Cool Stories Earth

Rare Photos of Atmospheric Gravity Waves

Life is often full of amazing little treats that, to the untrained eye, would go entirely unseen. Phenomena are commonly found in all walks of life, and this can give us some of the most truly life-changing sights and scenes. However, one phenomenon that has so far been invisible to humans is known as atmospheric gravity waves.

These are ripples that you would not be able to see in the sky, but definitely have taken place. Such waves can take place in various locations but are often most commonly found during thunderstorms.

Indeed, it’s apparently not too dissimilar to what happens when you throw a rock across the water – you see that little ripple, that change. That is also a gravity wave; what is happening in the sky is similar.

Our Atmosphere is Liquid

Any disturbance to fluid can make these waves take place. Given that our atmosphere is a liquid, too, though, it can contribute to the development of similar wave effects later on in time. It’s a big reason why this kind of atmospheric wave has long been sought after by scientists looking to see it happen in real-time.

The person behind making this happen was Adam Morgan, a meteorologist at the Australian Bureau of Meteorology. Speaking to ABC News, Morgan said: “Essentially gravity waves are disturbances in any sort of fluid, so we see them often in water, but the atmosphere is a fluid as well, so any sort of disturbance in there can generate waves.”

Asked why this has taken place to begin with, Morgan said: “There was a big thunderstorm over the northwest of Western Australia and the disturbance, in this case, was the cold air falling out of the thunderstorm and into the warmer air near the surface,” Morgan said.

“The difference in density there causes the disturbance and then the gravity wave can travel out as the cold air spreads out,”

Indeed, he also noted that such waves can travel exceptionally large distances before they begin to dissipate and return to normal. Speaking further about the experience, Morgan said: “The disturbance will exist until everything rebalances itself, that’s why they can travel a long way,

“If you’ve ever been to the swimming pool and someone jumps in and does a dive bomb at one end of the pool, you might get the wave right at the other end of the pool after a bit of time.”

The main reason why we cannot normally see these, though, is due to the fact that they must produce some kind of cloud. Otherwise, there is not enough moisture in the air to try and give us an insight into what is going on in the background.

Still, we can now finally say that we have visual proof of an atmospheric gravity wave taking place. For many in the science community, this will be seen as a hugely impressive level of progress.

Life is often full of amazing little treats that, to the untrained eye, would go entirely unseen. Phenomena are commonly found in all walks of life...

Cool Stories Fashion

Designer Says These $20 Million Shoes are The World’s Most Expensive

In the past, it was handbags. Your purse brand and its price defined you. The more expensive, the better. But slowly, bags have taken the backseat, and shoes have begun to take their place – or so says Business Insider’s, Mary Hanbury.

In fact, numbers show that consumers are spending more money on expensive shoes than luxury handbags – $794 on one pair on average, Hanbury wrote, citing a report by The NPD Group. The most classic of these status-symbol shoes is a pair of Christian Louboutins, which can range from anywhere in the high hundreds to the mid-thousands.

However, a pair of shoes debuted on a yacht in Dubai as a part of MIDE (Made in Italy, Designed in Emirates) Fashion Week earlier this October makes the cost of a pair of Louboutins look like pocket change.

Designed by the Italian Antonio Vietri, the “Moon Star Shoes” are now the world’s most expensive shoe, valuing around $19.9 million according to Sophi Prideaux of The National, an English-language UAE news site.

Made of Stars?

So, what makes these shoes so expensive? Not only is the heel solid gold, but it also consists of 30 carats of diamonds and a bit of Argentinian meteorite circa 1576 – all combined to make a record-breaking shoe.

According to Forbes Italia, the shoes are meant to be a tribute to Dubai’s Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world. Vietri is also known for designing the “world’s first 24k gold shoes” in 2017, reported Harper’s Bazaar Arabia. And, of course, they were delivered to buyers via helicopter.

“The most expensive shoes in the world are mine. And the record came to [the] city of Turin. I love my city,” the designer wrote on Instagram on October 14.

It’s undeniable that Vietri has taken the luxury market of shoes to a whole new level. What will he do next?

Still no news on how comfortable the shoes are as of yet.

In the past, it was handbags. Your purse brand and its price defined you. The more expensive, the better. But slowly, bags have taken the backseat...

Cool Stories Tech News

SpaceX Looks at 2020 for First Internet Coverage From Space

SpaceX is looking at mid-2020 to start offering broadband services via Starlink – a huge internet-from-space project.  To get the project up and running 60 satellites must be deployed which requires 6-8 launches.

Starlink constellation will consist of thousands of satellites orbiting the Earth at low altitudes.  These satellites will be used to provide internet coverage.

The Federal Communications Commission has licensed Space X to launch 12,000 satellites as part of the project and last week the company contacted the ITU (International Telecommunications Union) to request radio frequencies it needs to communicate with another 30,000 satellites.  In total SpaceX intends to launch around 42,000 satellites into low orbit.

The World Wants to Connect

The initiative stems from the increased demand for reliable and fast internet globally, and to reach areas where connectivity has been patchy, non-existent or too expensive.  SpaceX will likely be working to make Starlink Constellation scalable to meet anticipated future needs.

To date, 60 Starlink satellites have been launched by SpaceX and 3 of these failed when they reached orbit.  Two further satellites were removed from orbit which indicates that the company can do this if they need to.  However, the other satellites have accessed the correct orbit and are functioning normally.  This was announced by Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX via the system.

The project is still very much in its infancy with a lot of work still to complete before the general public can access the internet via Starlink.  As well as getting the satellites into orbit, Space X is still developing the user terminal that receives the signal from space.

The eventual roll-out may mean direct launch to customers in some areas, whereas in others it will be accessed via a telecom company.  This, along with pricing, has yet to be established.

With its venture into the Starlink Constellation SpaceX moves into the realms of space technology being utilized in commerce.

SpaceX is looking at mid-2020 to start offering broadband services via Starlink – a huge internet-from-space project.  To get the project up and...

Category - Cool Stories

City Life Cool Stories

Beyond the Streets: Early Brooklyn Graffiti Exhibition

Beyond the Streets, a show exhibiting the work of celebrated artists who spent years illegally working on the streets, first opened in Los Angeles last year.

It’s curator, Roger Gastman, has now opened a second iteration of Beyond the Streets in Brooklyn, NY, where visitors get to view the work of over 150 street artists from around the world.

Gastman, a well-known graffiti historian and “urban anthropologist” is known not just for these shows, but also for co-authoring books on street art and co-producing films like Banksy’s Exit Through the Gift Shop.

Two floors of wall-breaking art

You can check out this latest show, including conceptual artist Jenny Holzer, feminist art collective Guerrilla Girls, Shepard Fairey, and Takashi Murakami, at the new 25 Kent Avenue space on the edge of Williamsburg and Greenpoint.

The art takes up two whole floors of the space and also offers sculptures, works on canvas and, immersive installations alongside a Beastie Boys installation featuring “artifacts and ephemera” from the band’s 4-decade history, a functioning tattoo parlor by Bert Krak & Alexis Ross and a room of puppets made of trash by Paul INSECT and BAST.

Gastman has long had a passion for celebrating art that was first done illegally under the cover of night. In recent years, developers that are changing cities have desired officially sanctioned murals around as a way to “clean up the neighborhood.”

But the artists in these shows are ones who broke the rules, shaped what we know as street art, and, at times, paid the price for pioneering the way, says Gastman. Though many of them now have their own profitable studio practice, their beginnings were anything but.

“You know, this culture—which was started by youths writing their names over and over again for the sake of fame and fun and notoriety—has ballooned into a worldwide cultural phenomenon,” says Gastman in an interview with Artnet.

“So many of the pioneers are still with us today. A lot of them are getting older. But let’s learn from them. Let’s respect them. And let’s preserve the history as much as we can while they’re with us, before it’s too late.”

The exhibition opened up on June 21st and will remain open until the end of August this year. If you’re not able to make it to Beyond the Streets NYC, you can see the artists’ work on the website. They’re worth checking out, even if not in person.

Beyond the Streets, a show exhibiting the work of celebrated artists who spent years illegally working on the streets, first opened in Los Angeles last year.

It’s curator, Roger Gastman, has now opened a second iteration of Beyond the Streets in Brooklyn...

Cool Stories Earth Humans Are Awesome

Find Out How LEGO Has Managed To Run On 100% Renewable Energy

Not only has LEGO earned a place in the Guinness World Book of Records but achieved their goal running renewable energy a good 3 years before their initial plan.

LEGO was launched on August 10, 9132 in Billund Denmark and is the leading manufacturer of a children’s toy famously known as LEGO Building Bricks!  They completed their wind farm off the coast of Ireland which uses 258 megawatts of energy.  They constructed an enormous life-sized wind turbine made out of LEGOs to honor the occasion.

LEGO CEO, Bali Padda, said they worked very hard to leave a positive impact on the planet and they are very excited about the inauguration of the Burbo Bank Extension wind farm. This is not the first time LEGO has been involved in renewable energy.

They own approximately one-third of the German-based Borkum Riggrund I offshore wind farm and 25% of the newly-minted Burbo Bank.

The CEO said they plan to continue investing in renewable energy to help form a better future for the builders of tomorrow.  Back to the Guinness World Record, they achieved their place by historically building the largest LEGO brick turbine.

It was constructed out of more than 146,000 LEGO bricks and it took their team over 600 hours to complete, transport, and reassemble the masterpiece at the  Liverpool ONE shopping center in England.

After reassembly, the structure was measured by officials using a measuring tape and a hydraulic crane.  If you want to see this massive, magnificent LEGO wind turbine, it’s been moved to the LEGOLAND Winsor Resort in England.

It’s About The Children:

LEGO said they have gone to great lengths to promote renewable energy because it’s about the next generation being taught about the value of sustainable power.  They know their role models are children and plan to continue taking action for reducing the environmental impact as a company.

They continue looking for ways to inspire children from all over the world by engaging them in environmental and social issues.

In 2018, LEGO released its first sustainable set of plant-based bricks made from sugar cane.  A few months later, they introduced their LEGO Creator Expert toy which is a miniature version that functions as a wind turbine for children.

This amazing company with its incredible vision is well on its way to provide 100% environmentally-friendly packaging and merchandise by 2030!

Way To Go LEGO!

Not only has LEGO earned a place in the Guinness World Book of Records but achieved their goal running renewable energy a good 3 years before their initial plan.

LEGO was launched on August 10, 9132 in Billund Denmark and is the leading manufacturer of a...

Cool Stories Earth

Spectacular Images of the Raikoke Volcano Erupting From ISS by NASA

Sitting aboard the International Space Station (ISS) a NASA astronaut was able to capture some stunning images of the Raikoke Volcano as it erupts.

The 2,300ft crater can be clearly seen sending clouds of ash high into the atmosphere.  Located in the Kuril archipelago in the north-west Pacific the volcano had been dormant for almost 100 years before it violently erupted on June 22, sending a huge cloud of ash as far as 8 miles high.  In the images you can see the cloud rising as a column, stopping when it reaches the denser air.

Volcanologists at Michigan tech issued a statement for NASA commenting that the eruption was similar to that of another volcano in the Kurils a decade ago.  The images show a ring of white cloud at the base of the ash column indicating either that air is being drawn in, or perhaps that there is condensation caused by the magma entering the sea.

Raikoke island is quite small, so it is likely that magma flow reached the sea and the fluffy cloud at the base could be the resulting steam.

The huge ash plume has been seen drifting eastward and there are warnings in place for aircraft near the Bering Sea.  Volcanic ash often contains pieces of rock or glass which can be hazardous to aircraft.

Breaching the Stratosphere

Data obtained via satellite shows that the eruption has sent gas into the second layer of the Earth’s atmosphere.  Large amounts of sulfur dioxide in the stratosphere have been detected which NASA says indicates that this is a new injection of the gas.

The stratosphere starts at around 4.3-12 miles above the earth and it is vital to monitor ash plumes that hit this height because they have the ability to remain in the higher levels of the atmosphere for longer.

Other images of the volcano have also been released, alongside those captured by the ISS the NASA’s Terra satellite also captured the incident, as did the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Suomi satellite.

Sitting aboard the International Space Station (ISS) a NASA astronaut was able to capture some stunning images of the Raikoke Volcano as it erupts.

The 2,300ft crater can be clearly seen sending clouds of ash high into the atmosphere.  Located in the Kuril...

Cool Stories Humans Are Awesome

Creative Repairman Perfectly Fixes Household Goods Using Instant Noodles

Here’s an Idea:

You can fix anything, apparently, with Ramen Noodles!

I’m not sure how this actually holds up but the basis is valid – it’s a filler (noodles) mixed with glue. What could possibly go wrong?

Here’s an Idea:
You can fix anything, apparently, with Ramen Noodles!
I’m not sure how this actually holds up but the basis is valid – it’s a filler (noodles) mixed with glue. What could possibly go wrong?

Cool Stories

A House That Looks Like a Floating Island

Located in Greece above the Santorini Hills sits this incredible home.  Inside, it is a modern residence but from a distance it looks like a slice of land is levitating above the ground.

There is a living garden on the roof and because the lower levels are designed in the earth-like striations the house gives an almost mirage-like appearance in the landscape.

This house, created by Kapsimalis Architects sits in a vineyard overlooking the Mediterranean Sea and Fira, the capital of the island.  It completes its integration with the local landscape with a design reminiscent of the local caves.

Mirrored Earth

The look is created using tow levels: one mirrored, and one earthen.  The living area sits in the mirrored lower floor, along with the kitchen, bathroom and master bedroom.  The area has an almost subterranean feel because of the earthen level sitting above.

On this level you find an office and an attic and, of course, a terrace from which you can overlook the spectacular view.  The views are not limited to the upper level though, the architects cleverly used one-way mirroring to give stunning lower level views similarly impressive views across the local scenery.

The architects were heavily influenced by the diversity of the landscape and used that to inspire the design of the home.  They wanted the home to become integral to the scenery using specific materials combined with a mirrored level to fully assimilate the property into the natural environment.

The mixture of traditional aesthetics and modern, futuristic design has created a unique and outstanding dwelling.

The architects have created a number of other similar homes including hotels within hills, concrete homes and adaptations of Greek ruins.  All of their structures use the region’s natural shapes, textures and traditional architecture as a backdrop for their unique designs.

Located in Greece above the Santorini Hills sits this incredible home.  Inside, it is a modern residence but from a distance it looks like a slice of land is levitating above the ground.

There is a living garden on the roof and because the lower levels are...

Cool Stories Entertainment Entertainment News

Batman is 80!

Art Exhibition Showcases the Caped Crusader’s 80th year as Comic Book Icon

Long before the movies, video games, cartoons a music videos the Caped Crusader made his mark as a comic book hero.  Batman, alongside Superman, was the star of DC comics.  Looking back on our hero you can see a rich history and if that’s something you’d love to immerse yourself in then get yourself along to one of three new exhibitions of Batman Art.

The New York-based Society of Illustrators is opening three exhibitions devoted to the savior of Gotham City. Each of the exhibitions will showcase literally hundreds of Batman images across several themes.  The opening reception takes place on June 21st.

Illustrating Batman

The main exhibit, entitled “Illustrating Batman: Eighty Years of Comics and Pop Culture,”  will showcase the comic book hero as seen in the work of Jim Lee, Bob Kane, Frank Miller and Neal Adams featured alongside commercials, toys and essays.

Designer Chip Kidd has provided a personal collection entitled “Batman Collected: Chip Kidd’s Batman Obsession” You can, however, also see some pieces from Bruce Timm and Alex Ross in the mix.

If you are a fan of anime you really need to go and check out the exhibition of Bat-Manga by Jiro Kuwata.  For a 1960s manga feel buy a ticket to “Bat-Manga!: The Secret History of Batman in Japan”

If this has whetted your appetite for more Batman get yourself over to the Society of Illustrators in New York and grab a ticket.

Art Exhibition Showcases the Caped Crusader’s 80th year as Comic Book Icon

Long before the movies, video games, cartoons a music videos the Caped Crusader made his mark as a comic book hero.  Batman, alongside Superman, was the star of DC comics. ...

Cool Stories Vacation

Airbnb Enters the Adventure Travel Market

Airbnb remains the leader in home-sharing holidays and is now adding to its range of offerings by venturing into the adventure-travel arena – a market that is currently worth around $683billion.

The holiday and travel platform is now offering customers access to experiences as well as accommodation through the new “Airbnd Adventures”.  Customers can take the change to build some amazing memories.  Some of the offerings include time in Arizona to hunt for UFOs or heading off to Oman or the Galapagos Islands.

Airbnb Adventures is a spin-off from the popular Airbnb Experiences.  Where the Experiences would only last between for a few hours up to a full day, Adventures brings an immersive experience which lasts for days and up to a week.  Along with the adventure, of course, comes food and lodging.

Try the Road Less Traveled

At present, there are around 200 Airbnb Adventures on offer.  Some are exclusive to Airbnb but others are run through local operators advertising exclusively on the Airbnb Adventures platform.  By signing up the traveler can enjoy a fully immersive experience along the road less traveled where they are free to experience, explore and create lifelong memories.

There is no problem with quality either; Airbnb has been advised by the Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA) in order to maintain the high quality and safety standards people expect.

For the more adventurous there is an opportunity for a Warrior boot camp in Kenya, hiking in Petra or a fully accessible trip to Easter Island.  There is also a special Jules Verne inspired”Around the World in 80 Days” trip.

A small and intimate group will travel the world taking in the Nile and the Northern Lights, exploring Nairobi where they will meet the elephant singers and taking part in a Samurai pilgrimage near Osaka.  These and other one-off opportunities are available to commemorate the launch of Airbnb Adventure and are available for the sum of $5,000 per person.

For those who want a more sedate pace Airbnb Adventures offer something a little more laid back – how does a weekend on an Anabaptist Farm in Indiana sound?  The owners are happy to share the experience of collecting eggs, making jam and tending their garden as they renovate their 100-year old farm.  A perfectly relaxing adventure.

Airbnb remains the leader in home-sharing holidays and is now adding to its range of offerings by venturing into the adventure-travel arena – a market that is currently worth around $683billion.

The holiday and travel platform is now offering customers...

Animals Cool Stories

Study: Dolphins Form Friendships Based on Shared Interests

Just like humans, male dolphins have been shown to form long-lasting bonds and These ties are formed with those who have similar interests or traits.

It is well known that dolphins live in social groupings, known as pods, and carry out quite complex social interactions. However, this study is another indication of the level of intelligence they possess.

The international group of scientists from Australia, Switzerland and the UK studied dolphins in Shark Bay, Western Australia.  The particular pod of bottlenose dolphins has been observed before and it was discovered that the female pod members had developed a unique method of foraging using marine sponges in order to find food.

This behavior, known as sponging,  has not been seen outside this group and has been passed down from mother to calf.

Male Bonding

The scientists wanted to return to Shark Bay to look specifically at the behavior of the males in the group and studied 124 male bottlenose dolphins in their study which lasted from 2007 to 2015.

They found that some males used the sponging technique while others did not but those that did tend to associate with other sponging males.  They also spent more time foraging than the other males and less time sleeping.

It seems that, like the female dolphins, the males have formed social bonds based on the shared activity of sponging.

Another finding of the study is that the social alliances play a key role in the males’ mating success and that the bonds formed indicate, not only that the males can form social bonds based on similar traits, but also that these bonds can last for decades.

Just like humans, male dolphins have been shown to form long-lasting bonds and These ties are formed with those who have similar interests or traits.

It is well known that dolphins live in social groupings, known as pods, and carry out quite complex social...

Cool Stories

An Incredible Jeweled-Dinosaur Discovery In Australia!

Excavators made an incredible find in the outback of Australia of Opal-encrusted Dinosaurs which seems to be a completely new species.

Phil Bell from the University of New England, Australia said they discovered approximately 60 bones from an adult dinosaur which included part of a brain case along with other bones from approximately 3 different animals.

The fossils were initially discovered in an opal mine in New South Wales in the 80s, donated to a museum then dismissed for approximately 30 years. This species has been named “ Fostoria dhimbangunmal”. It seems these dinosaurs date back from the mid-Jurassic period to the late Cretaceous which is approximately 175 million years ago. The Iguanodontian is a clade of herbivorous dinosaurs who were two-legged.

The discovery was published in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology.

What are Opalized Fossils?

Opalized fossils are similar to other fossils accept they are preserved in silica, not rock. Opal forms in cavities of rocks and if a living part, such as a bone, is buried in the sand or clay before turning to stone, the opal can create a fossil replica of the buried object.

Partial skeletons of extinct reptiles have been formed and discovered in other areas of Australia but finding a complete opalized dinosaur skeleton is the rarest in the entire world. Scientists have found single bones or a tooth but to recover dozens of bones from one skeleton is extraordinary.

Originally, it was believed that the fossils came from just one dinosaur but upon further examination, they discovered they had 4 shoulder blades from different sized animals. The team finally identified 4 Fostoria skeletons from juveniles to adults. This clearly revealed these animals came from a herd. The team said this is the first time such a discovery has ever been made in Australia.

Excavators made an incredible find in the outback of Australia of Opal-encrusted Dinosaurs which seems to be a completely new species.

Phil Bell from the University of New England, Australia said they discovered approximately 60 bones from an adult dinosaur...

Cool Stories Humans Are Awesome Lifestyle

A Pop-Up Cabin That’s Actually Real? Check It Out!

Do you ever hear about people who have ‘pop-up homes’? You no doubt raise your eyebrows with slight uncertainty. And you aren’t the only one. The idea of a pop-up home is usually reserved for things like video games, where you can place a building with a tap of the finger. But in real-life? Usually, building a strong and sturdy home would take a fair bit more planning and good work!

That being said, we live in a wonderful and exciting world. A pop-up cabin is a term that you might draw derision at, but when you see it actually in place it all becomes a lot easier to understand. If you were able to have a “home” delivered that essentially gets put together in a day, would you do it?

Yes, that includes the plumbing, electrics, air conditioning, etc. – everything is there that you would expect to see. Well, thanks to Italian mastermind Renato Vidal, this is completely possible.

This is an interesting way to get the idea of a flat-pack home. It will come together in just six hours, apparently, and they come built ready to handle even the strongest of earthquakes. So, if you want to build your own home but don’t have the time or means, then a home like this might just be what you are looking for!

Everything comes ready to be enjoyed. It’s like buying some flat-pack furniture from a store: it all arrives ready to go and to be enjoyed. It’s a ridiculous experience, really. All you need to do is populate it with the furniture that you want, and you will be left with more or less a fully home that is built entirely to the way that you would have wanted!

Getting a flat-pack home

Want to know more about this? Then check out M.A.Di, the company behind it. They build up the cabins without any foundations and then they place it for you on some level ground. However, it’s recommended that you get a concrete foundation put in place for the home to sit on prior to it being delivered.

If this something you would be genuinely interested in, we’d recommend speaking to the team behind it before you make a purchase.

It is, though, one of the smartest ideas we have ever seen when it comes to building a home. They can even be packed up and moved. Now, when you choose to move to a new town or neighborhood, you could literally pack your home onto the back of a truck and drive away!

It’s a little like the episode of The Simpsons when Springfield essentially has to move on. It is, though, crucially, a high-quality, respectable build quality that isn’t some gimmick. These are solid, structurally impressive homes that you could easily live in if you were looking to move home.

If you are serious about buying a new property you can take with you, be sure to look at M.A.Di cabins.

Do you ever hear about people who have ‘pop-up homes’? You no doubt raise your eyebrows with slight uncertainty. And you aren’t the only one. The idea of a pop-up home is usually reserved for things like video games, where you can place a building with...

Cool Stories Humans Are Awesome

Put Your Name on Mars 2020 Rover!

NASA is giving people of every age and nationality the opportunity to have their names etched into its upcoming Mars 2020 rover which is set to launch on its expedition to the red planet next year.

All you have to do to be one of the lucky names heading to Mars is fill out the online form on NASA’s website before September 30. Once every name is submitted, NASA will have the scientists at the Microdevices Laboratory at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California use a beam of electrons to etch every one of them into a silicon chip.

The lines of text will be smaller than one-thousandth the width of a human hair, allowing over one million names to be carved into one single chip the size of a penny.

Most likely, NASA will end up having to use more than one chip, considering the 2.4 million people who submitted their names to be written on Mars’s InSight lander last November. This chip (or chips) will be fitted onto the rover underneath a glass cover.

Get a boarding pass to Mars

Those who submit their names will also receive “frequent flyer” points along with a souvenir “boarding pass to Mars” as part of NASA’s public engagement campaign to highlight missions related to the space agency’s exploration plans for the moon and Mars.

Every time you participate in a flight, you will be awarded miles, and as they accumulate, you can use these miles to download mission patches. For instance, those who had their names etched on the InSight lander earned about 300 million frequent flyer miles as that is the distance it traveled to get to Mars.

“This opportunity provides an incredible way for every person, in every nation around the world, to be part of this experience and to see their own names written among the stars,” Lori Glaze, director of NASA’s Planetary Science Division, told Newsweek.

This newest mission is meant to gather data on Mars’s climate and geology, search for signs of past microbial life and collect samples to bring back to earth. The 2,300-pound rover is scheduled to launch as soon as June in 2020 with the projected landing date being around February 2021.

“It’s an exciting time for NASA, as we embark on this voyage to answer profound questions about our neighboring planet and even the origins of life itself,” said Thomas Zurbuchen, from NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington, in a statement. “As we get ready to launch this historic Mars mission, we want everyone to share in this journey of exploration.”

NASA’s long-term mission is to return humans to the moon in 2024 and to have them on the red planet in the 2030s. This 2020 mission is just one step towards the feats they are hoping to accomplish in the future.

NASA is giving people of every age and nationality the opportunity to have their names etched into its upcoming Mars 2020 rover which is set to launch on its expedition to the red planet next year.

All you have to do to be one of the lucky names heading to...

Cool Stories Nature & Tech

Massive Avalanche In Aspen Captured On Camera

Originally founded as a mining camp during the Silver Boom in Colorado in the mid-1800s, Aspen is now the most elite winter resort and the most popular tourist attraction in the United States.

The four ski areas around the town of Aspen get an average of 176 inches of snow per year. It used to be visited by musicians and writers but nowadays they are joined by corporate executives.

Named after the abundance of aspen trees in the surrounding woods, it is situated in an area in the Sawatch Range of the Rocky Mountains and the Elk Mountains, along the Roaring Fork River at an elevation just below 8,000 feet (2,400 m) above sea level on the Western Slope, 11 miles (18 km) west of the Continental Divide.

In order to control the amount of snowfall on the ski terrains, as well as to reduce the risk of naturally-occurring avalanches, the authorities use strategically placed fuel-air explosives that generate an air blast strong enough to initiate a slide in a controlled environment.

It is usually done in the early hours of the morning if possible, to avoid stray skiers that neglect the warnings. These controlled blasts have been able to save many ski seasons and keep the safety on the slopes to a maximum.

Footage of Human Triggered Avalanche

This footage was shot by a tourist in Aspen during one of those detonations, showing the amazing way the powder falls and settles, minimizing the risk of a naturally occurring avalanche.

In the middle of February 2018 the Colorado Avalanche Information Center issued an avalanche warning for the Aspen-area backcountry.”Human-triggered avalanches are very likely at all elevations,” the warning said, with “natural avalanches that could run to the valley floors are likely.

Travel in avalanche terrain is not recommended.”The reason behind this occurrence is this winter’s snowfall, where one-third of the cumulative snowfall fell in just two weeks.

Avalanche control activities such as this one minimize the risks avalanches pose to the life, activities, and properties of humankind. These activities begin with a risk assessment by surveying for potential avalanche terrain.

The geographic features, such as vegetation patterns, drainages, and seasonal snow distribution that are indicative of avalanches, need to be identified.

From there, the hazard is assessed by identifying human geographic features such as roads, ski hills, and buildings that are potentially under threat. These programs address the avalanche risks by drawing up prevention and alleviation plans, which are executed during the winter season.

The prevention and alleviation plans combine extensive snowpack observation with three major groups of interventions: active, passive, and social. Those are sometimes more narrowly defined as “explosive”, “structural”, and “awareness”, according to the most common technique used in each.

These avalanche control techniques either intervene directly in the evolution of the snowpack, or minimize the effect of an avalanche once it has occurred. Should the need of human involvement occur, avalanche control organizations develop and train thorough response and recovery plans.

Have you ever seen an avalanche? What was it like?

Originally founded as a mining camp during the Silver Boom in Colorado in the mid-1800s, Aspen is now the most elite winter resort and the most popular tourist attraction in the United States.

The four ski areas around the town of Aspen get an average of 176...