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Mon, 19 Feb 2018
The World for People who Think



An update: Sunspots a la Cyclic Catastrophism

Sunspot Cycles
© NAOJ/Nagoya University/JAXA
Fig. 1 Fifty years of constant Sun observation.
This post is a response to "Variation of the Solar Microwave Spectrum in the Last Half Century", Masumi Shimojo et al. Astrophysical Journal, Volume 848, Number 1.

The abstract states:
"... we found that the microwave spectra at the solar minima of Cycles 20-24 agree with each other. These results show that the average atmospheric structure above the upper chromosphere in the quiet-Sun has not varied for half a century, and suggest that the energy input for atmospheric heating from the sub-photosphere to the corona have not changed in the quiet-Sun despite significantly differing strengths of magnetic activity in the last five solar cycles."
See Figure 1 above.

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20-foot-long sinkhole opens up on busy Manhattan street

Massive sinkhole opens up on Manhattan street

Massive sinkhole opens up on Manhattan street
New Yorkers had a scare early Monday morning after a water main failure caused a 20-foot-long sinkhole to open up on Manhattan's Upper West Side.

The sinkhole appeared around 8:30 a.m. on West 82nd Street between Central Park West and Columbus Ave., after residents reported a water main break, according to a local CBS affiliate.

Blue Planet

Huge hole opens up in Brazilian soybean field; depth unknown

big hole
Residents of a farm in Coromandel in Alto Paranaíba were surprised by a geological phenomenon last week. A giant hole, which would have been about 20 meters in diameter, appeared on a soybean plantation. Scientists from the Federal University of Uberlândia (UFU) were there and said that it might be a sinkhole.

Fazenda Santa Cruz is 30 kilometers from the city. According to the owner, Diogo Tudela, the hole opened between 5 and 6 November and was discovered by a resident. "You can not imagine the size of the hole," he said. The land was recently planted with soybeans. The phenomenon had never occurred on the property before. "That's why we sought out experts to answer our questions. Then we learned that there are already records in the region of this event, "he explained.

The farm owner hired a photographer with a drone to take the images. They believe that the diameter is 15 or 20 meters, and they Could not calculate depth yet.

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Water main break causes immense sinkhole in Pacific Beach, California

San Diego, CA sinkhole
A break in a water-transmission line left several Pacific Beach shops without plumbing service Monday afternoon.

The ruptured 30-inch-diameter pipeline near the intersection of Damon Avenue and Mission Bay Drive began overflowing shortly before 1 p.m., city spokesman Arian Collins said. It took crews about a half-hour to deactivate the failed line, which caused a large sinkhole on Mission Bay Drive.

"As a result of the shutdown, there were reports of low water pressure in several parts of the city,'' Collins said.

Comment: More coverage from San Diego's ABC 10 News:

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The Dead Sea is dying: Thousands of sinkholes are shrinking water level at rate of 1.4 metres a year

A view of the the Dead Sea's receding shoreline from the Hilton Dead Sea Resort & Spa in Jordan.
© Sophie Tremblay
A view of the the Dead Sea's receding shoreline from the Hilton Dead Sea Resort & Spa in Jordan.
On a bright November day in Jordan, the Dead Sea appears tranquil, with barely a ripple on its surface as it stretches out into a distant haze.

But there are indications that all is not well here at the lowest point on Earth: by the cluster of hotels that lines the seafront, mechanical diggers appear to be shoring up the land, and the walk down to the sun loungers beside the water is lengthening.

It all hints at a problem that has vexed multiple governments and sparked concerns among researchers, environmentalists and anyone else with an interest in this iconic salt lake, which is woven into the history of Islam, Christianity and Judaism.

In short, the Dead Sea is dying.

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Sinkhole appears in the center of Amsterdam

zinkgat amsterdam

Sinkhole in Amsterdam on Nov 1st, 2017.
Sinkholes have started appearing in the Netherlands of late. While no official statistics are available, a dozen or more sinkholes have opened up in the country in the past few years, with one of the earliest being a small sinkhole in the city of Breda in April 2015.

Back in 2013, chances of sinkholes opening up in the Netherlands were described as "negligible" by Dutch geologist van Balen. Granted, van Balen referred specifically to the enormous sinkhole that appeared in Florida that swallowed a man, however, as it currently stands, there is no telling to what extent the Earth will 'open up' - even in this neck of the woods.

On November 1st, a large sinkhole appeared on a cycling path in the Marnixstraat, which lies in the center of Amsterdam. Luckily, no one was hurt. Parts of the cycling path as well as the sidewalk sunk. Trams and buses had to take a different route, while parts of the roads were closed off to fix the hole, (see image above and below).


Try again: Massive sinkhole opens up in Erie county parking lot - 2 days after it was fixed

sink hole east aurora NY
© aurorabrewworks / Instagram
A giant 60ft-by-30ft sinkhole has opened up in a parking lot in Erie County, New York amid heavy downpours.

The whopping sinkhole, which has a stream running through it, emerged Sunday night after rain destroyed a temporary fix made at the site earlier in the week, reports WIVB.

The sinkhole is around 30ft (9 meters) wide, 60ft long and 16ft deep, according to crews working to stop the hole from getting bigger.

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2 large sinkholes threaten to swallow school in Thailand

An aerial view shows connected sinkholes within a few metres of the Banbonkaokangriang School grounds in Sri Sawat district of Kanchanaburi on Saturday
© Piyarach Chongcharoen
An aerial view shows connected sinkholes within a few metres of the Banbonkaokangriang School grounds in Sri Sawat district of Kanchanaburi on Saturday
Two large sinkholes that are 15-20 metres deep and cover about one rai are creeping closer to a school in Sri Sawat district, leaving parents reluctant to send their children back there for the new term this week.

The sinkholes are threatening Banbonkaokangriang School, which educates 187 children from kindergarten to grade 9 in tambon Tha Kradan. Many big trees have fallen into the holes in the past year and cracks in the earth are seen stretching from the holes to some school buildings.

School director Somwut Srisangworn said there used to be a stream flowing near the school to a waterfall. In November last year, runoff caused the stream to subside and disappear. The sinkholes first appeared on Nov 10 last year and have continued to grow.

Officials of the Department of Mineral Resources inspected the area and found a lot of perforated limestone that is vulnerable to erosion, especially from an underground waterway.

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Oil truck gets stuck after sinkhole opens up in Woodfin, North Carolina

tanker sinkhole
© The Weaverville Tribune
Tanker sinkhole
A large sinkhole opened up in front of the Moe's Original Bar B Que in Woodfin on Friday.

An oil truck driver told police he was leaving the restaurant and heard a noise that sounded like his tires popping.

He said he got out and saw the sink hole forming under the truck's back tires.

Police said the ground may have been weakened by recent storms.

Authorities said two trucks came and pulled the oil truck out of the sinkhole.

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Sinkholes scare local residents in Andhra's Kadapa district, India

While not a new phenomenon, farmers are skeptical to go to their farms with a surge in sinkholes.

While not a new phenomenon, farmers are skeptical to go to their farms with a surge in sinkholes.
Following heavy rainfall in Andhra Pradesh recently, many sinkholes have been forming in the Rayalaseema region, mainly in Kadapa district.

According to Prabhakar Reddy, the sarpanch of Buggalapalle village in Chintakommadinne mandal, sinkholes have been forming in the area for the past few years.

"On Monday, two sinkholes formed near Buggamaleswara temple in our village. Last year, we saw nearly 20 sink holes form in the span of two week in our, as well as surrounding villages," he said.

Prabhakar also claimed the in the past three years, 250 sinkholes have been found in the villages surrounding the Buggavagu project. Buggavagu is a minor irrigation project which caters to 10 villages including Buggalapalle and Gudavandlapalle.

"We have informed the officials and they said the sinkholes are being formed due to the loosening of the soil," he stated.