Tag Archives: Snow

Apollo News Snippets – May 2015

Posted on May 5th, 2015

As we do every now and then in this short snippet on technological updates, we turn our attention to fun and random advances that fit no broad category.First, a few improvements that might make our homes more comfortable and/or sustainable places to live in. It appears that USB power sources could save a considerable amount of energy as they convert AC to DC electricity more efficiently. Or how about piping some nice, natural sunlight into interior or otherwise dark rooms during the daytime? This idea is a novel approach to reducing the amount of energy used to bleach our laundry. And now a few technologies that can make our 1’s and 2’s more sustainable, such as this solar-powered toilet that can turn waste into biochar (a biological charcoal). Or this idea which uses urine to create power in disaster zones. Perhaps cow manure could be a source of clean water and fertilizers in rural communities? Finally, we close with an idea that is just plain weird and fun, whereby used cigarette butts are converted into an energy-saving coating for parts in computers, portable electronics and even wind turbines. The March 2015 Land and Ocean Temperature departure from average map. Warm … testContinue reading

Walking in a Winter Wonderland – The Blinding Reflectance of Snow

Posted on January 22nd, 2012

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow…It’s that time of year where I have holiday songs stuck in my head and here in Colorado I find myself surrounded by a foot of snow, which has obviously inspired this month’s article! For those of you in warmer climate, I guess you will just have to use your imaginations. When you’re walking in a winter wonderland, you will notice that sunglasses are a definite necessity. A blanket of snow can be blinding since snow has a very high albedo, which is the measured reflectance of wavelengths off of a particular surface. The high reflectance of snow is not restricted to just one small section of the electromagnetic spectrum, its albedo can range between 80% and 90% in the visible and near infrared spectra. As you can imagine, clouds have a very similar effect as they reflect wavelengths from the sun and other solar bodies back into space and through our atmosphere. There have been times in Boulder where the town is covered in snow while clouds hang in the air. On these days, as the sun disappears over the mountains, dusk stretches on for hours giving the town a purplish … testContinue reading

    The Geospatial Times Archive