Friday, February 23, 2007

The Mouflon

he Mouflon is a variety of wild sheep and as such is one of the Caprinae or "goat antelopes". It is consideration to be one of the two ancestors for all modern domestic sheep breeds. It is red-brown with a dark back-stripe, light colored saddle patch and underparts. The males are horned and the females are horned or polled.
They originated in Southwest Asia, where the types known as Asiatic mouflon lives. They were introduced to the islands of Corsica, Sardinia, and Cyprus through the neolithic period, perhaps as feral domesticated animals, where they naturalized to the mountainous interiors of these islands over the past few thousand years, giving rise to the species known as European mouflon . They are now unusual on the islands, but have been successfully introduced into central Europe, including Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, and Romania, even in some northern European countries, such as Finland.
The scientific classification of the Mouflon is disputed but the European Mouflon may be considered as either Ovis musimon or Ovis ammon musimon.

Monday, February 19, 2007

World maps and projections

Maps of the world or big areas are often either 'political' or 'physical'. The most important purpose of the political map is to explain territorial borders; the purpose of the physical is to show features of geography such as mountains, soil type or land use. Geological maps demonstrate not only the physical surface, but characteristics of the underlying rock, fault lines, and subsurface structures.
Maps that depict the surface of the Earth also use a projection, a way of translating the three-dimensional actual surface of the geoid to a two-dimensional picture. Perhaps the best-known world-map projection is the Mercator Projection, initially designed as a form of nautical chart.
Airplane pilots use aeronautical charts based on a Lambert conformal conic projection, in which a cone is laid over the division of the earth to be mapped. The cone intersects the sphere (the earth) at one or two parallels which are selected as standard lines. This allows the pilots to plan a great-circle route approximation on a flat, two-dimensional chart.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Red rain in Kerala

The coloured rain of Kerala first fell on 25 July 2001, in the districts of Kottayam and Idukki in the southern part of the state. Some reports recommended that other colours of rain were also seen.Many more occurrences of the red rain were reported over the following 10 days, and then with thinning frequency until late September.According to locals, the first coloured rain was preceded by a loud thunderclap and flash of light, and followed by groves of trees shedding shriveled grey "burnt" leaves. Shriveled leaves and the disappearance and sudden formation of wells were also reported around the same time in the area.The colouration of the rain was due to red particles in suspension in the rain water, and when it fell, the red rain was at times as strongly coloured as blood. It typically fell over small areas, no more than a few square kilometres in size, and was sometimes so generalized that normal rain could be falling just a few metres away from red rain. Red rainfalls typically lasted less than 20 minutes.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007


Gold is a extremely sought-after valuable metal that for many centuries has been used as money, a store of value and in ornaments. The metal occurs as nugget or grains in rocks and in alluvial deposits and is one of the coinage metals. It is a soft, glossy, yellow, dense, malleable, and ductile (trivalent and univalent) change metal. Modern manufacturing uses include dentistry and electronics. Gold forms the basis for a financial typical used by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the Bank for International resolution (BIS). Its ISO currency code is XAU.
Gold is a tinny element with a trait yellow color, but can also be black or ruby when finely alienated, while colloidal solutions are intensely tinted and often purple. These colors are the effect of gold's plasmon frequency lying in the visible range, which causes red and yellow glow to be reflected, and blue light to be engrossed. Only silver colloids show the same interactions with light, albeit at a shorter occurrence, making silver colloids yellow in color.
Gold is a good conductor of temperature and electricity, and is not precious by air and most reagents. Heat, damp, oxygen, and most corrosive agents have very little chemical effect on gold, making it well-suited for use in coins and jewelry; equally, halogens will chemically alter gold, and aqua regia dissolve it.
Pure gold is too soft for ordinary use and is hard-boiled by alloying with silver, copper, and other metals. Gold and its lots of alloys are most often used in jewelry, coinage and as a typical for monetary exchange in various countries. When promotion it in the form of jewelry, gold is calculated in karats (k), with pure gold being 24k. However, it is more commonly sold in lower capacity of 22k, 18k, and 14k. A lower "k" indicates a higher percent of copper or silver assorted into the alloy, with copper being the more typically used metal between the two. Fourteen karat gold-copper alloy will be almost identical in color to definite bronze alloys, and both may be used to produce polish and added badges. Eighteen karat gold with a high copper content is establish in some traditional jewelry and will have a distinct, though not dominant copper cast, giving an attractively warm color. A comparable karat weight when alloyed with silvery metals will appear less humid in color, and some low karat white metal alloys may be sold as "white gold", silvery in exterior with a slightly yellow cast but far more resistant to decay than silver or sterling silver. Karat weights of twenty and higher is more general in modern jewelry. Because of its high electrical conductivity and confrontation to decay and other desirable combinations of physical and chemical properties, gold also emerged in the late 20th century as an vital industrial metal, particularly as thin plating on electrical card associates and connectors.