JoNova

A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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Comet Ison grazing the sun — will it break up? Hanging on, but vaporizing…

It’s been 200 years since the last brand new sun-grazing comet from the Oort Cloud, according to Matthew Knight. This one is going within 0.0124 AU (which means slightly more than 2 solar radii).

—–UPDATE#3 (Post Perihelion): No one is quite sure what happened. The talk on twitter is that there’s no sign of a nucleus (not good),  but there is a dust stream, Ison is not like any other comet they’ve seen. @SungrazerComets tweets: “THIS > RT @RandomSpaceFact It is now clear that Comet #ISON either survived or did not survive, or… maybe both. Hope that clarifies things” Latest pic shows a faint streak leaving…

—– UPDATE #4 – for the best final wrap and spectacular movie see CIOC

——

Comet Ison is swinging around the sun today. It’s so close to perihelion it has made it onto both the LASCO and the SOHO solar viewers — the instruments we watch the sun with. (LASCO, means Large Angle and Spectrometric Coronagraph. SOHO is the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory).

Karl Battams writes:

…this is one of the more extraordinary astronomical events to happen in modern history, and we get to sit in our comfy chairs and watch a giant ball of 4.5 billion year old ice hurtle through the Sun’s million-degree outer atmosphere at 0.1% of the speed of light, 93-million miles away from us. Regardless of sizzle, fizzle, or a victorious reemergence, comet ISON’s perihelion is a truly spectacular event!

Late yesterday a coronal mass ejection at the same time as the comet approaches:

Current synopsis? A rollercoaster

Earlier today the experts thought it might break up, but then it became much brighter so quickly they think, maybe, it’s a sun-grazer and will survive. The word is that it will hit negative magnitude soon (which means, it’s very very bright). Of course — you can’t see how bright because it’s next to the sun (don’t look, don’t look*).

Since entering the LASCO C3 field of view, comet ISON has increased by at least a factor of four, and indications are it may be closer to a factor of ten. In the most recently available images, the comet appears to be around magnitude +0.5.

It is now the opinion of the CIOC Team that Comet ISON is now behaving like a sungrazing comet. We can not comment on whether the nucleus is in tact or not, but our analyses indicate that its rate of brightening is directly in line with that we have experienced with other sungrazing comets. This has no implication on its chances of survival. – (Posted on the SOHO page quoting Comet ISON Observing Campaign.)

UPDATE #1: No. Wait! It’s fading. Predictions it will not survive

I’m reluctantly thinking it seems very unlikely to survive at this point. I do think it will reach perihelion, and reach the NASA SDO field of view, but based on what I see it doing right now, I will be very surprised to see something of any consequence come out the other side….more

If you go to the SOHO site you can see the updates: Wow, just wow, look at these images!
Latest:

 UPDATE #2:

Comet ISON has moved quite close to the sun in this image from ESA/NASA’s Solar and Heliospheric Observatory captured at 10:50 a.m. EST on Nov. 28, 2013. This image is a composite, with the sun imaged by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory in the center, and SOHO showing the solar atmosphere, the corona. ESA&NASA/SOHO/SDO

(Click on the image to go to the Goddard Multimedia page for more updates).

I found this CIOC page particularly  interesting. There are a collection of sun-grazing comets some of which even go  slightly closer than Ison, but Ison is different, it’s not from the usual Kreutz group (which do 500-1000 year cycles). Instead it appears to be new.

… there is no formal definition of “sungrazing.” However, a logical distinction (and one that I am advocating for in a paper I am currently writing) is comets that come close enough to the Sun to be subject to tidal disruption. What is tidal disruption? It’s when an object (comet, asteroid, moon, etc.) is close enough to a larger body that the gravitational tug on the near side of the object is so much stronger than the gravitational tug on the far side of the object that the object becomes elongated and eventually pulled apart. Astronomers call the distance at which this occurs the Roche limit. The exact distance depends on a comet’s density, but for typical comet densities is ~3.7 solar radii (0.017 AU).

How is this, back in 1680, The Great Comet was observed so well, that a reasonably reliable orbit could be calculated for it, and evidently that showed it was not a new comet but on a regular lap.

Ison is new. It was discovered last year:

Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) was discovered on September 21, 2012 by astronomers Artyom Novichonok and Vitali Nevski, using a 16-inch telescope that is part of the International Scientific Optical Network (“ISON”), and after which the comet was named.

Could be some astronomers up late tonight … (or not). Sigh.

————————————–

*I know you know that, but I have to say it.

1AU = The average distance from the Sun to Earth.

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90 comments to Comet Ison grazing the sun — will it break up? Hanging on, but vaporizing…

  • #
    Bob Malloy

    Early on in a new post from Jo, I’m already of topic,

    Either Jo and her team of intelligent bloggers have me brainwashed or I have just endured 45 minutes of absolute crap on ABC overnights, on there Local Radio network with Rod Quinn. Rod had Jon Bodie from James Cook on as a guest talking about the dire straits the Great Barrier reef is in. Every thing got a run, increasing extreme weather, Increasing floods, run off of silt and fertiliser from the rivers, the estabulation of new ports, acidification and rising temperature of the water etc,etc.

    Just a suggestion, Jo but when the transcript goes up (ABC radio overnights, Rod Quinn between 4 and 5am) it might be worth pulling apart point by point.


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    Mark

    We live in amazing times. Technology allowing us mere mortals to gaze upon the impossible.

    PS…sat through Rod Quinn as well, just about tore out the radio in rage.


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    http://www.drroyspencer.com/ also has great coverage of Comet Ison perihelion.

    It is amazing that we are so lucky to have access to such events.

    Just finished our ThankGiving meal, today in Hollis NH.


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    Louis Hissink

    My guess is that it will reappear after passing the sun because,

    1. it’s not an iceball
    2. gravity isn’t the principal force acting on it.
    3. It won’t collide with the sun.


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  • #
    Louis Hissink

    Bob Malloy

    You were listening to a group of Millennialists discussing the ending times. No wonder it sounded crappy.


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    • #
      Bob Malloy

      Louis,
      I know exactly who I was listening to, It’s just when on the road at that time of the morning here in Newcastle, there is SFA to listen to and as long as he leaves science alone, I don’t mind his program. I also think it’s good to know what we are up against.


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    Yonniestone

    Handjive gave a link to this event on the “There goes a massive wind farm” thread a couple of days ago and I’ve been a bit surprised the MSM hasn’t given it much coverage, I suppose 97% of Astrologists have to agree it’s actually happening before anything is allowed to be broadcast…..
    Oh and my comment on his post about planets being born was both funny and scientific (read tadpoles, biology) and not one bloody thumb red or green, very upset. :(


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      Rereke Whakaaro

      I noticed that comment, and thought about answering it, with a :-|

      But I didn’t want to appear to be too enthusiastic ;-)

      Now if you had asked, “Is that how planets are conceived?” you may have gotten onto the leader board. :-)


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        Yonniestone

        Ok rereke conceived then, you don’t get away with much here. :)
        And 2 red thumbs for what? must be getting close to Xmas or something.
        As an aside for people who don’t work with Light Years the distances are very hard to imagine even after Googling light year distance scales it’s still astounding to fathom those expanses exist, I then followed links to folding space time, black holes and wormholes etc and you realize this is a frontier of science barely touched, fascinating stuff.


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        • #
          ROM

          You too Yonniestone
          Fascinating stuff indeed
          An estimated 200 to 400 billion stars in our spiral Galaxy which is classed as a giant Galaxy which one day due to gravitational attraction will collide with the Andromeda Galaxy , the other giant spiral galaxy in our Local Group of about 20 bright galaxies and another dozen or so faint and dwarf galaxies.
          A german estimate gives the estimated number of galaxies in the universe as it is postulated at around 500 billion galaxies, about the same as the number of stars in our Milky Way galaxy.

          The latest space telescopes are finding cosmological phenomena out to about 13 billion years ago, some few hundred million years from the postulated Big Bang which these days is not as clear cut as cosmologist of the past years liked to tell us.
          Then there are the unexplained and undetected except by gravitational effects on galaxies, Dark Matter with it’s gravitational attractive force and then the much larger [ postulated ] Dark Energy with it’s anti gravitational type force leading to the so called expanding universe proven by the Red Shift, the shift of known spectrums from local star and galaxy sources and found in and increasing in the Red shift towards the red, long wave frequencies of the light spectrum in light from far distant galaxies as those galaxies race away from us at ever increasing speeds the further out into space they can be detected.

          It is the Doppler shift in frequencies which you have all experienced as say a train goes past with it’s whistle blowing and as it passes the sound frequency falls to a deeper note as the sound waves are stretched out as the sound source moves away from you at speed.
          Light does the same across the universe and such Doppler effects can be very accurately measured and calibrated in laboratories.

          Which is the supposed proof of the expanding Universe believed now to be driven by the so called and so far undetected Dark Energy component of space of what ever form that happens to take.

          The postulated Dark Matter and Dark Energy reminds me very much of the pre Einstein era where the electro magnetic waves were supposedly transmitted via the “luminiferous aether”, a mysterious space substance or field that had to be there like air or gas for sound waves, for the electromagnetic waves to be transmitted.
          Einstein based his theory of special relativity on the major work and contributions of Albert Michelson, Hendrik Lorentz, Henri Poincaré
          [ Einstein published some 300 articles between 1901 and 1955. Only one of them is known to have been peer reviewed and when he found out about it Albert was NOT pleased .
          I have had many an argument over peer review on the WZ forum as it was the confirmation of the CAGW warming gospel for the rabid alarmists and SkS trolls so I used this article from a very highly qualified scientists as an example of all thats wrong and corrupt with today's peer [ pal review ] review process.
          Three myths about scientific peer review

          I read up on the Michelson -Morley experiment where the concept of Aether [ Search for Aether ] was disproven in my school years as I found it fascinating stuff and still do.

          I still haven’t found out in simple language what magnetic fields are in real life or why and how they have this extraordinary ability for magnetic field lines from two different and opposite polarities to find each other and link up across colossal distances in the solar corona-sphere which in turn is very, very small beer indeed compared to those magnetic field lines to find one another and then link up across a few hundred thousand or a few million light years of space / time between galaxies as is now known to happen.

          If the universe and it’s version of space is expanding and we see the light from the first primordial galaxies from some 13 billion years ago then just what size is the universe now after that 13 billion years of possible expansion?.
          Or is the universe a bouncing universe, going through stages of expansion following a big bang from a singularity. ie something resembling a Black Hole to a point where gravity or some other force slows down and then stops the expansion and the universe then starts to and continues to contract until it reaches the Big Crunch , another singularity from where the whole process starts all over again but in a different to and to us inconceivably type of new universe .

          Fascinating stuff indeed!


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          • #
            Yonniestone

            ROM thanks for supplying even more mind bending information/ideas on the universe.
            The “Three myths about scientific peer review” is quite an eye opener too and I’m sure is a great reason for debate in all sciences.


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  • #
    Peter Miller

    If Ison does indeed disintegrate, then hopefully this is an omen predicting the future of ‘climate science’, I.e. disappearing unseen in a cloud of vapour.


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  • #
    pat

    28 Nov: UK Telegraph: Julian Ryall: Japanese firm plans 250 mile-wide solar panel belt around Moon
    Tokyo-based Shimizu Corp. wants to lay a belt of solar panels 250 miles wide around the equator of our orbiting neighbour and then relay the constant supply of energy to “receiving stations” on Earth by way of lasers or microwave transmission.
    The “Luna Ring” that is being proposed would be capable of sending 13,000 terawatts of power to Earth. Throughout the whole of 2011, it points out, the United States only generated 4,100 terawatts of power…
    Once completed, the belt would stretch 6,800 miles around the equator and ensure constant exposure to the sun – without the interference of cloud cover – and an equally constant transfer of energy to the Earth.
    Shimizu believes that “virtually inexhaustible, non-polluting solar energy is the ultimate source of green energy”.
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/japan/10480950/Japanese-firm-plans-250-mile-wide-solar-panel-belt-around-Moon.html


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    • #

      Thanks for this pat.

      The scariest part of this story is that there will be more people who will believe it than ask questions about it.

      This is PV Solar.

      A single solar panel is made up of 72 solar cells.

      They will fit 10 of these panels to an individual table.

      A typical large scale Solar PV plant will cover 4.6 square miles and will have 64,500 of these tables.

      The area covered by the Lunar Solar Plant, (and don’t you just love the picture that title creates) is 1,700,000 Square Miles.

      That means they will need to construct 370,000 of these large scale Solar plants all connected to together.

      It would take a full crew almost a year just in the construction alone of that one 4.6 Square Mile plant.

      However, here they are doing it with robots, who could realistically work around the clock, so cut that time down by a third, so 3 a year, and now we see it will only take them 123,000 years to construct. Panels have an absolute best case life span of 25 years, so there’s another problem, but I suppose they think that they’ll last forever on the Moon, eh!

      They could always just keep transporting new robotic crews there to speed it all up, all transported to the moon at a constant rate.

      First they have to mine the moon for the products to make the cells themselves, again specialist robotic crews for that, all transported to the moon.

      Then plants to refine the mined product into the specialised materials for these panels, not just the cells themselves, but every part of the whole structures for all of this.

      Then build a construction plant with more crews transported to the moon, and then robotic crews to make the solar cells, all 1.73 Trillion of them, connect them to the 24 Billion panels, and then the 2.4 Billion solar tables needed, and then construct the plant itself.

      Then the infrastructure to get that power back to Earth. HUH!

      Then monster plants again on Earth to convert all that power into useable power here on Earth.

      This whole story is regrettable because people will just say what a great idea.

      And yet, when I point out the absolute ridiculousness of all this, I’m the one with no foresight that something like this is in fact feasible.

      This is an absolute joke.

      It should be prefaced by the usual things for all these crazy schemes.

      AT WHAT COST? AND HOW LONG?

      Tony.


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      • #
        AndyG55

        Well I think it would be very pretty on a moonlit night. :-)


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      • #
        MemoryVault

        .
        It’s okay Tony, They’ll be using solar panels left over from this project.


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      • #

        Good number crunching Tony, the art that is totally unknown to the proponents of these ‘sustainable’ sources of energy like wind and sun. One more number to put in that equation. I have just submitted paper for publication which quantifies amount of the heat energy from the Sun that reaches the ground level thermometers, or in this case, the solar panel receives in Japan. If the night temperature is, say 5C and it warms up to say 10C during the day, the difference is 5C. Since heat capacity of air is 1kJ per 1kg of air per 1C of warming it means that the warming of 5C is equivalent to 5kJ/kg of heat energy reaching ground level – irrespective of the amount of the sun’s heat energy that was available outside our atmosphere. If you add to that equation that the heat capacity of water is 4.2 kJ/kg, i.e. it absorbs the heat 4.2 times faster than air and that 80% of the earth could be covered by clouds, it becomes obvious, that re-routing the sun energy will not make any difference at all to the amount of the available heat energy from the sun that will be reaching the ground levels. It is yet another scheme to waste the money and ignore science, which is the trademark of the global warming religion.


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      Rereke Whakaaro

      Thirteen gigawatts in a laser or microwave beam.

      That is enough energy to vaporise a bulldozer.

      And there is no mention of how that laser or microwave beam will be kept in alignment as the earth rotates on its access, and the moon orbits around the earth.

      It is a publicity stunt. The Telegraph is staffed by idiots.


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        Yonniestone

        This has to be a joke surely?
        Why not call it a “Death Star” and be done with it?
        Un freaking believable!


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      • #
        ROM

        Well not really.
        The web site ; Do the Maths goes in quite deep technical and analytical detail on the project and the sums which Tony has just done on this hypothesized project .
        Tony has highlighted a few of the most basic points which in turn highlights the utter stupidity of supposedly intelligent people who suggest and publicise this sort of stuff and expect it to be seriously considered without doing the most simple and most basic maths on this craziest of global power schemes.

        I’ll just pull out a couple of quoted pieces on beaming this microwave energy back to Earth and very surprisingly the microwave beam carrying that space based solar panel generated power won’t fry too much after all as it’s too damn inefficient.
        ___________________
        [quoted from "Do the Maths- Space-Based Solar Power "]
        Converting Back to Electrical Power
        At microwave frequencies, it is straightforward to directly rectify the oscillating electric field into direct current at something like 85% efficiency. The generation of beamed microwave energy in space, the capture of the energy at the ground, then conversion to electrical current all take their toll, so that the end-to-end process may be expected to have something in the neighborhood of 50% efficiency.

        Beam Safety and Consequences
        I don’t worry too much about keeping the beam from veering off the collection region. There are clever, fail-safe schemes for ensuring proper alignment/pointing. According to the Wikipedia page on the topic, the recommended transmission strength would be 230 W/m² in the center of the beam. This is about a quarter the strength of full sunlight, and is thought to be a safe level through which aircraft and birds can fly.

        At this level, our 3.6 km diameter collecting area would generate about 40 GWh of energy in a day, at an assumed reception/conversion efficiency of 70%. By comparison, a flat array of 15%-efficient PV panels occupying the same area in the Mojave Desert would generate about a fourth as much energy averaged over the year. So these beaming hotspots are not terribly more concentrated than what the sunlight provides already. Again, I find myself scratching my head as to why we should go to so much trouble.
        &
        In Summary
        I sense that people have a tendency to think space is easy. We have lots of satellites, we’ve gone to the Moon (remember that?!), we used to have a space shuttle program, and we have seen many movies and television shows set in space. But space is a very challenging environment, and it is extremely costly and difficult to deliver things there. If you go to the Fed-Ex site to get delivery costs, you immediately get hung up on not knowing the postal-code for space. Once in space, failures cannot be serviced. The usual mitigation strategy is redundancy, adding weight and cost. A space-based solar power system might sound very cool and futuristic, and it may seem at first blush an obvious answer to intermittency, but this comes at a big cost. Among the possibly unanticipated challenges:

        The gain over the a good location on the ground is only a factor of 3 (2.4× in summer, 4.2× in winter at 35° latitude).
        It’s almost as hard to get energy back to the ground as it is to get the equipment into space in the first place.
        The microwave link faces problems with transmission through the atmosphere, and also flirts with roasting ducks on the wing.
        Diffraction of the downlink beam, together with energy density limits, means that very large areas of the ground still need to be dedicated to energy collection.
        Traditional solar photovoltaics in good locations can accomplish much the same for much reduced cost, and with only a few times more land than the microwave link approach would demand. The installations will be serviceable and will last longer. Batteries seem an easier way to cover storage shortcomings than launching stuff to space. I did not even address solar thermal schemes in this post, which competes well with photovoltaics and can very naturally build in storage capability.

        I am left puzzled as to why we would want to take a harder, more expensive road to solar power. I think it is just not intuitive to most how difficult and expensive space is.
        [end of quote ]


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        • #
          Yonniestone

          I think people get to much of a technically enhanced view of space, point in question is the movie Gravity which I watched at the cinema and yes it was a great visual experience and entertaining but you left wondering how accurate it was.
          The answers came quickly in the MSM via Astronomers, NASA and Astronauts themselves picking the reality from fiction in the movie which was interesting in itself but still didn’t diminish the effects the movie conveyed so well.
          I suppose people have to actually experience something to believe it, otherwise it’s just science fiction.


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          Rereke Whakaaro

          Yes, that is all well and good, but from what I can see, from a quick scan of the article, it is a discussion about collection devices “tethered” in geosynchronous orbit, which has always seemed like a good idea, until you look at the costs involved.

          But the moon is not geosynchronous, so you will need multiple reception sites, and some means of aiming the EMR beam to each reception site in turn.

          And being cynical as well as sceptical, and remembering that two-thirds of the Earth’s surface is covered in water, I suspect that some of these reception sites might need to be located in places that are a little damp, and storm prone.


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      • #
        Bones

        you can just hear the answer if the alignment was out a little”whoops.sorry about that”


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    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      Duh. Axis, not ‘access’. Perhaps I should go work for the Telegraph?


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    • #
      Mark D.

      Also not mentioned is that these 13 gigawatts are in addition to our current solar insolation budget. Might this cause warming?


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    • #
      old44

      Who is going to transport these panels? Tinkerbell and her mates?


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  • #
    RoHa

    Because of Global Warming, comets are melting at an unprecedented rate. Ison is just the latest.
    Ban CO2! Save the comets!


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  • #
    pat

    27 Nov: Bloomberg: Jonathan Stearns: EU Imposes Tariffs on Chinese Solar-Glass Exporters Up to 42.1%
    The European Union imposed tariffs of as much as 42.1 percent on solar glass from China to curb import competition for EU producers, heightening trade tensions over renewable energy…
    The levies, which took effect today, are for six months and may be prolonged for five years…
    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-11-27/eu-hits-chinese-solar-glass-exporters-with-tariffs-up-to-42-1-.html


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      Andrew McRae

      Hmmm, still learning the foibles of the auto-moderator rules… having three hyperlinks in a thirteen word comment is apparently too much, straight into the quarantine bin.
      Maybe it was the youtube link that looked suspicious.

      [The auto-mod will have seen your comment as advertising - I have released it - apologies for not picking it up sooner] -Fly


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    pat

    28 Nov: ABC: Gavin Coote: Contract awarded to construct Broken Hill and Nyngan solar farms
    Australian manufacturer IXL Group has been awarded the contract to build the proposed Broken Hill and Nyngan solar farms, creating up to 200 new jobs.
    First Solar chose the company to head construction which they say will get underway early next year…
    “Quite frankly there was a pretty significant expectation that a lot of it was going to be manufactured in Asia and imported,” he said.
    “Then when we looked at the cost analysis it actually turned out to be cheaper to work with a local supplier, so what I think it does is dispel some of the theories you hear about it not being sustainable for local economy in Australia to participate in this space.”
    He says it’s cheaper to have an Australian supplier come onboard with the project.
    “The great irony of it is that the IXL guys historically have manufactured components for the automotive industry,” he said.
    “Now they’re able to re-tool their capabilities to frankly be our most cost-effective supplier for solar projects vis-a-vis a number of Asian competitors.
    “I think it’s a really great validation that there are a number of components of the solar economic value chain that can and should be localised in Australia.”…
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-11-28/contract-awarded-to-construct-broken-hill-solar-farm/5120458


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    • #
      King Geo

      Solar & Wind power generation have a part to play in isolated places like Esperance which are well away from the national grid. Solar & Wind Energy have absolutely no part to play in “Base Load Power Generation” for our capital cities and main regional cities which are well serviced by cost effective “Fossil Fuel Power Stations”. Don’t listen to the likes of Tim Flannery or John Doyle (alias Roy Slaven) – they are living in dreamland expecting our main population centres to transition to their so called “green friendly renewables” to save us Aussies from non-existent AGW – no matter what the cost – and we all know that RE is 3-4 times as expensive as fossil fuels – remember that recent Govt document by the Victorian Auditor-General entitled “Facilitating Renewable Energy Generation in Victoria” (April 2011).


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    Peter C

    It’s been 200 years since the last brand new sun-grazing comet from the Oort Cloud, according to Matthew Knight. This one is going within 0.0124 AU (which means slightly more than 2 solar radii).

    The Astronomical Unit, being the average distance between the sun and the earth, was first estimated by Aristachos of Samos, in the 3rd century BC.
    He attempted to measure the Moon, Earth Sun angle, when the moon was exactly half illuminated ( ie the earth moon sun angle is 90 degrees). He estimated the distance to the sun as 19 times the distance to the moon (about 20 times too small). The real distance is about 400 times the distance to the Moon. He also measured the distance to the Moon as 30 earth diameters, which is quite a good measurement.

    His book is called “On sizes and distances”.


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    pat

    btw i’m not ignoring Ison. have been watching. nice.

    SAGA TIME: Anthony Cox wrote an opinion piece for Fairfax Newcastle Herald, which half an hour ago had 40 comments, including from John Cook, tho they seem to have disappeared. u may find them:

    26 Nov: Newcastle Herald (Fairfax): Anthony Cox: OPINION: Politics muddies global warming debate
    However when a number of other scientists checked Cook’s results they found that not 97 per cent of the sample of about 12,000 scientists were in that category, but fewer than 1 per cent…
    COMMENT #1 BY JOHN COOK:
    As lead author of the consensus paper discussed above, I can point out that Anthony Cox (from the highly politicised “Climate Sceptics Party”) blah blah…
    The tobacco industry perfected this approach in the 1970s, demanding ever-more stringent levels of proof that smoking caused cancer in order to delay government regulation of their products…
    These techniques were used by the tobacco industry and right-wing ideologues to deny that smoking causes cancer. The very same techniques are now being used by the fossil fuel industry and ring-wing ideologues to deny that humans cause global warming blah blah…
    COMMENT BY ANTHONY COX:
    Good of you to turn up John.
    I didn’t use any definition other than what you used in your paper etc…
    http://www.theherald.com.au/story/1934243/opinion-politics-muddies-global-warming-debate/?cs=308

    an “aimee” posts some peculiar comments, including:

    “No, I realise that we all need to reduce our consumption and live differently (Africa and China seem to manage)…”
    and
    “The world will mourn the life it expected but cannot continue to have (and believe me I am), and perhaps people such as Sir Richard Branson with his business profile and ‘Peak Oil’ belief will make a dent in people’s mindset on consumption, public infrastructure and population. Check out his talk in January this year …Or just Google “Richard Branson” and “peak oil.”:

    yes, aimee, along with “green” fracking/nuclear Obama, oil-guzzling, ever-ambitious Branson is a great CAGW icon. bit like Al Gore?

    27 Nov: ThisIsMoneyUK: Rob Davies: Taking the fight back to BA: How Virgin Atlantic boss Craig Kreeger aims to haul airline out of the red
    He puts the improvement down partly to stable fuel prices, recovery in business travel and comparisons against last year, when the London Olympics proved ‘more costly than we recognised’…
    Like most long-haul bosses, Kreeger favours the ‘hub’ option – expanding Heathrow or building a major new airport – believing this will attract connecting flights linking London to new economic pastures in China and other developing business centres…
    Given the extra airport capacity, he’d like Virgin to extend its reach further into the US, Latin American and Asia, but new routes are not on the agenda for the time being…
    Another pressing question is the challenge presented by Norwegian’s launch of cheap fares from London to New York.
    Kreeger believes Virgin won’t lose customers thanks to ‘how we treat them’ but acknowledges that ‘we’re going to have to compete aggressively’.
    In a year or two, he’ll choose whether to buy new planes from Boeing or Airbus, with Virgin’s Boeing 747s due for replacement in 2020.
    In the meantime, he insists Virgin was right to buy 15 of Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner, with an option for 28 more, despite the aircraft’s high-profile teething problems…
    ‘I’m extremely confident that at the end of the day it’s a really good aircraft.’
    Given that the order was worth up to £5billion, no self-respecting boss would say anything else.
    http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/markets/article-2514649/CITY-INTERVIEW-Virgin-Atlantic-boss-Craig-Kreeger-aims-haul-airline-red.html?ito=feeds-newsxml

    back to Newcastle. of course, Cook then got space to respond, which had 3 comments, which i can no longer find:

    (includes a VIDEO, whiich i haven’t watched)
    29 Nov: Newscastle Herald (Fairfax): John Cook: OPINION: Climate change deniers use tobacco tactics
    The same tactics are on offer in Anthony Cox’s opinion piece “Politics muddy global warming debate” (Herald 27/11). Mr Cox magics away the overwhelming scientific consensus via “unrealistic expectations”. He ignores any paper that doesn’t specify the percentage of global warming humans have caused.
    Thousands of papers endorsing the consensus conveniently disappear…
    http://www.theherald.com.au/story/1939492/opinion-climate-change-deniers-use-tobacco-tactics/?cs=308


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    pat

    “aimee” also suggested Anthony Cox go watch:

    Crude – The Incredible Journey Of Oil
    This excellent documentary, directed by Dr. Richard Smith, was first broadcast on 24 May 2007 by ABC TV (Australia) and wan the 2008 Walter Sullivan Award for excellence in science journalism…
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cPgfnwi2m9M

    LOL.


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    Geoffrey Cousens

    The term “greenhouse effect”was first coined in about 1963 by mainstream scientists desperate to convincingly explain an awkward new revelation about the “weather”on Venus.The Mercury[or was it Marina?] probe had just sent back accurate surface temp.[v. hot]just prior to subliming in the vitriolic atmosphere.The panic and embarrassment that followed,first words from”Harper’s @ Queen” needed to be defused asap.mss told the msm that Venus was so hot[ap.855f] due to a greenhouse effect on a planetary scale.MSS had assured all mere mortals Venus is cold and the probe will send back precis figures.The hydrocarbonese atmosphere was an impenetrable blanket 60 miles thick.
    Hotter on its night side,to add to the apoplectic mss.’quandary,the poor duffers settled on greenhouse effect. Velikovsky was in again.You have never read his work.Right?


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    handjive

    There is no truth in the rumour the Chinese are banning bar-b-ques in order to save the comet ISON from catastrophic destruction.

    But it is true Beijing is waging a war against climate change, one barbecue at a time.
    .
    Hope there is intelligent life in space, because there is none here on Earth.


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    pat

    29 Nov: BusinessSpectator: Matt Grantham: Carbon mapping: and why only climate policy can stop the boats
    (Matt Grantham is a radio presenter, political comedian and contributor at Beyond Zero Emissions.)
    The Carbon Map is an interactive tool that has been developed to explore both the responsibility for climate change and its consequences. It was featured prominently by The Guardian and was a finalist in the World Bank’s Apps for Climate competition…
    ***One of the larger obstacles going forward on a global deal has been countries taking responsibility for their historical emissions (Figure 3) and more recently this has been accepted by America one of the largest historical emitters…
    While I will never fully understand the motivations of Barnaby Joyce, Cory Bernardi, et al, the truth is that if you were trying to get your country overrun by communists and refugees, then as the carbon map indicates, failure to deliver on a global emissions deal would definitely be the fastest way to do it.
    http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2013/11/29/science-environment/carbon-mapping-and-why-only-climate-policy-can-stop-boats

    ***for Matt, “green” fracking/nuclear Obama, is a saviour. the usual CRAFTY Reuters’ spin:

    23 Nov: Factbox: Main decisions at U.N. climate talks in Warsaw
    LOSS AND DAMAGE
    The talks agreed a new “Warsaw International Mechanism” to provide expertise, and possibly aid, to help developing nations cope with losses from extreme events related to climate change. The exact form of the mechanism will be reviewed in 2016.
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/11/23/us-climate-talks-factbox-idUSBRE9AM0CA20131123

    reality:

    23 Nov: Vermont Law School COP19/CMP9 Observer Delegation
    Will it be the Warsaw Miracle? ADP and long-term finance adopted at COP 19, just loss and damage to go.
    Then, the President moved onto Agenda item 3(b), Loss and Damage (L&D, not LDM). I make this distinction, because the wording of the L15 draft text houses the “Warsaw international mechanism” on L&D “under” the adaptation pillar of the Cancun Adaptation Framework (CAF) (see para 1). Thus, the current text does not establish L&D as its own separate mechanism (LDM), like the Clean Development Mechanism…
    ***Fiji, on behalf of G77+China, strongly objected to the use of the word “under,” which was supported by the United States…
    The negotiation blocks of AOSIS, G77+China and others asked the COP President for a huddle. The President permitted a 15 minute huddle. A huge group of High-Level negotiators, including USA’s Mr. Todd Stern, immediately began discussing the word “under.” The huddle centered around Mr. Stern as he talked about the USA’s position on L&D…
    Over 30 minutes later, the huddle finally concluded. The COP President announced that the Parties had reached a consensus, but did not elaborate for another 10 minutes. The Plenary patiently waited to hear what the “consensus” embodied. When the COP/CMP session resumed, Mr. Korolec announced that the consensus centered on the word “under,” meaning the L&D would remain under the Cancun Adaptation Framework. However, he explained that this current L&D arrangement would be reviewed at COP22 in 2016, per paragraph 15. Additionally, the Parties presented three amendments to the text in the preambular text, paragraph 1 and paragraph 15. Before the adoption of the text, Mr. Yeb Saño made a reservation on the record that the 2016 review should reconsider the institutional location of the Warsaw international mechanism on loss and damage (aka as a separate international mechanism under the UNFCCC)…
    http://vlscop.vermontlaw.edu/category/loss-and-damage/

    the US won and, as the Vermont Law School Observer’s headline has it: “…just loss and damage to go”.

    partisan politics is so boring, Matt Grantham. it would help if you didn’t start with preconceived notions about the politics of CAGW sceptics. you don’t have a clue. not only are we a varied lot politically – right, left, libertarian, anarchist, even Green, but we are all welcomed on forums such as Joanne Nova’s or Anthony Watts’ WUWT, which is why vigorous debates take place, & relevant information is shared, on their websites and not on CAGW-advocacy sites.


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    • #
      handjive

      From Pat’s first link:”it is always helpful to be able to visualise what is at stake for governments around the world, including our own, if we do not get a move on in the next decade.”

      The next decade?
      We are now at a tipping point that threatens to flip the world into a full blown climate emergency,” Warsaw climate talks: the world’s poorest cannot wait for a 2015 deal
      .
      Either we can see the effects of climate change now, or we will see it in the future. Can it be both?
      And, what year does the carbon(sic) tax begin working, or is it too late for a tax to work?


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        Eddie Sharpe

        Has anyone ever wondered why the call it the Guardian. Does it see itself as being there to protect rather than to inform. Is it trying to protect us, from ourselves. When the loonies Guardian types become our self appointed our Guardians we’re in for a fun ride.


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    old44

    “It is now clear that Comet #ISON either survived or did not survive, or… maybe both”

    I know I recently had my brain hacked into by a surgeon but what kind of idiotic statement is that.


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    ROM

    Seeing we are kicking all sorts of odd ball science around maybe something of interest to add to Peter C’s comment .

    An old greek guy called Eratosthenes born way back in 276 BC measured the circumference of the Earth
    He came up with a figure of 250,000 Stades as the distance around ie; the circumference of the Earth.

    A “Stade” = 160 metres

    250,000 Stades x 160 metres = 40,000 kms

    The circumference of the Earth today’s measurements is 40075 kms around the equator and 40,007 kms around the poles.

    How he did it and so accurately over two thousand years ago with none of the most basic of instruments is told here

    Not bad for two and quarter thousand years ago and using nothing but you intellect and common sense to find a way to do this, something in this modern world we all tend to overlook and go for the most complicated method instead of sitting down to work out the way of achieving something in the simplest possible fashion.
    Or as a neighbour use to say; “Every Job needs a lazy man”:
    Someone who will figure out the easiest way of doing something.


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      Yonniestone

      If Eratosthenes could do this that 225000 years ago it makes you wonder what happened in between?
      It reminds me of the TV series “Vikings” on SBS where Ragnar Lodbrok uses a sunstone type of ships compass to sail west and find England, even though the story is based on Norse lore apparently the use of a sunstone compass has been proven and might have been a technology passed on from Eratosthenes original idea.


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      Rereke Whakaaro

      I have heard this story about Eratosthenes before, and have always had questions:

      How did Eratosthenes know when it was noon?

      And a comparison based on time is only applicable at the same latitude, how did he know if both locations were on the same latitude?


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      • #
        ROM

        Have a look through this Rereke. Those old guys were smart, very smart.

        Ancient Timekeepers, Part 2: Observing the Sky


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        Peter C

        Very good question Rereke. I puzzled over that for years.
        The answer is this. The historian Herodutus wrote

        that on a certain day of the year the sun illuminates the bottom a well in Syene.”

        Since day ( singular) is specified, it follows that Syene is on the tropic of Cancer, otherwise the sun shines to the bottom of the year on two days every year. Eratosthenes was the chief librarian of the great library in Alexandria. By coincidence, Alexandria is near to due North from Syene (Aswan now). Hence solar noon occurs at about the same time in both places.O
        By taking the noon sun angle on the day of the summer solstice, which is the day that the sun shines down the well in Syene, Erastosthenes measured the angular distance between Syene and Alexandria as 7 degrees.
        All that is needed now is the actual distance from Syene to Alexandria. Once again Herodotus helps out. He said it took 50 days by camel caravan to travel to Syene from Alexandria (5000 stades).
        Diameter earth =5000*360/7=255,000 stades. The exact length of a stadia is uncertain but is supposed to be about 1/6 km.
        Eratosthenes had to assume that the rays of the sun are parallel at the distance of the earth. The assumption is quite good, even using Aristachus’ estimate of the sun’s distance, which was available to him.


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          Peter C

          I meant, the sun shines to the bottom of the well on one day in the year. Hence the sun is directly overhead.


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          Rereke Whakaaro

          That you for that, Peter.

          I understood the math, but could never get around the problem that time (in terms of the earths rotation) and latitude are mutually self defining.

          By coincidence, Alexandria is near to due North from Syene

          As happens so often in science, fate plays a role, which is something science teachers are loath to discuss (or were in my day).


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            Peter C

            Thanks Rereke,

            It may be a coincidence that Syene is near to due south of Alexandria, but I would think that Erastothenes (being well schooled in geometry) was well aware of the longitude problem.
            Both you and I have been puzzled by the longitude problem, since contemporary accounts omit that detail. I imagine that when he came across the account by Herodotus (in the library at Alexandria) he seized apon the happy coincidence.
            The relative distances to the moon (in terms of earth diameters) and the sun (in terms of the moon distance) were already established by Aristachus of Samos. Hence the measurement of the earth diameter gave the correct scale to the Cosmos.

            The only thing left to establish was the distance to the fixed stars. Aristachus also proposed that the earth circles the sun (Heliocentric theory), predating Copernicus by more than 2000 years. Contemporary Philosophers however poured contempt on that idea. Not only was it self evident that the Earth stayed still but there were other objections. Firstly, the earth had to rotate at high speed to explain the daily rotation of the heavens, which would cause all the objects on the surface to be thrown off. Secondly, if the earth was to move on such a large orbit, the stars should show parallax, compared with nearer objects, such as the sun and the moon. Since this was not observed, either the stars were at an impossibly large distance, or the theory was clearly wrong.

            Archimedes commented that it should follow that the distance to the stars. compared to the sun should be in the same ratio as the diameter of a circle to its centre (ie infinity).

            It was proposed that Aristarchus be charged with impiety for making such an outlandish suggestion (penalty death). Aristarchus chose not to pursue the issue. That seems to be a good parallel with skeptical scientists of today (but they only have their jobs to lose).

            Paradoxically parallax had in fact been observed, but was not recognised. The planets (wandering stars) showed retrograde motion at times (parallax). As far as I know the Greeks never solved that conundrum.


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      Eddie Sharpe

      Great point ROM.

      “Every Job needs a lazy man”:
      Someone who will figure out the easiest way of doing something.

      I’m amazed every time my boss chides me for being ‘lazy’ , for logging onto our lab systems from my desk, instead if walking down the lab & back to check something.

      I have to point out it’s not my time I’d be wasting , but the Company’s. For an aspiring business leader, you’d think he might learn to overcome seeing ‘laziness’ in such negative terms.


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    Andrew McRae

    I may only ever get one chance to say this, so I’m saying it.

    Ison was “alive”, then it was presumed “dead”, then it “came back to life” again. Therefore it’s now a zombie comet.

    The distance of Ison to earth is currently decreasing and will make its closest approach to Earth on 26 December.

    Do I really have to spell it out?

    On Christmas eve planet Earth will be confronted by a cosmic zombie.

    :D


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    Tim

    In-depth scientific NASA info on comets at archive.org search:comets.


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    Sonny

    If we thought “climate science” reporting was dumbed down for the masses, it is NOTHING, compared to astronomy.

    NASA’s official story regarding comets is that they are “dirty snowballs” made of loosely packed dust and water which emerge from the mythical “Oort cloud” randomly into our solar system from time to time.

    NASA always states they they are pretty small (with a nucleus maybe 1 or 2km across at max), and they are of course no risk to planet earth whatsoever.

    The reality is that comets are monstrous (in some cases planet sized) objects which glow in the dark, travel at hundreds of kilometres per second, have tails, somwtimes develop wings, and interract electrically with the sun and planets. They have “jets” that are aometimes sun facing and sometimes go off in unknown directions.

    Basically, comets behave in a way that totally discredits the assumption that they are “dirty snowballs”, and NASA, co-conspirator in the climate change fraud knows a lot more than they tell the public.

    Do not trust official sources on Astronomy. Open your mind and look further.


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      Tim

      I came across a non-NASA article on that site that disputed the NASA ‘ice and dust’ stuff and analysed the EPOXI findings independently. It found that comets contain the same basic materials as planets. No wonder it’s no longer there.


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    pat

    another CAGW extortion racket on the verge of collapse?

    Top EU powers retreat further on aviation emission plans
    LONDON, Nov 28 (Reuters) – Britain, France and Germany want to curtail further a European Union plan to regulate CO2 emissions from flights, setting up a clash with Brussels keen to maintain the bloc’s climate policy which has sparked threats of a global trade war…
    http://www..pointcarbon.com/news/reutersnews/1.3125127

    good news:

    German energy laws need further revisions – EU’s Oettinger
    BERLIN, Nov 28 (Reuters) – Germany’s plan to curb the growth of renewables and review lavish subsidies is a step in the right direction but the country needs to do more to keep in check soaring retail power prices, EU Energy Commissioner Guenther Oettinger said…
    http://www..pointcarbon.com/news/reutersnews/1.3117185

    EU carbon prices slip on energy, more supply
    LONDON, Nov 28 (Reuters) – European carbon prices were softer on Thursday on weaker energy and as traders braced for more supply to hit the market from government auctions in the next two trading days…
    http://www.pointcarbon.com/news/reutersnews/1.3123561?&ref=searchlist


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    pat

    28 Nov: Adelaide Advertiser: Daniel Wills: Record $363m profit for SA Water as charges keep increasing
    SURGING household water bills have helped deliver SA Water a record $362 million profit as well as handing the cash-strapped State Government a windfall dividend…
    An SA Water spokesman said the high profit was caused by factors including warm weather that increased water sales and “lower than planned” spending at the Adelaide desalination plant.
    The plant is undergoing a two-year “proving period” which expires at the end of next year. It is then expected to be mothballed due to lack of demand for its water…
    The $1.8 billion construction cost of the plant and extra spending on supporting infrastructure like pipelines is a major contributor to increases in water bills over the past five years.
    The average household will pay $1270 for water and sewerage this year.
    Mr Weatherill said the Federal Government was urging him to sell SA Water as part of a privatisation drive that offered states incentives to free up capital from assets.
    “SA Water is an asset that we will not sell,” Mr Weatherill said. “We think that is really the wrong approach, trying to meet a fiscal challenge by putting the burden on householders.”…
    Opposition Leader Steven Marshall’s office also ruled out privatising SA Water.
    Mr Marshall said water prices had surged under Labor and Mr Weatherill “must assure South Australians that SA Water is not being used to prop up his ailing State Budget”…
    SA Water’s annual report, tabled in State Parliament, also shows the Adelaide Desalination Plant produced 39 billion litres of drinking water in 2012-13.
    http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/record-363m-profit-for-sa-water-as-charges-keep-increasing/story-fni6uo1m-1226770870802?from=google_rss&google_editors_picks=true

    28 Nov: Adelaide Advertiser: Turmoil as GreatSolar Solutions placed into administration with millions of dollars in debt
    by ANDREW HOUGH, GIUSEPPE TAURIELLO
    A LEADING Adelaide-based solar company has collapsed, leaving customers, creditors and dozens of former staff facing months of turmoil.
    GreatSolar Solutions, based at Torrensville in the western suburbs, today entered administration with millions of dollars of debt despite a rival firm buying parts of the business last week …
    The company, which supplied and installed more than 10,000 solar systems across Australia, is the fourth major solar company in the state to experience financial difficulty in two years…
    http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/turmoil-as-greatsolar-solutions-placed-into-administration-with-millions-of-dollars-in-debt/story-fni6uo1m-1226770807905?from=google_rss&google_editors_picks=true


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