt,Maryland is one of America's primary space science centres,involved in the management of  research programmes carried out by a variety of space probes,especially those in Earth orbit or perhaps as far out as the Moon or Mars-the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena,California handles probes to the outer planets and beyond.Larry Mignosa,a Mechanical Engineer at Goddard for 25 years,gave a broad overview of the facility and its lines of inquiry to a small audience of STEM enthusiasts at the C.Burr Artz Library in Frederick,Maryland,which has positioned itself as a STEM education center.He was educated as a civil engineer,but that discipline comes under the mechanical engineering heading at Goddard.Mr.Mignosa has worked on repairing the Hubble Space Telescope,which Goddard manages;as well as the Broad Band X-Ray Telescope,which was a Space Shuttle astronomy mission;the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission and the Global Precipitation Measuring Mission,gathering data for better climate modeling and carried out with JAXA,the Japanese Space Agency;and now ICE Sat-2,which will use lasers to measure the height of ice fields in an effort to understand the future of Earth's climate change.He said he's been making a number of visits to the ICE Sat-2 contractor in Arizona.*
In satellite design today,Mr.Mignosa pointed out,they always use materials so that it will demise on its own;otherwise,you will have to pay for extra fuel to control the re-entry.NASA launches a satellite every three to four months.The launches have a success rate of 95%.*
The repair of Hubble,which is in Earth orbit,involved five corrective mirrors and five corrective optics installed by Space Shuttle astronauts.The successor mission,the JamesWebb Space Telescope,has a mirror comprised of several cells.They can be electronically reconfigured for a correction,a capacity for self-repair.*
Mr.Mignosa likened NASA Goddard to a college campus.It employs about 10,000 people.Goddard has a lot of physics majors to study the physics of the planets;math majors;as well as mechanical,optical,aerospace and electrical engineers.A young student in the audience is interested in telescope design.*
NASA Goddard manages the MAVEN satellite that is probing the Martian atmosphere,some of the instruments on the Curiosity rover,as well as the Solar Dynamics Observatory.Sometimes they build their own satellites,but most often they contract them out.Goddard has extensive equipment to test the satellites for their ability to withstand the harshness of spaceflight,such as a centrifuge and vibration table.*
As for future missions,the James Webb Space Telescope,which Goddard is managing,is set for an October/November 2018 launch.It will be positioned in a solar orbit at point L2,a million miles from Earth to avoid the Earth and Moon's light.WFIRST will boast a field of view 100x greater than Hubble's,with access to a million galaxies;it will be launched in the 2020-2025 time frame.ATLAST will feature an 8-16 meter mirror and is considered  a flagship mission.Only a few people are studying the project now in its concept development phase.It is envisioned for a 2025-2035 launch.*

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Greek Churchman Strongly Defends Great and Holy Council,Ecumenical Patriarchate

A new book by His Eminence Metropolitan Chrysostomos of Messinia,Greece has just been published in Greek," 'Significant' For the Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church-the suppression and support in the preparation and the aftermath."His Eminence is a professor in the Theological Faculty of the University of Athens and well-known for his deeply theological and patristic style.For example,he concludes that:
Therefore,we should behave in a way that honours the Conciliar institution,and not contribute to its destruction,which is ultimately the destruction of the Church's own unity;recognising and accepting the work of the Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church as a project of unity,freedom,society,respect,solidarity,fairness,peace and ministry between peoples and nations.*
Among many other related points covered in his work are these,which may suggest the flavour of his book:
1.The Pan-Orthodox Synod seems to be a requirement of the times,and the course towards it was inexorable,as well as the closer communication of the Orthodox Churches then isolated from each other because of the various socio-political situations.
2.It should be admitted that in Crete (June 2016) an undisputed and essential step was taken to overcome the "autoimmune introspection" of some local Orthodox Churches,which for many centuries afflicted the Churches;while,at the same time,redefining the course towards a new operation of Synodality with timid but decisive steps.
3.Eventually,the case of the Holy and Great Council was critiqued by so-called fundamentalist circles,who do not make a constructive,legitimate critique,but try to break its collegial character by characterising it as a robbery or defeat,thus weakening the unity of the ecclesiastical body and devaluing the Conciliar institution,with the primary aim of challenging the important,coordinating and essential role of the Ecumenical Patriarchate as first in the ministry of unity of the Orthodox Church.All of this leads to the development of a blatant scandal and unwarranted argumentation,while unity is disturbed.
4.The counterpoint to such a divisive tendency cannot be the diametrically opposed "ecclesiastical or religious" construct,but the collaboration of the Orthodox Christian Churches with the other Christian Churches,even with other religions,in order to cultivate a spirit of cohesion,solidarity and unity.
5.It seems that this,which we initially characterised as the "Cold War" of East and West in reference to the Holy and Great Council,is not far from the reality we face today.The political leader with theocratic concepts of a Christian ideal,medieval type,with the collaboration of ecclesiastical leadership and the "flag" of anti-Westernism,creates an ideological and spiritual counterpart to corresponding forms of theocratic leadership,for example,the theocratic Islamist regimes,which are not far from its method,exclusivity,pursuits and redundancies.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Holy Eparchial Synod nominates three candidates for the vacancy of the Metropolis of Chicago - 2017 - Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America

Holy Eparchial Synod nominates three candidates for the vacancy of the Metropolis of Chicago - 2017 - Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America

Wabash Cannonball Hank Snow with Lyrics

Hank Snow - I've Been Everywhere lyric

US Pacific Commander Addresses Manifold Threats

Speaking at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute in Brisbane on 28 June 2017,Admiral Harry B. Harris,Jr.,Commander,US Pacific Command,characterised the North Korean threat as covering the entire APAC Region,since its missiles point in every direction:
North Korea made this clear when they threatened Australia with a nuclear strike just a couple of months ago.*
At the same time,Adm.Harris pointed out,the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant is a growing threat in the region,having named Isnilon Hapilon its emir of Southeast Asia:
These terrorists are using combat tactics that we've seen in the Middle East to kill in the city of Marawi in Mindanao (the Philippines).*
With regard to the ongoing US/Australia/New Zealand Exercise Talisman Sabre 17,the admiral noted:
TS17 is a realistic,high-end and challenging exercise that provides endless opportunities for our nations to innovatively prepare for our shared regional and global security challenges.
Our alliance matters.It matters to our two great nations.It matters to the Indo-Asia-Pacific Region and it matters to the world,because,just as Australia and the US stood together against tyranny and oppression in the twentieth century,the world expects no less in the twenty-first.*
As to China,Adm.Harris told ASPI:
I believe the Chinese are building up combat power and positional advantage to assert de facto sovereignty over disputed maritime features and spaces in the South China Sea,where they are physically altering the physical and political landscape by creating and militarising man-made bases.Fake islands shouldn't be believed by real people.