Is Aquaculture the Answer to World Hunger?

Feeding a growing world population could become problematic, but aquaculture might hold the key. If humans are anything, we are resourceful. We see a problem with the world, and we do what we can to fix it.  When being nomadic and following food sources was no longer sustainable, we solved the problem by developing agriculture.  Currently, as the population continues to grow and our taste for seafood increases, we’re trying to find ways to meet demand and, at the same time, sustain wild populations of fishes.

aquaculture-fish-farms

Aquaculture is the answer to this current dilemma. Farming fish for food has been around since about 2000 B.C. Since then, technology has helped it advanced and developed better techniques to raise fish for food.

Benefits of Aquaculture

Fish is a great source of protein, and it also contains essential minerals including potassium, zinc, iodine and magnesium. Fish are also rich in phosphorus and calcium. For a healthy heart, the American Heart Association recommends eating fish twice a week.

The health benefits of fish are more than enough reason to eat them, but they are also a delicious meal. There is a large variety of fish to choose from, including freshwater and saltwater varieties. However, the increased amount of people eating fish has had an impact on wild populations. To prevent certain species from being overfished, it is important to find an alternative to providing fish to people, and that includes aquaculture.

Different types of aquaculture must be used to raise different species of fish. Large companies can engage in aquaculture on an industrial scale with fish held in tanks or in pens in lakes, ponds or even the ocean. Families can even perform aquaculture in their backyard.

The variety of fish that you can raise for food includes catfish, bait minnow, trout, carp and tilapia, among others.  It’s also possible to raise shellfish, including oysters and shrimp. Want to try your hand at growing water plants?  You can also use aquaculture principles for water chestnuts and red and brown algae.

Studies have shown that marine aquaculture has the potential to produce 16.5 billion tons of fish per year, which is more than enough to feed the growing population and meet nutritional needs.

Different types of aquaculture must be used to raise different species of fish.

Different types of aquaculture must be used to raise different species of fish.

In some areas, such as parts of Africa, aquaculture has made an enormous impact on the local community’s economy and employment as well. The food produced helps to sustain Africa’s growing population and provides local jobs with steady income.

The Downside of Aquaculture

While it has the potential to feed hungry communities and contribute to local economies, there are some problems associated with aquaculture. Having too many fish in a tank can lead to the spread of disease.  Also, the type of feed the fish eat can impact how healthy they are for humans. Keeping fish in pens in lakes, ponds or the ocean might cause the spread of parasites to wild populations.  Farmed fish could also escape their enclosure and, as a result, alter the natural ecosystem.

Recognizing the shortcomings of aquaculture is the first step to remedying its problems. As technology and farming practices advance and techniques improve, it’s possible that we will resolve many of these issues. This will lead to greater benefits for the human population that depends on fish for food.

Humans have the ingenuity and drive to make the world a better place for themselves and others. Population growth isn’t going to slow down any time soon, and we need to make sure everyone is taken care of and has enough to eat. While aquaculture has its pros and cons, it can be a sustainable and economic way to feed hungry people.  In time, it may even be the answer to world hunger.

4 Tips to Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in Your Home

In daily life, we make use of several different gases, liquids, and solids, without which life isn’t livable. And it’s not just oxygen that we use in daily life to keep the heart pumping, but there is an entire list of gases that are essential to keep on with life.

One of the most vital gases among all the other is carbon monoxide. This a potent and valuable gas that charges up heaps of electricity and starts up your cars. It’s essential to know what carbon monoxide is as it is widely used inside homes and can be just as dangerous as it is needed. It is a highly flammable gas that, if left unwatched, can create fire and unimaginable damage. For this reason, below are some ways to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning in your home to use it effectively and safely.

1. Address Issues

Carbon monoxide is a combustible gas and can be quite dangerous to have in a closed space, but it makes for many of the essential procedures used in a home. Your heating system most probably is run by carbon monoxide. And if it experiences a tear and a leak, the house could be in danger of destruction, and the residents could suffocate.

Check your heating and other fuel-burning appliances regularly to avoid any mishaps. It is best to get them maintained each year by professionals who can also check the systems for their effective running.

2. Install Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Mostly carbon monoxide can be detected by its firm odor similar to that of rotten eggs. This smell helps to give you a heads up to get out of your home and call for help. However, when there is a slight leakage that is undecidable, or the house residents aren’t awake to notice it, the situation can take a turn for the worst.

Some states have laws that require homes to have CO detectors installed. These detectors should be present on each floor, especially the basement and areas where there are fuel appliances and heaters. It is best to make sure the indicators are installed near bedrooms to get alerts while sleeping.

3. Check the Air Quality

In small houses or congested areas of a home, air can get trapped, and different gases can get clogged, the air quality unhealthy and dangerous to breathe in. Make sure that where you have your oven, furnaces, and fireplaces situated has a proper ventilation system installed. If there are vents already in place, check the air quality and clean them often.

4. Put Out Burners Effectively

Cooking is a necessity in all homes, and even though many households have replaced gas burners to electric burners, there are still many that use the gas cooking method. The gas used for cooking and heating is carbon monoxide, which is sturdy and highly combustible.

To keep safe from sources like these, make sure not to switch on stoves unnecessarily. Keep your fireplaces and furnaces covered to stop the gas from spreading and lingering in the air. Regularly validate that these places are well kept and clean. Also, make sure that the systems work well.

Impact of Philosophy on the Development of Environmental Ethics

Philosophy can be defined as the study of the fundamental nature of knowledge, and/or reality, and/or existence. It can be looked at even more so as a study when you consider it to be an academic discipline. The practice of philosophy has had a deep impact on our lives since the time that subject came to be recognized as one and soon after became a discipline.

This impact continues to this day, with the practice being intricately connected with how we live. Here we take a look at how Environmental Ethics tells us how to ensure that every living being on the planet gets its fair chance to survive and its relation to the study of philosophy. There has definitely been a shift in the way we look at our world and how our actions affect it. Fortunately when we say “our” we are finally taking into account all living beings, rather than just humans.

development of environmental ethics

Philosophy in Everyday Lives

Socrates had made a claim that the only life worth living is the “examined” one.  Philosophy, and in turn, philosophers, tend to examine the increasingly mysterious, or even esoteric, phenomena. A few of these can include the complexities of language, or free will, or even morality.  It is easy to find information like this by searching for essays on key concepts in philosophy, online. There are hordes of free essay samples available at present.

Now, despite examining the aforementioned phenomena, philosophers still have a knack for taking intuitive assumptions to uncover their inner workings.  In the end, self-reflection and examination can give you a frustrating day, from the enjoyable one you might have been enjoying.

Every day, human beings lose their grip on consciousness as they fall asleep. It might be comparable to our understanding of the human brain and the understanding of ecology. Despite there being a lot of papers released, in order to explain a great deal about the dryland ecosystems, it knows little about those residing in the ocean deep recesses.

Science has not yet uncovered the specific reasons behind sleep and the exact mechanics of it. It’s amazing to think that we are yet to know most of the mechanics behind an activity the average human being spends a third of life performing. Interestingly even waking up, holds an uncanny resemblance to the awakening of the mind which can be regarded as – “the true aim of philosophy”.

What is Environmental Ethics?

The segment of environmental philosophy looking to extend ethics’ traditional boundaries, from only including humans to including the entire nonhuman world – this is arguably the proper “environmental ethics definition”, in the true sense. It exerts a lot of influence on a vast range of disciplines, like sociology, theology, ecology, etc. It is always trying to include the rights of all nonhuman living beings in all of our ethical and moral values.

Increasing Popularity of Philosophy

Philosophy as a discipline and as a way of thinking has gained massive popularity. It has gone on to feature among the 100 most popular majors among students. People are slowly starting to truly appreciate why philosophy is important and hence there are so many young students selecting this subject. This is evident from the fact that the number of graduates of the subject has taken a 61% hike, from the same time, a decade back.

Environmental Ethics and Its Practice in Different Countries

According to Environmental ethics, our behavior should be based on a number of ethical values, guiding our approach toward other living beings. Despite the human race being considered the primary species, other animals and/or plants are not less important. They deserve their fair share of existence. Environmental issues can be seen posing a host of global challenges, thus, in turn, raising skepticism regarding the topic of sustainability of nature.

impact of philosophy and environmental ethics

As a result, a number of countries have been seen implementing green practices to keep improving, and do their part for the environment. For example, there have been government policies implemented in Norway that ban deforestation. This protects the forest ecosystem and the animals living there. Finland generates a lot of its power from renewable energy sources to ensure that the environment and living beings in it are not harmed. You can easily find out more about such practices even with a bit of light reading.

Conclusion

It is unquestionable that over the past few years there has been a trend of a considerably increasing concern for our environment. It is a change in mindset that is occurring in people from all corners of the globe. People have started to look at the impact that all of our actions have upon environmental ethics and judge it more minutely. As a result, it is safe to say that the field will be here for quite a long time in the future. Not only that, on the basis of its present popularity, the study of philosophy and the environment, and ethical practices is only looking to gain momentum.

Water Hardness: Knowing and Calculating The Perfect “Mineral Water”

Water hardness seems to be a common problem among households worldwide, but there seems to be a certain ignorance as to what this is. What this does is it does more long-term harm despite the beneficial uses. Being a problem of this nature, we must know how to calculate water hardness level and what the desired level of water hardness is.

What is Water Hardness?

Ironically, water hardness has nothing to do with water turning into a solid block of ice or anything involving a transition into something solid. However, the reason for this name is because of what is actually in the water we use or drink.

Sometimes the water we use seems to be different despite the whole house being a general example of cleanliness. For example, one may notice some minerals that are present in cooking dishes or the more obvious scum that seems to be resistant to cleaning.

The simple reason for this would be the existence of “hard water” or water that appears to be infused with undesirable metals, the more prominent ones being calcium and magnesium. These are usually caused by water travelling through places filled with soil and rock, but some have found that water from wells is a breeding ground for this kind of water.

how to calculate water hardness

As a simple experiment to test if your home does have hard water, you may take a bottle and fill it up to one-third of it, and you should apply a few drops of soap. From here, shake or mix the solution well, and naturally, the mixture should be clear with bubbles at the top.

However, if it turns milky and lacks bubbles, your water is hard. The water does not cause any severe problems for the consumer, but these will cause some pipes, appliances, and other parts of the house that use water.

How do you calculate water hardness?

Before knowing how to calculate the possible hardness present in your water, you need to know that there are two types of this hardness, temporary and permanent. Since we want to know more about water hardness, measuring hard water would mean we would be looking for permanent hardness.

This, unlike temporary hardness, cannot be removed by heating the undesirable aspects of the water.

An option for calculating water hardness is to manually calculate the hardness using calcium and magnesium values. However, you would need to submit samples to the lab to receive the exact amount of the minerals found in the water. Nevertheless, it would require the use of equations.

The general equation would be as follows:

CaCO3 (Total Permanent Hardness) = Mg (mg/L) as CaCO3 + Ca (mg/L) as CaCO3

The general equation is the sum of both the hardness of Magnesium and Calcium. However, Magnesium and Calcium hardness is determined by another equation in the form of:

Ca or Mg hardness mg/L as CaCO3 / Equivalent Weight of CaCO3 = Ca or Mg in mg/L / Equivalent Weight of Ca or Mg

Calculating the equivalent weight would involve dividing the atomic weight by the valency, and these hold values. For example, calcium would be 20.04 while Magnesium would value at 12.15.

For Calcium Carbonate, this requires the molecular weight, which would be set at 50.04.

In sum, we must first determine the hardness first of the minerals, using the given values of Calcium or Magnesium in milligrams per litre and the set equivalent weights from the mineral being calculated and Calcium Carbonate.

Once with the two values, they may be added up to form the total permanent hardness of Calcium Carbonate.

Since one calculates for any concerning value, it would also be wise to know the desired water hardness level. It is important to remember that water still possesses minerals that are helpful to the body. However, much like everything in daily life, an excess can cause future problems.

The healthy amount would be at 10 to 50 parts per million of the Calcium Carbonate, while the slightly hard would range from 50 to a hundred. The actual hard water is seen when the amount hits 100, while 200 parts is an amount in which it is incredibly excessive.

Negative Impacts of Hard Water

As mentioned before, hard water does not have any serious problems when consumed by drinking.

This could be a great help for the body as it can give minerals that it could lack. However, this causes much more visible problems when used as bathwater as it interferes with soaps and other cleaning regiments, eventually leaving the skin to become irritated and dry.

disadvantages of hard water

These also affect pipes, boilers, and other water-using items in the household as this could affect their daily functions.

We can appreciate the use of hardness as a benefit, but this causes more damage in the long term. Therefore, it is important to be aware and stop this at the earliest possible moment.

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Everything You Should Know About Car Transmission System

A car transmission, also known as the transmission system, is the mechanism by which power created by the engine is transferred to the driving wheels. This part of the vehicle is the most important in determining the power and functionality of your engine systems. The two types of transmissions include automatic transmission and manual transmission.

A manual transmission requires the driver to complete extra steps of selecting and engaging the gear ratios. In contrast, mechanical efforts are minimized in an automatic transmission, and different speeds are obtained automatically.

If you are wondering how a car transmission works, it all depends on the type of transmission. However, regardless of the type, the answer to what a transmission does is to enable the gear ratio between the vehicle’s engine and drive wheels to adjust as the vehicle speeds up and slows down. When not in motion, the transmission disconnects the drive wheels from the engine. So let’s dive deeper into details on how manual and automatic transmission work.

working of car transmission system

All you need to know about manual transmission

A manual transmission is a manual gearbox or stick-shift or standard transmission class of transmission where the driver literally uses a stick shift to change gears. Changing the gears involves releasing the clutch disc through a third pedal located on the left side of the break. Then select the chosen gear and engage the clutch again. If the driver frequently engages the clutch slowly, the disc will wear out early. If the driver engages the clutch too quickly, the engine will stall.

Components of a manual gearbox

Narrowing down the various parts and components of the gearbox will help you understand the complex way a manual transmission works. Some significant features of a manual gearbox include

  1. The clutch and clutch pedal: Consisting of various small parts, the clutch transfers the engine torque to the transmission. The clutch pedal is a piece of gear that is hydraulically controlled. When you depress, it disengages the clutch.
  2. Flywheel: Normally circular in shape and used to send the engine torque to the clutch disc, which interacts with the smooth surface of the flywheel.
  3. Collar and selector fork: An arm-like-looking piece of gear that aids in moving the collars through the output shaft. By locking the collar to a specific gear, you can always select different other gears. This results in the transmission of torque from the layshaft to the output shaft.
  4. Synchronizers: Helps the collar and the gear engage with each other and importantly matches their speed if there is a difference.
  5. Output shaft and Layshaft: The output shaft’s gears mesh with the lay shaft’s gears when one receives the engine power first.
  6. Gears: Gear often comes in different sizes in a manual gearbox. Large gearwheels contain more teeth and offer more torque to reduce the car’s speed, whereas small gears provide less torque to your car so that it can run at a higher speed.

How a manual transmission works

  • Before switching the vehicle’s key on, you need to press the clutch pedal down to disengage the clutch. This cuts the power between the engine’s input shaft and the transmission and ensures that the engine is alive before powering the vehicle.
  • Shift the gearshift to the first gear so that the gear shift can move towards the latter one. The first gear has a connection to the layshaft, which is connected to the engine input file via another gear.
  • The synchronizer collar connected to the shifting fork helps the driving gear in the transportation of power to the output shaft and matches their speed if there is any difference.
  • You now need to apply slight pressure on the gas pedal and then take your foot off the clutch. This reconnects the gearbox and the engine making your vehicle start moving.
  • You now need to repeat the same process of changing the gear so that you can speed up or slow down the car.

 

car transmission system

Generally, bade-model vehicles are fitted with a 5-speed manual transmission, while pricey vehicles are equipped with a 6-speed transmission such as the rebuilt nv5600 transmission.

All you need to know about automatic transmission

With an automatic transmission, things are simplified as compared to a manual transmission. There is neither a clutch pedal nor a gear shift in an automatic transmission vehicle. Once the transmission is put into drive, all other things are automatic.

Components of an automatic transmission

To help understand what happens in an automatic transmission, let us look at the specific parts of an automatic transmission.

  1. Transmission casing: Houses all parts of the transmission.
  2. Torque Converter: Transmits to the transmission input shaft from the engine. It also helps in the multiplication of engine torque output
  3. Planetary gears: This allows automatic increase and decrease of the gear ratios.

How automatic transmission works

  • The engine dispatches power to the torque converter’s pump
  • The pump receives the power and, through the transmission fluid, sends it to the torque converter’s turbine
  • Through the stator, the transmission fluid is sent back to the pump
  • The stator multiplies power and sends it back to the turbine
  • The turbine is normally connected to the central shaft, which is also connected to the transmission.
  • The turbine then spins the shaft spins dispatching power to the first planetary gear
  • The planetary gear arrangements determine of power transmitted to the rest of the drive
  • Power from the torque converter will either make the ring gear, the sun gear, or the planetary carrier of the planetary gear system stay stationary or move.

Stages of automatic transmission

  • Park(P): Locks the transmission, restricting the vehicle from moving
  • Reverse(R): Puts the car in reverse gear, making the car move backward
  • Neutral(N): disconnects the transmission from the wheel
  • Drive(D): allows the vehicle to move and can accelerate through a range of gears
  • Low(L): allows you to lower your speed and move on middy or hilly areas

Now, as you cruise down the freeways and feel the car shifting gears, you will have an idea of what is exactly taking place under the hood. It’s all about the transmission, but if you need to get a new one it’s all about cheap online transmissions!

Counseling Resources for Stressed Scientists

Professionals who work in fast-paced, high-stress jobs often find themselves struggling to keep up with their mental health. Scientists, engineers, and physicians dedicate themselves to careers of science without always managing the personal ramifications of a demanding work life. While it benefits all of society when scientists are dedicated to their work, it is also extremely important that they take care of their own mental health both for their personal development as well as long-term, lasting professional success.

high-energy-bills

Resources for Stress Management

If you experience struggles with your mental health, it may help to read self-help articles written by mental health professionals. For scientists, this is much akin to reading research papers and then applying the findings to your own research. After reading such articles, reflect upon their value and delve into an analysis of how their advice can be applied in your own life.

As a scientist, you may be able to think linearly and analytically, and this thought process can actually be applied to the analysis of your mental health. Try searching MyTherapist for online resources, tips, and advice on finding qualified therapists who are ready to work with you.

When available academic resources do not adequately treat your mental health, the next step in the progression of addressing mental health issues may be to talk with a friend, colleague, or significant other. It is very helpful to discuss feelings and concerns with people you trust. It may even be worthwhile to read the self-help articles with another person so that you can each brainstorm ways in which the information included in the articles can be integrated into your life.

These articles may contain actionable advice, like instructions for meditation, journaling, or deep breathing that could begin your journey to improved mental wellness.

Therapy and Counseling

If your mental state does not improve after reading articles and having discussions with trusted companions, it is likely time to pursue therapy. Therapy can help when mental health issues loom with no apparent end to the symptoms in sight.

marriage-therapy

The stigmas surrounding therapy have fortunately been shrinking. Therapy works well for those experiencing a diagnosed mental illness, but it can work wonders for anyone. Especially for those bright-minded scientists who regard their mental strength as impressive, it may feel demoralizing to need to speak with someone to regain control of your mind. Just remember that experiencing troubles with mental health is a very common occurrence.

Just because a person is very smart, it does not mean that they can control all mental processes and emotions. Addressing and improving any existing mental health struggles through therapy could actually benefit your thought process and therefore your work.

Online Therapy

Virtual therapy is a great resource that is only growing in popularity and availability. It provides patients with a convenient and confidential way to work through issues with a licensed therapist.

For busy scientific professionals, it may be difficult to find the time to schedule therapy sessions, drive to the therapist’s office, spend an hour in therapy, and then drive home. Thanks to virtual therapy, sessions may be more flexible and can involve less commuting and associated stress.

virtual-psychotherapy

 

 

Scheduling therapy sessions online is a simple, quick task that provides great flexibility in scheduling. And, since everything is online, the patient need not leave the comfort of their home or office to engage in therapy sessions.

Another benefit of virtual therapy is that the cost of online sessions is typically lower than in-office visits. While some health insurance companies may not cover virtual therapy as much as in-person therapy, the overall cost is still often much lower.

In-person therapy can cost between $65 and $200+ per session, depending upon the therapist and the type of therapy needed. Luckily, there are different types of online mental health services available to patients that represent a range of price points.

On some sites, text or email options can be available for around $40 per week. Sessions with online therapists are less expensive than in-office sessions and typically run between $75 and $120 per session. This is a moderately priced therapy option that provides virtual face-to-face treatment at a lower cost.

Remember to choose the treatment options that are appropriate for your mental condition and fit well with your lifestyle. The life of a scientist is tough enough, and caring for your mental health is a vital and valuable part of one’s personal and professional success.

Everything You Need to Know About Carbon Black

Carbon Black is a commercial form of solid carbon that is manufactured in highly controlled processes to produce specifically engineered aggregates of carbon particles that vary in particle size, aggregate size, shape, porosity and surface chemistry. Carbon Black typically contains more than 95 % pure carbon with minimal quantities of oxygen, hydrogen and nitrogen.

In the manufacturing process, Carbon Black particles range from 10 nm to approximately 500 nm in size. These fuse into chain-like aggregates, which define the structure of individual Carbon Black grades.

What is Carbon Black

Carbon Black is used in a diverse group of materials in order to enhance their physical, electrical and optical properties. Its largest volume use is as a reinforcement and performance additive in rubber products.

In rubber compounding, natural and synthetic elastomers are blended with Carbon Black, elemental sulphur, processing oils and various organic processing chemicals, and then heated to produce a wide range of vulcanized rubber products. In these applications, Carbon Black provides reinforcement and improves resilience, tear-strength, conductivity and other physical properties.

Carbon Black is the most widely used and cost effective rubber reinforcing agent (typically called Rubber Carbon Black) in tire components (such as treads, sidewalls and inner liners), in mechanical rubber goods (“MRG”), including industrial rubber goods, membrane roofing, automotive rubber parts (such as sealing systems, hoses and anti-vibration parts) and in general rubber goods (such as hoses, belts, gaskets and seals).

Applications of Carbon Black

Besides rubber reinforcement, Carbon Black is used as black pigment and as an additive to enhance material performance, including conductivity, viscosity, static charge control and UV protection. This type of Carbon Black (typically called Specialty Carbon Black) is used in a variety of applications in the coatings, polymers and printing industries, as well as in various other special applications.

Actually, after oil removal and ash removal processing from tire pyrolysis, we can get high-purity commercial carbon black, which can be used to make color masterbatch, color paste, oil ink and as addictive in plastic and rubber products. Besides, after activation treatment, the carbon black will become good materials to produce activated carbon.

In the coatings industry, treated fine particle Carbon Black is the key to deep jet black paints. The automotive industry requires the highest black intensity of black pigments and a bluish undertones.

Carbon Black has got a wide array of applications in different industries

Small particle size Carbon Blacks fulfill these requirements. Coarser Carbon Blacks, which offer a more brownish undertone, are commonly used for tinting and are indispensable for obtaining a desired grey shade or color hue.

In the polymer industry, fine particle Carbon Black is used to obtain a deep jet black color. A major attribute of Carbon Black is its ability to absorb detrimental UV light and convert it into heat, thereby making polymers, such as polypropylene and polyethylene, more resistant to degradation by UV radiation from sunlight. Specialty Carbon Black is also used in polymer insulation for wires and cables. Specialty Carbon Black also improves the insulation properties of polystyrene, which is widely used in construction.

In the printing industry, Carbon Black is not only used as pigment but also to achieve the required viscosity for optimum print quality. Post-treating Carbon Black permits effective use of binding agents in ink for optimum system properties. New Specialty Carbon Blacks are being developed on an ongoing basis and contribute to the pace of innovation in non-impact printing.

The Promise of Algae

This year has witnessed the U.S. Navy debut their “Great Green Fleet,” the first aircraft carrier strike group powered largely by alternative, nonpetroleum-based fuels, the British Ministry of Defence launch a competition to reduce its equipment energy spend and the Pentagon increase its investment in clean-energy technologies, including biofuels development.  Could we be witnessing the start of the end of our reliance on “fossil fuel” petroleum?

algae_biofuels

In 2010, the MOD spent £628m on equipment energy and, for every 1p per litre rise in the price of fuel, the MOD’s annual equipment energy bill increases by £13m. These rising oil prices have once again positioned biofuels centre stage as a potential substitute to fulfil our global thirst for fuel.

With so many biofuel crops needing to compete for space and freshwater supplies with agriculture, algae are being seen as an ideal, sustainable alternative.  Algae can be grown in areas where crops cannot, but until now, it’s been difficult to achieve the scale needed for commercial  algal production.

Leading international authority on algal biotechnology and head of the Culture Collection of Algae and Protozoa, Dr John Day, thinks it’s a major step forward.  Dr Day has over 25 years’ experience in biotechnology and applied algal research and comments “Commercial confidence in the scalability of algal biofuel production is an exciting step forward in the journey towards sustainable, economic biofuel production using microalgae.

“A major driver for the development of algal biofuels has been fuel security and the US Navy has successfully tested nearly all of its ships and aircraft on biofuel blends containing algal oils — including an F-18 fighter flying at twice the speed of sound and a ship moving at 50 knots.”

“Scientists at SAMS and elsewhere have been contributing to the global development of knowledge on algal biofuel. It is this understanding of the biology of these enigmatic microbes and our capacity to successfully cultivate them that will be the key to producing algal biofuels and other products.”

Driven by the desire to reduce reliance on foreign countries for petroleum, and the constant pressure to reduce costs, Governments are taking sustainable fuels very seriously.  (A recent report highlighted that Pentagon investment in green technologies rose to $1.2 billion, up from $400 million, and is projected to reach $10 billion annually by 2030.)  The Pentagon’s Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (which finances and monitors research into algae fuels,) says it has now managed to produce algafuel for $2 per gallon and that it will produce jet aircraft quality algafuel for $3 per gallon by 2013. Unsurprisingly, commercial aviation companies around the world are also taking an interest in algae biofuels to reduce their own costs and carbon footprints.

As interest grows and more funding becomes available, the industry is blossoming and more skilled people are needed. Could we witness a global shift to sustainable fuels in our lifetime?  We certainly hope so.

Everything You Need to Know About Glow Sticks

You have probably come across glow sticks at some stage of your life, however other people refer to them as chemlights or light sticks. After you bend a glow stick, the glass inside shatters and it begins to glow.

After they begin to glow, you can expect them to be visible in the dark from 1 to 12 hours. The time of how long it glows for depends on the quality and the size of the glow stick. 

Remember, that once you have broken the glass inside and the light appears, you can’t turn it off. 

You can find glow sticks in all different types of shapes and sizes. Most are no longer than 10 inches, however some you can connect together to make longer ones. They are also available in lots of different colors, such as red, blue, yellow and orange. However, it seems both the orange and red don’t light up that well. 

disposal-of-glow-sticks

Glow sticks are very popular amongst kids and party goers, but what other purposes can you use glow sticks for?

Survival

If you are planning to go out in the wild, it is vital that you pack reliable lighting. For several years, it has been common for people to use glow sticks in a crisis situation. 

Unlike other sources of lighting, glow sticks don’t need batteries to work. Purchasing a quality glow stick will give you 12 hours of light, without having to worry about the batteries running out. 

Glow sticks are safe, so you don’t have to worry about them starting a fire nor will they electrocute somebody. They are even safe for children to play with.

Because they are small and lightweight, you will easily be able to find space when you are packing. 

Even the best quality glow sticks are cheap. If you are looking for value, purchasing glow sticks in bulk is your best option.

What Survival situations would a Glow Stick prove useful?

There are many reasons why you should pack a glow stick with your survival kit such as:

  • Helps you to read a topographic map in the dark. 
  • You can mark a trail directing others to your camp
  • Keeps large groups together: At night it is very hard to organize a lot of people, so a glow stick will prove to be a very helpful device
  • After a road accident, you can use a glow stick as a marker: Glow sticks are a great way to warn oncoming traffic that there is an accident on the roadside. If there is debris on the road or gas leaks, placing a glow stick nearby will alert others.
  • Avoid falling: If you frequently camp, you have probably tripped at some stage. Small holes, trees, and other obstacles that are not visible during the night can cause injuries. By putting a glow stick nearby will help warn others. You can also place glow sticks to mark a safe path. 
  • If it is raining or you are in the water, don’t worry as glow sticks are water-resistant and are perfect for wet environments. 

Glow sticks are used by militaries all over the globe as a survival tool. If you do decide to buy glow sticks in bulk and you pack a large amount in your survival kit, you can easily write SOS with them if you are stuck in a dangerous location.

How do you Dispose of Glow Sticks and are They Safe?

One of the disadvantages of using glow sticks is that there is no environmentally safe way that you can recycle them. As each one has chemicals inside, the plastic casing cannot be reused nor can it be repurposed. 

The reason why glow sticks produce light is that there are two main ingredients that cause a chemical reaction.

Although the casing is made of strong plastic, be careful of young children or pets chewing on the plastic. Although the chemicals are not that toxic, it is not advised to ingest them. If a child swallows some of the chemicals, make sure to rinse his or her mouth immediately. Speak to your doctor if the child has swallowed a lot. 

Click on the link for more details on how to properly disposing glow sticks.

Summary

Glow sticks have a shelf life of around 4 years, as long as it is kept in its original foil packaging. If it has been removed, you can expect it to last for 1 year. If you decide to buy in bulk, keep this in mind. If you have a large number of glow sticks and think they are out of date, test one before you throw them all away. 

Glow sticks are not just a great source of lighting, but children and families can play lots of games and have a fantastic time with them.

All You Need to Know About the Benefits Of Natural Gas

All areas of our lives are literally run by energy. And with various options of energy consumption choices, it’s always good to know the benefits of each one of them so that you make a great consumer choice. Today, in this article, we are focusing on natural gas and are going to take you through some of its top benefits. So if that’s what you have been searching for, then you are at the correct place. Let’s get started!

1. Clean Burning Fuel

When compared to coal, oil, and diesel, natural gas is cleaner as it emits the least percentage of carbon dioxide and other related harmful chemicals. So when you use one, you don’t have to invest in emission lowering technologies as the efficiency is top notch. Also, since it’s odorless, it makes little contribution to air pollution and doesn’t cause any harm when inhaled by people and animals.

2. Versatile

There is a given sort of flexibility and convenience that comes with the use of natural gas. With it, you enjoy the ease of starting and turning off as it won’t take much of your time. Also, since it isn’t dependent on the wind or the sun, it can function pretty well when used with solar and wind powers. It’s a source you can depend on no matter the weather conditions outside.

So if this seems like something you would like to try out, then it’s advisable to carefully go through an apples to apples comparison of the various natural gas providers and settle for one according to your needs and financial capability.

3. Affordable

With the current hard economic times, people are always on the lookout for affordable but efficient options when it comes to products or services affecting their billings. So natural gas couldn’t have been easily accessible at a better time. In fact, it’s by far one of the cheapest energy options in the current market. This is because, even as you calculate the long-term costs of seemingly cheap options such as generators, you will realize that they aren’t as affordable as they might appear in the beginning. Take the fuel and maintenance costs, for example, you will end up spending much more than you can ever imagine.

natural-gas-applications

But this isn’t the case with natural gas. According to recent findings, its cost is expected to remain constant or relatively unchanged at least even for the next decade. So you can be sure that it’s a long-term investment, worth every cent. You make one and forget about unnecessary expenses.

4. Reliable Delivery Infrastructure

This is probably one of the natural gas‘s primary benefits. This is because you can still receive your delivery of natural gas even during extreme weather conditions such as storms, through the pipes. A case that’s different from other energy sources. Also, the infrastructure is already established in most urban areas.

Final Thoughts

Natural gas is a clean fuel that can be used in various places while keeping the air fresh and clean. Together with this, there are various benefits associated with its use and this includes the affordability, reliable infrastructure, versatility, among others. The above list isn’t exhaustive.