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Electrical failure shuts collider down for the winter

Well, it had a short run: Only nine days after going online Sept. 10, CERN's Large Hadron Collider has already gone south for the winter, due to an electrical failure Friday. The LHC was always scheduled for winter shutdown and maintenance, due to the costs of fuel, but that wasn't supposed to happen until the end of November. Now, CERN says, the necessary inspections and repairs will likely not be completed much before that scheduled shutdown date.

24 Sep 2008

Brazil says 'no thanks' to OPEC

I didn't know you could do that. 

Back in August, Iran had invited Brazil to join OPEC, but Brazil declined, saying it had "other priorities." And now, Saudi Arabia has invited Brazil into the cartel.

17 Sep 2008

Oil industries escape Ike's wrath

Hurricane Ike’s damage to Gulf Coast oil industries was not as bad as authorities had feared, the Department of Energy stated in a report released Monday.

17 Sep 2008

Energy's the hot topic this week on the Hill

UPDATE: The House energy bill, which will allow offshore drilling and gives states incentives by sharing the revenues from drilling leases with them, passed yesterday (Sept. 16). The Senate bill is still pending, but a vote is likely sometime this week.

 

16 Sep 2008

Houston avoids worst of Ike; gas prices jump

Hurricane Ike roared into southeastern Texas early Saturday morning as a strong Category-2 storm, with 170 kilometer-per-hour (110 mph) winds. But due to a last-minute veer to the east, the populous region between Galveston and Houston narrowly avoided the worst of the storm.

Meteorologists had feared the region would encounter the “dirty side” of Ike, a nickname for the hurricane’s northeast quadrant that combines the speed of its overall northeasterly movement with the powerful winds of Ike’s counterclockwise spin.

13 Sep 2008

Watch out Houston, Ike is coming

As residents of Galveston, Texas, scramble to evacuate before Hurricane Ike makes landfall tonight, most Houston residents have been told to stay put. But even Houston — about 130 kilometers (80 miles) to the northeast — is in for some extreme weather tomorrow.

12 Sep 2008

Large earthquake rocks Iran oil port

Wednesday, Sept. 10, 12:30 p.m. EDT — At 3:30 p.m. local time, a magnitude-6.0 earthquake struck Iran near the southern port city of Bandar Abbas. Tremors from the quake were felt as far away as the United Arab Emirates and Qatar, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

USGS detected a magnitude-4.8 aftershock about 30 minutes after the quake, although John Bellini, a geophysicist at the National Earthquake Information Center in Golden, Colo., says that many other aftershocks have and will bypass U.S. detection.

10 Sep 2008

The Big Turn-On

Tuesday, Sept. 9, 11:30 a.m. EDT — Fourteen years in the making, the $8 billion Large Hadron Collider comes online Wednesday at last (although, when you think about it, that's not really that long to wait for a machine that may reveal some of the mysteries of the universe).

The switch-on is provoking strong public reaction: Scientists are excited and eager to see what the LHC can do; alarmists are worried about the end of the world. And one person made a funny rap.

09 Sep 2008

NASA's hurricane pages updated

Friday, Sept. 5, 10:30 a.m. EDT — All of a sudden it's really busy out there: There are four storms currently spinning in the Atlantic: Gustav (whose remnants are on their way to the northeastern U.S.), Hanna, Ike and Josephine. As Tropical Storm Hanna bears down on the Carolinas (expected to make landfall later today), Tropical Storm Josephine has set its sights on Florida, and is expected to collide somewhere along the coast early next week. Ike (currently a Category-4 hurricane) is on its way to the Bahamas this weekend.

05 Sep 2008

Trial by Fire

What makes a fire burn? In addition to fuel (such as wood or paper) and heat, fires need oxygen. If there isn’t enough oxygen in the atmosphere, combustion simply won’t happen.

That was as true hundreds of millions of years ago as it is today. So wildfires, scientists say, can provide a unique way to estimate how much oxygen was in Earth’s atmosphere throughout its history.

04 Sep 2008

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