Sunday, August 9, 2015

Fat Man

Thursday, August 6, 2015

70 Year Old Little Boy

We've been told that dropping the bomb saved lives and that Japan would have never surrendered had we not used the bomb

The truth is, the Japanese military officials knew their defeat was at-hand and hoped to negotiate a conditional surrender to prevent more of their cities from being firebombed.* Meanwhile, Washington imposed deliberately difficult unconditional terms to perpetuate the war long enough to test the newest weapons** in the arsenal.  A new extensive and expensive secret industry had been created to build these bombs and officials wanted to use them in a real war scenario to test their effectiveness. 

A handful of virgin  targets were off-bounds to firebomb raids and designated as primary and secondary atomic bomb targets. On August 6, 1945, Hiroshima was the primary. The skies were clear, and it was a perfect day to roll out the previously untested uranium gun weapon nicknamed, Little Boy.

After the new technology*** had been demonstrated, the Japanese conditional terms of surrender were met and credit was given to the bomb for bringing the war to a swift end. 

* The firebombing raids on major Japanese cities resulted in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Japanese citizens and wide-spread destruction, equivalent to atomic weapons damage. But the a-bomb only required one aeroplane to inflict the same amount of damage that it took hundreds of B-29 fire-bombers to accomplish.

** A long skinny uranium gun weapon nicknamed Little Boy and a bulbous beast of a bomb appropriately named Fat Man. The former, was detonated a thousand feet above the city of Hiroshima, and produced a 13.5 kiloton blast that destroyed that city. Fat Man, a plutonium implosion device, produced a 17 kiloton blast over Nagasaki three days later. 

*** There were other options on the table that would have spared cities and civilian lives. It had been proposed that we simply invite Japanese officials to witness a demonstration of the awesome destructive power of the bomb. Unfortunately, the desire for real battlefield blast data outweighed the lives of hundreds of thousands of civilians.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

HELLFIRE XX 2015 - in 3D

Hundreds of home-made model rockets took flight this weekend at the Bonneville Salt Flats.

Perfect weather conditions contributed to a successful gathering for the Utah Rocket Club's annual Hellfire model rocket launch event. 

3d image of someone's display

Every summer, Rocketeer hobbyists bring their rockets of all sizes from around the country to participate in this unique launch event. 

3D image of another display

Many of the rockets exceed ten feet in length and ascend to an elevation of more than 20,000'. Therefore, FAA approval had to be granted and airspace closed to aircraft for the event. 

3D image adding perspective

Some of the rockets were made from kits while others where self-designed and made from scratch. Some of the participants brought scale models of iconic rockets such as the German V2 and Friendship 7.

3D image of a German V2 - the first weaponized missile known for the destruction and terror it inflicted on London during WWII

3D image of Friendship 7 - the Redstone Rocket that launched John Glen on the first US orbital flight. There was even a little astronaut in the capsule.  

More than a hundred rockets were expected to launch over the four day event.
3d image of a launch

Some of the rockets exhibited exotic sparkle effects as fiery engine-thrust particles blasted from their engines.

The rocket below was one of my favorites at the event and it performed wonderfully, except for a bumpy landing on someone's car. No damage done.
3D image B4 launch


At the end of the day, everyone gathered together for a group photo with their rockets. 
3d image - group photo

3d Image - group disbursement 
See ya again next year UROC HELLFIRE XXI!!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

New Wind Turbine for Donny Q

Five years ago, the US Army spent 3.8 million dollars on a windmill* at Tooele Army Depot that has never worked. 

Disfunctional Chinese-made Tang Energy turbine with Oquirrh Mountains in background.


The 262' tall monolith promised to deliver 1.5 megawatts of power, saving the military facility an average of $200,000 annually. Unfortunately, the Chinese-made Tang Energy turbine failed to perform.

With an average wind speed of around 14 mph, this location on Tooele Army Depot is the perfect location for a wind turbine. Therefore the Army has contracted** to build another wind turbine in the same location, right next to the one that doesn't work. 

The windmills are located near the southerly boarder of the southeast corner of the Tooele Army Depot and can be seen from almost everywhere in the Tooele Valley.

The new wind turbine that has been under construction for the past few months will soon be fully operational, but this time, sporting a new American-made General Electric turbine that the Army Corps of Engineers promises will deliver 1.5 to 2 megawatts of free*** energy. 

There are no plans to retrofit or remove the $3.8 million Chinese-made turbine so it will remain where it is... forever and forever in Tooele.
The power lines that supply electricity to operate the controversial NSA Data Center run adjacent to the southerly boarder of the depot.

* $3.8 million contract was awarded to PNE Corp, who installed all Chinese-made components.

** $5.5 million contract was awarded to Juhl Energy in partnership with Aegis Renewable Energy and Icenogle Construction Management inc.

***  The windmill project combined cost of $9.3 million will take an estimated 46.5 years to pay for itself.