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Monday, 18 March 2013

Nike's x-ray tights

Nike released these pretty cool x-ray leggings at the end of last year and I keep meaning to post about them. So here they are - Nike thinking outside the box.


The say in some admittedly effusive 'brand' speak:

 "The new Nike Women’s Exclusive Print tight is a performance based pant for the athlete unafraid to make a statement. On the outside, she might be the girl next door, but on the inside, her body has survived grueling workouts, often pushing through pain, broken bones, pulled muscles and harsh tears."

Still, despite over-egging the campaign behind the tights, they look pretty awesome.

Friday, 15 March 2013

The most beautiful sight in space is urine

From down here on our humble planet, the best sight for me is the Milky Way on a clear night in a remote location. Or a meteor shower. Or a Solar Eclipse. Or Uranus, Venus and Mars all visible with the naked eye on the same night. But for Russel Schweickart of Appolo 9...

"The most beautiful sight in orbit…is a urine dump at sunset"*

Um. Awkard. So, could you explain yourself please Russel?

Russel wasn't available for comment but I can regurgitate what others have said for you. Space shuttles don't have much space on board for the little extras, like bodily waste, so they regularly have to release them to lighten their load. When urine is released from the exit nozzle it freezes immediately and 'instantly flashes into 10 million little ice crystals which go out almost in a hemisphere…a spray of sparklers, almost' (say Scientific American anyway). And it gets better, once those little droplets are crystals, the sun then hits them and transforms them into water vapour to create a kind of mesmerizing cloud of human bodily fluids.

The urine dump that Russel was talking about was a particularly big one (about 68 kilos of urine and water) because the shuttle couldn't unload during it's 10-day stay at the international Space Station. Nice.

*Source: Time

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Magic Zig-zagging water

A colleague sent me this link to an experiment on Alex Hardy's Blog where a 24Hz Sine Wave is put through a flow of running water adn it appears to run in a zig zig motion. I don't know if this beats non-newtonian fluid on a speaker* but it's pretty darn close.


The camera frame rate is adjusted to match the vibration of the wave (so, 24 FPS {frames per second})to get this effect. This is an optical illusion resulting from viewing the stream of water at the same FPS as the HZ of the sound. In person, it wouldn't look like this. It's a bit like the way the rims on a car appear to spin in reverse at certain speeds. At 23Hz the stream of water would look like it is moving backwards and 25Hz like it is moving forward in slow motion.

 *I just searched back for a blog post to link to on non-newtonian fluid on speakers and was amazed to find that I haven't posted about it yet. Error. Post coming soon!