Wednesday, March 31, 2010

New Solar Farm

NextEra Energy Resources thought it had a golden project.
Eleven solar thermal farms have been proposed for Southern California and are going through the permitting process with the California Energy Commission and with the U.S. Bureau of Land Management if on federal land. The 11 farms are among the biggest of the almost 50 renewable energy projects seeking to begin construction in California before the end of the year so they can seek federal stimulus funds.


The company proposed a 2,000-acre solar farm, named Beacon, on fallow agricultural land on the edge of California's Mojave Desert. The site has the great desert sun but is on degraded land near a freeway, an auto test track and old buildings.

The site "is exactly where solar should be," says David Myers, head of conservation group Wildlands Conservancy.

But two years later, NextEra still awaits permission to begin construction from the California Energy Commission, which grants permits on such projects after environmental reviews. Time is running short, not only for NextEra but for several dozen green-energy projects in California. Ground must be broken on them before year's end to get federal stimulus funds worth 30% of the projects' cost.

The deadline — and the push for green energy by President Obama and California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger— has inspired unprecedented coordination among regulators and environmentalists who want green energy but not rampant destruction of wilderness. If they succeed in siting so many large solar projects quickly, California may set a precedent for how other states resolve concerns over land use vs. the benefits of green energy.

"It's a scene that's being played out all over the country," says Benjamin Kelahan, senior vice president for energy of the Saint Consulting Group. But California, he says, is "a hotbed of activity."

Yet the sheer number and size of the California projects, especially a dozen huge solar farms unlike anything regulators have reviewed in 20 years, is stressing agencies and stakeholders alike. No other state has so many huge solar projects in the pipeline. Billions of dollars in stimulus funds ride on whether the permitting process can be sped up without sacrificing California's stringent environmental standards.

No corners are being cut, regulators say. But some environmentalists fear that the tight deadlines will lead to projects that could've been better with more time. And companies say that some projects, like NextEra's, have suffered delays born of inefficient permitting.

"These are large projects at a scale we've never seen before on a time schedule that's never been done before," says Kimberley Delfino, California program director for the environmental group Defenders of Wildlife. "This is not going to be an easy thing to do."

Promise of power, jobs

If all are built, the 49 projects seeking stimulus funding would generate 11,000 megawatts of electricity a year. That's enough to supply 7 million California homes and give California utilities a big boost in meeting mandates to get 33% of their energy from renewable sources by 2020.

The projects also would drive 10,000 construction jobs, 2,200 operational jobs and up to $30 billion in investment, including up to $10 billion in federal stimulus dollars, says Michael Picker, Schwarzenegger's renewable-energy adviser.

Twenty-two of the 49 projects account for 83% of the power. Some projects fall under the permitting process of counties. But the vast majority of the large solar projects fall under the review of the California Energy Commission and, if the projects are on federal land, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.

California and federal regulators are working under conditions far from the norm.

Typically, the California Energy Commission rules on seven power plants a year, most often 20- to 40-acre natural-gas plants. This year, it has almost three dozen projects to review, including 11 large solar farms, several of which will each cover 10 square miles of land. Some projects that would normally take two years to review are seeking eight- to nine-month turnarounds, says Tom Pogacnik, a deputy state director for the Bureau of Land Management.

Never before have the bureau and the commission worked so closely to coordinate and expedite project reviews, says Terrence O'Brien, commission deputy director. He's dubbed a fourth-floor conference room a "war room," where staffers meet weekly to set priorities.

In November, commission staffer Christopher Meyer noted that the staff was already "sort of at a breaking point" with the workload, a transcript of a hearing on one of the solar farms says.

More people have since been hired. At the commission, 110 employees work on siting projects, up 25% since the fall. And while other state workers face furloughs on some Fridays, a consequence of California's budget woes, "We're working," O'Brien says.

The agencies are "tearing their hair out," says Peter Weiner, who, at law firm Paul Hastings, represents solar developers.

Moving too fast or too slow?

Whether the permitting process is fast or slow, complete or subpar depends on who's talking — and when.

In January, NextEra thought its chances were "grim" to get the $1 billion Beacon project through the process in time to qualify for $300 million in federal cash grants that are given instead of tax credits as part of the stimulus program, says Matthew Handel, NextEra vice president.

At a January hearing before the California Energy Commission, NextEra unfurled a string of complaints about the process. The Beacon site had to have a plan to relocate desert tortoises, although the site "has no desert tortoises," NextEra's Scott Busa said. The company had to redo a plan five times to monitor ravens that prey on baby tortoises, although the solar fields would draw fewer ravens than the sheep that currently graze and sometimes die on the land, providing a "raven buffet," Busa said.

He also said state regulators gave NextEra a 382-day plan to offset any effect on Native American cultural resources on the site, when the company didn't have 382 days before it had to break ground to get stimulus funding.

Given that the site was considered almost "perfect" for solar, Busa said, "I wonder why we're here two years later?"

After the hearing, the state reduced some demands. For instance, it cut the 382-day plan to 180 days by reducing how much land needed to be surveyed, Busa says. "They've recognized they're under time constraints," he says.

NextEra, a subsidiary of the Florida-based FPL Group energy company, is now optimistic the project will make the Dec. 31 deadline.

The commission's O'Brien says he also wishes that Beacon's review had gone faster. But he says part of the blame rests with NextEra, which at first proposed using fresh groundwater despite commission opposition. "It wasn't a perfect project, and it took time to resolve the issues," O'Brien says.
Home to threatened species

NextEra is proposing one of 11 large solar thermal farms. The farms concentrate the sun's power on mirrors to produce heat used to generate electricity. They'll cover thousands of acres, many of them largely untouched desert. The region has the most intense sun in North America, but it's also home to threatened species, such as the desert tortoise, and rare plants.

Environmentalists, who're largely supportive of solar, still worry that environmental reviews will be rushed.

"We need to proceed with caution, and what the stimulus deadline has done is remove our ability to do that," says Gloria Smith, an attorney for the Sierra Club in San Francisco.

Last week, the Sierra Club faced a two-day deadline to respond to information presented at an all-day hearing on one solar farm. After it complained, the response time was set at eight business days. Typically, it'd be weeks, Smith says.

Some agency reports also lack information they'd normally have, says Joshua Basofin, California representative for Defenders of Wildlife. This month, the commission and the Bureau of Land Management filed their joint environmental review on the 6,500-acre Blythe Solar Power Project. At the filing, numerous issues were unresolved, including relocating desert tortoises and offsetting damage to burrowing owl habitat and Native American cultural resources.

"We're very concerned that there hasn't been comprehensive environmental analysis for some of these projects," Basofin says.

The commission's O'Brien says environmental reviews will be complete. If first reports lack data, the agencies will file supplements, he says.

Several of the projects have changed to reduce their effects on the environment. The Ivanpah solar farm, at 3,500 acres, shrank 12% to lessen damage to desert tortoise and rare plant habitat. The Imperial Valley Solar farm, at 6,000-acres, is 16% smaller than originally proposed to avoid an area especially rich in Native American resources around land that was once an ancient lake.
Next few months are critical

Project developers are hopeful that the deadline for 30% cash grants will be extended, as Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., has proposed in legislation. "But nobody wants to count on an extension," says Sean Gallagher, vice president of Tessera Solar, which has two projects. The stimulus funds "are a critical part of the financing," Gallagher adds.

The next few months are also critical. Companies need permits by fall to have time to finalize financing and transmission plans. Picker, of the governor's office, expects up to 75% of the larger projects will get permits in time.

While some environmentalists say those may not be as well-designed as they could be, leading groups also recognize that land conservation isn't the only factor to consider. Global warming will degrade even pristine land, says environmentalist Delfino. Greener energy is a way to fight back, leading her to conclude that some habitat destruction is worth a bigger "long-term" gain.

"But we cannot have the cure be worse than the disease," Delfino says.

Space tourism?

Space is the next frontier in adventure travel, suggests a survey analysis, with sub-orbital tourism perhaps embracing the modern-day jet set this year.

In the current Acta Astronautica journal, Véronique Ziliotto of Holland's European Space Research and Technology Centre, looks at recent polls and industry estimates to reckon the chances of space tourism getting off the ground. Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo effort, in particular, looks to start flights as soon as this year, she notes, and already has about 200 flight reservations.

"In 2003, luxury travel had 20 million customers globally and generated 91 billion in revenue, which represents 20% of tourism revenues worldwide. This large untapped market represents a unique chance for space tourism," Ziliotto writes. Since then, she adds, "(t)hanks to recent technological achievements such as Burt Rutan's SpaceShipOne in 2004, Bigelow's Genesis I in July 2006 and Genesis II in July 2007 and the success of space adventures' flights to the ISS, space tourism is leaving the realm of science-fiction." The Bigelow Genesis I inflatable space station prototype made its 10,000th orbit of Earth in 2008.

A 2006 Futron Corporation poll of millionaires, asking them about their interest in Virgin Galactic sub-orbital space flights, found that "estimated demand for the year 2021 would be over 13,000 passengers, generating revenues in excess of US$600 million." Tickets would be $200,000 the first three years, and then drop to $50,000 thereafter. A second "adventurer's" survey that year found less demand until tickets dropped to $50,000; many of the customers preferred to wait for moon trips, not currently envisioned by space tourism firms.

More recently, one aerospace firm estimated the demand for space flights at 13,000 to 15,000 passengers per year. "In this case, the market would not be limited by demand but by the number of attractive locations for spaceports on Earth that permit a safe integration of spacecrafts in the local air traffic," Ziliotto writes.

"Promises made to public that in some future, ordinary people may experience most of the feelings of professional astronauts by simply booking a seat in a privately operated spaceship, appear today credible to some operators," says France's Christophe Bonnal of the CNES–Launcher Directorate, in an editorial accompanying the analysis. "The hurdles are nevertheless quite significant in all domains, technical, legal, medical, insurance, and even when solved, the viability of the market will have to be demonstrated. Today, one can say we still have more questions than answers."

Legal and regulatory hurdles "are undoubtedly among the most severe constraints today", he adds, particularly outside the USA. A space symposium in France last looked at the demand for space tourism in 2008, he notes, prior to the current severe economic downturn.

"The commercial future of suborbital space travel is deemed promising and the interest in private spaceflight has built up during the last few years," concludes Ziliotto. "Nevertheless, it still faces major challenges and winning the potential customers' confidence about the safety of the flights is not the least one. An accident in the early phases of commercial operation could bring the industry to a halt and jeopardize its future."

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Angkor Wat doomed by drought, floods, suggests tree ring study




The ancient Cambodian capital of Angkor Wat suffered decades of drought interspersed with monsoon lashings that doomed the city six centuries ago, suggests a Monday tree-ring study.

A 979-year record of tree rings taken from Vietnam's highlands, released by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal and led by Brendan Buckley of Columbia University, finds the, "Angkor droughts were of a duration and severity that would have impacted the sprawling city's water supply and agricultural productivity, while high-magnitude monsoon years damaged its water control infrastructure."

Alternating effects of El Nino and La Nina conditions in the Pacific Ocean, as the northern hemisphere shifted a period of medieval warmth to the "Little Ice Age" of the 17th Century, may have whipsawed the region where Angkor Wat once stood. The "hydraulic city", center of the Khmer empire from the 9th to the 15th Century, was built of impressive temples standing amid nearly 400 square miles of canals and reservoirs called "baray", according to a 2009 Journal of Environmental Management study.

Many of those canals and baray appear silted up by drought, says the PNAS paper, which left them wide open for flooding from the intense monsoons of the early 15th century. "Much like the Classic Maya cities in Mesoamerica in the period of their ninth century 'collapse' and the implicated climate crisis, Angkor declined from a level of high complexity and regional hegemony after the droughts of the fourteenth and early fifteenth centuries," says the study. " The temple of Angkor Wat itself, however, survived as a Buddhist monastery to the present day."

A 2005 Journal of Archaeological Science study found that a typical Angkor temple may have taken more than a century to build.

While some scholars suggest that trade interests led to the capital moving to Phnom Penh in the mega-monsoon era, the study concludes, "decades of weakened summer monsoon rainfall, punctuated by abrupt and extreme wet episodes that likely brought severe flooding that damaged flood-control infrastructure, must now be considered an additional, important, and significant stressor occurring during a period of decline. Interrelated infrastructural, economic, and geopolitical stresses had made Angkor vulnerable to climate change and limited its capacity to adapt to changing circumstances."


Monday, March 29, 2010

Giant mouse lemur

A new population of rare giant mouse lemurs was discovered in southwestern Madagascar's Ranobe forest, in an area threatened by mining concessions, WWF said today.

"Last year during a night survey monitoring biodiversity along the gallery forest of Ranobe near Toliara...Charlie Gardner and Louise Jasper came across a giant mouse lemur (Mirza) foraging within fruiting ficus" trees, WWF said in information released with this photograph.


Two species of giant mouse lemurs are known: Mirza coquereli and Mirza zaza.

Mirza coquereli (Coquerel's mouse lemur) is found in the southwestern spiny forest eco-region, but has never been seen in the Toliara area before, WWF said.

Coquerel's mouse lemurs are Near Threatened according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), which means that they might qualify for vulnerable, endangered or critically endangered in the near future.

"Their population trend is decreasing. The discovery of a new population is exciting as it raises hopes for the species' survival," said WWF, which is a Switzerland-based conservation organization.

New species?

The species seen in the Ranobe gallery forest exhibits "significant differences in the coloration of its coat from the other two species," according to the researcher Charlie Gardner, who is from the University of Kent. He and Jasper were working on a project for WWF when they spotted the giant mouse lemur.

"The specimen that we observed appears to have a lighter dorsal coloration than is noted for M. coquereli, and has conspicuous reddish or rusty patches on the dorsal surface of the distal ends of both fore and hind-limbs. The ventral pelage is also conspicuously light in color, and the animal possesses a strikingly red tail, also becoming darker at the end."

"This is to suggest that it may not only be a new population, but a new species or subspecies," Gardner said. However, the animal has to be trapped, examined and tested before it can be officially described as a new species, he added.

"These findings not only highlight the biological importance of the area, but also emphasise how little we know about these rapidly disappearing forests."

"These findings not only highlight the biological importance of the area, but also emphasise how little we know about these rapidly disappearing forests. Without the creation of new protected areas, we would risk losing species to extinction before they have even been discovered or described," WWF said.

"These animals, in turn, can attract tourism and conservation revenue to the site which can help local communities to find less destructive ways to meet their development needs."

This new lemur population is not the first exciting discovery from Ranobe in recent years, according to WWF.

In 2005 scientists described the rediscovery of Mungotictis decemlineata lineata, a subspecies of the narrow-striped mongoose that had not been observed since 1915, and which was only ever known from a single specimen. This subspecies may be entirely restricted to a protected area in Ranobe.

The representative of the new Mirza population was discovered just outside the limits of the protected area, WWF said. "It highlights the critical need to extend the limits of this protected area."

The protected area, known as PK32-Ranobe[ML1] , is co-managed by WWF and the inter-communal association MITOIMAFI. It received temporary protection status in December 2008. "However, due to the presence of mining concessions, the limits of the protected area did not extend to include the gallery forests of Ranobe," WWF said.

"It is a hotspot of biodiversity clamped on almost all sides by mining concessions."

"It is a hotspot of biodiversity clamped on almost all sides by mining concessions. WWF is currently applying for the extension of the PA to include more key habitats within the decree of definitive protection," Malika Virah-Sawmy, WWF's Terrestrial Programme Coordinator in Madagascar said.

"Every year, large areas of Ranobe forests are felled by charcoal sellers, and in the past, much of the region was granted for mining concessions for the various minerals deposited in its rich sand soils. Meagre crops of maize are also planted on the calcareous soils, after felling and burning the forests," WWF said.

The new protected area is part of a new philosophy promoted by WWF for the Durban Vision which aims to triple the surface area of Madagascar protected areas, the conservation group said. "WWF aims to empower communities to co-manage PA and to find ways for communities to benefit economically protecting their environment."

Gardner's research, based at the University of Kent, is focused on reconciling conservation and sustainable rural development within new protected areas. This research will inform the management of PK32-Ranobe, allowing the identification of win-win scenarios that benefit all stakeholders, WWF said.

"We hope the area will not only represent the single most important conservation area within the Spiny forest, but also a place where communities are benefiting from conservation through ecotourism and other sustainable livelihoods," said Virah-Sawmy.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Space Wallpapers Galaxy Universe

Here You will Find Galaxy Wallpapers and also Space Wallpapers and universe backgrounds with Aliens pictures.Some of the wallpapers are High Definition photos.

stars Space Wallpaper Galaxy Universe

alien Space Wallpaper Galaxy Universe

galaxies Space Wallpaper Galaxy Universe

Space Wallpaper Galaxy Universe

digital galaxy Space Wallpaper Galaxy Universe

Novo Renalt - Twingo Rs

Quem ja viu e estava acostumado com o antigo Twingo compacto e com motor com menos de 1000 cilindradas vai se impresionar com o seu novo designer Painel totaçmente renovado com direito a mp3 controle remoto no volante bluetooth, ipod e etc.. O motor 1.6 133 hp , rodas esportivas e muito mais confiram

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Chevrolet - Chevy C3100

Linda Chevy 3100 Ano 1949 + Low Rider Raridade...
Antigona Chevy C3100

Friday, March 26, 2010

Mercedes-Benz G V12 S Biturbo Widestar Brabu

Post by: Automotive
The most powerful in the world off-roader comes with a striking wide version: At the Geneva Motor Show 2010 BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo celebrate the debut WIDESTAR world. This exclusive special model is powered by twelve twin-cylinder turbo engine with 700 hp (690 bhp) / 515 kW.

BRABUS build a five-door with a hand based on the latest Mercedes G-Class. Like all BRABUS special model, accepted by the German Federal Vehicle Registration Agency (Kraftfahrtbundesamt) as a car manufacturer, which BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo WIDESTAR available with a long list of luxury appointments. Ultra-strong 4x4 starts at 394,900 Euros MSRP.

Designation as the model shows, the engine bay to accommodate G-Class vehicles BRABUS SV12 S engine originally developed for the BRABUS ROCKET with a top speed of 365.7 km / h (227.2 mph). High performance is based on the engine V12 Biturbo engine of the latest Mercedes S 600 model. In the state-of-the-art BRABUS engine shop displacement of the three-valve engine increased 5,5-6,3 liters (336-384 cu. Masuk) with the help of a special crankshaft with longer stroke, larger cylinder bore and piston greater. In addition, the engine cylinder head and re-equipped with special camshafts.

Engine peripherals are enhanced with larger turbochargers, the optimal system and intercooling stainless steel high-performance exhaust system with free-flow metal catalysts. Dispose of the custom-developed for the G-Class and features chrome-plated dual tailpipes that exit in front of the rear wheel on both sides. New mapping for engine electronics precision coordinate the perfect interaction of all new components. The result is a smooth-running model engines with maximum power that meets the limits set by strict EURO IV emission norms.

In the G-Class BRABUS S V12 S displacement engine produces 700 hp (690 bhp) / 515 kW at 5100 rpm. The turbocharged twelve-cylinder provides peak torque of 1320 Nm (973 lb-ft) at 2100 rpm. In the car peak torque is electronically limited to 1100 Nm (811 lb-ft).

The BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo offers acceleration performance of almost unimaginable for a true off-roader: Combined with a special five-speed automatic transmission and permanent four-wheel drive SUV catapult themselves exclusively from rest to 100 km / h (62 mph) in just 4.3 seconds. Top speed is limited electronically to 240 km / h (150 mph). Without limiting the high-tech self-imposed G-Class models can reach 260 km / h (163 mph).

With the new version WIDESTAR the BRABUS designers have managed to lend a classic G-Class body is more striking and dynamic profile. Strongly shaped fender flares add 12 cm (4.7 inches) with a wide body and optimize venting from the front wheels and rear of the house thanks to the integrated air vents. Hollywood striking BRABUS door moldings 4x4 provides a very distinctive appearance even when viewed from the side. Sturdy stainless steel running boards to facilitate entry and exit of vehicles during the day and at night. LED lights integrated into the front and rear fenders top WIDESTAR illuminate the ongoing activation through the door handle or keyless remote.

Wide fender creates space for very large wheels and tires. WIDESTAR owner BRABUS offers a wide choice of custom-tailored tire / wheel combinations with diameters ranging from 20-23 inches. WIDESTAR versions available for all five-door G-Class models. The most exclusive choice for WIDESTAR features three-piece 11Jx23 PLATINUM EDITION Monoblock E alloy wheels in front and rear axle. The appropriate high-performance tires in size 305/35 R 23 are supplied by Pirelli and Yokohama.

WIDESTAR the BRABUS version offers a wider track and even more impressive appearance. Continue to shape the front apron flare on both sides and a large air channels to provide front brakes with a lot of cooling air supply. At the same time sophisticated shape reduces lift apron at the front axle. Six styles to optimize lamp integrated active safety aids in low light conditions. BRABUS running daytime LED lights under the main lights calls attention to the 'Power G' during the day.

Apron on the back of the front apron design language with stylish flare to fade and underride guard. In addition to the central reflector mounted on the rear bumper also houses WIDESTAR rear fog lights and backup lights on both sides. Designer suit round out the BRABUS roof spoiler with integrated LED brake light.

Optimal handling of the special model BRABUS complete G V12 S Biturbo with a comfortable custom suspension. To maintain the exceptional performance safely in check at all times the standard equipment also includes the BRABUS high-performance brake system with 12-piston aluminum fixed calipers and 380-mm (15.0 in) vented discs on front axle.

G BRABUS interior habits V12 S Biturbo WIDESTAR very exclusive too: This includes ergonomically shaped sport steering wheel, a speedometer with 280-km / h scale (175-mph), stainless steel plate pounded with illuminated BRABUS logo and completely artificial skin BRABUS interior made from especially soft and breathing BRABUS Mastik leather.

At the request BRABUS can turn customers into fully functional 4x4 and off-road capable office on wheels by installing a computer system including a wireless LAN network and UMTS internet connection. This concept can be enhanced with high-tech multimedia system with a DVD changer, TV tuner and game console DVBT.

Three screens display images from various sources: An electrically deployed 15.2-inch TFT screen is integrated into the headliner. In addition, BRABUS has developed a special console for the rear of the front seat. They each feature seven-inch integrated LCD screen with DVD player and an electric deployed table. The sound is carried by infrared headphones.

source: Brabus press

Mercedes-Benz G V12 S Biturbo Widestar Brabu

Post by: Automotive
The most powerful in the world off-roader comes with a striking wide version: At the Geneva Motor Show 2010 BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo celebrate the debut WIDESTAR world. This exclusive special model is powered by twelve twin-cylinder turbo engine with 700 hp (690 bhp) / 515 kW.

BRABUS build a five-door with a hand based on the latest Mercedes G-Class. Like all BRABUS special model, accepted by the German Federal Vehicle Registration Agency (Kraftfahrtbundesamt) as a car manufacturer, which BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo WIDESTAR available with a long list of luxury appointments. Ultra-strong 4x4 starts at 394,900 Euros MSRP.

Designation as the model shows, the engine bay to accommodate G-Class vehicles BRABUS SV12 S engine originally developed for the BRABUS ROCKET with a top speed of 365.7 km / h (227.2 mph). High performance is based on the engine V12 Biturbo engine of the latest Mercedes S 600 model. In the state-of-the-art BRABUS engine shop displacement of the three-valve engine increased 5,5-6,3 liters (336-384 cu. Masuk) with the help of a special crankshaft with longer stroke, larger cylinder bore and piston greater. In addition, the engine cylinder head and re-equipped with special camshafts.

Engine peripherals are enhanced with larger turbochargers, the optimal system and intercooling stainless steel high-performance exhaust system with free-flow metal catalysts. Dispose of the custom-developed for the G-Class and features chrome-plated dual tailpipes that exit in front of the rear wheel on both sides. New mapping for engine electronics precision coordinate the perfect interaction of all new components. The result is a smooth-running model engines with maximum power that meets the limits set by strict EURO IV emission norms.

In the G-Class BRABUS S V12 S displacement engine produces 700 hp (690 bhp) / 515 kW at 5100 rpm. The turbocharged twelve-cylinder provides peak torque of 1320 Nm (973 lb-ft) at 2100 rpm. In the car peak torque is electronically limited to 1100 Nm (811 lb-ft).

The BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo offers acceleration performance of almost unimaginable for a true off-roader: Combined with a special five-speed automatic transmission and permanent four-wheel drive SUV catapult themselves exclusively from rest to 100 km / h (62 mph) in just 4.3 seconds. Top speed is limited electronically to 240 km / h (150 mph). Without limiting the high-tech self-imposed G-Class models can reach 260 km / h (163 mph).

With the new version WIDESTAR the BRABUS designers have managed to lend a classic G-Class body is more striking and dynamic profile. Strongly shaped fender flares add 12 cm (4.7 inches) with a wide body and optimize venting from the front wheels and rear of the house thanks to the integrated air vents. Hollywood striking BRABUS door moldings 4x4 provides a very distinctive appearance even when viewed from the side. Sturdy stainless steel running boards to facilitate entry and exit of vehicles during the day and at night. LED lights integrated into the front and rear fenders top WIDESTAR illuminate the ongoing activation through the door handle or keyless remote.

Wide fender creates space for very large wheels and tires. WIDESTAR owner BRABUS offers a wide choice of custom-tailored tire / wheel combinations with diameters ranging from 20-23 inches. WIDESTAR versions available for all five-door G-Class models. The most exclusive choice for WIDESTAR features three-piece 11Jx23 PLATINUM EDITION Monoblock E alloy wheels in front and rear axle. The appropriate high-performance tires in size 305/35 R 23 are supplied by Pirelli and Yokohama.

WIDESTAR the BRABUS version offers a wider track and even more impressive appearance. Continue to shape the front apron flare on both sides and a large air channels to provide front brakes with a lot of cooling air supply. At the same time sophisticated shape reduces lift apron at the front axle. Six styles to optimize lamp integrated active safety aids in low light conditions. BRABUS running daytime LED lights under the main lights calls attention to the 'Power G' during the day.

Apron on the back of the front apron design language with stylish flare to fade and underride guard. In addition to the central reflector mounted on the rear bumper also houses WIDESTAR rear fog lights and backup lights on both sides. Designer suit round out the BRABUS roof spoiler with integrated LED brake light.

Optimal handling of the special model BRABUS complete G V12 S Biturbo with a comfortable custom suspension. To maintain the exceptional performance safely in check at all times the standard equipment also includes the BRABUS high-performance brake system with 12-piston aluminum fixed calipers and 380-mm (15.0 in) vented discs on front axle.

G BRABUS interior habits V12 S Biturbo WIDESTAR very exclusive too: This includes ergonomically shaped sport steering wheel, a speedometer with 280-km / h scale (175-mph), stainless steel plate pounded with illuminated BRABUS logo and completely artificial skin BRABUS interior made from especially soft and breathing BRABUS Mastik leather.

At the request BRABUS can turn customers into fully functional 4x4 and off-road capable office on wheels by installing a computer system including a wireless LAN network and UMTS internet connection. This concept can be enhanced with high-tech multimedia system with a DVD changer, TV tuner and game console DVBT.

Three screens display images from various sources: An electrically deployed 15.2-inch TFT screen is integrated into the headliner. In addition, BRABUS has developed a special console for the rear of the front seat. They each feature seven-inch integrated LCD screen with DVD player and an electric deployed table. The sound is carried by infrared headphones.

source: Brabus press

Mercedes-Benz G V12 S Biturbo Widestar Brabu

Post by: Automotive
The most powerful in the world off-roader comes with a striking wide version: At the Geneva Motor Show 2010 BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo celebrate the debut WIDESTAR world. This exclusive special model is powered by twelve twin-cylinder turbo engine with 700 hp (690 bhp) / 515 kW.

BRABUS build a five-door with a hand based on the latest Mercedes G-Class. Like all BRABUS special model, accepted by the German Federal Vehicle Registration Agency (Kraftfahrtbundesamt) as a car manufacturer, which BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo WIDESTAR available with a long list of luxury appointments. Ultra-strong 4x4 starts at 394,900 Euros MSRP.

Designation as the model shows, the engine bay to accommodate G-Class vehicles BRABUS SV12 S engine originally developed for the BRABUS ROCKET with a top speed of 365.7 km / h (227.2 mph). High performance is based on the engine V12 Biturbo engine of the latest Mercedes S 600 model. In the state-of-the-art BRABUS engine shop displacement of the three-valve engine increased 5,5-6,3 liters (336-384 cu. Masuk) with the help of a special crankshaft with longer stroke, larger cylinder bore and piston greater. In addition, the engine cylinder head and re-equipped with special camshafts.

Engine peripherals are enhanced with larger turbochargers, the optimal system and intercooling stainless steel high-performance exhaust system with free-flow metal catalysts. Dispose of the custom-developed for the G-Class and features chrome-plated dual tailpipes that exit in front of the rear wheel on both sides. New mapping for engine electronics precision coordinate the perfect interaction of all new components. The result is a smooth-running model engines with maximum power that meets the limits set by strict EURO IV emission norms.

In the G-Class BRABUS S V12 S displacement engine produces 700 hp (690 bhp) / 515 kW at 5100 rpm. The turbocharged twelve-cylinder provides peak torque of 1320 Nm (973 lb-ft) at 2100 rpm. In the car peak torque is electronically limited to 1100 Nm (811 lb-ft).

The BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo offers acceleration performance of almost unimaginable for a true off-roader: Combined with a special five-speed automatic transmission and permanent four-wheel drive SUV catapult themselves exclusively from rest to 100 km / h (62 mph) in just 4.3 seconds. Top speed is limited electronically to 240 km / h (150 mph). Without limiting the high-tech self-imposed G-Class models can reach 260 km / h (163 mph).

With the new version WIDESTAR the BRABUS designers have managed to lend a classic G-Class body is more striking and dynamic profile. Strongly shaped fender flares add 12 cm (4.7 inches) with a wide body and optimize venting from the front wheels and rear of the house thanks to the integrated air vents. Hollywood striking BRABUS door moldings 4x4 provides a very distinctive appearance even when viewed from the side. Sturdy stainless steel running boards to facilitate entry and exit of vehicles during the day and at night. LED lights integrated into the front and rear fenders top WIDESTAR illuminate the ongoing activation through the door handle or keyless remote.

Wide fender creates space for very large wheels and tires. WIDESTAR owner BRABUS offers a wide choice of custom-tailored tire / wheel combinations with diameters ranging from 20-23 inches. WIDESTAR versions available for all five-door G-Class models. The most exclusive choice for WIDESTAR features three-piece 11Jx23 PLATINUM EDITION Monoblock E alloy wheels in front and rear axle. The appropriate high-performance tires in size 305/35 R 23 are supplied by Pirelli and Yokohama.

WIDESTAR the BRABUS version offers a wider track and even more impressive appearance. Continue to shape the front apron flare on both sides and a large air channels to provide front brakes with a lot of cooling air supply. At the same time sophisticated shape reduces lift apron at the front axle. Six styles to optimize lamp integrated active safety aids in low light conditions. BRABUS running daytime LED lights under the main lights calls attention to the 'Power G' during the day.

Apron on the back of the front apron design language with stylish flare to fade and underride guard. In addition to the central reflector mounted on the rear bumper also houses WIDESTAR rear fog lights and backup lights on both sides. Designer suit round out the BRABUS roof spoiler with integrated LED brake light.

Optimal handling of the special model BRABUS complete G V12 S Biturbo with a comfortable custom suspension. To maintain the exceptional performance safely in check at all times the standard equipment also includes the BRABUS high-performance brake system with 12-piston aluminum fixed calipers and 380-mm (15.0 in) vented discs on front axle.

G BRABUS interior habits V12 S Biturbo WIDESTAR very exclusive too: This includes ergonomically shaped sport steering wheel, a speedometer with 280-km / h scale (175-mph), stainless steel plate pounded with illuminated BRABUS logo and completely artificial skin BRABUS interior made from especially soft and breathing BRABUS Mastik leather.

At the request BRABUS can turn customers into fully functional 4x4 and off-road capable office on wheels by installing a computer system including a wireless LAN network and UMTS internet connection. This concept can be enhanced with high-tech multimedia system with a DVD changer, TV tuner and game console DVBT.

Three screens display images from various sources: An electrically deployed 15.2-inch TFT screen is integrated into the headliner. In addition, BRABUS has developed a special console for the rear of the front seat. They each feature seven-inch integrated LCD screen with DVD player and an electric deployed table. The sound is carried by infrared headphones.

source: Brabus press

Mercedes-Benz G V12 S Biturbo Widestar Brabu

Post by: Automotive
The most powerful in the world off-roader comes with a striking wide version: At the Geneva Motor Show 2010 BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo celebrate the debut WIDESTAR world. This exclusive special model is powered by twelve twin-cylinder turbo engine with 700 hp (690 bhp) / 515 kW.

BRABUS build a five-door with a hand based on the latest Mercedes G-Class. Like all BRABUS special model, accepted by the German Federal Vehicle Registration Agency (Kraftfahrtbundesamt) as a car manufacturer, which BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo WIDESTAR available with a long list of luxury appointments. Ultra-strong 4x4 starts at 394,900 Euros MSRP.

Designation as the model shows, the engine bay to accommodate G-Class vehicles BRABUS SV12 S engine originally developed for the BRABUS ROCKET with a top speed of 365.7 km / h (227.2 mph). High performance is based on the engine V12 Biturbo engine of the latest Mercedes S 600 model. In the state-of-the-art BRABUS engine shop displacement of the three-valve engine increased 5,5-6,3 liters (336-384 cu. Masuk) with the help of a special crankshaft with longer stroke, larger cylinder bore and piston greater. In addition, the engine cylinder head and re-equipped with special camshafts.

Engine peripherals are enhanced with larger turbochargers, the optimal system and intercooling stainless steel high-performance exhaust system with free-flow metal catalysts. Dispose of the custom-developed for the G-Class and features chrome-plated dual tailpipes that exit in front of the rear wheel on both sides. New mapping for engine electronics precision coordinate the perfect interaction of all new components. The result is a smooth-running model engines with maximum power that meets the limits set by strict EURO IV emission norms.

In the G-Class BRABUS S V12 S displacement engine produces 700 hp (690 bhp) / 515 kW at 5100 rpm. The turbocharged twelve-cylinder provides peak torque of 1320 Nm (973 lb-ft) at 2100 rpm. In the car peak torque is electronically limited to 1100 Nm (811 lb-ft).

The BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo offers acceleration performance of almost unimaginable for a true off-roader: Combined with a special five-speed automatic transmission and permanent four-wheel drive SUV catapult themselves exclusively from rest to 100 km / h (62 mph) in just 4.3 seconds. Top speed is limited electronically to 240 km / h (150 mph). Without limiting the high-tech self-imposed G-Class models can reach 260 km / h (163 mph).

With the new version WIDESTAR the BRABUS designers have managed to lend a classic G-Class body is more striking and dynamic profile. Strongly shaped fender flares add 12 cm (4.7 inches) with a wide body and optimize venting from the front wheels and rear of the house thanks to the integrated air vents. Hollywood striking BRABUS door moldings 4x4 provides a very distinctive appearance even when viewed from the side. Sturdy stainless steel running boards to facilitate entry and exit of vehicles during the day and at night. LED lights integrated into the front and rear fenders top WIDESTAR illuminate the ongoing activation through the door handle or keyless remote.

Wide fender creates space for very large wheels and tires. WIDESTAR owner BRABUS offers a wide choice of custom-tailored tire / wheel combinations with diameters ranging from 20-23 inches. WIDESTAR versions available for all five-door G-Class models. The most exclusive choice for WIDESTAR features three-piece 11Jx23 PLATINUM EDITION Monoblock E alloy wheels in front and rear axle. The appropriate high-performance tires in size 305/35 R 23 are supplied by Pirelli and Yokohama.

WIDESTAR the BRABUS version offers a wider track and even more impressive appearance. Continue to shape the front apron flare on both sides and a large air channels to provide front brakes with a lot of cooling air supply. At the same time sophisticated shape reduces lift apron at the front axle. Six styles to optimize lamp integrated active safety aids in low light conditions. BRABUS running daytime LED lights under the main lights calls attention to the 'Power G' during the day.

Apron on the back of the front apron design language with stylish flare to fade and underride guard. In addition to the central reflector mounted on the rear bumper also houses WIDESTAR rear fog lights and backup lights on both sides. Designer suit round out the BRABUS roof spoiler with integrated LED brake light.

Optimal handling of the special model BRABUS complete G V12 S Biturbo with a comfortable custom suspension. To maintain the exceptional performance safely in check at all times the standard equipment also includes the BRABUS high-performance brake system with 12-piston aluminum fixed calipers and 380-mm (15.0 in) vented discs on front axle.

G BRABUS interior habits V12 S Biturbo WIDESTAR very exclusive too: This includes ergonomically shaped sport steering wheel, a speedometer with 280-km / h scale (175-mph), stainless steel plate pounded with illuminated BRABUS logo and completely artificial skin BRABUS interior made from especially soft and breathing BRABUS Mastik leather.

At the request BRABUS can turn customers into fully functional 4x4 and off-road capable office on wheels by installing a computer system including a wireless LAN network and UMTS internet connection. This concept can be enhanced with high-tech multimedia system with a DVD changer, TV tuner and game console DVBT.

Three screens display images from various sources: An electrically deployed 15.2-inch TFT screen is integrated into the headliner. In addition, BRABUS has developed a special console for the rear of the front seat. They each feature seven-inch integrated LCD screen with DVD player and an electric deployed table. The sound is carried by infrared headphones.

source: Brabus press

Mercedes-Benz G V12 S Biturbo Widestar Brabu



Post by: Automotive


The most powerful in the world off-roader comes with a striking wide version: At the Geneva Motor Show 2010 BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo celebrate the debut WIDESTAR world. This exclusive special model is powered by twelve twin-cylinder turbo engine with 700 hp (690 bhp) / 515 kW.

BRABUS build a five-door with a hand based on the latest Mercedes G-Class. Like all BRABUS special model, accepted by the German Federal Vehicle Registration Agency (Kraftfahrtbundesamt) as a car manufacturer, which BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo WIDESTAR available with a long list of luxury appointments. Ultra-strong 4x4 starts at 394,900 Euros MSRP.

Designation as the model shows, the engine bay to accommodate G-Class vehicles BRABUS SV12 S engine originally developed for the BRABUS ROCKET with a top speed of 365.7 km / h (227.2 mph). High performance is based on the engine V12 Biturbo engine of the latest Mercedes S 600 model. In the state-of-the-art BRABUS engine shop displacement of the three-valve engine increased 5,5-6,3 liters (336-384 cu. Masuk) with the help of a special crankshaft with longer stroke, larger cylinder bore and piston greater. In addition, the engine cylinder head and re-equipped with special camshafts.

Engine peripherals are enhanced with larger turbochargers, the optimal system and intercooling stainless steel high-performance exhaust system with free-flow metal catalysts. Dispose of the custom-developed for the G-Class and features chrome-plated dual tailpipes that exit in front of the rear wheel on both sides. New mapping for engine electronics precision coordinate the perfect interaction of all new components. The result is a smooth-running model engines with maximum power that meets the limits set by strict EURO IV emission norms.

In the G-Class BRABUS S V12 S displacement engine produces 700 hp (690 bhp) / 515 kW at 5100 rpm. The turbocharged twelve-cylinder provides peak torque of 1320 Nm (973 lb-ft) at 2100 rpm. In the car peak torque is electronically limited to 1100 Nm (811 lb-ft).

The BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo offers acceleration performance of almost unimaginable for a true off-roader: Combined with a special five-speed automatic transmission and permanent four-wheel drive SUV catapult themselves exclusively from rest to 100 km / h (62 mph) in just 4.3 seconds. Top speed is limited electronically to 240 km / h (150 mph). Without limiting the high-tech self-imposed G-Class models can reach 260 km / h (163 mph).

With the new version WIDESTAR the BRABUS designers have managed to lend a classic G-Class body is more striking and dynamic profile. Strongly shaped fender flares add 12 cm (4.7 inches) with a wide body and optimize venting from the front wheels and rear of the house thanks to the integrated air vents. Hollywood striking BRABUS door moldings 4x4 provides a very distinctive appearance even when viewed from the side. Sturdy stainless steel running boards to facilitate entry and exit of vehicles during the day and at night. LED lights integrated into the front and rear fenders top WIDESTAR illuminate the ongoing activation through the door handle or keyless remote.

Wide fender creates space for very large wheels and tires. WIDESTAR owner BRABUS offers a wide choice of custom-tailored tire / wheel combinations with diameters ranging from 20-23 inches. WIDESTAR versions available for all five-door G-Class models. The most exclusive choice for WIDESTAR features three-piece 11Jx23 PLATINUM EDITION Monoblock E alloy wheels in front and rear axle. The appropriate high-performance tires in size 305/35 R 23 are supplied by Pirelli and Yokohama.

WIDESTAR the BRABUS version offers a wider track and even more impressive appearance. Continue to shape the front apron flare on both sides and a large air channels to provide front brakes with a lot of cooling air supply. At the same time sophisticated shape reduces lift apron at the front axle. Six styles to optimize lamp integrated active safety aids in low light conditions. BRABUS running daytime LED lights under the main lights calls attention to the 'Power G' during the day.

Apron on the back of the front apron design language with stylish flare to fade and underride guard. In addition to the central reflector mounted on the rear bumper also houses WIDESTAR rear fog lights and backup lights on both sides. Designer suit round out the BRABUS roof spoiler with integrated LED brake light.

Optimal handling of the special model BRABUS complete G V12 S Biturbo with a comfortable custom suspension. To maintain the exceptional performance safely in check at all times the standard equipment also includes the BRABUS high-performance brake system with 12-piston aluminum fixed calipers and 380-mm (15.0 in) vented discs on front axle.

G BRABUS interior habits V12 S Biturbo WIDESTAR very exclusive too: This includes ergonomically shaped sport steering wheel, a speedometer with 280-km / h scale (175-mph), stainless steel plate pounded with illuminated BRABUS logo and completely artificial skin BRABUS interior made from especially soft and breathing BRABUS Mastik leather.

At the request BRABUS can turn customers into fully functional 4x4 and off-road capable office on wheels by installing a computer system including a wireless LAN network and UMTS internet connection. This concept can be enhanced with high-tech multimedia system with a DVD changer, TV tuner and game console DVBT.

Three screens display images from various sources: An electrically deployed 15.2-inch TFT screen is integrated into the headliner. In addition, BRABUS has developed a special console for the rear of the front seat. They each feature seven-inch integrated LCD screen with DVD player and an electric deployed table. The sound is carried by infrared headphones.

source: Brabus press

Mercedes-Benz G V12 S Biturbo Widestar Brabu



Post by: Automotive


The most powerful in the world off-roader comes with a striking wide version: At the Geneva Motor Show 2010 BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo celebrate the debut WIDESTAR world. This exclusive special model is powered by twelve twin-cylinder turbo engine with 700 hp (690 bhp) / 515 kW.

BRABUS build a five-door with a hand based on the latest Mercedes G-Class. Like all BRABUS special model, accepted by the German Federal Vehicle Registration Agency (Kraftfahrtbundesamt) as a car manufacturer, which BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo WIDESTAR available with a long list of luxury appointments. Ultra-strong 4x4 starts at 394,900 Euros MSRP.

Designation as the model shows, the engine bay to accommodate G-Class vehicles BRABUS SV12 S engine originally developed for the BRABUS ROCKET with a top speed of 365.7 km / h (227.2 mph). High performance is based on the engine V12 Biturbo engine of the latest Mercedes S 600 model. In the state-of-the-art BRABUS engine shop displacement of the three-valve engine increased 5,5-6,3 liters (336-384 cu. Masuk) with the help of a special crankshaft with longer stroke, larger cylinder bore and piston greater. In addition, the engine cylinder head and re-equipped with special camshafts.

Engine peripherals are enhanced with larger turbochargers, the optimal system and intercooling stainless steel high-performance exhaust system with free-flow metal catalysts. Dispose of the custom-developed for the G-Class and features chrome-plated dual tailpipes that exit in front of the rear wheel on both sides. New mapping for engine electronics precision coordinate the perfect interaction of all new components. The result is a smooth-running model engines with maximum power that meets the limits set by strict EURO IV emission norms.

In the G-Class BRABUS S V12 S displacement engine produces 700 hp (690 bhp) / 515 kW at 5100 rpm. The turbocharged twelve-cylinder provides peak torque of 1320 Nm (973 lb-ft) at 2100 rpm. In the car peak torque is electronically limited to 1100 Nm (811 lb-ft).

The BRABUS G V12 S Biturbo offers acceleration performance of almost unimaginable for a true off-roader: Combined with a special five-speed automatic transmission and permanent four-wheel drive SUV catapult themselves exclusively from rest to 100 km / h (62 mph) in just 4.3 seconds. Top speed is limited electronically to 240 km / h (150 mph). Without limiting the high-tech self-imposed G-Class models can reach 260 km / h (163 mph).

With the new version WIDESTAR the BRABUS designers have managed to lend a classic G-Class body is more striking and dynamic profile. Strongly shaped fender flares add 12 cm (4.7 inches) with a wide body and optimize venting from the front wheels and rear of the house thanks to the integrated air vents. Hollywood striking BRABUS door moldings 4x4 provides a very distinctive appearance even when viewed from the side. Sturdy stainless steel running boards to facilitate entry and exit of vehicles during the day and at night. LED lights integrated into the front and rear fenders top WIDESTAR illuminate the ongoing activation through the door handle or keyless remote.

Wide fender creates space for very large wheels and tires. WIDESTAR owner BRABUS offers a wide choice of custom-tailored tire / wheel combinations with diameters ranging from 20-23 inches. WIDESTAR versions available for all five-door G-Class models. The most exclusive choice for WIDESTAR features three-piece 11Jx23 PLATINUM EDITION Monoblock E alloy wheels in front and rear axle. The appropriate high-performance tires in size 305/35 R 23 are supplied by Pirelli and Yokohama.

WIDESTAR the BRABUS version offers a wider track and even more impressive appearance. Continue to shape the front apron flare on both sides and a large air channels to provide front brakes with a lot of cooling air supply. At the same time sophisticated shape reduces lift apron at the front axle. Six styles to optimize lamp integrated active safety aids in low light conditions. BRABUS running daytime LED lights under the main lights calls attention to the 'Power G' during the day.

Apron on the back of the front apron design language with stylish flare to fade and underride guard. In addition to the central reflector mounted on the rear bumper also houses WIDESTAR rear fog lights and backup lights on both sides. Designer suit round out the BRABUS roof spoiler with integrated LED brake light.

Optimal handling of the special model BRABUS complete G V12 S Biturbo with a comfortable custom suspension. To maintain the exceptional performance safely in check at all times the standard equipment also includes the BRABUS high-performance brake system with 12-piston aluminum fixed calipers and 380-mm (15.0 in) vented discs on front axle.

G BRABUS interior habits V12 S Biturbo WIDESTAR very exclusive too: This includes ergonomically shaped sport steering wheel, a speedometer with 280-km / h scale (175-mph), stainless steel plate pounded with illuminated BRABUS logo and completely artificial skin BRABUS interior made from especially soft and breathing BRABUS Mastik leather.

At the request BRABUS can turn customers into fully functional 4x4 and off-road capable office on wheels by installing a computer system including a wireless LAN network and UMTS internet connection. This concept can be enhanced with high-tech multimedia system with a DVD changer, TV tuner and game console DVBT.

Three screens display images from various sources: An electrically deployed 15.2-inch TFT screen is integrated into the headliner. In addition, BRABUS has developed a special console for the rear of the front seat. They each feature seven-inch integrated LCD screen with DVD player and an electric deployed table. The sound is carried by infrared headphones.

source: Brabus press

Chinese divided over Google move to close service

The professor sounds upset, the tour guide says she doesn't care, and the taxi driver swears it's a coverup.

Google's decision this week to close its self-censored Internet search service in mainland China was provoking diverse reactions here Thursday.

"I'm very disappointed about Google's departure as I hoped they would stay," says Professor Stan Li, who runs biometrics and security research at the Chinese Academy of Sciences.



The majority of Chinese Internet users responded more like tour guide Li Wenwen: "I never look at political or sensitive sites," says Li, 20,

China employs an array of censorship tools widely known here as the "Great Firewall." Perhaps the most effective method is the self-censorship that media organizations here, including Google until Monday, accept as the price of doing business.

Google stopped censoring its search results Monday because it said it was the target of hacking attacks originating from China. Google now redirects "Google.cn" traffic to its Hong Kong-based site, which it does not censor. Hong Kong is a Chinese territory that is semiautonomous because of its past as a British colony.

On Thursday, some Google searches produced the same results whether from Beijing or Hong Kong. Among them is "Michael Jackson;" another is "Taiwan," which considers itself separate from China and that China considers its own.

Type "Falun Gong" in Chinese into Google's search engine from Beijing, and the Web browser suddenly becomes unresponsive. Make the same search from Hong Kong and you'll get many links to the spiritual movement banned by the Chinese government.

China maintained Thursday that Google is acting on orders from the U.S. government. Ding Yifan, a development researcher affiliated with China's Cabinet, said in the China Daily newspaper that Google's exit "is a deliberate plot," part of "Washington's political games with China."

The State Department has said it was not involved in Google's decision, though Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton championed Internet freedom in a recent speech. Congress has appropriated $35 million for grants to develop technology that helps circumvent Internet censorship.

Li, the professor, says the Chinese government puts too many restrictions on the Internet.

"I think they should reconsider and make some changes, like less restrictions," he says.

Some Chinese use proxy servers to get around censorship. Most just use state-sanctioned search engines.

"Baidu is quicker and more convenient," Li, the tour guide, says of China's largest search engine.

Flowers and tributes have been left by a stream of people outside Google's Beijing headquarters. Taxi driver Tian Liang will not be leaving a bouquet. "There's fierce competition in this area. I think that's why Google leaves China," says Tian, 40. "I don't like the foreign companies who use politics as an excuse for their commercial interests."

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Polar Algae Forests

The rarely seen creatures in Antarctica's lush algae "forests" are the subjects of a University of Alabama at Birmingham search for potential new cancer medicines.

The cold waters near Antarctica are filled with lush forests of 4 main species of large algae plants, or seaweeds.

Researchers are comparing their pervasiveness to giant kelp forests of the more temperate Pacific coast of California.

SOUNDBITE: Chuck Amsler, Phycologist, Univ. of Alabama at Birmingham: “You enter these dense forests. They rise up 3 or 4 feet off the bottom just carpeting the bottom.”

Researchers have found the plants and invertebrates in this region produce defensive chemicals, and some are under study for the treatment of at least one type of cancer.

Researchers from the University of Alabama at Birmingham are in the midst of a 3-month diving expedition to the frozen continent.

The video, shot by lead researcher Chuck Amsler, shows lush growths below the ocean surface along the western side of Antarctica’s peninsula.

SOUNDBITE: Chuck Amsler, Phycologist, Univ. of Alabama at Birmingham: “You don’t think about there being forests in Antarctica. But there truly are these forests of giant seaweeds underneath the surface of the water.”

The large brown algae forest includes one species that can grow up to 50 feet in length and up to 4 feet wide. These lie on the bottom, at a depth of 100 feet and more, and cover the floor nearly 100 percent in some areas.

Another brown macroalgae, or seaweed, has small spherical gas-filled bladders to make it buoyant, and the 6 foot tall plants stay upright.

Smaller algae grows at shallower depths, but still, often covers the sea floor.

These lush Antarctic forests are different from their counterparts in warmer climates.

SOUNDBITE: Chuck Amsler, Phycologist, Univ. of Alabama at Birmingham: “And what’s unusual compared to other large forests of algae in other places in the world, is that these forests of algae are chemically defended. They are using compounds to make them taste bad.”

By tasting bad, large algae doesn’t get eaten by other organisms. They feast on smaller algae, and that in turn keeps the small algae from encroaching on the big algae.

Then, besides the forests, there is other thriving life in these cold waters.

SOUNDBITE: Chuck Amsler, Phycologist, Univ. of Alabama at Birmingham: “There are lots of very steep shores, where especially when we get down deep, we get to be on pretty much vertical walls. And when you’re on vertical walls, and there are overhangs and things, the big seaweeds don’t do as well. And that’s where we can start to find really lush and really diverse communities of sponges and colonial sea squirts or tunicates, soft corals, you don’t think about corals, and it’s not hard re-forming corals but gorgonian and soft corals. And they will cover nearly a 100 percent or certainly well over 60-70 percent of that surface.”

From some of the tunicates, the researchers discovered a compound that in the laboratory, in early studies, has been shown to combat some forms of melanoma in mice.

SOUNDBITE: Jim McClintock, Marine Chemical Ecologist, UAB: “We certainly have the potential of discovering a compound that could help fight cancer, or AIDS or a flu virus, these types of things.”

Because the water is so cold, the researchers’ dives are limited to 30-40 minutes at a time. They wear thick layers of underwear under dry suits, but their hands do get cold.

SOUNDBITE: Chuck Amsler, Phycologist, Univ. of Alabama at Birmingham: “Unfortunately, if we wore as much on our hands as we wore everywhere else, we’d be wearing boxing gloves and we wouldn’t get a lot of work done. So you’re hands get cold. We have some tricks, and chemical heater packs on the hands are nice.”

Their primary goal on these dive studies is to find out more about the ecosystems in these underwater forests, and learn about the relationships between the creatures and plants that live there.

The University of Alabama at Birmingham in Antarctica expedition is funded by the National Science Foundation.

Fossil shows dinosaur caught in collapsing sand dune

Researchers have discovered a nearly complete fossil of a dinosaur which appears to have been caught in a collapsing sand dune.

The Seitaad ruessi fossil, described in the journal PLoS One, is a relative of the long-necked sauropods that were once Earth's biggest animals.

S. ruessi, found in what is now Utah, could have walked on all four legs, or risen up to walk on just two.

It is from the Early Jurassic period, between 175 and 200 million years ago.

At that time, all of Earth's continents were still joined in the super-continent Pangaea, and sauropodomorphs like S. ruessi have been found in South America and Africa.

Unlike the sauropods to which they are related, S. ruessi was relatively small, about a metre tall and 3.5-4m long with its lengthy neck and tail, weighing in at between 70 and 90kg.

Justify FullPlant life

Much of the fossil, first discovered by a local artist in 2004, was perfectly preserved in sandstone. However, it is missing its head, neck and tail.

Joseph Sertich of the University of Utah and Mark Loewen from the Utah Museum of Natural History have since then worked to free S. ruessi from its sandy grave - in an arid part of the US that, 185 million years ago, formed part of a huge desert.

"Although Seitaad was preserved in a sand dune, this ancient desert must have included wetter areas with enough plants to support these smaller dinosaurs and other animals," said Mr Sertich.

"Just like in deserts today, life would have been difficult in Utah's ancient 'sand sea.'"

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Spring Wallpapers Flowers Backgrounds

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Russian Mathematician Reject $1 Million Dollars

A RECLUSIVE Russian maths genius has refused a $1MILLION prize for solving a century-old problem.

Dr Grigori Perelman, who has been dubbed "the smartest man in the world", refused the money, despite living in poverty in a cockroach-infested flat in St Petersburg.

When told of the prize, which was offered by the Clay Mathematics Institute in Cambridge, Massachusetts to anyone who could solve the conundrum, the Daily Mail reports that he refused to open the door, saying only: "I don't need anything. I have all I want."

The Poincare Conjecture basically asserts that any three-dimensional space without holes in it is equivalent to a stretched sphere and had confounded maths experts for more than a century.

But in 2003 Mr Perelman, who was working as a researcher at the Steklov Institute of Mathematics in St Petersburg, began posting papers on the internet suggesting he had solved the puzzle.

Rigorous tests proved he was correct.

But the bearded genius, 44, is known for his hatred of the limelight.

Four years ago, after posting his solution on the web, he failed to turn up to receive his prestigious Fields Medal from the International Mathematical Union in Madrid.

At the time he stated: "I'm not interested in money or fame. I don't want to be on display like an animal in a zoo.

"I'm not a hero of mathematics. I'm not even that successful, that is why I don't want to have everybody looking at me."

His friends now say he has given up mathematics.

Neighbours say Perelman spends his days inside the cockroach-ridden flat playing table tennis against a wall.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Nissan’s Killer EV App


One story I’ll be closely following and reporting on is China’s role as an EV car producer. Several Chinese car companies are working on cheap, entry level full electric vehicles and will have them ready years before the major car companies. I’ve got my eye on BYD, the Chinese car company that Warren Buffet is backing, and you will too when you see what they plan to deliver next year to the American market:

Newly Discovered Exoplanet May Have Water Clouds

An alien planet recently found orbiting another star has the potential to host water in its atmosphere, scientists say.

The suspected temperate nature of the planet — whose surface temperature is somewhere between minus 4 and plus 360 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 20 and plus 160 degrees Celsius) — could mean that it it could have liquid water.

But this water wouldn't be in the form of Earth-like oceans, more likely it would be only in the form of clouds with water droplets, said Tristan Guillot, a member of the team that discovered the planet.

Astronomers announced the discovery of the planet, dubbed CoRoT-9b, last week, when they described it as a Jupiter-sized world that orbits its parent star at about the orbit of Mercury in our solar system.

This distance, while it seems close to the star, is considerably further out than many other known Jupiter-sized exoplanets, which means that CoRoT-9b likely escapes the wild temperature extremes experienced by those planets.

Such an example of this can be seen in our own solar system, again on Jupiter.

"The same is true for Jupiter, which actually has water clouds, but they're hidden from view in the deep atmosphere," Guillot told SPACE.com in an e-mail.

Water oceans are out of the question because gas giant planets "don't have any surface: one goes continuously from the atmosphere to a progressively denser environment in the interior," Guillot said.

The interior of the planet would look something like this:

"In the very deep interior, there may be a core made of water compressed to extremely high pressures (10 million times the atmospheric pressure and more) and temperatures [of about] 30,000 Kelvins (or Celsius) [54,000 degrees Fahrenheit]; water is then expected to become a ionized plasma, behaving a bit like a liquid," Guillot explained. "But calling it an ocean would be far-stretched."

Another possibility for water in this new planetary system would be the presence of a moon.

If the temperatures at CoRoT-9b's orbit are in the right range, an ice-ball moon could exist, like Saturn's moon Titan, or possibly even a moon with liquid oceans.

"Titan-like moons with dense atmospheres and liquid water on the surface may exist there," said Hans Deeg, another member of the team that discovered the planet.

First flight for SpaceShipTwo



The SpaceShipTwo rocket plane is attached between the twin fuselages of its
WhiteKnightTwo carrier airplane, as seen from below during Monday's test flight
from California's Mojave Air and Space Port.

Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo rocket plane took to the air for the first time this morning from California's Mojave Air and Space Port.

The craft, which has been christened the VSS Enterprise, remained firmly attached to its WhiteKnightTwo carrier airplane throughout the nearly three-hour test flight. It will take many months of further tests before SpaceShipTwo actually goes into outer space. Nevertheless, today's outing marks an important milestone along a path that could take paying passengers to the final frontier as early as 2011 or 2012.

The captive-carry flight comes three and a half months after SpaceShipTwo's unveiling in Mojave. The project, backed by British billionaire Richard Branson, builds upon the first-ever private-sector spaceflights, flown five years ago by the SpaceShipOne prototype plane. Both SpaceShipOne and SpaceShipTwo were designed by aerospace guru Burt Rutan.

Today's test was the first in a series aimed at checking the aerodynamics of the rocket plane in a controlled, real-world environment. The configuration for SpaceShipTwo is significantly different from that for SpaceShipOne (which is now hanging in the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum) and its WhiteKnightOne mothership. SpaceShipOne was slung right beneath WhiteKnightOne's fuselage, while SpaceShipTwo rides between WhiteKnightTwo's twin fuselages.

Virgin Galactic's spaceflight profile calls for the rocket to be taken up to around 50,000 feet in altitude, where it would be released from the mothership. SpaceShipTwo would then fire up its own rocket engine for the final push to space. But for these initial captive-carry tests, the rocket plane will stay attached to WhiteKnightTwo.

Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo rocket plane takes to the air for a test flight on
Monday, firmly connected to its WhiteKnightTwo carrier airplane.

When Rutan and his team are confident that they've tweaked the design to optimize its flightworthiness, they'll move on to the next phase of testing: unpowered glide tests, during which WhiteKnightTwo will release SpaceShipTwo (and its pilot) for a gliding flight back down to the Mojave runway.

That phase will lead to an even more ambitious series of flights, scheduled to start next year, during which SpaceShipTwo will light up its hybrid rocket engine. Eventually those powered test flights will push the plane beyond the sound barrier - and beyond the 100-kilometer (62-mile) altitude mark that serves as the internationally accepted boundary of outer space.

Passenger operations won't begin until a goodly number of test flights have broken the space barrier. No firm date has been set, but the conventional wisdom is currently focusing on late 2011 or early 2012. "Test flights will pace the program," Virgin Galactic's operations manager, Julie Tizard, said last year at a spaceflight conference in New Mexico.

Virgin Galactic's test program is being conducted out of Mojave, where Rutan's Scaled Composites has its home base. However, the passenger flights will likely be run out of New Mexico's Spaceport America, which is currently under construction.

Executives at Virgin Galactic have consistently said no paying passengers will be taken on until they're confident that the flights measure up to their safety standards. Branson and his family are to be among the first spacefliers.

More than 330 people have already put down deposits toward the $200,000 fare for a tour package - an adventure that will feature a rocket-powered roller-coaster ride, several minutes of weightlessness, and a commanding view of the curving Earth beneath the blackness of space.

An in-flight closeup shows SpaceShipTwo riding between WhiteKnightTwo's twin
fuselages. This SpaceShipTwo plane has been christened the Enterprise, and the
WhiteKnightTwo is named Eve, after Virgin founder Richard Branson's mother.
Click on the picture for a larger view that clearly shows the "Eve" mascots.


Here's the full news release from Virgin Galactic, with quotes from Rutan and Branson:

"Virgin Galactic announced today that its commercial manned spaceship, VSS Enterprise, this morning successfully completed its first 'captive carry' test flight, taking off at 07:05 am (PST) from Mojave Air and Spaceport, California. "The spaceship was unveiled to the public for the first time on December 7th 2009 and named by Governors [Arnold] Schwarzenegger [of California] and [New Mexico's Bill] Richardson. VSS Enterprise remained attached to its unique WhiteKnightTwo carrier aircraft, VMS Eve, for the duration of the 2 hours 54 minutes flight, achieving an altitude of 45,000 feet (13716 meters). "Both vehicles are being developed for Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic, by Mojave based Scaled Composites. Founded by Burt Rutan, Scaled developed SpaceShipOne which in 2004 claimed the $10 million Ansari X Prize as the world’s first privately developed manned spacecraft. Virgin Galactic’s new vehicles share much of the same basic design but are being built to carry six fare-paying passengers on suborbital space flights, allowing an out-of-the-seat zero gravity experience and offering astounding views of the planet from the black sky of space. "Virgin Galactic has already taken around $45 million in deposits for spaceflight reservations from over 330 people wanting to experience space for themselves. "The first flight of VSS Enterprise is another major milestone in an exhaustive flight testing program, which started with the inaugural flight of VMS Eve in 2008 and is at the heart of Virgin Galactic’s commitment to safety. "Commenting on the historic flight, Burt Rutan said: 'This is a momentous day for the Scaled and Virgin Teams. The captive-carry flight signifies the start of what we believe will be extremely exciting and successful spaceship flight test program.' "Sir Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Galactic, added: 'Seeing the finished spaceship in December was a major day for us, but watching VSS Enterprise fly for the first time really brings home what beautiful, ground-breaking vehicles Burt and his team have developed for us. It comes as no surprise that the flight went so well; the Scaled team is uniquely qualified to bring this important and incredible dream to reality. Today was another major step along that road and a testament to US engineering and innovation.' "The VSS Enterprise test flight program will continue though 2010 and 2011, progressing from captive carry to independent glide and then powered flight, prior to the start of commercial operations."

Virgin Galactic's business plan calls for building five SpaceShipTwo planes and two WhiteKnightTwo carriers, with options for more.