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www.youtube.com/watch?v=TdpVT-spvkU&feature=youtu.be - Lonnie Liston Smith

 

(Looks kinda' good on black)

 

Yeah, it's Thanksgiving 2012. These holidays come up on us so quickly and then - it seems - last but a minute. And, at this age, I'm no longer concerned with buying and buying, shopping and shopping, acquiring and having - as I've pretty much everything I need to live comfortably. So, now it's the spirit of these seasonal days of observance I feel more than I did for all those years of measuring life by my "ooo-gotta'-have it..." collection of things acquired and possessed.

 

I am 62 - will be 63 come December 4. It is said, over and over again, as though repeating it will make it so, that age is just a number. No. No, I'm afraid that is not true. Age - days, weeks, years lived and accumulated - has its sweet and sour realities; not imagined, nor dismissed, but real.

 

63 is a number I could not have imagined nor understood at age 10, 20, 30 or even 49. It was....some distant solar system of existence, in a galaxy far, far and many light years away.

 

But, I am here. Wow! (Many are not.) I made it. Wow! (Many did not.) And as one of my heroes, James Brown exclaimed in that gravelly, primal, soulful yell of his that I can still imitate, "I FEEL GOOD!" (And I can still move my feet like James too.)

 

No, this "Pappa don't have a Brand New Bag," but I don't need one. The one I have is all broken in - it's comfy, and workin', and still lookin' pretty good. I ain't lookin' to trade it in, swap it out, or update it with cosmetically stitched-up coverings and bindings. It's the upholstery I came with, I'm thinking, and I guess I'll ride out with it too.

 

Bad days, bad moments, bad times? Like, duh, yeah, sure. But not that many all in all, and not that often. And, you've just gotta' accept that they come with the package called "being alive."

 

Yeah, I've managed to stay on my "Good Foot" - cross whatever you like, knock on whatever you like, say a prayer to whomever you worship. I've learned to graciously accept all blessings - in all of their guises - and refuse none.

 

I was asked: "Why do you not feature joyous thoughts with joyous (bright, colorful, high-key, lively) images? Why the darkness?"

 

I guess it is because I don't see the darker times of day, or night, as connected to emotional darkness. Those times of day are the other side of one coin (life) and any time of day can hold ghastly horror and/or incredible joy and succor. I see as much exquisite beauty in the coming of dark as I do in celebrating the coming of the dawn.

 

And, for that and all of the joys, wisdom, experiences, insights, understandings, knowledge, patience, appreciation, loves, friendships - and so much more - that comes with being alive and simply getting up in pretty-damned good health ("all-in-all," and "all-things-considered") in the morning....

 

I am so deeply, deeply, deeply thankful.

 

Period.

 

Can you dig that?

 

Yeah...I know some of you can. LOL

 

The beach and the tip of the nature area, South Shore Cultural Center, Chicago. No bird brushes here. They were there. :-)

 

Textures by Flypaper Textures - flypapertextures.com/ - Summer Painterly group,

"Balthamos Blue and Evening Veil"

Vital statistics about the Metropolitan building in Warsaw include:

   

Name: Metropolitan [ Office building ]

 

Address: Plac Pilsudskiego 1, 2, 3, Warsaw, Poland

   

Floors / above ground: 7

 

Construction type: Low-rise building

 

Current status: Completed

  

Facade material: Granite

 

Facade system: Curtain wall

 

Architectural style: Modernism

  

Main usage: Commercial offices

 

Side usages: Shops, Restaurants

  

Other important facts and infos about the Metropolitan building in Warsaw include:

  

- One of the city's famous buildings.

 

- Metropolitan is among the winners of the prestigious architectural RIBA Worldwide Award in 2004.

 

- Metropolitan was awarded a MIPIM Award on March 11, 2004, the most prestigious distinction in the property world, in a business center's category.

 

- The construction of a modern office building in such a culturally-sensitive location led to a heated debate among Polish architects.

 

- The 50-meter diameter courtyard in the heart of the building and three passages allow pedestrian shortcuts across the site, resulting in an open public area.

 

- This resulted in rounded corners and vertical granite fins which, when viewed from the side give the façade solidity but when viewed from the front seem to disappear. Similar fins, but made of glass were installed in Crown Point. [ The Crown Point is another famous building in Warsaw and is constructed mainly in glass / limestone / concrete - but by architect Ludwik Konior & Montois Partners Architects ]

 

- Due to its sensitive location the project was discussed with conservators of historic monuments, which led to design changes that complimented the neighboring buildings and sites.

 

- The occupied square formerly belonged to the Saxon Axis, the grandest baroque urban scheme in Warsaw.

 

- Built in close proximity to historically and culturally significant sites: the Unknown Soldier's Tomb, the Zacheta State Art Gallery, the Grand Theater and the Saxon Garden.

Borders the north side of Pilsudski Square, one of the most historically-important in Warsaw.

 

- The Metropolitan is comprised of three separate, but linked buildings.

  

Architect: Foster + Partners [ Lord - Norman - Foster ]

 

Opening: 2003

 

About the architect: Norman Robert Foster, Baron Foster of Thames Bank, OM (born 1 June 1935) is a British architect whose company maintains an international design practice. He is Britain's most prolific builder of landmark office buildings. In 2009 Foster was awarded the Prince of Asturias Award in the Arts category.

 

SEE ALSO FOR MORE INFOS:

WIKIPEDIA = LORD FOSTER = ARCHITECT of the METROPOLITAN in WARSAW

 

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As part of our Tour of Poland 2012 incl.

 

Warsaw : Poznan : Gdansk : Sopot : Gdynia : Krakow : Auschwitz / Birkenau : Warsaw

 

2 weeks // April // flights incl.

 

Dublin - Frankfurt - Warsaw

 

Warsaw - Poznan

 

Poznan - Warsaw - Gdansk

 

Gdansk - Warsaw - Krakow

 

Krakow - Warsaw

 

Warsaw - Frankfurt - Dublin

 

Airlines: Lufthansa, Euro Lot // LOT Polish Airlines

 

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Inspired by the wonderful British weather.

 

View On Black

 

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This image will be part of an exhibition at the Arts Centre Washington, Tyne & Wear from December 6th 2011 till January 15th 2012.

 

www.artscentrewashington.co.uk/production-details.aspx?id...

 

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Ashness jetty is a very popular spot at Derwentwater, near Keswick in the Lake District. When I arrived the night before it was too dark to shoot the jetty so I came back the next day.

 

As anyone who has ever been to the Lakes will know, it's not called the Lakes for nothing! However, if you check out everyone's description on flickr you'll notice that everyone say's "due to the rain"!! However, the rain comes in handy to fill the Lakes!

 

But seriously Mick & Dave gave me awesome directions to this spot! There is a car park behind this spot, mind the cattle grid! However, be prepared to wait in a line! I found another photog here and two fishermen!

 

The poor fishermen where getting a bit miffed having to wait for all these long exposures!! They needed the jetty to cast off! I was about to warn them about fishing hooks and seagulls, but as communicating was difficult for them I decided not to educate them! Instead I just joined in with their grunts!

 

Anyhow, it was eventually my turn so equipped with my broken umbrella (many thanks Mike Ashley ~ cheap crap you sell!) I set about trying to capture the wonderful....erm...misty and rainy view!

 

This was catptured using my new Hitech 10 stop filter, I went for a "dark rinse" as there was very little colour due to the poor light conditions. (Notice on flickr how many other photogs in the lakes say that!)

 

I was going to call this "slippery when wet" as there is a sign on this jetty saying just that!, just in case you're not able to work out that wood and water = slippery! Bloody Health & Safety!

 

So enjoy, and make sure to check out Mick & Dave's wicked photostreams!

 

www.flickr.com/photos/dbrightwell/

 

www.flickr.com/photos/49031479@N04/

 

Many thanks again lads for the tip off!

 

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Follow PhotographyByUrbanEyes.com on:

 

Facebook/www.photographybyurbaneyes.com/ Twitter

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This full-disk image from NOAA’s GOES-13 satellite was captured at 11:45 UTC (7:45 a.m. EDT) and shows the Americas on June 21, 2012. This date marks the start of astronomical summer in the northern hemisphere, making it the longest day of the year!

 

NASA image use policy.

 

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission.

 

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"Putrajaya Lake is located at the centre of Putrajaya city, Malaysia. This 650ha man-made lake is designed to act as a natural cooling system for the city and also for recreation, fishing, water sports and water transport." - Wikipedia

 

this is a single long exposure shot of 25secs by the Putra Lake facing the Putra Mosque and Jabatan Perdana Menteri (JPM) on one fine evening. taken in January 2012. still have some more shots taking turns to be processed. all of them were taken around this place on this day. stay tuned :)

 

» Buy My Photos Here!

www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/sunearth/news/News070712-X1.1f...

 

Active Region 1515 released an X1.1 class flare from the lower right of the sun on July 6, 2012, peaking at 7:08 PM EDT. This flare caused a radio blackout, labeled as an R3 on the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administrations scale that goes from R1 to R5. Such blackouts can cause disruption to both high and low level radio frequencies.

 

Earth's magnetosphere also underwent a minor geomagnetic storm on the evening of July 6 in response to relatively slow coronal mass ejections (CMEs) that have erupted from other regions on the sun since July 4.

 

Credit: NASA/SDO/AIA

 

NASA image use policy.

 

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission.

 

Follow us on Twitter

 

Like us on Facebook

 

Find us on Instagram

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Hilton Hotel Warsaw & Conference Centre

 

Details include:

 

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Height / architectural: 94.00 m

 

Floors / above ground: 28

 

Floors / below ground: 3

 

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Construction / start: 2003

 

Construction / end: 2007

 

Elevators: 11

 

Escalators: 2

 

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Building / type: High-rise building

 

Building / status: completed

 

Structural material: concrete

 

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Facade material: aluminium, ceramic tile, glass

 

Facade system: curtain wall

 

Facade color: light blue

 

Architectural style: modernism

 

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Main usage: Luxury hotel, conference centre

 

Side usage: Bars, Casino, Fitness, Spa, Restaurants

 

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Architect: Biuro Projektów Kazimierski & Ryba

 

Associate architect: Feigin Architects

 

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SOURCE: EMPORIS

 

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As part of our Tour of Poland 2012 incl.

 

Warsaw : Poznan : Gdansk : Sopot : Gdynia : Krakow : Auschwitz / Birkenau : Warsaw

 

2 weeks // April // flights incl.

 

Dublin - Frankfurt - Warsaw

 

Warsaw - Poznan

 

Poznan - Warsaw - Gdansk

 

Gdansk - Warsaw - Krakow

 

Krakow - Warsaw

 

Warsaw - Frankfurt - Dublin

 

Airlines: Lufthansa, Euro Lot // LOT Polish Airlines

 

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Burry Port (Welsh: Porth Tywyn) is a small town five miles (8 km) outside the larger centre of Llanelli in Carmarthenshire, Wales, lying on the Loughor estuary. The town's population was 4,209 in the 2001 census and 4,240 in 2012.[1]

 

The town is home to a harbour and is where Amelia Earhart landed as the first woman to fly across the Atlantic Ocean. The Pembrey Burrows sand dune and wetland system, home to a country park and the Cefn Sidan sands, lie nearby. The town also has a proud musical heritage and is also home to Burry Port Opera, Male Choir and Burry Port Town Band

Reichsbrücke

Coordinates: 48 ° 13 '42 " N, 16 ° 24' 36" E | |

(Pictures you can see by clicking on the link at the end of page!)

Empire Bridge, seen from the north bank of

Use motor vehicles in the basement underground,

Cyclists, pedestrians

Road train Lassallestraße - Wagramerstraße (B8 )

Location Vienna, between Leopoldstadt (2nd District)

and Danube City (22 nd District)

Prestressed concrete bridge construction, double deck bridge

Total length 865 meters

Width 26.10 meters

Release 8 November 1980

Altitude 157 m above sea level. A.

Card reichsbrücke.png

Location of the Empire Bridge in Vienna

The Empire Bridge is one of Vienna's most famous bridges. It crosses the Danube, the Danube Island and the New Danube and connects the second District of Vienna, Leopoldstadt, with the 22nd District, Danube city. The building extends from Mexico place at Handelskai (2nd district) in a northeasterly direction to the Danube City and the Vienna International Centre (District 22).

The current kingdom bridge (Reichsbrücke) was opened in 1980, it is the third crossing of the Danube in the same axis, which bears the name kingdom bridge. The first Empire Bridge (also: Crown Prince Rudolf bridge when Project: National Highway Bridge), an iron bridge on current five pillars existed from 1876 until 1937. The second Empire Bridge, a chain bridge with two 30-meter high pylons on two river piers, was opened in 1937, it was next to St. Stephen's Cathedral and the Giant Ferris one of the landmarks of the city of Vienna. After the Second World War it was the only intact Danube river crossing downstream of Linz in Austria and became the busiest stretch of road in Austria. On Sunday, the first August 1976 the bridge collapsed in the early morning hours on full width of the Danube into the water. In the accident, which was not foreseeable by the then state of the art, one person was killed. The meaning and emotional charge, which had received the bridge by its colorful past in the Viennese population, increased further by the collapse.

Prehistory

The Danube before regulation (centric is the location of the Reichsbrücke marked)

Some years after the devastating flood of 1830 was considering Emperor Ferdinand I to regulate the Danube and at the same time to build several bridges over the resulting stream bed. The plan was, among other things, a chain bridge approximately at the site of today's Empire bridge, whose construction costs were estimated at two to three million florins. However, these plans came as well as future intentions, build stable bridges over the unregulated Danube, before the Vienna Danube regulation not for execution, the projects went not beyond the planning stage. All bridges over the Danube, whether for road or since 1838 for the Northern Railway, then had rather provisional character. Jochbrücken Those were trestle bridges made ​​of wood, which were regularly swept away by floods or Eisstößen (bumps of ice chunks) and then re-built.

On 12 September 1868 eventually ordered Emperor Franz Joseph I, the nephew and successor of Ferdinand, the regulation of the Danube. At the same time, eventually, should be built "stable bridges". One of them should represent a direct extension of the hunter line (Jägerzeile) (today: Prater Road and the Schwimmschulstraße (now Lassallestraße). With the choice of this location a central urban axis should be continued, which ranged from the Gloriette in Schonbrunn over St. Stephen's Cathedral and the Prater Stern to the Danube. On the other side of the Danube, the bridge should join to the Vienna, Kagraner and Leopold Auer Reichsstrasse (since 1910 Wagramerstraße), which became a major transit route in the northeastern areas of the monarchy. The name of the bridge was accordingly to "Empire Road bridge" set.

First Reichsbrücke - 1876-1937

Crown Prince Rudolf bridge

Since 6 November 1919 : Reichsbrücke

Crown Prince Rudolf bridge since 6 November 1919: Reichsbrücke

Official name of Crown Prince Rudolf Bridge (1876-1919), since then Reichsbrücke

Use vehicles, trams (from 26 June 1898 on the current bridge single track) and pedestrian

crossing of Handelskai, Danube and floodplain

Construction iron lattice structures (river bridge), 341.20 meters

Total length 1019.75 meter (incl. bridge over Handelskai and floodplain)

Width 11.40 meters

Release 21 August 1876

Closure 11 October 1937

Toll 32 cruisers and 64 Heller per vehicle (up to 1904)

The by Franz Joseph commissioned bridge, which the main part of the 2nd district after the regulation of the Danube with the on the left bank lying part of the city Kaisermuehlen, the now Old Danube and the to 1890/1892 independent community of Kagran connected, was navigable from August 1876 to October, 1937. It has been renamed several times: During the construction period it had the preliminary name of Empire Road bridge, after its opening, it was Crown Prince Rudolf bridge. The term "Empire Bridge" but soon won through in general usage, as was said, for example, the stop of the Donauuferbahn (Railway) at the bridge officially Kommunalbad-Reichsbrücke. After the fall of the monarchy on 6 November 1919 it was officially renamed Empire bridge.

With a total length of nearly 1,020 feet, it was at that time the longest bridge connection over the Danube. It was 11.40 meters wide, the road took 7.60 meters and 3.80 meters, the two sidewalks. The original plan had provided a total width of eight fathoms (15.20 meters), the Parliament decided shortly before the start of the construction to reduce the width because of cost reasons.

The bridge consisted of three parts. The so-called Hubertusdamm, protected the March field against flood, and the flood area created in the Danube regulation (inundation) on the north, the left bank of the river was spanned by a stone, 432 meters long inundation bridge, which consisted of 16 sheets of 23 and 39 m width. Handelskai on the southern right bank of the river spanned the so-called Kaibrücke of stone with a length of 90.4 meters and four arches, each 18.96 m width. The actual current bridge was 341.20 meters long and consisted of four individual iron grating structures that rested on five 3.80 meter thick pillars, three of which were in the water. The distance of each pillar was 79.90 meters.

Construction

The current bridge seen from the north, from the left bank (St Stephen's Cathedral in the background); recording before the summer of 1898, there's no tram track

Construction began in August, 1872. Although at that time the stream bed of the Danube had already been largely completed, but not yet flooded. The Empire bridge was then, as the northern railway bridge Stadlauer Bridge and the Emperor Franz Joseph Bridge (later Floridsdorfer bridge), built in dry construction.

The building was designed by the Road and Hydraulic Engineering Department of Imperial Ministry of Interior, whose boss, Undersecretary Mathias Waniek Ritter von Domyslow, was entrusted with the construction management. Total construction cost of 3.7 million guilders. The metal construction had a total weight of 2,193 tons and was manufactured by Schneider & Co in Burgundy of Belgian welding iron.

The two piers on the banks were about five feet below the river bed, which is about eleven meters founded under the riverbed on so-called "blue Viennese Tegel" (a stiff to semi-solid floor similar to the clay which as sedimentary rock is typical for the Vienna basin). The pillars of the two foreland bridges (Kaibrücke and inundation bridge ) were established in shallow coarse gravel.

Of the four Danube bridges built at that time only the kingdom bridge (Reichsbrücke) was not opened to traffic when the new bed of the Danube on 14 April 1875 was flooded. Until 16 months later, on 21 August 1876, the birthday of the Crown Prince Rudolf, opened the Imperial Governor of Lower Austria , Baron Conrad of Sigmund Eybesfeld, representing the emperor, the bridge and gave her in honor of Crown Prince - contrary to the original plan - the name "Crown Prince Rudolf bridge". The opening ceremony was attended by a delegation from Japan, Minister of War Feldzeugmeister Graf Maximilian von Artur Bylandt-Rheidt and mayor of Vienna Cajetan Felder. The governor read a royal resolution, in which Franz Joseph announced the full imperial satisfaction with Oberbauleiter Waniek and several Engineers and Building Officers were awarded the Imperial Knights Cross. As highlight of the celebration the keystone of the last pillar of the ramp was set - under it were built into a cassette several documents, photos of the bridge, coins and medals.

Bridge operation

The Kaibrücke over the Handelskai on the south, the right bank of the Danube, recording c.1907

The bridge ramp and the four brick arches over the Handels on the south, the right bank of the Danube, it ( right) the bridge over the stream, recording from 1876

After the suicide of Crown Prince Rudolf in 1889, the bridge was popularly called "suicide bridge ". It was in the first years of its operation still not a very popular crossing of the Danube. Industry and trade settled slowly to the other side of the Danube. There were also no significant trade routes from north to March Field. Via the Old Danube, which it would have to be crossed, leading to around 1900 only a rickety wooden bridge.

In the first 28 years of its operation, the crossing of the Empire Bridge was charged. 32 cruisers and 64 Heller had to be paid per vehicle, which has been regularly criticized by newspapers in Vienna. Only after the villages north of the Old Danube in the year 1904/1905 than 21st district were incorporated, the crossing was provided free of charge and increased the popularity of the bridge. From 26 June 1898, the bridge was frequented by the tram. The occasion was the 50-year Jubilee of Emperor Franz Joseph. The route went (over the current bridge (Strombrücke) just single track ) for the moment to shooting range (Schießstätte) at Arbeiterstrandbadstraße and was on 22 December 1898 extended until Kagraner place. Operator was the Vienna-Kagraner train (WKB), which initially used for six railcars acquired from Hamburg. In 1904, the traffic operation of Vienna-Street Railways WKB.

The end of the bridge

1910 were counted in Vienna over two million inhabitants. On the left, northern bank of the Danube, more and more settlements and commercial enterprises emerged. This increased both the importance and the traffic on the Empire Bridge. Neither the load nor the total roadway width of less than eight meters were sufficient for this additional burden. 1930 damage was discovered at the bridge, which would have necessitated the refurbishment in the near future. In recent years, their stock weight restrictions has been to protect the bridge. Vienna's city government first planned a conversion of the old kingdom bridge. In 1933, under the federal government of Dollfuss a new building was disposed.

During the three years of construction work had the old bridge remain usable - ie the existing 340 meters long by 4,900-ton Strombrücke was there moved by 26 meters downstream in September 1934, and connected with the banks. The move operation lasted only six hours, the traffic interruption to the reusability lasted three days. The suspended bridge was then three years in operation. Immediately after the opening of its successor bridge it was dismantled.

Second Empire Bridge - 1937-1976

Second Reichsbrücke

The second Empire Bridge, circa 1975

Official name Reichsbrücke, from 11 April 1946 to 18 July 1956 the Red Army Bridge

Use private transport (2 lanes next to the tracks, 2 on the tracks), tram (2 tracks in the middle position), pedestrians (sidewalks 2)

Construction through the air: "Spurious" self-anchored chain bridge with reversed horizontal thrust); broadening of the inundation bridge used since 1876

Total length 1225 meters

Width 26.90 meters (including sidewalks)

Longest span 241.2 meters in the central opening, 60.05 and 61.05 meters in the side openings

Construction September 1934

Release 10 October 1937

Closure 1 August 1976 (collapse)

The second realm bridge had a total length of 1255 meters. The current bridge had a length of 373 meters and a maximum span length of 241.2 meters, the construction of the third largest chain bridge in Europe. It had two pylons made ​​of steel with a height of 30 meters above road top, standing on two piers and with the bridge superstructure burd two steel chains carrying.

The bridge was staged as a symbol of the wealth and size of Vienna. So it was yet in the late 1930s next to St. Stephen's Cathedral and the Giant Ferris emblem for the third city of Vienna declared and served as an internationally used symbol on all promotional literature and invitations to the Vienna Exhibition in 1938.

Competition

First, the Commerce Department announced a precompetitive, although that could win the architects Emil Hoppe and Otto Schonthal, the result of which, however, did not correspond with the Ministry and the City of Vienna. The final competition for the construction of the Empire Bridge was finally announced in Spring 1933 and awarded in November. As architectural advisor to the eight-member jury acted the architect Clemens Holzmeister. The jurors selected from 64 submitted, one of which even provided for a tunnel under the river Danube. The winning project was a chain bridge by architects Siegfried Theiss and Hans Jaksch. This design provided only two pillars standing in the water. Three quarters of the full width of the river should be free spans. The bridge would connect directly to the still-to-use, only to be widened inundation bridge of the first Empire bridge over floodplain and Hubertusdamm.

Construction

Construction began on 26 February 1934, two weeks after the civil war-like battles in February. The cost of 24 million shillings were imposed to one third of the city of Vienna, two-thirds came from the federal budget. There were only Austrian companies involved in the construction. The two pillars were erected in caisson construction.

Soon the first difficulties appeared. The ground, especially in the Danube River, on which the bridge piers and anchor blocks for the chains should be founded, proved to be less viable than the planners had anticipated. It was originally planned to have to shoulder a large part of the weight of the Strombrücke, primarily of the area lying between the pillars middle part of the bridge, of two chains that run on both sides of the two pylons and should be anchored right in the river on heavy, solid anchor blocks of concrete. However, it was feared that this abutment on the Danube soft soil by the large tensile forces of 78.5 million N (8,000 t) per chain would start sliding and could not be adequately anchored in the Danube ground.

Professor Paul Fillunger of the Technical University of Vienna became the largest public critic of the building. He was of the opinion that not only the foundation of the anchor blocks, but also the pillars of the Danube in the soft ground was irresponsible because the bridge would not have the necessary stability. Contrasting opinion was his colleague of professors, soil mechanics Karl von Terzaghi. In his view, the nature of the Danube soil was suitable for the pier foundation. The disagreement was part of a personal feud, which was publicly held. Together with his wife Fillunger took in 1937 due to a disciplinary procedure that ran against him at the Technical University of Vienna his life. The construction of the bridge was rescheduled after the proposals Terzaghis: the chains were not fastened to anchor blocks on the Danube ground, but directly to the two main girders of the steel supporting structure, ie on the bridge itself anchored.

In June 1936, the building was overshadowed by a shipwreck: the people steamer "Vienna" DDSG was driven to a pillar. The ship broke up and sank immediately. Six people were killed.

The final link in the chain was composed of 98 members on 16 November 1936 inserted. Thereafter the lowering of the support stand began to displace the chain in tension. The production of the concrete deck slab of the bridge deck and the installation of sidewalks followed in the spring of 1937, in the summer, the bridge was painted dark green.

From 1 to 3 October 1937 the stress test of the building took place in the stretched chains and the pylons were slightly rotated. Were then driven as a load test 84 trucks and 28 loaded with stones streetcars on the bridge and left to stand there for a few hours. All measurements were running satisfactorily, so that on 4 October the first tram of line number 16 was able to drive over the kingdom bridge. A day later, the bridge was unofficially released for streetcar traffic. To traffic it remained locked up to its opening.

Austro-Fascist propaganda

A labor-and cost-intensive project such as the construction of the bridge was fully in line with the spirit of the Austro-fascist regime: the end of 1933, unemployment stood at 38.5 percent. The construction of the second Empire bridge can therefore be seen as a job creation project, similar to the construction of the Grossglockner High Alpine Road or the Vienna High Road.

On 10 October 1937, the Empire Bridge was officially opened. The corporate state government held a solemn state ceremony with President Wilhelm Miklas, Chancellor Kurt Schuschnigg, Cardinal Theodor Innitzer, the Vienna Vice Mayor Fritz Lahr and Trade Minister Taucher who called the new Reich bridge as a "symbol of creating life force of the new Austria". Present were alongside architects, project managers and designers also a delegation of the opus "New Life" of the Fatherland Front, all workers involved in the construction of the construction companies and 10,000 school children. Soldiers of the armed forces lined the shore.

The Viennese city researcher Peter Payer writes about the pompous production:

"Conspicuously, propagated the carefully staged celebration the new model of society of the Austro-fascist government: the ending of the class struggle and overcoming social barriers through meaningful work and cooperation of all professional groups. [ ...] The completion of the bridge was portrayed as unprecedented cultural achievement, as a joint work of all involved". - Peter Payer.

The event was broadcast live on the radio, the newspapers reported widely about it. At the event, postcards, envelopes, and a commemorative stamp was issued and even a "Reichsbrücke song "composed, in which was said:

"A thousand hammers, wheels, files,

thousand hands had to rush

the great work that was!

Salvation of the work that connects,

Hail to the work, healing our land!"

- Empire Bridge Song

The Empire Bridge in the Second World War

During the Second World War the German army used two support pillars of reinforced concrete under the Empire Bridge into the Danube, so that the building would not completely fall into the water when it was hit, but could be repaired. In addition, at each of the two pylons were erected platforms for anti-aircraft guns.

In early April, 1945, in the last days of the war, Soviet armies were moving from the south and west heading to the city center. The fleeing units of the SS blew up in their retreat to the north gradually almost all Vienna Danube bridges.

For the Nordwestbahnbrücke, the Floridsdorfer bridge and the Nordbahnbrücke the "defenders" of Vienna had by Hitler's headquarters on the 8th April 1945 sought the permission for demolition, the Stadlauer Ostbahnbrücke was also blown up without explicit permission. With the Reichsbrücke, however, Hitler had personally for days the blasting ruled out, still yet at 11 April 1945, just on 13 April afternoon allowed, at a time when the southern bridgehead was already occupied by the Red Army, was the northern bridgehead without coverage in their field of fire and the German troops who had retreated to the left bank of the Danube, north west withdrew, for not beeing closed in by the Red Army. There was therefore no chance to blow. The Red Army occupied the evening of the 13th April also the northern bridgehead.

On 11 April, at the height of the battle of Vienna, the Russian troops with armored boats already had been advanced on the Danube to the Reichsbrücke (officially called by the Russians "Object 56") and had obscured the area. They went on the right bank of the Danube, about 500 meters northwest of the bridge, on land and moved slowly to the building.

Decades later, it was unclear why exactly the Empire bridge was not blown up. The Red Army, the Austrian resistance movement O5 as well as members of the armed forces later claimed they just would have prevented the explosion. One version said that, at the Battle of 11 April some soldiers of the Red Army should have gotten to the beachhead, where they destroyed the explosive lines. Another version was that Red Army soldiers were led by a knowledgeable local Vienna sewer worker sneaked through the sewer system of Vienna to the bridge to prevent the demolition. Clarity created in 2012 the analysis of historical sources with the résumé. Ultimately, it was Hitler himself which had prevented demolition of the bridge until the last moment. The Reichsbrücke was now the only intact bridge crossing over the Danube between Linz and the state border. She was thus given a status symbol, it was a sign of the resilience of Austria.

The city council renamed the Empire Bridge on the anniversary of the liberation of Vienna on 11 April 1946 in honor of the liberators "Bridge of the Red Army Bridge". Was also on this occasion by the city government to the left of the bridge driveway in the 2nd district an obelisk (reddish colored lightweight concrete on wood construction) erected with the Soviet Star on the top of which was in German and Russian to read:

"THE HERO WILL

LANDING GUARD SQUAD

AND SAILORS

IN GRATITUDE

THE EXEMPT

VIENNA "

- Obelisk, then plaque on the bridge

The obelisk was removed after 1955. The inscription was then attached on a bronze plaque that was mounted directly to the bridge. The bridge was at 18 July 1956 re-named Reichsbrücke.

Reichsbrücke in the postwar period

To the rebuilding of Floridsdorfer bridge 1946 the Reichsbrücke was the only way to reach Vienna coming from the northeast on the road. Although it was not blown up, it still suffered numerous losses, primarily by shellfire. In 1946, took place the first rehabilitation of war damage of the bridge, ​​from May 1947 work on a larger scale was made. Thereby five hanging rods have been mended and repaired the vault of the inundation bridge. The smoke control ceiling above the Donauuferbahn has been replaced. At seven chain links had to be renewed a total of 26 blades. For this temporary piers were used on barges, which again ate on the river bed. The work was finished in 1952. On the Reichsbrücke originally was wooden heel patch installed, this was 1958-1960 replaced by granite stone pavement, which resulted in an additional load of 4688 kN for each pylon bearing. The enormous, newly ascended individual traffic led more often hinder the tram traffic on the bridge, therefore the tracks in the sixties by blocking lines have been declared not approved for individual traffic of the roadway. Now, congestion of vehicular traffic was the result.

Empire bridge collapse in 1976

The southern, right after the collapse of the banks, recording August 1976

Bridge debris on the north, left bank, recording August 1976

On Sunday, the first August 1976 Reichsbrücke 4:53 to 4:55 clock crashed to almost full length of the main bridge into the water. The first radio announcement was made at 5:00 clock. An eyewitness described the collapse as". The whole bridge has suddenly lifted a foot and then dropped loud crashing on the entire length".

On the Kaibrücke as well as on the Überschwemmungsbrücke (inundation bridge) the carrier collapsed in several places, but both bridges were standing. The Strombrücke itself broke into three parts, the middle part falling into the water as a whole and and the two outer parts obliquely hanging into the water. The south-facing pylon fell downstream and damaged heavily the stern of a passenger ship, the north side pylon collapsed in the other direction on the flood plain.

At the time of the collapse, five people were in four vehicles on the bridge: a bus driver in an urban articulated, two employees of the ÖAMTC in a roadside assistance vehicle, the driver of a Volkswagen Beetle, which had requested the breakdown service because of a defective tire following an accident as well as the driver of a minibus, who was employed as a driver at the ORF. The bus driver crashed his vehicle into the Danube and was rescued unharmed within hours. The ÖAMTC employees and the VW drivers were on that part of the Kaibrücke, which indeed broke and fell, but not completely destroyed, so that they could save themselves by foot. The ORF driver was trapped in his pickup truck and found his dead the day after the collapse.

Within an hour was a quarter of all vehicles of the in Vienna available Fire Brigade on the site of the collapse, it was the alarm given stage IV. Also, police, ambulance and army were represented by large contingents. The on the bridge located water pipes that supplied drinking water to the north of Vienna, put the Handelskai under water. Explosions were also feared because the gas lines running across the bridge were broken. There was on the scene for days strict non-smoking. First, many people were north of the Danube without gas, electricity, water and telephone. Already on the second August was, however, restored the supply.

de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reichsbr%C3%BCcke

NASA image captured June 5, 2012.

 

On June 5-6 2012, SDO is collecting images of one of the rarest predictable solar events: the transit of Venus across the face of the sun. This event happens in pairs eight years apart that are separated from each other by 105 or 121 years. The last transit was in 2004 and the next will not happen until 2117.

 

Credit: NASA/SDO, AIA

 

To read more about the 2012 Venus Transit go to: sunearthday.nasa.gov/transitofvenus

  

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January 25, 2012

 

*Updated February 2, 2012: According to Flickr, "The western hemisphere Blue Marble 2012 image has rocketed up to over 3.1 million views making it one of the all time most viewed images on the site after only one week."

 

A 'Blue Marble' image of the Earth taken from the VIIRS instrument aboard NASA's most recently launched Earth-observing satellite - Suomi NPP. This composite image uses a number of swaths of the Earth's surface taken on January 4, 2012. The NPP satellite was renamed 'Suomi NPP' on January 24, 2012 to honor the late Verner E. Suomi of the University of Wisconsin.

  

Suomi NPP is NASA's next Earth-observing research satellite. It is the first of a new generation of satellites that will observe many facets of our changing Earth.

 

Suomi NPP is carrying five instruments on board. The biggest and most important instrument is The Visible/Infrared Imager Radiometer Suite or VIIRS.

 

To read more about NASA's Suomi NPP go to: www.nasa.gov/npp

 

Credit: NASA/NOAA/GSFC/Suomi NPP/VIIRS/Norman Kuring

 

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Amersfoort [ˈaːmərsfoːrt] is a municipality and the second largest city of the province of Utrecht in central Netherlands. The city is growing quickly but has a well-preserved and protected medieval centre. Amersfoort is one of the largest railway junctions in the country, because of its location on two of the Netherlands' main east-west and north-south rail lines. The city celebrated its 750th birthday in 2009.

 

The municipality of Amersfoort consists of the following cities, towns, villages and/or districts: Bergkwartier, Bosgebied, Binnenstad, Hoogland, Hoogland-West, Kattenbroek, Kruiskamp, de Koppel, Liendert, Rustenburg, Nieuwland, Randenbroek, Schuilenburg, Schothorst, Soesterkwartier, Vathorst, Hooglanderveen, Vermeerkwartier, Leusderkwartier, Zielhorst and Stoutenburg-Noord.

 

Hunter gatherers set up camps in the Amersfoort region in the Mesolithic period. Archaeologists have found traces of these camps, such as the remains of hearths, and sometimes microlithic flint objects, to the north of the city.

 

Remains of settlements in the Amersfoort area from around 1000 BC have been found, but the name Amersfoort, after a ford in the Amer River, today called the Eem, did not appear until the 11th century. The city grew around what is now known as the central square, the Hof, where the Bishops of Utrecht established a court in order to control the "Gelderse Vallei (nl)" area. It was granted city rights in 1259 by the bishop of Utrecht, Henry I van Vianden. A first defensive wall, made out of brick, was finished around 1300. Soon after, the need for enlargement of the city became apparent and around 1380 the construction of a new wall was begun and completed around 1450. The famous Koppelpoort, a combined land and water gate, is part of this second wall. The first wall was demolished and houses were built in its place. Today's Muurhuizen (wallhouses) Street is at the exact location of the first wall; the fronts of the houses are built on top of the first city wall's foundations.

 

The Onze-Lieve-Vrouwentoren tower (The Tower of Our Lady) is one of the tallest medieval church towers in the Netherlands at 98 metres (322 ft). The construction of the tower and the church was started in 1444. The church was destroyed by an explosion in 1787, but the tower survived, and the layout of the church still can be discerned today through the use of different types of stone in the pavement of the open space that was created. It is now the reference point of the RD coordinate system, the coordinate grid used by the Dutch topographical service: the RD coordinates are (155.000, 463.000).

 

The inner city of Amersfoort has been preserved well since the Middle Ages. Apart from the Onze-Lieve-Vrouwetoren, the Koppelpoort, and the Muurhuizen (Wall-houses), there is also the Sint-Joriskerk (Saint George's church), the canal-system with its bridges, as well as medieval and other old buildings; many are designated as national monuments. In the Middle Ages, Amersfoort was an important centre for the textile industry, and there were a large number of breweries.

 

In the 18th century the city flourished because of the cultivation of tobacco, but from about 1800 onwards began to decline. The decline was halted by the establishment of the first railway connection in 1863, and, some years later, by the building of a substantial number of infantry and cavalry barracks, which were needed to defend the western cities of the Netherlands. After the 1920s growth stalled again, until in 1970 the national government designated Amersfoort, then numbering some 70,000 inhabitants, as a "growth city". In 2009 the population was 140,000 plus, with an expected 150,000 by 2012.

 

source: Wikipedia

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Prague is the capital and largest city of the Czech Republic and fourteenth-largest city in the European Union. It is also historical capital of Bohemia proper. Situated in the north-west of the country on the Vltava river, the city is home to about 1.3 million people, while its metropolitan area is estimated to have a population of nearly 2 million. The city has a temperate oceanic climate with warm summers and chilly winters.

Prague has been a political, cultural, and economic centre of central Europe with waxing and waning fortunes during its 1,100-year existence. Founded during the Romanesque and flourishing by the Gothic and Renaissance eras, Prague was the seat of two Holy Roman Emperors and thus then also the capital of the Holy Roman Empire.[6][7] It was an important city to the Habsburg Monarchy and its Austro-Hungarian Empire and after World War I became the capital of Czechoslovakia. The city played major roles in the Protestant Reformation, the Thirty Years' War, and in 20th-century history, during both World Wars and the post-war Communist era.

Prague is home to a number of famous cultural attractions, many of which survived the violence and destruction of twentieth century Europe. Main attractions include the Prague Castle, the Charles Bridge, Old Town Square, the Jewish Quarter, the Lennon Wall, and Petřín hill. Since 1992, the extensive historic centre of Prague has been included in the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites.

The city boasts more than ten major museums, along with countless theatres, galleries, cinemas, and other historical exhibits. A modern public transportation system connects the city. Also, it is home to a wide range of public and private schools, including Charles University. Prague is classified as a Beta+ global city according to GaWC studies, comparable to Berlin, Rome, or Houston. Its rich history makes it a popular tourist destination, and the city receives more than 4.1 million international visitors annually, as of 2009. In 2011, Prague was the sixth-most-visited city in Europe.

 

Wikipedia: "Mount Batur (Gunung Batur) is an active volcano located at the center of two concentric calderas north west of Mount Agung, Bali, Indonesia. The south east side of the larger 10×13 km caldera contains a caldera lake. The inner 7.5-kilometer-wide caldera, which was formed during emplacement of the Bali (or Ubud) ignimbrite, has been dated at about 23,670 and 28,500 years ago.

 

The southeast wall of the inner caldera lies beneath Lake Batur; Batur cone has been constructed within the inner caldera to a height above the outer caldera rim. The Batur stratovolcano has produced vents over much of the inner caldera, but a NE-SW fissure system has localized the Batur I, II, and III craters along the summit ridge. Historical eruptions have been characterized by mild-to-moderate explosive activity sometimes accompanied by lava emission. Basaltic lava flows from both summit and flank vents have reached the caldera floor and the shores of Lake Batur in historical time. The caldera contains an active, 700-metre-tall stratovolcano rising above the surface of Lake Batur. The first historically documented eruption of Batur was in 1804, and it has been frequently active since then. The substantial lava field from the 1968 eruption is visible today when viewed from Kintamani, a town that stradles the southwest ridge of the greater caldera.

 

The caldera is populated and includes the four main villages of Kedisan, Songan, Trunyan and Toya Bungkah. The locals largely rely on agriculture for income but tourism has become increasingly popular due to the relatively straightforward trek to the summit of the central crater.

 

The lake, Danau Batur, is the largest crater lake on the island of Bali and is a good source of fish.

 

On September 20, 2012 UNESCO has made Mount Batur Caldera a part of the Global Geopark Network"

 

Here you can see the lake and two volcanos in the background, one of which is Mt.Agung.

Horacio Pagani's personal car at the Quail while Monterey Car Week 2014.

 

The Pagani Zonda is a supercar built by the Italian manufacturer Pagani. It debuted in 1999, and production ended in 2011, with three special edition cars, the Zonda 760RS, Zonda 760LH and the Zonda 764 Passione, being produced in 2012. By June 2009, 135 Zondas had been built, including test mules. Both 2-door coupe and roadster versions have been produced. Construction is mainly of carbon fiber.

 

The Zonda F (or Zonda Fangio) debuted at the 2005 Geneva Motor Show. It is the most extensive re-engineering of the Zonda yet, though it shares much with its predecessors including the 7.3 L AMG V12 engine which through enhanced intake manifolds, exhaust and a revised ECU now produces 602 PS (443 kW; 594 hp) at 6150 rpm and 560 lb·ft (759 N·m) at 4000 rpm.

 

Production of the Zonda F was limited to 25 cars. Named after Formula One driver Juan Manuel Fangio, it came equipped with an extra headlight and different fog lights at the sides, new bodywork (revised front end, new rear spoiler, more aerodynamic vents all around) that improved the car's aerodynamics, and different side mirrors. Further enhancements over the 'S' centered around optional carbon/ceramic brakes developed in conjunction with Brembo, magnesium wheels, inconel titanium exhaust system, hydroformed aluminum intake plenum and a redesigned 'Z preg' weave in the crash structure to improve rigidity and reduce weight.

Solar Flare

Extremely energetic objects permeate the universe. But close to home, the sun produces its own dazzling lightshow, producing the largest explosions in our solar system and driving powerful solar storms.. When solar activity contorts and realigns the sun’s magnetic fields, vast amounts of energy can be driven into space. This phenomenon can create a sudden flash of light—a solar flare.

 

Flares typically last a few minutes and unleash energies equivalent to millions of hydrogen bombs. The above picture features a filament eruption on the sun, accompanied by solar flares.

 

To learn more about solar flares, go to NASA’s SDO mission: www.nasa.gov/sdo

 

---------------------------------

Original caption:

Click here to view an image showing the size of this CME compared to the size of Earth: bit.ly/RkYr7z

 

On August 31, 2012 a long filament of solar material that had been hovering in the sun's atmosphere, the corona, erupted out into space at 4:36 p.m. EDT. The coronal mass ejection, or CME, traveled at over 900 miles per second. The CME did not travel directly toward Earth, but did connect with Earth's magnetic environment, or magnetosphere, causing aurora to appear on the night of Monday, September 3.

 

Pictured here is a lighten blended version of the 304 and 171 angstrom wavelengths. Cropped

 

Credit: NASA/GSFC/SDO

 

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NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission.

 

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Jewel of industrial architecture, this site was a center of transshipment of goods, duty-paid and stored quantity of food. This universe, which has generated an intense economic activity in the neighboring districts (coffee, chocolate, tobacco, wine, alcohol ...).

Just like the site to which it refers, the name Tour & Taxis is rich in history. You may remember the founders of the Post, the Von Thurn und Thassis family. This celebrated dynasty, whose origins can be traced back to the 12th century, used the marshy land bordering the port as pastures for their horses. Today, your post may make its journey by train or truck, but at the time its distribution relied on stage coaches which travelled from city to city. This revolutionary system, established by Frans von Thassis, enabled his large family to reign unopposed over the postal system for some 355 years.

Tour & Taxis got its second wind in 2001 when it was bought by Projet T&T – a joint venture between two real estate companies,. The company set itself the objective of creating a new district for Brussels. So began the development and management of the site like you can see it now. Renovated in 2001, this former trading hall now is now home to various shops and restaurants, offices and cultural events.

   

Best to be viewed in large size format

All rights reserved. Copyright 2012 © Jacques Freund. All my images are protected under international authors copyright laws and may not be downloaded, reproduced, copied, transmitted or manipulated without my written explicit permission. All rights reserved - Copyright 2012 © Jacques Freund

Burry Port (Welsh: Porth Tywyn) is a small town five miles (8 km) outside the larger centre of Llanelli in Carmarthenshire, Wales, lying on the Loughor estuary. The town's population was 4,209 in the 2001 census and 4,240 in 2012.

 

The town is home to a harbour and is where Amelia Earhart landed as the first woman to fly across the Atlantic Ocean. The Pembrey Burrows sand dune and wetland system, home to a country park and the Cefn Sidan sands, lie nearby.

 

Burry Holms (grid reference SS403926) (Welsh: Ynys Ianwol) is a small tidal island located at the northern end of the Gower Peninsula, Wales. 9,000 years ago it was up to 12 miles (19 km) away from the sea and inhabited by nomadic Mesolithic hunters. Flint tools provided the first evidence of their existence in 1919, since when charcoal, charred hazelnut shells, and tools made out of wood and bone have also been found. A 1998 excavation by the National Museums and Galleries of Wales found that Burry Holms was used as a Mesolithic seasonal camp. Iron Age people subsequently built a 5 acre (20,000 m²) hill fort and ditch on the island, while in Medieval times it was home to a monastery.

 

During spring and summer Burry Holms is covered by flowers such as thrift (plant) and Sea Campion. The island is also popular among collectors of shells.

  

Reichsbrücke

Coordinates: 48 ° 13 '42 " N, 16 ° 24' 36" E | |

(Pictures you can see by clicking on the link at the end of page!)

Empire Bridge, seen from the north bank of

Use motor vehicles in the basement underground,

Cyclists, pedestrians

Road train Lassallestraße - Wagramerstraße (B8 )

Location Vienna, between Leopoldstadt (2nd District)

and Danube City (22 nd District)

Prestressed concrete bridge construction, double deck bridge

Total length 865 meters

Width 26.10 meters

Release 8 November 1980

Altitude 157 m above sea level. A.

Card reichsbrücke.png

Location of the Empire Bridge in Vienna

The Empire Bridge is one of Vienna's most famous bridges. It crosses the Danube, the Danube Island and the New Danube and connects the second District of Vienna, Leopoldstadt, with the 22nd District, Danube city. The building extends from Mexico place at Handelskai (2nd district) in a northeasterly direction to the Danube City and the Vienna International Centre (District 22).

The current kingdom bridge (Reichsbrücke) was opened in 1980, it is the third crossing of the Danube in the same axis, which bears the name kingdom bridge. The first Empire Bridge (also: Crown Prince Rudolf bridge when Project: National Highway Bridge), an iron bridge on current five pillars existed from 1876 until 1937. The second Empire Bridge, a chain bridge with two 30-meter high pylons on two river piers, was opened in 1937, it was next to St. Stephen's Cathedral and the Giant Ferris one of the landmarks of the city of Vienna. After the Second World War it was the only intact Danube river crossing downstream of Linz in Austria and became the busiest stretch of road in Austria. On Sunday, the first August 1976 the bridge collapsed in the early morning hours on full width of the Danube into the water. In the accident, which was not foreseeable by the then state of the art, one person was killed. The meaning and emotional charge, which had received the bridge by its colorful past in the Viennese population, increased further by the collapse.

Prehistory

The Danube before regulation (centric is the location of the Reichsbrücke marked)

Some years after the devastating flood of 1830 was considering Emperor Ferdinand I to regulate the Danube and at the same time to build several bridges over the resulting stream bed. The plan was, among other things, a chain bridge approximately at the site of today's Empire bridge, whose construction costs were estimated at two to three million florins. However, these plans came as well as future intentions, build stable bridges over the unregulated Danube, before the Vienna Danube regulation not for execution, the projects went not beyond the planning stage. All bridges over the Danube, whether for road or since 1838 for the Northern Railway, then had rather provisional character. Jochbrücken Those were trestle bridges made ​​of wood, which were regularly swept away by floods or Eisstößen (bumps of ice chunks) and then re-built.

On 12 September 1868 eventually ordered Emperor Franz Joseph I, the nephew and successor of Ferdinand, the regulation of the Danube. At the same time, eventually, should be built "stable bridges". One of them should represent a direct extension of the hunter line (Jägerzeile) (today: Prater Road and the Schwimmschulstraße (now Lassallestraße). With the choice of this location a central urban axis should be continued, which ranged from the Gloriette in Schonbrunn over St. Stephen's Cathedral and the Prater Stern to the Danube. On the other side of the Danube, the bridge should join to the Vienna, Kagraner and Leopold Auer Reichsstrasse (since 1910 Wagramerstraße), which became a major transit route in the northeastern areas of the monarchy. The name of the bridge was accordingly to "Empire Road bridge" set.

First Reichsbrücke - 1876-1937

Crown Prince Rudolf bridge

Since 6 November 1919 : Reichsbrücke

Crown Prince Rudolf bridge since 6 November 1919: Reichsbrücke

Official name of Crown Prince Rudolf Bridge (1876-1919), since then Reichsbrücke

Use vehicles, trams (from 26 June 1898 on the current bridge single track) and pedestrian

crossing of Handelskai, Danube and floodplain

Construction iron lattice structures (river bridge), 341.20 meters

Total length 1019.75 meter (incl. bridge over Handelskai and floodplain)

Width 11.40 meters

Release 21 August 1876

Closure 11 October 1937

Toll 32 cruisers and 64 Heller per vehicle (up to 1904)

The by Franz Joseph commissioned bridge, which the main part of the 2nd district after the regulation of the Danube with the on the left bank lying part of the city Kaisermuehlen, the now Old Danube and the to 1890/1892 independent community of Kagran connected, was navigable from August 1876 to October, 1937. It has been renamed several times: During the construction period it had the preliminary name of Empire Road bridge, after its opening, it was Crown Prince Rudolf bridge. The term "Empire Bridge" but soon won through in general usage, as was said, for example, the stop of the Donauuferbahn (Railway) at the bridge officially Kommunalbad-Reichsbrücke. After the fall of the monarchy on 6 November 1919 it was officially renamed Empire bridge.

With a total length of nearly 1,020 feet, it was at that time the longest bridge connection over the Danube. It was 11.40 meters wide, the road took 7.60 meters and 3.80 meters, the two sidewalks. The original plan had provided a total width of eight fathoms (15.20 meters), the Parliament decided shortly before the start of the construction to reduce the width because of cost reasons.

The bridge consisted of three parts. The so-called Hubertusdamm, protected the March field against flood, and the flood area created in the Danube regulation (inundation) on the north, the left bank of the river was spanned by a stone, 432 meters long inundation bridge, which consisted of 16 sheets of 23 and 39 m width. Handelskai on the southern right bank of the river spanned the so-called Kaibrücke of stone with a length of 90.4 meters and four arches, each 18.96 m width. The actual current bridge was 341.20 meters long and consisted of four individual iron grating structures that rested on five 3.80 meter thick pillars, three of which were in the water. The distance of each pillar was 79.90 meters.

Construction

The current bridge seen from the north, from the left bank (St Stephen's Cathedral in the background); recording before the summer of 1898, there's no tram track

Construction began in August, 1872. Although at that time the stream bed of the Danube had already been largely completed, but not yet flooded. The Empire bridge was then, as the northern railway bridge Stadlauer Bridge and the Emperor Franz Joseph Bridge (later Floridsdorfer bridge), built in dry construction.

The building was designed by the Road and Hydraulic Engineering Department of Imperial Ministry of Interior, whose boss, Undersecretary Mathias Waniek Ritter von Domyslow, was entrusted with the construction management. Total construction cost of 3.7 million guilders. The metal construction had a total weight of 2,193 tons and was manufactured by Schneider & Co in Burgundy of Belgian welding iron.

The two piers on the banks were about five feet below the river bed, which is about eleven meters founded under the riverbed on so-called "blue Viennese Tegel" (a stiff to semi-solid floor similar to the clay which as sedimentary rock is typical for the Vienna basin). The pillars of the two foreland bridges (Kaibrücke and inundation bridge ) were established in shallow coarse gravel.

Of the four Danube bridges built at that time only the kingdom bridge (Reichsbrücke) was not opened to traffic when the new bed of the Danube on 14 April 1875 was flooded. Until 16 months later, on 21 August 1876, the birthday of the Crown Prince Rudolf, opened the Imperial Governor of Lower Austria , Baron Conrad of Sigmund Eybesfeld, representing the emperor, the bridge and gave her in honor of Crown Prince - contrary to the original plan - the name "Crown Prince Rudolf bridge". The opening ceremony was attended by a delegation from Japan, Minister of War Feldzeugmeister Graf Maximilian von Artur Bylandt-Rheidt and mayor of Vienna Cajetan Felder. The governor read a royal resolution, in which Franz Joseph announced the full imperial satisfaction with Oberbauleiter Waniek and several Engineers and Building Officers were awarded the Imperial Knights Cross. As highlight of the celebration the keystone of the last pillar of the ramp was set - under it were built into a cassette several documents, photos of the bridge, coins and medals.

Bridge operation

The Kaibrücke over the Handelskai on the south, the right bank of the Danube, recording c.1907

The bridge ramp and the four brick arches over the Handels on the south, the right bank of the Danube, it ( right) the bridge over the stream, recording from 1876

After the suicide of Crown Prince Rudolf in 1889, the bridge was popularly called "suicide bridge ". It was in the first years of its operation still not a very popular crossing of the Danube. Industry and trade settled slowly to the other side of the Danube. There were also no significant trade routes from north to March Field. Via the Old Danube, which it would have to be crossed, leading to around 1900 only a rickety wooden bridge.

In the first 28 years of its operation, the crossing of the Empire Bridge was charged. 32 cruisers and 64 Heller had to be paid per vehicle, which has been regularly criticized by newspapers in Vienna. Only after the villages north of the Old Danube in the year 1904/1905 than 21st district were incorporated, the crossing was provided free of charge and increased the popularity of the bridge. From 26 June 1898, the bridge was frequented by the tram. The occasion was the 50-year Jubilee of Emperor Franz Joseph. The route went (over the current bridge (Strombrücke) just single track ) for the moment to shooting range (Schießstätte) at Arbeiterstrandbadstraße and was on 22 December 1898 extended until Kagraner place. Operator was the Vienna-Kagraner train (WKB), which initially used for six railcars acquired from Hamburg. In 1904, the traffic operation of Vienna-Street Railways WKB.

The end of the bridge

1910 were counted in Vienna over two million inhabitants. On the left, northern bank of the Danube, more and more settlements and commercial enterprises emerged. This increased both the importance and the traffic on the Empire Bridge. Neither the load nor the total roadway width of less than eight meters were sufficient for this additional burden. 1930 damage was discovered at the bridge, which would have necessitated the refurbishment in the near future. In recent years, their stock weight restrictions has been to protect the bridge. Vienna's city government first planned a conversion of the old kingdom bridge. In 1933, under the federal government of Dollfuss a new building was disposed.

During the three years of construction work had the old bridge remain usable - ie the existing 340 meters long by 4,900-ton Strombrücke was there moved by 26 meters downstream in September 1934, and connected with the banks. The move operation lasted only six hours, the traffic interruption to the reusability lasted three days. The suspended bridge was then three years in operation. Immediately after the opening of its successor bridge it was dismantled.

Second Empire Bridge - 1937-1976

Second Reichsbrücke

The second Empire Bridge, circa 1975

Official name Reichsbrücke, from 11 April 1946 to 18 July 1956 the Red Army Bridge

Use private transport (2 lanes next to the tracks, 2 on the tracks), tram (2 tracks in the middle position), pedestrians (sidewalks 2)

Construction through the air: "Spurious" self-anchored chain bridge with reversed horizontal thrust); broadening of the inundation bridge used since 1876

Total length 1225 meters

Width 26.90 meters (including sidewalks)

Longest span 241.2 meters in the central opening, 60.05 and 61.05 meters in the side openings

Construction September 1934

Release 10 October 1937

Closure 1 August 1976 (collapse)

The second realm bridge had a total length of 1255 meters. The current bridge had a length of 373 meters and a maximum span length of 241.2 meters, the construction of the third largest chain bridge in Europe. It had two pylons made ​​of steel with a height of 30 meters above road top, standing on two piers and with the bridge superstructure burd two steel chains carrying.

The bridge was staged as a symbol of the wealth and size of Vienna. So it was yet in the late 1930s next to St. Stephen's Cathedral and the Giant Ferris emblem for the third city of Vienna declared and served as an internationally used symbol on all promotional literature and invitations to the Vienna Exhibition in 1938.

Competition

First, the Commerce Department announced a precompetitive, although that could win the architects Emil Hoppe and Otto Schonthal, the result of which, however, did not correspond with the Ministry and the City of Vienna. The final competition for the construction of the Empire Bridge was finally announced in Spring 1933 and awarded in November. As architectural advisor to the eight-member jury acted the architect Clemens Holzmeister. The jurors selected from 64 submitted, one of which even provided for a tunnel under the river Danube. The winning project was a chain bridge by architects Siegfried Theiss and Hans Jaksch. This design provided only two pillars standing in the water. Three quarters of the full width of the river should be free spans. The bridge would connect directly to the still-to-use, only to be widened inundation bridge of the first Empire bridge over floodplain and Hubertusdamm.

Construction

Construction began on 26 February 1934, two weeks after the civil war-like battles in February. The cost of 24 million shillings were imposed to one third of the city of Vienna, two-thirds came from the federal budget. There were only Austrian companies involved in the construction. The two pillars were erected in caisson construction.

Soon the first difficulties appeared. The ground, especially in the Danube River, on which the bridge piers and anchor blocks for the chains should be founded, proved to be less viable than the planners had anticipated. It was originally planned to have to shoulder a large part of the weight of the Strombrücke, primarily of the area lying between the pillars middle part of the bridge, of two chains that run on both sides of the two pylons and should be anchored right in the river on heavy, solid anchor blocks of concrete. However, it was feared that this abutment on the Danube soft soil by the large tensile forces of 78.5 million N (8,000 t) per chain would start sliding and could not be adequately anchored in the Danube ground.

Professor Paul Fillunger of the Technical University of Vienna became the largest public critic of the building. He was of the opinion that not only the foundation of the anchor blocks, but also the pillars of the Danube in the soft ground was irresponsible because the bridge would not have the necessary stability. Contrasting opinion was his colleague of professors, soil mechanics Karl von Terzaghi. In his view, the nature of the Danube soil was suitable for the pier foundation. The disagreement was part of a personal feud, which was publicly held. Together with his wife Fillunger took in 1937 due to a disciplinary procedure that ran against him at the Technical University of Vienna his life. The construction of the bridge was rescheduled after the proposals Terzaghis: the chains were not fastened to anchor blocks on the Danube ground, but directly to the two main girders of the steel supporting structure, ie on the bridge itself anchored.

In June 1936, the building was overshadowed by a shipwreck: the people steamer "Vienna" DDSG was driven to a pillar. The ship broke up and sank immediately. Six people were killed.

The final link in the chain was composed of 98 members on 16 November 1936 inserted. Thereafter the lowering of the support stand began to displace the chain in tension. The production of the concrete deck slab of the bridge deck and the installation of sidewalks followed in the spring of 1937, in the summer, the bridge was painted dark green.

From 1 to 3 October 1937 the stress test of the building took place in the stretched chains and the pylons were slightly rotated. Were then driven as a load test 84 trucks and 28 loaded with stones streetcars on the bridge and left to stand there for a few hours. All measurements were running satisfactorily, so that on 4 October the first tram of line number 16 was able to drive over the kingdom bridge. A day later, the bridge was unofficially released for streetcar traffic. To traffic it remained locked up to its opening.

Austro-Fascist propaganda

A labor-and cost-intensive project such as the construction of the bridge was fully in line with the spirit of the Austro-fascist regime: the end of 1933, unemployment stood at 38.5 percent. The construction of the second Empire bridge can therefore be seen as a job creation project, similar to the construction of the Grossglockner High Alpine Road or the Vienna High Road.

On 10 October 1937, the Empire Bridge was officially opened. The corporate state government held a solemn state ceremony with President Wilhelm Miklas, Chancellor Kurt Schuschnigg, Cardinal Theodor Innitzer, the Vienna Vice Mayor Fritz Lahr and Trade Minister Taucher who called the new Reich bridge as a "symbol of creating life force of the new Austria". Present were alongside architects, project managers and designers also a delegation of the opus "New Life" of the Fatherland Front, all workers involved in the construction of the construction companies and 10,000 school children. Soldiers of the armed forces lined the shore.

The Viennese city researcher Peter Payer writes about the pompous production:

"Conspicuously, propagated the carefully staged celebration the new model of society of the Austro-fascist government: the ending of the class struggle and overcoming social barriers through meaningful work and cooperation of all professional groups. [ ...] The completion of the bridge was portrayed as unprecedented cultural achievement, as a joint work of all involved". - Peter Payer.

The event was broadcast live on the radio, the newspapers reported widely about it. At the event, postcards, envelopes, and a commemorative stamp was issued and even a "Reichsbrücke song "composed, in which was said:

"A thousand hammers, wheels, files,

thousand hands had to rush

the great work that was!

Salvation of the work that connects,

Hail to the work, healing our land!"

- Empire Bridge Song

The Empire Bridge in the Second World War

During the Second World War the German army used two support pillars of reinforced concrete under the Empire Bridge into the Danube, so that the building would not completely fall into the water when it was hit, but could be repaired. In addition, at each of the two pylons were erected platforms for anti-aircraft guns.

In early April, 1945, in the last days of the war, Soviet armies were moving from the south and west heading to the city center. The fleeing units of the SS blew up in their retreat to the north gradually almost all Vienna Danube bridges.

For the Nordwestbahnbrücke, the Floridsdorfer bridge and the Nordbahnbrücke the "defenders" of Vienna had by Hitler's headquarters on the 8th April 1945 sought the permission for demolition, the Stadlauer Ostbahnbrücke was also blown up without explicit permission. With the Reichsbrücke, however, Hitler had personally for days the blasting ruled out, still yet at 11 April 1945, just on 13 April afternoon allowed, at a time when the southern bridgehead was already occupied by the Red Army, was the northern bridgehead without coverage in their field of fire and the German troops who had retreated to the left bank of the Danube, north west withdrew, for not beeing closed in by the Red Army. There was therefore no chance to blow. The Red Army occupied the evening of the 13th April also the northern bridgehead.

On 11 April, at the height of the battle of Vienna, the Russian troops with armored boats already had been advanced on the Danube to the Reichsbrücke (officially called by the Russians "Object 56") and had obscured the area. They went on the right bank of the Danube, about 500 meters northwest of the bridge, on land and moved slowly to the building.

Decades later, it was unclear why exactly the Empire bridge was not blown up. The Red Army, the Austrian resistance movement O5 as well as members of the armed forces later claimed they just would have prevented the explosion. One version said that, at the Battle of 11 April some soldiers of the Red Army should have gotten to the beachhead, where they destroyed the explosive lines. Another version was that Red Army soldiers were led by a knowledgeable local Vienna sewer worker sneaked through the sewer system of Vienna to the bridge to prevent the demolition. Clarity created in 2012 the analysis of historical sources with the résumé. Ultimately, it was Hitler himself which had prevented demolition of the bridge until the last moment. The Reichsbrücke was now the only intact bridge crossing over the Danube between Linz and the state border. She was thus given a status symbol, it was a sign of the resilience of Austria.

The city council renamed the Empire Bridge on the anniversary of the liberation of Vienna on 11 April 1946 in honor of the liberators "Bridge of the Red Army Bridge". Was also on this occasion by the city government to the left of the bridge driveway in the 2nd district an obelisk (reddish colored lightweight concrete on wood construction) erected with the Soviet Star on the top of which was in German and Russian to read:

"THE HERO WILL

LANDING GUARD SQUAD

AND SAILORS

IN GRATITUDE

THE EXEMPT

VIENNA "

- Obelisk, then plaque on the bridge

The obelisk was removed after 1955. The inscription was then attached on a bronze plaque that was mounted directly to the bridge. The bridge was at 18 July 1956 re-named Reichsbrücke.

Reichsbrücke in the postwar period

To the rebuilding of Floridsdorfer bridge 1946 the Reichsbrücke was the only way to reach Vienna coming from the northeast on the road. Although it was not blown up, it still suffered numerous losses, primarily by shellfire. In 1946, took place the first rehabilitation of war damage of the bridge, ​​from May 1947 work on a larger scale was made. Thereby five hanging rods have been mended and repaired the vault of the inundation bridge. The smoke control ceiling above the Donauuferbahn has been replaced. At seven chain links had to be renewed a total of 26 blades. For this temporary piers were used on barges, which again ate on the river bed. The work was finished in 1952. On the Reichsbrücke originally was wooden heel patch installed, this was 1958-1960 replaced by granite stone pavement, which resulted in an additional load of 4688 kN for each pylon bearing. The enormous, newly ascended individual traffic led more often hinder the tram traffic on the bridge, therefore the tracks in the sixties by blocking lines have been declared not approved for individual traffic of the roadway. Now, congestion of vehicular traffic was the result.

Empire bridge collapse in 1976

The southern, right after the collapse of the banks, recording August 1976

Bridge debris on the north, left bank, recording August 1976

On Sunday, the first August 1976 Reichsbrücke 4:53 to 4:55 clock crashed to almost full length of the main bridge into the water. The first radio announcement was made at 5:00 clock. An eyewitness described the collapse as". The whole bridge has suddenly lifted a foot and then dropped loud crashing on the entire length".

On the Kaibrücke as well as on the Überschwemmungsbrücke (inundation bridge) the carrier collapsed in several places, but both bridges were standing. The Strombrücke itself broke into three parts, the middle part falling into the water as a whole and and the two outer parts obliquely hanging into the water. The south-facing pylon fell downstream and damaged heavily the stern of a passenger ship, the north side pylon collapsed in the other direction on the flood plain.

At the time of the collapse, five people were in four vehicles on the bridge: a bus driver in an urban articulated, two employees of the ÖAMTC in a roadside assistance vehicle, the driver of a Volkswagen Beetle, which had requested the breakdown service because of a defective tire following an accident as well as the driver of a minibus, who was employed as a driver at the ORF. The bus driver crashed his vehicle into the Danube and was rescued unharmed within hours. The ÖAMTC employees and the VW drivers were on that part of the Kaibrücke, which indeed broke and fell, but not completely destroyed, so that they could save themselves by foot. The ORF driver was trapped in his pickup truck and found his dead the day after the collapse.

Within an hour was a quarter of all vehicles of the in Vienna available Fire Brigade on the site of the collapse, it was the alarm given stage IV. Also, police, ambulance and army were represented by large contingents. The on the bridge located water pipes that supplied drinking water to the north of Vienna, put the Handelskai under water. Explosions were also feared because the gas lines running across the bridge were broken. There was on the scene for days strict non-smoking. First, many people were north of the Danube without gas, electricity, water and telephone. Already on the second August was, however, restored the supply.

de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reichsbr%C3%BCcke

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Prague is the capital and largest city of the Czech Republic and fourteenth-largest city in the European Union. It is also historical capital of Bohemia proper. Situated in the north-west of the country on the Vltava river, the city is home to about 1.3 million people, while its metropolitan area is estimated to have a population of nearly 2 million. The city has a temperate oceanic climate with warm summers and chilly winters.

Prague has been a political, cultural, and economic centre of central Europe with waxing and waning fortunes during its 1,100-year existence. Founded during the Romanesque and flourishing by the Gothic and Renaissance eras, Prague was the seat of two Holy Roman Emperors and thus then also the capital of the Holy Roman Empire.[6][7] It was an important city to the Habsburg Monarchy and its Austro-Hungarian Empire and after World War I became the capital of Czechoslovakia. The city played major roles in the Protestant Reformation, the Thirty Years' War, and in 20th-century history, during both World Wars and the post-war Communist era.

 

Prague is home to a number of famous cultural attractions, many of which survived the violence and destruction of twentieth century Europe. Main attractions include the Prague Castle, the Charles Bridge, Old Town Square, the Jewish Quarter, the Lennon Wall, and Petřín hill. Since 1992, the extensive historic centre of Prague has been included in the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites.

 

The city boasts more than ten major museums, along with countless theatres, galleries, cinemas, and other historical exhibits. A modern public transportation system connects the city. Also, it is home to a wide range of public and private schools, including Charles University. Prague is classified as a Beta+ global city according to GaWC studies, comparable to Berlin, Rome, or Houston. Its rich history makes it a popular tourist destination, and the city receives more than 4.1 million international visitors annually, as of 2009. In 2011, Prague was the sixth-most-visited city in Europe.

 

Canning Dock is a dock, on the River Mersey,LIVERPOOL England, and part of the Port of Liverpool. It is situated in the southern dock system, connected to Salthouse Dock to the south and Canning Half Tide Dock to the west. The Canning Graving Docks are accessed from the dock.

The dock was opened in 1737 as a protected tidal basin providing an entrance to Old Dock. Having been subsequently enclosed as a wet dock three years earlier, in 1832 it was officially named after the Liverpool MP, George Canning. To the east is the site of Old Dock, built in 1709, which was the world first enclosed commercial dock. Canning Dock would have initially served ships involved in the trans Atlantic slave trade.

Access to the northern half of the dock system was via Georges Dock, George's Basin and into Princes Dock. In 1899, both Georges Basin and George's Dock were filled in and the site is now the Pier Head.

Along with the Albert Dock and others in the immediate vicinity, Canning Dock was abandoned as a commercial shipping facility in 1972 due to the rising cost of dredging and falling numbers in traffic. It was restored in the 1980s and provides access to the Canning Graving Docks, which are part of the Merseyside Maritime Museum.

 

LIVERPOOL CITY CENTRE 2012

  

See where this picture was taken. [?]

Calving front of the Upsala Glacier (Argentina). This glacier has been thinning and retreating at a rapid rate during the last decades – from 2006 to 2010, it receded 43.7 yards (40 meters) per year. During summer 2012, large calving events prevented boat access to the glacier.

 

To learn about the contributions of glaciers to sea level rise, visit:

www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/glacier-sea-rise.html

 

Credit: Etienne Berthier, Université de Toulouse

 

NASA image use policy.

 

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission.

 

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Have a look to my other shots from this amazing city: Mainhattan City Lights | Zoom: Entering The Matrix | Frankfurt Skyline | SOS -------------------------------------------------------------- Follow me on: Instagram -------------------------------------------------------------- Frankfurt am Main , commonly known as Frankfurt, is the largest city in the German state of Hesse and the fifth-largest city in Germany, with a 2012 population of 687,775. The urban area had an estimated population of 2,300,000 in 2010. The city is at the centre of the larger Frankfurt Rhine-Main Metropolitan Region which has a population of 5,600,000 and is Germany's second-largest metropolitan region. Since the enlargement of the European Union in 2013, the geographic centre of the EU is about 40 km (25 mi) east of Frankfurt. Frankfurt is the largest financial centre in continental Europe and ranks among the world's leading financial centres. It is home to the European Central Bank, Deutsche Bundesbank, Frankfurt Stock Exchange and several large commercial banks. The European Central Bank is the central bank of the eurozone, consisting of 18 EU member states that have adopted the euro (€) as their common currency and sole legal tender. The Deutsche Bundesbank is the central bank of Germany and as such part of the European System of Central Banks. The Frankfurt Stock Exchange is one of the world's largest stock exchanges by market capitalization and accounts for over 90 percent of the turnover in the German market. In 2010, 63 national and 152 international banks had their registered offices in Frankfurt, including the headquarters of the major German banks, notably Deutsche Bank, Commerzbank, DZ Bank and KfW, as well as 41 representative offices of international banks. via 500px ift.tt/1hX00gG

The galaxy pictured here is NGC 4424, located in the constellation of Virgo. It is not visible with the naked eye but has been captured here with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope.

 

Although it may not be obvious from this image, NGC 4424 is in fact a spiral galaxy. In this image it is seen more or less edge on, but from above, you would be able to see the arms of the galaxy wrapping around its center to give the characteristic spiral form.

 

In 2012, astronomers observed a supernova in NGC 4424 — a violent explosion marking the end of a star’s life. During a supernova explosion, a single star can often outshine an entire galaxy. However, the supernova in NGC 4424, dubbed SN 2012cg, cannot be seen here as the image was taken ten years prior to the explosion. Along the central region of the galaxy, clouds of dust block the light from distant stars and create dark patches.

 

To the left of NGC 4424 there are two bright objects in the frame. The brightest is another, smaller galaxy known as LEDA 213994 and the object closer to NGC 4424 is an anonymous star in our Milky Way.

 

Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA, Acknowledgement: Gilles Chapdelaine

 

NASA image use policy.

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission.

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Due to "chasing" European 2012 and also going back to camp for a 2 week NS reservist , i had been hibernating on photography....

 

With the official opening of garden by the bay on 29th june 2012, what could be a better way to resume my photography journey with a big bang upload of photos of it...

 

How can such a big project open without fireworks ???? I was surprise when i found out therefore i make use of the NDP combined rehersal's firework to complete Gardens By The Bay Opening !

 

My remote shutter release was spoilt at the crucial moment whereby the firework is going to start and i had no choice to do intellegient guessing for the correct exposure...Luckily the firework was not too intense and i was able to capture the firework in a single exposure between 20-30sec and f8-f11.

  

View my flickr set on gardens by the bay using the following link

 

www.flickr.com/photos/gwwang/sets/72157630358093212/

 

.:Taken from From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:.

About Marina Bay Sands

 

Marina Bay Sands (traditional Chinese: 濱海灣金沙; simplified Chinese: 滨海湾金沙) is an integrated resort fronting Marina Bay in Singapore. Developed by Las Vegas Sands, it is billed as the world's most expensive standalone casino property at S$8 billion, including cost of the prime land.[1][2]

With the casino complete, the resort features a 2,561-room hotel, a 1,300,000-square-foot (120,000 m2) convention-exhibition centre, the 800,000-square-foot (74,000 m2) The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands mall, an iconic ArtScience museum, two large theatres, seven "celebrity chef" restaurants, two floating Crystal Pavilions, an ice skating rink, and the world's largest atrium casino with 500 tables and 1,600 slot machines. The complex is topped by a 340m-long SkyPark with a capacity of 3,900 people and a 150m infinity swimming pool, set on top of the world's largest public cantilevered platform, which overhangs the north tower by 67m.[3][4] The 20-hectare resort was designed by Moshe Safdie Architects. The local architect of record was Aedas Singapore, and engineering was provided by Arup and Parsons Brinkerhoff (MEP). The main contractor was Ssangyong Engineering and Construction.[5]

Originally set to open in 2009, Las Vegas Sands faced delays caused by escalating costs of material and labour shortages from the onset. The severe global financial crisis also pressured the company to delay its projects elsewhere to complete the integrated resort.[6] Although Marina Bay Sands has been compared on scale and development costs to MGM's CityCenter, the latter is a mixed-use development, with condominium properties (comprising three of the seven main structures) being sold off.[7][8]

The resort was officially opened with a two-day celebration on 23 June 2010 at 3.18 pm, after a partial opening (which included the casino) on 27 April 2010.[9] The SkyPark opened a day later on 24 June 2010. The theatres were completed in time for the first performance by Riverdance on 30 November 2010. The floating pavilions are still being built and are expected to be fully completed by 2011. The indoor skating rink, which uses artificial ice, opened to a performance by Michelle Kwan on 18 December 2010. The ArtScience Museum opened to the public and the debut of a 13-minute light, laser and water spectacle called Wonder Full on 19 February 2011 marked the full completion of the entire Integrated Resort.

The grand opening of Marina Bay Sands was held on 17 February 2011. It also marked the opening of the seven celebrity chef restaurants. The highly-anticipated Broadway musical The Lion King debuted on 3 March 2011.[10] The last portion of the Marina Bay Sands, the floating pavilions, were finally opened to the public when the two tenants (Louis Vuitton and Pangaea Club) opened on 18 September 2011 and 22 September 2011 respectively.

 

About Garden by the Bay

Gardens by the Bay consists of three distinctive waterfront gardens – Bay South, Bay East and Bay Central, spanning a total of 101 hectares. They are set in the heart of Singapore’s new downtown Marina Bay, encircling the Marina Reservoir like a green necklace. The Gardens will complement the array of attractions around Marina Bay.

 

Gardens by the Bay is an integral part of a strategy by the Singapore government that further transforms Singapore from a ‘Garden City’ to a ‘City in a Garden’, in which the city is woven into a green and floral tapestry. This aims to raise the quality of life in Singapore with a more holistic and all-encompassing programme that enhances greenery and flora in the city. First announced to the public by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during the National Day Rally in August 2005, Gardens by the Bay will become Singapore’s premier urban outdoor recreation space, and a national icon.

 

An international competition for the design of the master plan was held in January 2006 to elicit the best designs for the Gardens. This attracted more than 70 entries submitted by 170 firms from 24 countries, from which two firms – Grant Associates and Gustafson Porter – were eventually awarded the master plan design for the Bay South and Bay East Gardens respectively.

 

The Gardens are being developed in phases. Bay South is currently being constructed and is slated to be completed by June 2012. Bay East has been developed as an interim park in support of the Youth Olympic Games 2010, and is scheduled to open to the public in late 2011 or early 2012. The full master plan implementation of Bay East and the development of Bay Central are part of the next phase of development.

 

...:Taken from From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:.

The Singapore Flyer is a giant Ferris wheel located in Singapore, constructed in 2005–2008. Described by its operators as an observation wheel,[2] it reaches 42 stories high, with a total height of 165 m (541 ft), making it the tallest Ferris wheel in the world, 5 m (16 ft) taller than the Star of Nanchang and 30 m (98 ft) taller than the London Eye.

Situated on the southeast tip of the Marina Centre reclaimed land, it comprises a 150 m (492 ft) diameter wheel, built over a three-story terminal building which houses shops, bars and restaurants, and offers broad views of the city centre and beyond to about 45 km (28 mi), including the Indonesian islands of Batam and Bintan, as well as Johor, Malaysia.

The final capsule was installed on 2 October 2007, the wheel started rotating on 11 February 2008 and it officially opened to the public on 1 March 2008.[1] Tickets for rides on the first 3 nights were sold out for S$8,888 (US$6,271), an auspicious number in Chinese culture.[2] The grand opening for the Flyer was held on 15 April 2008.[3]

Each of the 28 air-conditioned capsules is capable of holding 28 passengers, and a complete rotation of the wheel takes about 30 minutes.[4] Initially rotating in a counter-clockwise direction when viewed from Marina Centre, its direction was changed on 4 August 2008 under the advice of Feng shui masters.[5]

 

.:From www.nparks.gov.sg/cms/index.php?option=com_news&task=... :.

About Super trees

Concept and Overview

 

•Supertrees are uniquely designed vertical gardens ranging from 25 to 50 metres in height (9 to 16 storey), with emphasis placed on the vertical display of tropical flowering climbers, epiphytes and ferns.

•There are a total of 18 Supertrees, all located within Bay South at Gardens by the Bay. Out of the 18 Supertrees, twelve are situated in the Supertree Grove while the remaining six are placed in clusters of threes near the Arrival Square and Dragonfly Lake.

•Given the relatively short time span to create a garden from reclaimed land, the Supertrees provide an immediate scale and dimension to the Gardens while marrying the form and function of mature trees.

•They also create height to balance the current and future tall developments in the Marina Bay area.

•In the day, the Supertrees' large canopies provide shade and shelter. At night, the Supertrees will come alive with lighting and projected media.

•Eleven of the Supertrees are embedded with environmentally sustainable functions.

•A 128-metre-long aerial walkway will connect the two 42-metre Supertrees in the Supertree Grove and enable visitors to take in a different view of the Gardens from a height of 22 metres.

•The 50-metre Supertree will have a treetop bistro that will offer a panoramic view of the Gardens and surrounding Marina Bay area, while F&B outlets located in the Supertree Grove will offer a casual dining experience amidst the lush garden setting. These are among the many dining options that will be available in the Gardens.

•Visitors can look forward to getting up-close to the Supertrees when Bay South officially opens in June 2012.

 

Construction

The Supertree comprises four major parts:

•Reinforcement concrete core - Inner vertical structure that upholds the Supertree;

•Trunk - A steel frame that will be attached around the reinforcement concrete core;

•Planting panels - Installed on the trunk in preparation for the planting of the living skin;

•Canopy - Shaped like an inverted umbrella, the canopy will be assembled and hoisted via a hydraulic jack system (with the exception of the 50m Supertree canopy which will be assembled at its final height).

 

Environmentally Sustainable Functions

•Eleven Supertrees will have canopies embedded with environmentally sustainable functions.

•Some will have photovoltaic cells to harvest solar energy for lighting up the Supertrees. Some will be integrated with the cooled conservatories and serve as air exhaust receptacles.

 

Plants

•Over 162,900 plants comprising more than 200 species and varieties of bromeliads, orchids, ferns and tropical flowering climbers will be planted on the 18 Supertrees.

•Examples of some of the species that will be planted on the Supertrees include the Tillandsia stricta from Brazil, Tillandsia fasciculate from Panama, Cattleya maxima from Ecuador, and Pseudorhipsalis from Costa Rica.

•The plants are chosen based on the following considerations:

◦Suitable for vertical planting

◦Lightweight and hardy

◦Soil-less

◦Easy to maintain

◦Suitable for Singapore's Climate

◦Not commonly found in Singapore

◦Visually interesting

•The Supertrees will have different planting schemes in various colours ranging from warm tones like reds, browns, orange and yellows, to cooler hues like silver and pink.

 

.:From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:.

About Garden by the Bay

Gardens by the Bay consists of three distinctive waterfront gardens – Bay South, Bay East and Bay Central, spanning a total of 101 hectares. They are set in the heart of Singapore’s new downtown Marina Bay, encircling the Marina Reservoir like a green necklace. The Gardens will complement the array of attractions around Marina Bay.

 

Gardens by the Bay is an integral part of a strategy by the Singapore government that further transforms Singapore from a ‘Garden City’ to a ‘City in a Garden’, in which the city is woven into a green and floral tapestry. This aims to raise the quality of life in Singapore with a more holistic and all-encompassing programme that enhances greenery and flora in the city. First announced to the public by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during the National Day Rally in August 2005, Gardens by the Bay will become Singapore’s premier urban outdoor recreation space, and a national icon.

 

An international competition for the design of the master plan was held in January 2006 to elicit the best designs for the Gardens. This attracted more than 70 entries submitted by 170 firms from 24 countries, from which two firms – Grant Associates and Gustafson Porter – were eventually awarded the master plan design for the Bay South and Bay East Gardens respectively.

 

The Gardens are being developed in phases. Bay South is currently being constructed and is slated to be completed by June 2012. Bay East has been developed as an interim park in support of the Youth Olympic Games 2010, and is scheduled to open to the public in late 2011 or early 2012. The full master plan implementation of Bay East and the development of Bay Central are part of the next phase of development.

 

you can visit my website at www.on9cloud.com .

 

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Royal Suite // Master Suite // Bedroom // Living room // 2x LCD TV's with Bose Surround Sound System // Fully stocked Mini-Bar // Complimentary mineral water // 24h room service // Extravagant colors // Dinning table for 4 // Four Poster King Size Bed // Alessi bathroom incl. eggshell bathtub // separate shower stall // Double Crowne Plaza bath amenities // bathrobes // double sinks // eggshell toilet // large wardrobe space and great views over the hustle and bustle of the Blanchardstown Shopping Centre.

 

Crowne Plaza Hotel, Blanchardstown, Dublin, Republic of Ireland

 

Leica D-Lux 5

 

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Amersfoort [ˈaːmərsfoːrt] is a municipality and the second largest city of the province of Utrecht in central Netherlands. The city is growing quickly but has a well-preserved and protected medieval centre. Amersfoort is one of the largest railway junctions in the country, because of its location on two of the Netherlands' main east-west and north-south rail lines. The city celebrated its 750th birthday in 2009.

 

The municipality of Amersfoort consists of the following cities, towns, villages and/or districts: Bergkwartier, Bosgebied, Binnenstad, Hoogland, Hoogland-West, Kattenbroek, Kruiskamp, de Koppel, Liendert, Rustenburg, Nieuwland, Randenbroek, Schuilenburg, Schothorst, Soesterkwartier, Vathorst, Hooglanderveen, Vermeerkwartier, Leusderkwartier, Zielhorst and Stoutenburg-Noord.

 

Hunter gatherers set up camps in the Amersfoort region in the Mesolithic period. Archaeologists have found traces of these camps, such as the remains of hearths, and sometimes microlithic flint objects, to the north of the city.

 

Remains of settlements in the Amersfoort area from around 1000 BC have been found, but the name Amersfoort, after a ford in the Amer River, today called the Eem, did not appear until the 11th century. The city grew around what is now known as the central square, the Hof, where the Bishops of Utrecht established a court in order to control the "Gelderse Vallei (nl)" area. It was granted city rights in 1259 by the bishop of Utrecht, Henry I van Vianden. A first defensive wall, made out of brick, was finished around 1300. Soon after, the need for enlargement of the city became apparent and around 1380 the construction of a new wall was begun and completed around 1450. The famous Koppelpoort, a combined land and water gate, is part of this second wall. The first wall was demolished and houses were built in its place. Today's Muurhuizen (wallhouses) Street is at the exact location of the first wall; the fronts of the houses are built on top of the first city wall's foundations.

 

The Onze-Lieve-Vrouwentoren tower (The Tower of Our Lady) is one of the tallest medieval church towers in the Netherlands at 98 metres (322 ft). The construction of the tower and the church was started in 1444. The church was destroyed by an explosion in 1787, but the tower survived, and the layout of the church still can be discerned today through the use of different types of stone in the pavement of the open space that was created. It is now the reference point of the RD coordinate system, the coordinate grid used by the Dutch topographical service: the RD coordinates are (155.000, 463.000).

 

The inner city of Amersfoort has been preserved well since the Middle Ages. Apart from the Onze-Lieve-Vrouwetoren, the Koppelpoort, and the Muurhuizen (Wall-houses), there is also the Sint-Joriskerk (Saint George's church), the canal-system with its bridges, as well as medieval and other old buildings; many are designated as national monuments. In the Middle Ages, Amersfoort was an important centre for the textile industry, and there were a large number of breweries.

 

In the 18th century the city flourished because of the cultivation of tobacco, but from about 1800 onwards began to decline. The decline was halted by the establishment of the first railway connection in 1863, and, some years later, by the building of a substantial number of infantry and cavalry barracks, which were needed to defend the western cities of the Netherlands. After the 1920s growth stalled again, until in 1970 the national government designated Amersfoort, then numbering some 70,000 inhabitants, as a "growth city". In 2009 the population was 140,000 plus, with an expected 150,000 by 2012.

 

source: Wikipedia

The Ferrari F12 Berlinetta is a front mid-engine, rear-wheel-drive grand tourer produced by Italian sports car manufacturer Ferrari. The F12 berlinetta, introduced to the public at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show, replaces the Ferrari 599 series grand tourers.The F12berlinetta was named "The Supercar of the Year 2012" by Top Gear.

 

Engine

 

The F12berlinetta uses a 6,262 cc (382 cu in), naturally aspirated 65° V12 engine shared with the Ferrari FF, producing 740 PS (544 kW; 730 hp) at 8500 rpm and 690 N·m (509 lb·ft) of torque at 6000 rpm, making it the most powerful road-legal Ferrari to date. This allows the F12berlinetta to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 3.1 seconds, 0 to 200 km/h (120 mph) in 8.5 seconds to a top speed of over 340 km/h (210 mph).

 

The engine of the F12berlinetta has been designed to be more efficient than that of the 599, as well as more powerful. The engine management system is fitted with Ferrari's HELE start-stop system to reduce fuel consumption when idling. Ferrari reports that the F12berlinetta can achieve 18 mpg-imp (15.7 L/100 km; 15.0 mpg-US) – a 30% improvement over the 599 – and produces CO2 emissions of 350 g/km.

 

Transmission

 

In common with the California, 458 Italia and FF, the F12berlinetta transmits power through a 7-speed dual-clutch automated semi-automatic gearbox operated by the driver using 'paddles' behind the steering wheel. Compared to similar models, the F12berlinetta uses shortened gear ratios to match the power of the engine.

 

Chassis

 

The F12berlinetta is built around an aluminium space frame chassis co-developed with Scaglietti. The chassis is made up of 12 different aluminium alloys and improves structural rigidity by 20% over the 599, whilst reducing weight by 70 kg (150 lb). The centre of gravity has been lowered by around 25 mm (0.98 in). The F12berlinetta's weight distribution is 46% front, 54% rear.

 

Similarly to other contemporary Ferrari models, the F12berlinetta uses Ferrari's third generation CCM3 carbon ceramic disc brakes with ABS, SCM-E magnetorheological suspension, an electronic limited slip differential, ESP Premium stability control and F1-Trac traction control. The car's stability and traction control, suspension and other settings are controlled by the Manettino dial mounted on the steering wheel.

 

Tyres

 

The F12berlinetta is fitted with Michelin Pilot Super Sport tyres, with the tyre codes 255/35ZR20 at the front and 315/35ZR20 at the rear.

 

Aerodynamics

 

The F12berlinetta makes use of aerodynamic techniques based on Ferrari's 599XX and Formula One programmes, developed with wind tunnel and CFD testing. A notable feature is the Aero Bridge, an air channel running from the bonnet, through the flanks and along the sides of the vehicle, creating an effect that increases downforce. Another feature is Active Brake Cooling ducts, which open to direct cooling air only when the brakes are hot, keeping them closed at other times to reduce aerodynamic drag. The F12berlinetta produces 123 kg (270 lb) of downforce at 200 km/h (120 mph) – an increase of 76% over the 599 GTB – and has a drag coefficient of 0.299.

Performance

 

Ferrari reports that the F12berlinetta is capable of lapping the Fiorano test circuit in 1 minute, 23 seconds; 1.0 second faster than the 599 GTO, 1.9 seconds faster than the Enzo Ferrari, 2.0 seconds faster than the 458 Italia and 3.5 seconds faster than the 599 GTB.

Amersfoort [ˈaːmərsfoːrt] is a municipality and the second largest city of the province of Utrecht in central Netherlands. The city is growing quickly but has a well-preserved and protected medieval centre. Amersfoort is one of the largest railway junctions in the country, because of its location on two of the Netherlands' main east-west and north-south rail lines. The city celebrated its 750th birthday in 2009.

 

The municipality of Amersfoort consists of the following cities, towns, villages and/or districts: Bergkwartier, Bosgebied, Binnenstad, Hoogland, Hoogland-West, Kattenbroek, Kruiskamp, de Koppel, Liendert, Rustenburg, Nieuwland, Randenbroek, Schuilenburg, Schothorst, Soesterkwartier, Vathorst, Hooglanderveen, Vermeerkwartier, Leusderkwartier, Zielhorst and Stoutenburg-Noord.

 

Hunter gatherers set up camps in the Amersfoort region in the Mesolithic period. Archaeologists have found traces of these camps, such as the remains of hearths, and sometimes microlithic flint objects, to the north of the city.

 

Remains of settlements in the Amersfoort area from around 1000 BC have been found, but the name Amersfoort, after a ford in the Amer River, today called the Eem, did not appear until the 11th century. The city grew around what is now known as the central square, the Hof, where the Bishops of Utrecht established a court in order to control the "Gelderse Vallei (nl)" area. It was granted city rights in 1259 by the bishop of Utrecht, Henry I van Vianden. A first defensive wall, made out of brick, was finished around 1300. Soon after, the need for enlargement of the city became apparent and around 1380 the construction of a new wall was begun and completed around 1450. The famous Koppelpoort, a combined land and water gate, is part of this second wall. The first wall was demolished and houses were built in its place. Today's Muurhuizen (wallhouses) Street is at the exact location of the first wall; the fronts of the houses are built on top of the first city wall's foundations.

 

The Onze-Lieve-Vrouwentoren tower (The Tower of Our Lady) is one of the tallest medieval church towers in the Netherlands at 98 metres (322 ft). The construction of the tower and the church was started in 1444. The church was destroyed by an explosion in 1787, but the tower survived, and the layout of the church still can be discerned today through the use of different types of stone in the pavement of the open space that was created. It is now the reference point of the RD coordinate system, the coordinate grid used by the Dutch topographical service: the RD coordinates are (155.000, 463.000).

 

The inner city of Amersfoort has been preserved well since the Middle Ages. Apart from the Onze-Lieve-Vrouwetoren, the Koppelpoort, and the Muurhuizen (Wall-houses), there is also the Sint-Joriskerk (Saint George's church), the canal-system with its bridges, as well as medieval and other old buildings; many are designated as national monuments. In the Middle Ages, Amersfoort was an important centre for the textile industry, and there were a large number of breweries.

 

In the 18th century the city flourished because of the cultivation of tobacco, but from about 1800 onwards began to decline. The decline was halted by the establishment of the first railway connection in 1863, and, some years later, by the building of a substantial number of infantry and cavalry barracks, which were needed to defend the western cities of the Netherlands. After the 1920s growth stalled again, until in 1970 the national government designated Amersfoort, then numbering some 70,000 inhabitants, as a "growth city". In 2009 the population was 140,000 plus, with an expected 150,000 by 2012.

 

source: Wikipedia

Due to "chasing" European 2012 and also going back to camp for a 2 week NS reservist , i had been hibernating on photography....

 

With the official opening of garden by the bay on 29th june 2012, what could be a better way to resume my photography journey with a big bang upload of photos of it...

 

How can such a big project open without fireworks ???? I was surprise when i found out therefore i make use of the NDP combined rehersal's firework to complete Gardens By The Bay Opening !

 

My remote shutter release was spoilt at the crucial moment whereby the firework is going to start and i had no choice to do intellegient guessing for the correct exposure...Luckily the firework was not too intense and i was able to capture the firework in a single exposure between 20-30sec and f8-f11.

  

View my flickr set on gardens by the bay using the following link

 

www.flickr.com/photos/gwwang/sets/72157630358093212/

 

.:Taken from From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:.

About Marina Bay Sands

 

Marina Bay Sands (traditional Chinese: 濱海灣金沙; simplified Chinese: 滨海湾金沙) is an integrated resort fronting Marina Bay in Singapore. Developed by Las Vegas Sands, it is billed as the world's most expensive standalone casino property at S$8 billion, including cost of the prime land.[1][2]

With the casino complete, the resort features a 2,561-room hotel, a 1,300,000-square-foot (120,000 m2) convention-exhibition centre, the 800,000-square-foot (74,000 m2) The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands mall, an iconic ArtScience museum, two large theatres, seven "celebrity chef" restaurants, two floating Crystal Pavilions, an ice skating rink, and the world's largest atrium casino with 500 tables and 1,600 slot machines. The complex is topped by a 340m-long SkyPark with a capacity of 3,900 people and a 150m infinity swimming pool, set on top of the world's largest public cantilevered platform, which overhangs the north tower by 67m.[3][4] The 20-hectare resort was designed by Moshe Safdie Architects. The local architect of record was Aedas Singapore, and engineering was provided by Arup and Parsons Brinkerhoff (MEP). The main contractor was Ssangyong Engineering and Construction.[5]

Originally set to open in 2009, Las Vegas Sands faced delays caused by escalating costs of material and labour shortages from the onset. The severe global financial crisis also pressured the company to delay its projects elsewhere to complete the integrated resort.[6] Although Marina Bay Sands has been compared on scale and development costs to MGM's CityCenter, the latter is a mixed-use development, with condominium properties (comprising three of the seven main structures) being sold off.[7][8]

The resort was officially opened with a two-day celebration on 23 June 2010 at 3.18 pm, after a partial opening (which included the casino) on 27 April 2010.[9] The SkyPark opened a day later on 24 June 2010. The theatres were completed in time for the first performance by Riverdance on 30 November 2010. The floating pavilions are still being built and are expected to be fully completed by 2011. The indoor skating rink, which uses artificial ice, opened to a performance by Michelle Kwan on 18 December 2010. The ArtScience Museum opened to the public and the debut of a 13-minute light, laser and water spectacle called Wonder Full on 19 February 2011 marked the full completion of the entire Integrated Resort.

The grand opening of Marina Bay Sands was held on 17 February 2011. It also marked the opening of the seven celebrity chef restaurants. The highly-anticipated Broadway musical The Lion King debuted on 3 March 2011.[10] The last portion of the Marina Bay Sands, the floating pavilions, were finally opened to the public when the two tenants (Louis Vuitton and Pangaea Club) opened on 18 September 2011 and 22 September 2011 respectively.

 

About Garden by the Bay

Gardens by the Bay consists of three distinctive waterfront gardens – Bay South, Bay East and Bay Central, spanning a total of 101 hectares. They are set in the heart of Singapore’s new downtown Marina Bay, encircling the Marina Reservoir like a green necklace. The Gardens will complement the array of attractions around Marina Bay.

 

Gardens by the Bay is an integral part of a strategy by the Singapore government that further transforms Singapore from a ‘Garden City’ to a ‘City in a Garden’, in which the city is woven into a green and floral tapestry. This aims to raise the quality of life in Singapore with a more holistic and all-encompassing programme that enhances greenery and flora in the city. First announced to the public by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during the National Day Rally in August 2005, Gardens by the Bay will become Singapore’s premier urban outdoor recreation space, and a national icon.

 

An international competition for the design of the master plan was held in January 2006 to elicit the best designs for the Gardens. This attracted more than 70 entries submitted by 170 firms from 24 countries, from which two firms – Grant Associates and Gustafson Porter – were eventually awarded the master plan design for the Bay South and Bay East Gardens respectively.

 

The Gardens are being developed in phases. Bay South is currently being constructed and is slated to be completed by June 2012. Bay East has been developed as an interim park in support of the Youth Olympic Games 2010, and is scheduled to open to the public in late 2011 or early 2012. The full master plan implementation of Bay East and the development of Bay Central are part of the next phase of development.

 

...:Taken from From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:.

The Singapore Flyer is a giant Ferris wheel located in Singapore, constructed in 2005–2008. Described by its operators as an observation wheel,[2] it reaches 42 stories high, with a total height of 165 m (541 ft), making it the tallest Ferris wheel in the world, 5 m (16 ft) taller than the Star of Nanchang and 30 m (98 ft) taller than the London Eye.

Situated on the southeast tip of the Marina Centre reclaimed land, it comprises a 150 m (492 ft) diameter wheel, built over a three-story terminal building which houses shops, bars and restaurants, and offers broad views of the city centre and beyond to about 45 km (28 mi), including the Indonesian islands of Batam and Bintan, as well as Johor, Malaysia.

The final capsule was installed on 2 October 2007, the wheel started rotating on 11 February 2008 and it officially opened to the public on 1 March 2008.[1] Tickets for rides on the first 3 nights were sold out for S$8,888 (US$6,271), an auspicious number in Chinese culture.[2] The grand opening for the Flyer was held on 15 April 2008.[3]

Each of the 28 air-conditioned capsules is capable of holding 28 passengers, and a complete rotation of the wheel takes about 30 minutes.[4] Initially rotating in a counter-clockwise direction when viewed from Marina Centre, its direction was changed on 4 August 2008 under the advice of Feng shui masters.[5]

 

.:From www.nparks.gov.sg/cms/index.php?option=com_news&task=... :.

About Super trees

Concept and Overview

 

•Supertrees are uniquely designed vertical gardens ranging from 25 to 50 metres in height (9 to 16 storey), with emphasis placed on the vertical display of tropical flowering climbers, epiphytes and ferns.

•There are a total of 18 Supertrees, all located within Bay South at Gardens by the Bay. Out of the 18 Supertrees, twelve are situated in the Supertree Grove while the remaining six are placed in clusters of threes near the Arrival Square and Dragonfly Lake.

•Given the relatively short time span to create a garden from reclaimed land, the Supertrees provide an immediate scale and dimension to the Gardens while marrying the form and function of mature trees.

•They also create height to balance the current and future tall developments in the Marina Bay area.

•In the day, the Supertrees' large canopies provide shade and shelter. At night, the Supertrees will come alive with lighting and projected media.

•Eleven of the Supertrees are embedded with environmentally sustainable functions.

•A 128-metre-long aerial walkway will connect the two 42-metre Supertrees in the Supertree Grove and enable visitors to take in a different view of the Gardens from a height of 22 metres.

•The 50-metre Supertree will have a treetop bistro that will offer a panoramic view of the Gardens and surrounding Marina Bay area, while F&B outlets located in the Supertree Grove will offer a casual dining experience amidst the lush garden setting. These are among the many dining options that will be available in the Gardens.

•Visitors can look forward to getting up-close to the Supertrees when Bay South officially opens in June 2012.

 

Construction

The Supertree comprises four major parts:

•Reinforcement concrete core - Inner vertical structure that upholds the Supertree;

•Trunk - A steel frame that will be attached around the reinforcement concrete core;

•Planting panels - Installed on the trunk in preparation for the planting of the living skin;

•Canopy - Shaped like an inverted umbrella, the canopy will be assembled and hoisted via a hydraulic jack system (with the exception of the 50m Supertree canopy which will be assembled at its final height).

 

Environmentally Sustainable Functions

•Eleven Supertrees will have canopies embedded with environmentally sustainable functions.

•Some will have photovoltaic cells to harvest solar energy for lighting up the Supertrees. Some will be integrated with the cooled conservatories and serve as air exhaust receptacles.

 

Plants

•Over 162,900 plants comprising more than 200 species and varieties of bromeliads, orchids, ferns and tropical flowering climbers will be planted on the 18 Supertrees.

•Examples of some of the species that will be planted on the Supertrees include the Tillandsia stricta from Brazil, Tillandsia fasciculate from Panama, Cattleya maxima from Ecuador, and Pseudorhipsalis from Costa Rica.

•The plants are chosen based on the following considerations:

◦Suitable for vertical planting

◦Lightweight and hardy

◦Soil-less

◦Easy to maintain

◦Suitable for Singapore's Climate

◦Not commonly found in Singapore

◦Visually interesting

•The Supertrees will have different planting schemes in various colours ranging from warm tones like reds, browns, orange and yellows, to cooler hues like silver and pink.

 

.:From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:.

About Garden by the Bay

Gardens by the Bay consists of three distinctive waterfront gardens – Bay South, Bay East and Bay Central, spanning a total of 101 hectares. They are set in the heart of Singapore’s new downtown Marina Bay, encircling the Marina Reservoir like a green necklace. The Gardens will complement the array of attractions around Marina Bay.

 

Gardens by the Bay is an integral part of a strategy by the Singapore government that further transforms Singapore from a ‘Garden City’ to a ‘City in a Garden’, in which the city is woven into a green and floral tapestry. This aims to raise the quality of life in Singapore with a more holistic and all-encompassing programme that enhances greenery and flora in the city. First announced to the public by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during the National Day Rally in August 2005, Gardens by the Bay will become Singapore’s premier urban outdoor recreation space, and a national icon.

 

An international competition for the design of the master plan was held in January 2006 to elicit the best designs for the Gardens. This attracted more than 70 entries submitted by 170 firms from 24 countries, from which two firms – Grant Associates and Gustafson Porter – were eventually awarded the master plan design for the Bay South and Bay East Gardens respectively.

 

The Gardens are being developed in phases. Bay South is currently being constructed and is slated to be completed by June 2012. Bay East has been developed as an interim park in support of the Youth Olympic Games 2010, and is scheduled to open to the public in late 2011 or early 2012. The full master plan implementation of Bay East and the development of Bay Central are part of the next phase of development.

 

you can visit my website at www.on9cloud.com .

 

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Panzerhaubitze 2000

Dutch Panzerhaubitz fires in Afghanistan above

 

Panzerhaubitze 2000 in profile.

TypeSelf-propelled artillery

Place of originGermany

Service history

WarsWar in Afghanistan

Production history

Designed1996

Unit costUS$4.5 million

Produced1998

Specifications

WeightCombat: 55.8 t (61.5 short tons)

Length11.7 m (38 ft 5 in)

Width3.6 m (11 ft 10 in)

Height3.1 m (10 ft 2 in)

Crew5 (commander, driver, gunner, and two loaders)

Armorwelded steel, 14.5 mm resistant

additional bomblet protection

Main

armament

Rheinmetall 155 mm L52 Artillery Gun

(60 rounds)

3 rounds in 9.0 seconds (Burst)

10 round/min

Secondary

armament

Rheinmetall MG3 7.62 mm machine gun

EngineMTU 881 Ka-500

1,000 PS (986 hp, 736 kW)

Power/weight17.92 PS/t

Suspensiontorsion bar

Operational

range

420 km (261 mi)

SpeedRoad: 67 km/h (41 mph)

Off-road: 45 km/h (28 mph)

 

This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. Please help to improve this article by introducing more precise citations. (February 2010)

The Panzerhaubitze 2000 ("armoured-howitzer 2000"), abbreviated PzH 2000, is a German 155 mm self-propelled howitzer developed by Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW) and Rheinmetall for the German Army. The PzH 2000 is one of the most powerful conventional artillery systems deployed in the 2010s. It is particularly notable for a very high rate of fire; in burst mode it can fire three rounds in 9 seconds, ten rounds in 56 seconds, and can—depending on barrel heating—fire between 10 and 13 rounds per minute continuously. The PzH 2000 has automatic support for up to 5 rounds of Multiple Rounds Simultaneous Impact (MRSI). The replenishment of shells is automated. Two operators can load 60 shells and propelling charges in less than 12 minutes. PzH 2000 has also been selected by the armies of Italy, Netherlands, Greece and Croatia, and more orders are probable as many NATO forces replace their M109 howitzers.

 

Development

 

In 1986 Italy, the United Kingdom, and Germany, agreed to terminate their existing development of the PzH 155-1 (SP70) program, which had run into reliability problems and had design defects, notably being mounted on a modified tank chassis. A new Joint Ballistics Memorandum of Understanding (JBMOU) for a 52 calibre barrel (based on a UK proposal) to replace 39 calibre was nearing agreement. German industry was asked for proposals to build a new design with gun conforming to the JBMOU. Of the proposed designs, Wegmann's was selected.

 

Rheinmetall designed the 155 mm 52-calibre JBMOU compliant gun, which is chromium-lined for its entire 8 metre length and includes a muzzle brake on the end. The gun uses a new modular charge system with six charges (five identical), which can be combined to provide the optimal total charge for the range to the target, as well as the conventional bagged charge systems. Primer is loaded separately via a conveyor belt, and the entire loading, laying and clearing is completely automated. The maximum range of the gun is 30 km with the standard L15A2 round (a UK design for FH-70 and stockpiled by Germany for M109G and FH70), about 35 km with base bleed rounds, and at least 40 km with assisted projectiles. In April 2006 a PzH 2000 shot assisted shells (Denel V-Lap) over a distance of 56 km with a probable maximum range of over 60 km. The gun can also fire the SMArt 155 artillery round, which is used by Germany and Greece.

 

Wegmann supplied both the chassis, sharing some components with the Leopard 1, and the turret for the gun. The system has superb cross-country performance because of its use of continuous tracks and considerable protection in the case of counter-fire. The turret includes a phased array radar on the front glacis for measuring the muzzle velocity of each round fired. Laying data can be automatically provided via encrypted radio from the battery fire direction centre.

 

Wegman eventually won a contract in 1996 for 185 to be delivered to Germany's rapid reaction force, followed by another 410 for the main force. Wegmann and Krauss-Maffei, the two main German military tracked vehicle designers, merged in 1998.

 

A lighter, more air-portable version, using the gun in a module fitted to a lighter chassis, has been developed by Krauss-Maffei. It is called the Artillery Gun Module.

 

In December 2013, Raytheon and the German Army completed compatibility testing for the M982 Excalibur extended range guided artillery shell with the PzH2000. 10 Excaliburs were fired at ranges from 9 to 48 kilometers. Shells hit within three meters of their targets, with an average miss distance of one meter at 48 km. The Excalibur may be accepted by the German Army in 2014.

 

Combat record and alterations

 

The PzH 2000 was used for the first time in combat by the Dutch Army in August 2006 against Taliban targets in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan, in support of Operation Medusa.[4] Since then it has been used regularly in support of coalition troops in Uruzgan province, also in Afghanistan. The PzH 2000 was also used extensively during the Battle of Chora. It is known as "the long arm of ISAF". The gun has been criticised by the Dutch in Uruzgan province as the NBC system designed for use in Europe cannot cope with the high level of dust in Afghanistan. The guns have been modified with additional armor being fitted to the roof to protect against mortar rounds. There have been other reports of problems including the need to keep it in the shade unless actually firing, the damage it does to poorly built roads and a significant 'cold gun' effect necessitating the use of 'warmers'.

 

Since the beginning of June 2010, German ISAF troops at PRT Kunduz have three PzH2000 at their disposal. They were first used on 10 July 2010 to provide support for the recovery of a damaged vehicle. This was the first time in its history the Bundeswehr has used heavy artillery in combat.[5] The PzH2000 also played a key role during Operation Halmazag in November 2010, when the villages of Isa Khel and Quatliam were retaken from the Taliban by German paratroopers.

 

Operators

 

Actual operators

Croatia: Order made for 12 second-hand systems completely modernized and overhauled with spare parts, training and support trucks valued at 55 million USD. To be delivered in 2015 and 2016.

Germany: 185 (to be reduced to 154 with 31 to be kept in storage for possible conversion to AGM mobile artillery module)

 

Greece: 24

Italy: 70

Netherlands: 18 active, 33 in reserve ,6 training

Qatar: 24 ordered, deliveries to commence in late 2014 or early 2015 and conclude in 2018.

 

Exports

A number of armies have tested the system and its ability to provide accurate fire at 40 km has been a major selling point.

 

The PzH 2000 was considered for the US Army's Crusader concept system, but several requirements of the Crusader made it unsuitable. The Crusader specifications placed the crew and gun in separate compartments, allowing a single highly armoured crew compartment to control the firing of an entire battery of guns through intervehicle links. In addition the Crusader included an automated ammunition tender, and an active cooled barrel.

 

The PzH2000 was a contender for Phase 1C of Australia's Land 17 Artillery Replacement Program prior to that phase of the project being cancelled in May 2012.

 

Evaluation operators

Finland: Tested one alongside the 155mm SpGH ZUZANA and AS-90 "Braveheart". Tests ended 1998 and due the cost efficiency issues no SPG system was selected, but instead more of the cheaper 155 K 98 field guns were bought.

Germany: German Navy evaluated a modified system known as MONARC for installation onboard frigates; while the system performed well components were difficult to protect against corrosion.

Sweden: 1 slightly modified but went for the Archer Artillery system instead

 

Courtesy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Due to "chasing" European 2012 and also going back to camp for a 2 week NS reservist , i had been hibernating on photography....

 

With the official opening of garden by the bay on 29th june 2012, what could be a better way to resume my photography journey with a big bang upload of photos of it...

 

How can such a big project open without fireworks ???? I was surprise when i found out therefore i make use of the NDP combined rehersal's firework to complete Gardens By The Bay Opening !

 

My remote shutter release was spoilt at the crucial moment whereby the firework is going to start and i had no choice to do intellegient guessing for the correct exposure...Luckily the firework was not too intense and i was able to capture the firework in a single exposure between 20-30sec and f8-f11.

  

View my flickr set on gardens by the bay using the following link

 

www.flickr.com/photos/gwwang/sets/72157630358093212/

 

.:Taken from From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:.

About Marina Bay Sands

 

Marina Bay Sands (traditional Chinese: 濱海灣金沙; simplified Chinese: 滨海湾金沙) is an integrated resort fronting Marina Bay in Singapore. Developed by Las Vegas Sands, it is billed as the world's most expensive standalone casino property at S$8 billion, including cost of the prime land.[1][2]

With the casino complete, the resort features a 2,561-room hotel, a 1,300,000-square-foot (120,000 m2) convention-exhibition centre, the 800,000-square-foot (74,000 m2) The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands mall, an iconic ArtScience museum, two large theatres, seven "celebrity chef" restaurants, two floating Crystal Pavilions, an ice skating rink, and the world's largest atrium casino with 500 tables and 1,600 slot machines. The complex is topped by a 340m-long SkyPark with a capacity of 3,900 people and a 150m infinity swimming pool, set on top of the world's largest public cantilevered platform, which overhangs the north tower by 67m.[3][4] The 20-hectare resort was designed by Moshe Safdie Architects. The local architect of record was Aedas Singapore, and engineering was provided by Arup and Parsons Brinkerhoff (MEP). The main contractor was Ssangyong Engineering and Construction.[5]

Originally set to open in 2009, Las Vegas Sands faced delays caused by escalating costs of material and labour shortages from the onset. The severe global financial crisis also pressured the company to delay its projects elsewhere to complete the integrated resort.[6] Although Marina Bay Sands has been compared on scale and development costs to MGM's CityCenter, the latter is a mixed-use development, with condominium properties (comprising three of the seven main structures) being sold off.[7][8]

The resort was officially opened with a two-day celebration on 23 June 2010 at 3.18 pm, after a partial opening (which included the casino) on 27 April 2010.[9] The SkyPark opened a day later on 24 June 2010. The theatres were completed in time for the first performance by Riverdance on 30 November 2010. The floating pavilions are still being built and are expected to be fully completed by 2011. The indoor skating rink, which uses artificial ice, opened to a performance by Michelle Kwan on 18 December 2010. The ArtScience Museum opened to the public and the debut of a 13-minute light, laser and water spectacle called Wonder Full on 19 February 2011 marked the full completion of the entire Integrated Resort.

The grand opening of Marina Bay Sands was held on 17 February 2011. It also marked the opening of the seven celebrity chef restaurants. The highly-anticipated Broadway musical The Lion King debuted on 3 March 2011.[10] The last portion of the Marina Bay Sands, the floating pavilions, were finally opened to the public when the two tenants (Louis Vuitton and Pangaea Club) opened on 18 September 2011 and 22 September 2011 respectively.

 

About Garden by the Bay

Gardens by the Bay consists of three distinctive waterfront gardens – Bay South, Bay East and Bay Central, spanning a total of 101 hectares. They are set in the heart of Singapore’s new downtown Marina Bay, encircling the Marina Reservoir like a green necklace. The Gardens will complement the array of attractions around Marina Bay.

 

Gardens by the Bay is an integral part of a strategy by the Singapore government that further transforms Singapore from a ‘Garden City’ to a ‘City in a Garden’, in which the city is woven into a green and floral tapestry. This aims to raise the quality of life in Singapore with a more holistic and all-encompassing programme that enhances greenery and flora in the city. First announced to the public by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during the National Day Rally in August 2005, Gardens by the Bay will become Singapore’s premier urban outdoor recreation space, and a national icon.

 

An international competition for the design of the master plan was held in January 2006 to elicit the best designs for the Gardens. This attracted more than 70 entries submitted by 170 firms from 24 countries, from which two firms – Grant Associates and Gustafson Porter – were eventually awarded the master plan design for the Bay South and Bay East Gardens respectively.

 

The Gardens are being developed in phases. Bay South is currently being constructed and is slated to be completed by June 2012. Bay East has been developed as an interim park in support of the Youth Olympic Games 2010, and is scheduled to open to the public in late 2011 or early 2012. The full master plan implementation of Bay East and the development of Bay Central are part of the next phase of development.

 

...:Taken from From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:.

The Singapore Flyer is a giant Ferris wheel located in Singapore, constructed in 2005–2008. Described by its operators as an observation wheel,[2] it reaches 42 stories high, with a total height of 165 m (541 ft), making it the tallest Ferris wheel in the world, 5 m (16 ft) taller than the Star of Nanchang and 30 m (98 ft) taller than the London Eye.

Situated on the southeast tip of the Marina Centre reclaimed land, it comprises a 150 m (492 ft) diameter wheel, built over a three-story terminal building which houses shops, bars and restaurants, and offers broad views of the city centre and beyond to about 45 km (28 mi), including the Indonesian islands of Batam and Bintan, as well as Johor, Malaysia.

The final capsule was installed on 2 October 2007, the wheel started rotating on 11 February 2008 and it officially opened to the public on 1 March 2008.[1] Tickets for rides on the first 3 nights were sold out for S$8,888 (US$6,271), an auspicious number in Chinese culture.[2] The grand opening for the Flyer was held on 15 April 2008.[3]

Each of the 28 air-conditioned capsules is capable of holding 28 passengers, and a complete rotation of the wheel takes about 30 minutes.[4] Initially rotating in a counter-clockwise direction when viewed from Marina Centre, its direction was changed on 4 August 2008 under the advice of Feng shui masters.[5]

 

.:From www.nparks.gov.sg/cms/index.php?option=com_news&task=... :.

About Super trees

Concept and Overview

 

•Supertrees are uniquely designed vertical gardens ranging from 25 to 50 metres in height (9 to 16 storey), with emphasis placed on the vertical display of tropical flowering climbers, epiphytes and ferns.

•There are a total of 18 Supertrees, all located within Bay South at Gardens by the Bay. Out of the 18 Supertrees, twelve are situated in the Supertree Grove while the remaining six are placed in clusters of threes near the Arrival Square and Dragonfly Lake.

•Given the relatively short time span to create a garden from reclaimed land, the Supertrees provide an immediate scale and dimension to the Gardens while marrying the form and function of mature trees.

•They also create height to balance the current and future tall developments in the Marina Bay area.

•In the day, the Supertrees' large canopies provide shade and shelter. At night, the Supertrees will come alive with lighting and projected media.

•Eleven of the Supertrees are embedded with environmentally sustainable functions.

•A 128-metre-long aerial walkway will connect the two 42-metre Supertrees in the Supertree Grove and enable visitors to take in a different view of the Gardens from a height of 22 metres.

•The 50-metre Supertree will have a treetop bistro that will offer a panoramic view of the Gardens and surrounding Marina Bay area, while F&B outlets located in the Supertree Grove will offer a casual dining experience amidst the lush garden setting. These are among the many dining options that will be available in the Gardens.

•Visitors can look forward to getting up-close to the Supertrees when Bay South officially opens in June 2012.

 

Construction

The Supertree comprises four major parts:

•Reinforcement concrete core - Inner vertical structure that upholds the Supertree;

•Trunk - A steel frame that will be attached around the reinforcement concrete core;

•Planting panels - Installed on the trunk in preparation for the planting of the living skin;

•Canopy - Shaped like an inverted umbrella, the canopy will be assembled and hoisted via a hydraulic jack system (with the exception of the 50m Supertree canopy which will be assembled at its final height).

 

Environmentally Sustainable Functions

•Eleven Supertrees will have canopies embedded with environmentally sustainable functions.

•Some will have photovoltaic cells to harvest solar energy for lighting up the Supertrees. Some will be integrated with the cooled conservatories and serve as air exhaust receptacles.

 

Plants

•Over 162,900 plants comprising more than 200 species and varieties of bromeliads, orchids, ferns and tropical flowering climbers will be planted on the 18 Supertrees.

•Examples of some of the species that will be planted on the Supertrees include the Tillandsia stricta from Brazil, Tillandsia fasciculate from Panama, Cattleya maxima from Ecuador, and Pseudorhipsalis from Costa Rica.

•The plants are chosen based on the following considerations:

◦Suitable for vertical planting

◦Lightweight and hardy

◦Soil-less

◦Easy to maintain

◦Suitable for Singapore's Climate

◦Not commonly found in Singapore

◦Visually interesting

•The Supertrees will have different planting schemes in various colours ranging from warm tones like reds, browns, orange and yellows, to cooler hues like silver and pink.

 

.:From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:.

About Garden by the Bay

Gardens by the Bay consists of three distinctive waterfront gardens – Bay South, Bay East and Bay Central, spanning a total of 101 hectares. They are set in the heart of Singapore’s new downtown Marina Bay, encircling the Marina Reservoir like a green necklace. The Gardens will complement the array of attractions around Marina Bay.

 

Gardens by the Bay is an integral part of a strategy by the Singapore government that further transforms Singapore from a ‘Garden City’ to a ‘City in a Garden’, in which the city is woven into a green and floral tapestry. This aims to raise the quality of life in Singapore with a more holistic and all-encompassing programme that enhances greenery and flora in the city. First announced to the public by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during the National Day Rally in August 2005, Gardens by the Bay will become Singapore’s premier urban outdoor recreation space, and a national icon.

 

An international competition for the design of the master plan was held in January 2006 to elicit the best designs for the Gardens. This attracted more than 70 entries submitted by 170 firms from 24 countries, from which two firms – Grant Associates and Gustafson Porter – were eventually awarded the master plan design for the Bay South and Bay East Gardens respectively.

 

The Gardens are being developed in phases. Bay South is currently being constructed and is slated to be completed by June 2012. Bay East has been developed as an interim park in support of the Youth Olympic Games 2010, and is scheduled to open to the public in late 2011 or early 2012. The full master plan implementation of Bay East and the development of Bay Central are part of the next phase of development.

 

you can visit my website at www.on9cloud.com .

 

Do not use my photos in anyway without my explicit permission.

you can contact me using the form at www.on9cloud.com/contact regarding your usage of photo

...... ..

 

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Wikipedia: "Mount Batur (Gunung Batur) is an active volcano located at the center of two concentric calderas north west of Mount Agung, Bali, Indonesia. The south east side of the larger 10×13 km caldera contains a caldera lake. The inner 7.5-kilometer-wide caldera, which was formed during emplacement of the Bali (or Ubud) ignimbrite, has been dated at about 23,670 and 28,500 years ago.

  

The southeast wall of the inner caldera lies beneath Lake Batur; Batur cone has been constructed within the inner caldera to a height above the outer caldera rim. The Batur stratovolcano has produced vents over much of the inner caldera, but a NE-SW fissure system has localized the Batur I, II, and III craters along the summit ridge. Historical eruptions have been characterized by mild-to-moderate explosive activity sometimes accompanied by lava emission. Basaltic lava flows from both summit and flank vents have reached the caldera floor and the shores of Lake Batur in historical time. The caldera contains an active, 700-metre-tall stratovolcano rising above the surface of Lake Batur. The first historically documented eruption of Batur was in 1804, and it has been frequently active since then. The substantial lava field from the 1968 eruption is visible today when viewed from Kintamani, a town that stradles the southwest ridge of the greater caldera.

 

The caldera is populated and includes the four main villages of Kedisan, Songan, Trunyan and Toya Bungkah. The locals largely rely on agriculture for income but tourism has become increasingly popular due to the relatively straightforward trek to the summit of the central crater.

 

The lake, Danau Batur, is the largest crater lake on the island of Bali and is a good source of fish.

 

On September 20, 2012 UNESCO has made Mount Batur Caldera a part of the Global Geopark Network"

 

Here you can see the lake and two volcanos in the background, one of which is Mt.Agung.

NASA image acquired April 18 - October 23, 2012

 

This image of Asia and Australia at night is a composite assembled from data acquired by the Suomi NPP satellite in April and October 2012. The new data was mapped over existing Blue Marble imagery of Earth to provide a realistic view of the planet.

 

The nighttime view was made possible by the new satellite’s “day-night band” of the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite. VIIRS detects light in a range of wavelengths from green to near-infrared and uses filtering techniques to observe dim signals such as city lights, gas flares, auroras, wildfires, and reflected moonlight. In this case, auroras, fires, and other stray light have been removed to emphasize the city lights.

 

“Night time imagery provides an intuitively graspable view of our planet,” says William Stefanov, a scientist in NASA’s International Space Station program office who has worked with similar images from astronauts. “City lights are an excellent means to track urban and suburban growth, which feeds into planning for energy use and urban hazards, for studying urban heat islands, and for initializing climate models.”

 

Named for satellite meteorology pioneer Verner Suomi, NPP flies over any given point on Earth's surface twice each day at roughly 1:30 a.m. and p.m. The polar-orbiting satellite flies 824 kilometers (512 miles) above the surface, sending its data once per orbit to a ground station in Svalbard, Norway, and continuously to local direct broadcast users distributed around the world. The mission is managed by NASA with operational support from NOAA and its Joint Polar Satellite System, which manages the satellite's ground system.

 

NASA Earth Observatory image by Robert Simmon, using Suomi NPP VIIRS data provided courtesy of Chris Elvidge (NOAA National Geophysical Data Center). Suomi NPP is the result of a partnership between NASA, NOAA, and the Department of Defense. Caption by Mike Carlowicz.

 

Instrument: Suomi NPP - VIIRS

 

Credit: NASA Earth Observatory

 

Click here to view all of the Earth at Night 2012 images

 

Click here to read more about this image

 

NASA image use policy.

 

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission.

 

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My new Online Star Photography Post Processing Workshop Page is up and running. I will be holding these every few weeks so grab a spot that fits your schedule:)

 

Here are the dates for my summer star photography workshops! If you wanna learn to shoot the stars here is your chance:) | Under the Stars Night Photography Workshops |

 

| www.DaveMorrowPhotography.com | Photography Portfolio | Google+ | 500PX | Facebook |

 

I have included all of the software/hardware and different cameras, lenses, and tools that I use for photography in the About Me section. It also includes some awesome websites that will help you find great places to shoot.

 

Currently I am putting together a set of 50 great photography destinations in the Pacific Northwest. All locations are geo-tagged, so you can check them out yourself-----> PACNW Top 50

 

All photos are free to download in high resolution from my website for your desktop wallpaper or other fun & personal stuff like that. They are Creative Commons noncommercial so just give credit and link back to www.DaveMorrowPhotography.com. Please contact me for any commercial usage or licensing info

 

I was sitting in the living room last night processing pics from the weekend, when I noticed a huge moon rising over Seattle. Grabbed my camera and ran up to Kerry Park to get this picture.

 

If you would like to try taking a picture like this yourself, here are the steps I followed:

First I took (9) exposures of the city (-4EV - 4EV) converted to TIFF and blended them in Photomatix.

 

Save Photomatix file in JPEG and exported 5 of the 9 exposures to JPEG. I would really like to use TIFF here but due to the file size of the D800 it really isn't necessary and becomes a huge memory issue.

 

Using Adobe Bridge I opened all 6 files as Layers in Adobe CS5 and blended them together to get the desired Seattle skyline results I wanted.

 

Next I brought in the 6 moon shots that I had taken over an elapsed time as layers as well.

 

I set each of these layers to "lighten" mode, you can also use "screen" mode, the results may slightly vary. Mess around to find your best choice:)

 

My final steps are selective sharpen and saturation of certain colors. In this picture, orange and blue.

 

Hopefully you find this helpful and can make something of your own.

 

Enjoy...

 

Details/Equipment:

Camera: Nikon D800

Lens: Nikkor 28-300 f/3.5-5.6G

Tripod: Oben AC-1310 Tripod w/ Ball Head

Computer: 27" iMac i7 3.1GHz 16GB Ram

Programs: Photomatix, Photoshop, and Lightroom for final adjustments

Apollo 11 Mission image - View of the Lunar Module at Tranquility Base. Image taken by Astronaut Neil A. Armstrong during the Apollo 11 Mission. Armstrongs shadow is visible in foreground.

 

Credit: NASA

 

NASA image use policy.

 

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission.

 

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Due to "chasing" European 2012 and also going back to camp for a 2 week NS reservist , i had been hibernating on photography....

 

With the official opening of garden by the bay on 29th june 2012, what could be a better way to resume my photography journey with a big bang upload of photos of it...

 

How can such a big project open without fireworks ???? I was surprise when i found out therefore i make use of the NDP combined rehersal's firework to complete Gardens By The Bay Opening !

 

My remote shutter release was spoilt at the crucial moment whereby the firework is going to start and i had no choice to do intellegient guessing for the correct exposure...Luckily the firework was not too intense and i was able to capture the firework in a single exposure between 20-30sec and f8-f11.

  

View my flickr set on gardens by the bay using the following link

 

www.flickr.com/photos/gwwang/sets/72157630358093212/

 

.:Taken from From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:.

About Marina Bay Sands

 

Marina Bay Sands (traditional Chinese: 濱海灣金沙; simplified Chinese: 滨海湾金沙) is an integrated resort fronting Marina Bay in Singapore. Developed by Las Vegas Sands, it is billed as the world's most expensive standalone casino property at S$8 billion, including cost of the prime land.[1][2]

With the casino complete, the resort features a 2,561-room hotel, a 1,300,000-square-foot (120,000 m2) convention-exhibition centre, the 800,000-square-foot (74,000 m2) The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands mall, an iconic ArtScience museum, two large theatres, seven "celebrity chef" restaurants, two floating Crystal Pavilions, an ice skating rink, and the world's largest atrium casino with 500 tables and 1,600 slot machines. The complex is topped by a 340m-long SkyPark with a capacity of 3,900 people and a 150m infinity swimming pool, set on top of the world's largest public cantilevered platform, which overhangs the north tower by 67m.[3][4] The 20-hectare resort was designed by Moshe Safdie Architects. The local architect of record was Aedas Singapore, and engineering was provided by Arup and Parsons Brinkerhoff (MEP). The main contractor was Ssangyong Engineering and Construction.[5]

Originally set to open in 2009, Las Vegas Sands faced delays caused by escalating costs of material and labour shortages from the onset. The severe global financial crisis also pressured the company to delay its projects elsewhere to complete the integrated resort.[6] Although Marina Bay Sands has been compared on scale and development costs to MGM's CityCenter, the latter is a mixed-use development, with condominium properties (comprising three of the seven main structures) being sold off.[7][8]

The resort was officially opened with a two-day celebration on 23 June 2010 at 3.18 pm, after a partial opening (which included the casino) on 27 April 2010.[9] The SkyPark opened a day later on 24 June 2010. The theatres were completed in time for the first performance by Riverdance on 30 November 2010. The floating pavilions are still being built and are expected to be fully completed by 2011. The indoor skating rink, which uses artificial ice, opened to a performance by Michelle Kwan on 18 December 2010. The ArtScience Museum opened to the public and the debut of a 13-minute light, laser and water spectacle called Wonder Full on 19 February 2011 marked the full completion of the entire Integrated Resort.

The grand opening of Marina Bay Sands was held on 17 February 2011. It also marked the opening of the seven celebrity chef restaurants. The highly-anticipated Broadway musical The Lion King debuted on 3 March 2011.[10] The last portion of the Marina Bay Sands, the floating pavilions, were finally opened to the public when the two tenants (Louis Vuitton and Pangaea Club) opened on 18 September 2011 and 22 September 2011 respectively.

 

About Garden by the Bay

Gardens by the Bay consists of three distinctive waterfront gardens – Bay South, Bay East and Bay Central, spanning a total of 101 hectares. They are set in the heart of Singapore’s new downtown Marina Bay, encircling the Marina Reservoir like a green necklace. The Gardens will complement the array of attractions around Marina Bay.

 

Gardens by the Bay is an integral part of a strategy by the Singapore government that further transforms Singapore from a ‘Garden City’ to a ‘City in a Garden’, in which the city is woven into a green and floral tapestry. This aims to raise the quality of life in Singapore with a more holistic and all-encompassing programme that enhances greenery and flora in the city. First announced to the public by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during the National Day Rally in August 2005, Gardens by the Bay will become Singapore’s premier urban outdoor recreation space, and a national icon.

 

An international competition for the design of the master plan was held in January 2006 to elicit the best designs for the Gardens. This attracted more than 70 entries submitted by 170 firms from 24 countries, from which two firms – Grant Associates and Gustafson Porter – were eventually awarded the master plan design for the Bay South and Bay East Gardens respectively.

 

The Gardens are being developed in phases. Bay South is currently being constructed and is slated to be completed by June 2012. Bay East has been developed as an interim park in support of the Youth Olympic Games 2010, and is scheduled to open to the public in late 2011 or early 2012. The full master plan implementation of Bay East and the development of Bay Central are part of the next phase of development.

 

...:Taken from From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:.

The Singapore Flyer is a giant Ferris wheel located in Singapore, constructed in 2005–2008. Described by its operators as an observation wheel,[2] it reaches 42 stories high, with a total height of 165 m (541 ft), making it the tallest Ferris wheel in the world, 5 m (16 ft) taller than the Star of Nanchang and 30 m (98 ft) taller than the London Eye.

Situated on the southeast tip of the Marina Centre reclaimed land, it comprises a 150 m (492 ft) diameter wheel, built over a three-story terminal building which houses shops, bars and restaurants, and offers broad views of the city centre and beyond to about 45 km (28 mi), including the Indonesian islands of Batam and Bintan, as well as Johor, Malaysia.

The final capsule was installed on 2 October 2007, the wheel started rotating on 11 February 2008 and it officially opened to the public on 1 March 2008.[1] Tickets for rides on the first 3 nights were sold out for S$8,888 (US$6,271), an auspicious number in Chinese culture.[2] The grand opening for the Flyer was held on 15 April 2008.[3]

Each of the 28 air-conditioned capsules is capable of holding 28 passengers, and a complete rotation of the wheel takes about 30 minutes.[4] Initially rotating in a counter-clockwise direction when viewed from Marina Centre, its direction was changed on 4 August 2008 under the advice of Feng shui masters.[5]

 

.:From www.nparks.gov.sg/cms/index.php?option=com_news&task=... :.

About Super trees

Concept and Overview

 

•Supertrees are uniquely designed vertical gardens ranging from 25 to 50 metres in height (9 to 16 storey), with emphasis placed on the vertical display of tropical flowering climbers, epiphytes and ferns.

•There are a total of 18 Supertrees, all located within Bay South at Gardens by the Bay. Out of the 18 Supertrees, twelve are situated in the Supertree Grove while the remaining six are placed in clusters of threes near the Arrival Square and Dragonfly Lake.

•Given the relatively short time span to create a garden from reclaimed land, the Supertrees provide an immediate scale and dimension to the Gardens while marrying the form and function of mature trees.

•They also create height to balance the current and future tall developments in the Marina Bay area.

•In the day, the Supertrees' large canopies provide shade and shelter. At night, the Supertrees will come alive with lighting and projected media.

•Eleven of the Supertrees are embedded with environmentally sustainable functions.

•A 128-metre-long aerial walkway will connect the two 42-metre Supertrees in the Supertree Grove and enable visitors to take in a different view of the Gardens from a height of 22 metres.

•The 50-metre Supertree will have a treetop bistro that will offer a panoramic view of the Gardens and surrounding Marina Bay area, while F&B outlets located in the Supertree Grove will offer a casual dining experience amidst the lush garden setting. These are among the many dining options that will be available in the Gardens.

•Visitors can look forward to getting up-close to the Supertrees when Bay South officially opens in June 2012.

 

Construction

The Supertree comprises four major parts:

•Reinforcement concrete core - Inner vertical structure that upholds the Supertree;

•Trunk - A steel frame that will be attached around the reinforcement concrete core;

•Planting panels - Installed on the trunk in preparation for the planting of the living skin;

•Canopy - Shaped like an inverted umbrella, the canopy will be assembled and hoisted via a hydraulic jack system (with the exception of the 50m Supertree canopy which will be assembled at its final height).

 

Environmentally Sustainable Functions

•Eleven Supertrees will have canopies embedded with environmentally sustainable functions.

•Some will have photovoltaic cells to harvest solar energy for lighting up the Supertrees. Some will be integrated with the cooled conservatories and serve as air exhaust receptacles.

 

Plants

•Over 162,900 plants comprising more than 200 species and varieties of bromeliads, orchids, ferns and tropical flowering climbers will be planted on the 18 Supertrees.

•Examples of some of the species that will be planted on the Supertrees include the Tillandsia stricta from Brazil, Tillandsia fasciculate from Panama, Cattleya maxima from Ecuador, and Pseudorhipsalis from Costa Rica.

•The plants are chosen based on the following considerations:

◦Suitable for vertical planting

◦Lightweight and hardy

◦Soil-less

◦Easy to maintain

◦Suitable for Singapore's Climate

◦Not commonly found in Singapore

◦Visually interesting

•The Supertrees will have different planting schemes in various colours ranging from warm tones like reds, browns, orange and yellows, to cooler hues like silver and pink.

 

.:From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:.

About Garden by the Bay

Gardens by the Bay consists of three distinctive waterfront gardens – Bay South, Bay East and Bay Central, spanning a total of 101 hectares. They are set in the heart of Singapore’s new downtown Marina Bay, encircling the Marina Reservoir like a green necklace. The Gardens will complement the array of attractions around Marina Bay.

 

Gardens by the Bay is an integral part of a strategy by the Singapore government that further transforms Singapore from a ‘Garden City’ to a ‘City in a Garden’, in which the city is woven into a green and floral tapestry. This aims to raise the quality of life in Singapore with a more holistic and all-encompassing programme that enhances greenery and flora in the city. First announced to the public by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during the National Day Rally in August 2005, Gardens by the Bay will become Singapore’s premier urban outdoor recreation space, and a national icon.

 

An international competition for the design of the master plan was held in January 2006 to elicit the best designs for the Gardens. This attracted more than 70 entries submitted by 170 firms from 24 countries, from which two firms – Grant Associates and Gustafson Porter – were eventually awarded the master plan design for the Bay South and Bay East Gardens respectively.

 

The Gardens are being developed in phases. Bay South is currently being constructed and is slated to be completed by June 2012. Bay East has been developed as an interim park in support of the Youth Olympic Games 2010, and is scheduled to open to the public in late 2011 or early 2012. The full master plan implementation of Bay East and the development of Bay Central are part of the next phase of development.

 

you can visit my website at www.on9cloud.com .

 

Do not use my photos in anyway without my explicit permission.

you can contact me using the form at www.on9cloud.com/contact regarding your usage of photo

...... ..

 

Most interesting photos from flickriver

Google+|

Amersfoort [ˈaːmərsfoːrt] is a municipality and the second largest city of the province of Utrecht in central Netherlands. The city is growing quickly but has a well-preserved and protected medieval centre. Amersfoort is one of the largest railway junctions in the country, because of its location on two of the Netherlands' main east-west and north-south rail lines. The city celebrated its 750th birthday in 2009.

 

The municipality of Amersfoort consists of the following cities, towns, villages and/or districts: Bergkwartier, Bosgebied, Binnenstad, Hoogland, Hoogland-West, Kattenbroek, Kruiskamp, de Koppel, Liendert, Rustenburg, Nieuwland, Randenbroek, Schuilenburg, Schothorst, Soesterkwartier, Vathorst, Hooglanderveen, Vermeerkwartier, Leusderkwartier, Zielhorst and Stoutenburg-Noord.

 

Hunter gatherers set up camps in the Amersfoort region in the Mesolithic period. Archaeologists have found traces of these camps, such as the remains of hearths, and sometimes microlithic flint objects, to the north of the city.

 

Remains of settlements in the Amersfoort area from around 1000 BC have been found, but the name Amersfoort, after a ford in the Amer River, today called the Eem, did not appear until the 11th century. The city grew around what is now known as the central square, the Hof, where the Bishops of Utrecht established a court in order to control the "Gelderse Vallei (nl)" area. It was granted city rights in 1259 by the bishop of Utrecht, Henry I van Vianden. A first defensive wall, made out of brick, was finished around 1300. Soon after, the need for enlargement of the city became apparent and around 1380 the construction of a new wall was begun and completed around 1450. The famous Koppelpoort, a combined land and water gate, is part of this second wall. The first wall was demolished and houses were built in its place. Today's Muurhuizen (wallhouses) Street is at the exact location of the first wall; the fronts of the houses are built on top of the first city wall's foundations.

 

The Onze-Lieve-Vrouwentoren tower (The Tower of Our Lady) is one of the tallest medieval church towers in the Netherlands at 98 metres (322 ft). The construction of the tower and the church was started in 1444. The church was destroyed by an explosion in 1787, but the tower survived, and the layout of the church still can be discerned today through the use of different types of stone in the pavement of the open space that was created. It is now the reference point of the RD coordinate system, the coordinate grid used by the Dutch topographical service: the RD coordinates are (155.000, 463.000).

 

The inner city of Amersfoort has been preserved well since the Middle Ages. Apart from the Onze-Lieve-Vrouwetoren, the Koppelpoort, and the Muurhuizen (Wall-houses), there is also the Sint-Joriskerk (Saint George's church), the canal-system with its bridges, as well as medieval and other old buildings; many are designated as national monuments. In the Middle Ages, Amersfoort was an important centre for the textile industry, and there were a large number of breweries.

 

In the 18th century the city flourished because of the cultivation of tobacco, but from about 1800 onwards began to decline. The decline was halted by the establishment of the first railway connection in 1863, and, some years later, by the building of a substantial number of infantry and cavalry barracks, which were needed to defend the western cities of the Netherlands. After the 1920s growth stalled again, until in 1970 the national government designated Amersfoort, then numbering some 70,000 inhabitants, as a "growth city". In 2009 the population was 140,000 plus, with an expected 150,000 by 2012.

 

source: Wikipedia

Amersfoort [ˈaːmərsfoːrt] is a municipality and the second largest city of the province of Utrecht in central Netherlands. The city is growing quickly but has a well-preserved and protected medieval centre. Amersfoort is one of the largest railway junctions in the country, because of its location on two of the Netherlands' main east-west and north-south rail lines. The city celebrated its 750th birthday in 2009.

 

The municipality of Amersfoort consists of the following cities, towns, villages and/or districts: Bergkwartier, Bosgebied, Binnenstad, Hoogland, Hoogland-West, Kattenbroek, Kruiskamp, de Koppel, Liendert, Rustenburg, Nieuwland, Randenbroek, Schuilenburg, Schothorst, Soesterkwartier, Vathorst, Hooglanderveen, Vermeerkwartier, Leusderkwartier, Zielhorst and Stoutenburg-Noord.

 

Hunter gatherers set up camps in the Amersfoort region in the Mesolithic period. Archaeologists have found traces of these camps, such as the remains of hearths, and sometimes microlithic flint objects, to the north of the city.

 

Remains of settlements in the Amersfoort area from around 1000 BC have been found, but the name Amersfoort, after a ford in the Amer River, today called the Eem, did not appear until the 11th century. The city grew around what is now known as the central square, the Hof, where the Bishops of Utrecht established a court in order to control the "Gelderse Vallei (nl)" area. It was granted city rights in 1259 by the bishop of Utrecht, Henry I van Vianden. A first defensive wall, made out of brick, was finished around 1300. Soon after, the need for enlargement of the city became apparent and around 1380 the construction of a new wall was begun and completed around 1450. The famous Koppelpoort, a combined land and water gate, is part of this second wall. The first wall was demolished and houses were built in its place. Today's Muurhuizen (wallhouses) Street is at the exact location of the first wall; the fronts of the houses are built on top of the first city wall's foundations.

 

The Onze-Lieve-Vrouwentoren tower (The Tower of Our Lady) is one of the tallest medieval church towers in the Netherlands at 98 metres (322 ft). The construction of the tower and the church was started in 1444. The church was destroyed by an explosion in 1787, but the tower survived, and the layout of the church still can be discerned today through the use of different types of stone in the pavement of the open space that was created. It is now the reference point of the RD coordinate system, the coordinate grid used by the Dutch topographical service: the RD coordinates are (155.000, 463.000).

 

The inner city of Amersfoort has been preserved well since the Middle Ages. Apart from the Onze-Lieve-Vrouwetoren, the Koppelpoort, and the Muurhuizen (Wall-houses), there is also the Sint-Joriskerk (Saint George's church), the canal-system with its bridges, as well as medieval and other old buildings; many are designated as national monuments. In the Middle Ages, Amersfoort was an important centre for the textile industry, and there were a large number of breweries.

 

In the 18th century the city flourished because of the cultivation of tobacco, but from about 1800 onwards began to decline. The decline was halted by the establishment of the first railway connection in 1863, and, some years later, by the building of a substantial number of infantry and cavalry barracks, which were needed to defend the western cities of the Netherlands. After the 1920s growth stalled again, until in 1970 the national government designated Amersfoort, then numbering some 70,000 inhabitants, as a "growth city". In 2009 the population was 140,000 plus, with an expected 150,000 by 2012.

 

source: Wikipedia

Reichsbrücke

Coordinates: 48 ° 13 '42 " N, 16 ° 24' 36" E | |

(Pictures you can see by clicking on the link at the end of page!)

Empire Bridge, seen from the north bank of

Use motor vehicles in the basement underground,

Cyclists, pedestrians

Road train Lassallestraße - Wagramerstraße (B8 )

Location Vienna, between Leopoldstadt (2nd District)

and Danube City (22 nd District)

Prestressed concrete bridge construction, double deck bridge

Total length 865 meters

Width 26.10 meters

Release 8 November 1980

Altitude 157 m above sea level. A.

Card reichsbrücke.png

Location of the Empire Bridge in Vienna

The Empire Bridge is one of Vienna's most famous bridges. It crosses the Danube, the Danube Island and the New Danube and connects the second District of Vienna, Leopoldstadt, with the 22nd District, Danube city. The building extends from Mexico place at Handelskai (2nd district) in a northeasterly direction to the Danube City and the Vienna International Centre (District 22).

The current kingdom bridge (Reichsbrücke) was opened in 1980, it is the third crossing of the Danube in the same axis, which bears the name kingdom bridge. The first Empire Bridge (also: Crown Prince Rudolf bridge when Project: National Highway Bridge), an iron bridge on current five pillars existed from 1876 until 1937. The second Empire Bridge, a chain bridge with two 30-meter high pylons on two river piers, was opened in 1937, it was next to St. Stephen's Cathedral and the Giant Ferris one of the landmarks of the city of Vienna. After the Second World War it was the only intact Danube river crossing downstream of Linz in Austria and became the busiest stretch of road in Austria. On Sunday, the first August 1976 the bridge collapsed in the early morning hours on full width of the Danube into the water. In the accident, which was not foreseeable by the then state of the art, one person was killed. The meaning and emotional charge, which had received the bridge by its colorful past in the Viennese population, increased further by the collapse.

Prehistory

The Danube before regulation (centric is the location of the Reichsbrücke marked)

Some years after the devastating flood of 1830 was considering Emperor Ferdinand I to regulate the Danube and at the same time to build several bridges over the resulting stream bed. The plan was, among other things, a chain bridge approximately at the site of today's Empire bridge, whose construction costs were estimated at two to three million florins. However, these plans came as well as future intentions, build stable bridges over the unregulated Danube, before the Vienna Danube regulation not for execution, the projects went not beyond the planning stage. All bridges over the Danube, whether for road or since 1838 for the Northern Railway, then had rather provisional character. Jochbrücken Those were trestle bridges made ​​of wood, which were regularly swept away by floods or Eisstößen (bumps of ice chunks) and then re-built.

On 12 September 1868 eventually ordered Emperor Franz Joseph I, the nephew and successor of Ferdinand, the regulation of the Danube. At the same time, eventually, should be built "stable bridges". One of them should represent a direct extension of the hunter line (Jägerzeile) (today: Prater Road and the Schwimmschulstraße (now Lassallestraße). With the choice of this location a central urban axis should be continued, which ranged from the Gloriette in Schonbrunn over St. Stephen's Cathedral and the Prater Stern to the Danube. On the other side of the Danube, the bridge should join to the Vienna, Kagraner and Leopold Auer Reichsstrasse (since 1910 Wagramerstraße), which became a major transit route in the northeastern areas of the monarchy. The name of the bridge was accordingly to "Empire Road bridge" set.

First Reichsbrücke - 1876-1937

Crown Prince Rudolf bridge

Since 6 November 1919 : Reichsbrücke

Crown Prince Rudolf bridge since 6 November 1919: Reichsbrücke

Official name of Crown Prince Rudolf Bridge (1876-1919), since then Reichsbrücke

Use vehicles, trams (from 26 June 1898 on the current bridge single track) and pedestrian

crossing of Handelskai, Danube and floodplain

Construction iron lattice structures (river bridge), 341.20 meters

Total length 1019.75 meter (incl. bridge over Handelskai and floodplain)

Width 11.40 meters

Release 21 August 1876

Closure 11 October 1937

Toll 32 cruisers and 64 Heller per vehicle (up to 1904)

The by Franz Joseph commissioned bridge, which the main part of the 2nd district after the regulation of the Danube with the on the left bank lying part of the city Kaisermuehlen, the now Old Danube and the to 1890/1892 independent community of Kagran connected, was navigable from August 1876 to October, 1937. It has been renamed several times: During the construction period it had the preliminary name of Empire Road bridge, after its opening, it was Crown Prince Rudolf bridge. The term "Empire Bridge" but soon won through in general usage, as was said, for example, the stop of the Donauuferbahn (Railway) at the bridge officially Kommunalbad-Reichsbrücke. After the fall of the monarchy on 6 November 1919 it was officially renamed Empire bridge.

With a total length of nearly 1,020 feet, it was at that time the longest bridge connection over the Danube. It was 11.40 meters wide, the road took 7.60 meters and 3.80 meters, the two sidewalks. The original plan had provided a total width of eight fathoms (15.20 meters), the Parliament decided shortly before the start of the construction to reduce the width because of cost reasons.

The bridge consisted of three parts. The so-called Hubertusdamm, protected the March field against flood, and the flood area created in the Danube regulation (inundation) on the north, the left bank of the river was spanned by a stone, 432 meters long inundation bridge, which consisted of 16 sheets of 23 and 39 m width. Handelskai on the southern right bank of the river spanned the so-called Kaibrücke of stone with a length of 90.4 meters and four arches, each 18.96 m width. The actual current bridge was 341.20 meters long and consisted of four individual iron grating structures that rested on five 3.80 meter thick pillars, three of which were in the water. The distance of each pillar was 79.90 meters.

Construction

The current bridge seen from the north, from the left bank (St Stephen's Cathedral in the background); recording before the summer of 1898, there's no tram track

Construction began in August, 1872. Although at that time the stream bed of the Danube had already been largely completed, but not yet flooded. The Empire bridge was then, as the northern railway bridge Stadlauer Bridge and the Emperor Franz Joseph Bridge (later Floridsdorfer bridge), built in dry construction.

The building was designed by the Road and Hydraulic Engineering Department of Imperial Ministry of Interior, whose boss, Undersecretary Mathias Waniek Ritter von Domyslow, was entrusted with the construction management. Total construction cost of 3.7 million guilders. The metal construction had a total weight of 2,193 tons and was manufactured by Schneider & Co in Burgundy of Belgian welding iron.

The two piers on the banks were about five feet below the river bed, which is about eleven meters founded under the riverbed on so-called "blue Viennese Tegel" (a stiff to semi-solid floor similar to the clay which as sedimentary rock is typical for the Vienna basin). The pillars of the two foreland bridges (Kaibrücke and inundation bridge ) were established in shallow coarse gravel.

Of the four Danube bridges built at that time only the kingdom bridge (Reichsbrücke) was not opened to traffic when the new bed of the Danube on 14 April 1875 was flooded. Until 16 months later, on 21 August 1876, the birthday of the Crown Prince Rudolf, opened the Imperial Governor of Lower Austria , Baron Conrad of Sigmund Eybesfeld, representing the emperor, the bridge and gave her in honor of Crown Prince - contrary to the original plan - the name "Crown Prince Rudolf bridge". The opening ceremony was attended by a delegation from Japan, Minister of War Feldzeugmeister Graf Maximilian von Artur Bylandt-Rheidt and mayor of Vienna Cajetan Felder. The governor read a royal resolution, in which Franz Joseph announced the full imperial satisfaction with Oberbauleiter Waniek and several Engineers and Building Officers were awarded the Imperial Knights Cross. As highlight of the celebration the keystone of the last pillar of the ramp was set - under it were built into a cassette several documents, photos of the bridge, coins and medals.

Bridge operation

The Kaibrücke over the Handelskai on the south, the right bank of the Danube, recording c.1907

The bridge ramp and the four brick arches over the Handels on the south, the right bank of the Danube, it ( right) the bridge over the stream, recording from 1876

After the suicide of Crown Prince Rudolf in 1889, the bridge was popularly called "suicide bridge ". It was in the first years of its operation still not a very popular crossing of the Danube. Industry and trade settled slowly to the other side of the Danube. There were also no significant trade routes from north to March Field. Via the Old Danube, which it would have to be crossed, leading to around 1900 only a rickety wooden bridge.

In the first 28 years of its operation, the crossing of the Empire Bridge was charged. 32 cruisers and 64 Heller had to be paid per vehicle, which has been regularly criticized by newspapers in Vienna. Only after the villages north of the Old Danube in the year 1904/1905 than 21st district were incorporated, the crossing was provided free of charge and increased the popularity of the bridge. From 26 June 1898, the bridge was frequented by the tram. The occasion was the 50-year Jubilee of Emperor Franz Joseph. The route went (over the current bridge (Strombrücke) just single track ) for the moment to shooting range (Schießstätte) at Arbeiterstrandbadstraße and was on 22 December 1898 extended until Kagraner place. Operator was the Vienna-Kagraner train (WKB), which initially used for six railcars acquired from Hamburg. In 1904, the traffic operation of Vienna-Street Railways WKB.

The end of the bridge

1910 were counted in Vienna over two million inhabitants. On the left, northern bank of the Danube, more and more settlements and commercial enterprises emerged. This increased both the importance and the traffic on the Empire Bridge. Neither the load nor the total roadway width of less than eight meters were sufficient for this additional burden. 1930 damage was discovered at the bridge, which would have necessitated the refurbishment in the near future. In recent years, their stock weight restrictions has been to protect the bridge. Vienna's city government first planned a conversion of the old kingdom bridge. In 1933, under the federal government of Dollfuss a new building was disposed.

During the three years of construction work had the old bridge remain usable - ie the existing 340 meters long by 4,900-ton Strombrücke was there moved by 26 meters downstream in September 1934, and connected with the banks. The move operation lasted only six hours, the traffic interruption to the reusability lasted three days. The suspended bridge was then three years in operation. Immediately after the opening of its successor bridge it was dismantled.

Second Empire Bridge - 1937-1976

Second Reichsbrücke

The second Empire Bridge, circa 1975

Official name Reichsbrücke, from 11 April 1946 to 18 July 1956 the Red Army Bridge

Use private transport (2 lanes next to the tracks, 2 on the tracks), tram (2 tracks in the middle position), pedestrians (sidewalks 2)

Construction through the air: "Spurious" self-anchored chain bridge with reversed horizontal thrust); broadening of the inundation bridge used since 1876

Total length 1225 meters

Width 26.90 meters (including sidewalks)

Longest span 241.2 meters in the central opening, 60.05 and 61.05 meters in the side openings

Construction September 1934

Release 10 October 1937

Closure 1 August 1976 (collapse)

The second realm bridge had a total length of 1255 meters. The current bridge had a length of 373 meters and a maximum span length of 241.2 meters, the construction of the third largest chain bridge in Europe. It had two pylons made ​​of steel with a height of 30 meters above road top, standing on two piers and with the bridge superstructure burd two steel chains carrying.

The bridge was staged as a symbol of the wealth and size of Vienna. So it was yet in the late 1930s next to St. Stephen's Cathedral and the Giant Ferris emblem for the third city of Vienna declared and served as an internationally used symbol on all promotional literature and invitations to the Vienna Exhibition in 1938.

Competition

First, the Commerce Department announced a precompetitive, although that could win the architects Emil Hoppe and Otto Schonthal, the result of which, however, did not correspond with the Ministry and the City of Vienna. The final competition for the construction of the Empire Bridge was finally announced in Spring 1933 and awarded in November. As architectural advisor to the eight-member jury acted the architect Clemens Holzmeister. The jurors selected from 64 submitted, one of which even provided for a tunnel under the river Danube. The winning project was a chain bridge by architects Siegfried Theiss and Hans Jaksch. This design provided only two pillars standing in the water. Three quarters of the full width of the river should be free spans. The bridge would connect directly to the still-to-use, only to be widened inundation bridge of the first Empire bridge over floodplain and Hubertusdamm.

Construction

Construction began on 26 February 1934, two weeks after the civil war-like battles in February. The cost of 24 million shillings were imposed to one third of the city of Vienna, two-thirds came from the federal budget. There were only Austrian companies involved in the construction. The two pillars were erected in caisson construction.

Soon the first difficulties appeared. The ground, especially in the Danube River, on which the bridge piers and anchor blocks for the chains should be founded, proved to be less viable than the planners had anticipated. It was originally planned to have to shoulder a large part of the weight of the Strombrücke, primarily of the area lying between the pillars middle part of the bridge, of two chains that run on both sides of the two pylons and should be anchored right in the river on heavy, solid anchor blocks of concrete. However, it was feared that this abutment on the Danube soft soil by the large tensile forces of 78.5 million N (8,000 t) per chain would start sliding and could not be adequately anchored in the Danube ground.

Professor Paul Fillunger of the Technical University of Vienna became the largest public critic of the building. He was of the opinion that not only the foundation of the anchor blocks, but also the pillars of the Danube in the soft ground was irresponsible because the bridge would not have the necessary stability. Contrasting opinion was his colleague of professors, soil mechanics Karl von Terzaghi. In his view, the nature of the Danube soil was suitable for the pier foundation. The disagreement was part of a personal feud, which was publicly held. Together with his wife Fillunger took in 1937 due to a disciplinary procedure that ran against him at the Technical University of Vienna his life. The construction of the bridge was rescheduled after the proposals Terzaghis: the chains were not fastened to anchor blocks on the Danube ground, but directly to the two main girders of the steel supporting structure, ie on the bridge itself anchored.

In June 1936, the building was overshadowed by a shipwreck: the people steamer "Vienna" DDSG was driven to a pillar. The ship broke up and sank immediately. Six people were killed.

The final link in the chain was composed of 98 members on 16 November 1936 inserted. Thereafter the lowering of the support stand began to displace the chain in tension. The production of the concrete deck slab of the bridge deck and the installation of sidewalks followed in the spring of 1937, in the summer, the bridge was painted dark green.

From 1 to 3 October 1937 the stress test of the building took place in the stretched chains and the pylons were slightly rotated. Were then driven as a load test 84 trucks and 28 loaded with stones streetcars on the bridge and left to stand there for a few hours. All measurements were running satisfactorily, so that on 4 October the first tram of line number 16 was able to drive over the kingdom bridge. A day later, the bridge was unofficially released for streetcar traffic. To traffic it remained locked up to its opening.

Austro-Fascist propaganda

A labor-and cost-intensive project such as the construction of the bridge was fully in line with the spirit of the Austro-fascist regime: the end of 1933, unemployment stood at 38.5 percent. The construction of the second Empire bridge can therefore be seen as a job creation project, similar to the construction of the Grossglockner High Alpine Road or the Vienna High Road.

On 10 October 1937, the Empire Bridge was officially opened. The corporate state government held a solemn state ceremony with President Wilhelm Miklas, Chancellor Kurt Schuschnigg, Cardinal Theodor Innitzer, the Vienna Vice Mayor Fritz Lahr and Trade Minister Taucher who called the new Reich bridge as a "symbol of creating life force of the new Austria". Present were alongside architects, project managers and designers also a delegation of the opus "New Life" of the Fatherland Front, all workers involved in the construction of the construction companies and 10,000 school children. Soldiers of the armed forces lined the shore.

The Viennese city researcher Peter Payer writes about the pompous production:

"Conspicuously, propagated the carefully staged celebration the new model of society of the Austro-fascist government: the ending of the class struggle and overcoming social barriers through meaningful work and cooperation of all professional groups. [ ...] The completion of the bridge was portrayed as unprecedented cultural achievement, as a joint work of all involved". - Peter Payer.

The event was broadcast live on the radio, the newspapers reported widely about it. At the event, postcards, envelopes, and a commemorative stamp was issued and even a "Reichsbrücke song "composed, in which was said:

"A thousand hammers, wheels, files,

thousand hands had to rush

the great work that was!

Salvation of the work that connects,

Hail to the work, healing our land!"

- Empire Bridge Song

The Empire Bridge in the Second World War

During the Second World War the German army used two support pillars of reinforced concrete under the Empire Bridge into the Danube, so that the building would not completely fall into the water when it was hit, but could be repaired. In addition, at each of the two pylons were erected platforms for anti-aircraft guns.

In early April, 1945, in the last days of the war, Soviet armies were moving from the south and west heading to the city center. The fleeing units of the SS blew up in their retreat to the north gradually almost all Vienna Danube bridges.

For the Nordwestbahnbrücke, the Floridsdorfer bridge and the Nordbahnbrücke the "defenders" of Vienna had by Hitler's headquarters on the 8th April 1945 sought the permission for demolition, the Stadlauer Ostbahnbrücke was also blown up without explicit permission. With the Reichsbrücke, however, Hitler had personally for days the blasting ruled out, still yet at 11 April 1945, just on 13 April afternoon allowed, at a time when the southern bridgehead was already occupied by the Red Army, was the northern bridgehead without coverage in their field of fire and the German troops who had retreated to the left bank of the Danube, north west withdrew, for not beeing closed in by the Red Army. There was therefore no chance to blow. The Red Army occupied the evening of the 13th April also the northern bridgehead.

On 11 April, at the height of the battle of Vienna, the Russian troops with armored boats already had been advanced on the Danube to the Reichsbrücke (officially called by the Russians "Object 56") and had obscured the area. They went on the right bank of the Danube, about 500 meters northwest of the bridge, on land and moved slowly to the building.

Decades later, it was unclear why exactly the Empire bridge was not blown up. The Red Army, the Austrian resistance movement O5 as well as members of the armed forces later claimed they just would have prevented the explosion. One version said that, at the Battle of 11 April some soldiers of the Red Army should have gotten to the beachhead, where they destroyed the explosive lines. Another version was that Red Army soldiers were led by a knowledgeable local Vienna sewer worker sneaked through the sewer system of Vienna to the bridge to prevent the demolition. Clarity created in 2012 the analysis of historical sources with the résumé. Ultimately, it was Hitler himself which had prevented demolition of the bridge until the last moment. The Reichsbrücke was now the only intact bridge crossing over the Danube between Linz and the state border. She was thus given a status symbol, it was a sign of the resilience of Austria.

The city council renamed the Empire Bridge on the anniversary of the liberation of Vienna on 11 April 1946 in honor of the liberators "Bridge of the Red Army Bridge". Was also on this occasion by the city government to the left of the bridge driveway in the 2nd district an obelisk (reddish colored lightweight concrete on wood construction) erected with the Soviet Star on the top of which was in German and Russian to read:

"THE HERO WILL

LANDING GUARD SQUAD

AND SAILORS

IN GRATITUDE

THE EXEMPT

VIENNA "

- Obelisk, then plaque on the bridge

The obelisk was removed after 1955. The inscription was then attached on a bronze plaque that was mounted directly to the bridge. The bridge was at 18 July 1956 re-named Reichsbrücke.

Reichsbrücke in the postwar period

To the rebuilding of Floridsdorfer bridge 1946 the Reichsbrücke was the only way to reach Vienna coming from the northeast on the road. Although it was not blown up, it still suffered numerous losses, primarily by shellfire. In 1946, took place the first rehabilitation of war damage of the bridge, ​​from May 1947 work on a larger scale was made. Thereby five hanging rods have been mended and repaired the vault of the inundation bridge. The smoke control ceiling above the Donauuferbahn has been replaced. At seven chain links had to be renewed a total of 26 blades. For this temporary piers were used on barges, which again ate on the river bed. The work was finished in 1952. On the Reichsbrücke originally was wooden heel patch installed, this was 1958-1960 replaced by granite stone pavement, which resulted in an additional load of 4688 kN for each pylon bearing. The enormous, newly ascended individual traffic led more often hinder the tram traffic on the bridge, therefore the tracks in the sixties by blocking lines have been declared not approved for individual traffic of the roadway. Now, congestion of vehicular traffic was the result.

Empire bridge collapse in 1976

The southern, right after the collapse of the banks, recording August 1976

Bridge debris on the north, left bank, recording August 1976

On Sunday, the first August 1976 Reichsbrücke 4:53 to 4:55 clock crashed to almost full length of the main bridge into the water. The first radio announcement was made at 5:00 clock. An eyewitness described the collapse as". The whole bridge has suddenly lifted a foot and then dropped loud crashing on the entire length".

On the Kaibrücke as well as on the Überschwemmungsbrücke (inundation bridge) the carrier collapsed in several places, but both bridges were standing. The Strombrücke itself broke into three parts, the middle part falling into the water as a whole and and the two outer parts obliquely hanging into the water. The south-facing pylon fell downstream and damaged heavily the stern of a passenger ship, the north side pylon collapsed in the other direction on the flood plain.

At the time of the collapse, five people were in four vehicles on the bridge: a bus driver in an urban articulated, two employees of the ÖAMTC in a roadside assistance vehicle, the driver of a Volkswagen Beetle, which had requested the breakdown service because of a defective tire following an accident as well as the driver of a minibus, who was employed as a driver at the ORF. The bus driver crashed his vehicle into the Danube and was rescued unharmed within hours. The ÖAMTC employees and the VW drivers were on that part of the Kaibrücke, which indeed broke and fell, but not completely destroyed, so that they could save themselves by foot. The ORF driver was trapped in his pickup truck and found his dead the day after the collapse.

Within an hour was a quarter of all vehicles of the in Vienna available Fire Brigade on the site of the collapse, it was the alarm given stage IV. Also, police, ambulance and army were represented by large contingents. The on the bridge located water pipes that supplied drinking water to the north of Vienna, put the Handelskai under water. Explosions were also feared because the gas lines running across the bridge were broken. There was on the scene for days strict non-smoking. First, many people were north of the Danube without gas, electricity, water and telephone. Already on the second August was, however, restored the supply.

de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reichsbr%C3%BCcke

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Hilton Hotel Warsaw & Conference Centre

 

Details include:

 

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Height / architectural: 94.00 m

 

Floors / above ground: 28

 

Floors / below ground: 3

 

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Construction / start: 2003

 

Construction / end: 2007

 

Elevators: 11

 

Escalators: 2

 

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Building / type: High-rise building

 

Building / status: completed

 

Structural material: concrete

 

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Facade material: aluminium, ceramic tile, glass

 

Facade system: curtain wall

 

Facade color: light blue

 

Architectural style: modernism

 

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Main usage: Luxury hotel, conference centre

 

Side usage: Bars, Casino, Fitness, Spa, Restaurants

 

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Architect: Biuro Projektów Kazimierski & Ryba

 

Associate architect: Feigin Architects

 

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SOURCE: EMPORIS

 

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As part of our Tour of Poland 2012 incl.

 

Warsaw : Poznan : Gdansk : Sopot : Gdynia : Krakow : Auschwitz / Birkenau : Warsaw

 

2 weeks // April // flights incl.

 

Dublin - Frankfurt - Warsaw

 

Warsaw - Poznan

 

Poznan - Warsaw - Gdansk

 

Gdansk - Warsaw - Krakow

 

Krakow - Warsaw

 

Warsaw - Frankfurt - Dublin

 

Airlines: Lufthansa, Euro Lot // LOT Polish Airlines

 

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Have a look to my other shots from this amazing city: Mainhattan City Lights | Zoom: Entering The Matrix | Frankfurt Skyline -------------------------------------------------------------- Follow me on: Instagram -------------------------------------------------------------- Frankfurt am Main , commonly known as Frankfurt, is the largest city in the German state of Hesse and the fifth-largest city in Germany, with a 2012 population of 687,775. The urban area had an estimated population of 2,300,000 in 2010. The city is at the centre of the larger Frankfurt Rhine-Main Metropolitan Region which has a population of 5,600,000 and is Germany's second-largest metropolitan region. Since the enlargement of the European Union in 2013, the geographic centre of the EU is about 40 km (25 mi) east of Frankfurt. Frankfurt is the largest financial centre in continental Europe and ranks among the world's leading financial centres. It is home to the European Central Bank, Deutsche Bundesbank, Frankfurt Stock Exchange and several large commercial banks. The European Central Bank is the central bank of the eurozone, consisting of 18 EU member states that have adopted the euro (€) as their common currency and sole legal tender. The Deutsche Bundesbank is the central bank of Germany and as such part of the European System of Central Banks. The Frankfurt Stock Exchange is one of the world's largest stock exchanges by market capitalization and accounts for over 90 percent of the turnover in the German market. In 2010, 63 national and 152 international banks had their registered offices in Frankfurt, including the headquarters of the major German banks, notably Deutsche Bank, Commerzbank, DZ Bank and KfW, as well as 41 representative offices of international banks. via 500px ift.tt/1lK0dis

This is the view from our tents of the last light hitting Haystack Mountain, across and reflected in, Big Sandy Lake. Saturday had been a full day of hiking and sight seeing in the Wind River Range.

 

It didn't take long after the three of us got back from our enjoyable day hikes on Saturday, for the sun to start setting, the temperature to drop, and our second and last night at the Lost Creek on Big Sandy Lake base camp - - to come to an end.

 

All that would be left after these Day Two, Saturday photographs were taken, would be to get a good night's sleep and backpack out to the trail head, the next morning. We had all seen a lot of remarkable, scenic and rugged country.

 

All too soon, this backpacking trip in the Wind River Range of Wyoming...was coming to an end.

 

A link to my map showing where we hiked on this trip:

 

www.flickr.com/photos/12150532@N04/7986908652/in/photostream

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THE CIRQUE OF THE TOWERS Backpacking Trip: September 7th through 9th 2012

Wind River Mountain Range - Wyoming

 

PREFACE:

 

I often write a "story" to go along with the photographs I post on my OLDMANTRAVELS flickr site. I can get pretty wordy and long winded with these stories but the beauty of the situation is you don't have to read one word of it if you don't want to. Just look at the photographs (if you want to).

 

On occasion I have received some flip Flickr flak for my long photo "stories" but, trust me, I am adept at ignoring criticism. Ask any of my photographer friends who try to talk me into using a tripod or even try to become a "real" photographer (instead of a hiker who likes to snap pictures).

 

So, you may be sitting in a work cubicle in a high rise office in L.A., wishing you were any where else in the world but preferably up in the mountains with a pack on your back. You may sitting in an easy chair in your ranch house in Halfway, Wyoming (I want to go there some day, just to say I have been there) or looking at flickr photos on your PC or surfing flickr photos on your iPad in a cafe in Halfway, Oregon (I have been there. Cool little town).

 

But wherever you are, be it Halfway,Anywhere or Alltheway, Somewhere - I hope you enjoy some of the photographs and perhaps, some of the story that goes with them. Have fun.

 

INTRODUCTION:

 

Fred and I put together a backpacking trip into Titcomb Basin, in the Northern portion of Wyoming's Wind River Range for September of 2011. With Fred's consent, my brother and a friend of mine, accompanied us on that backpacking trip. We backpacked 27 miles over four days and had spectacular weather. No bugs and very few people. In fact, we pretty much had Upper and Lower Titcomb Lakes to ourselves.

 

The September 2011 Titcomb Basin backpack, was the first time Fred and I had hiked together. We got along great so it was only natural to plan a "follow up hike". During the always long, with short days, winter or 2011-12, we exchanged emails and it became evident that both of us longed for a return trip to the Wind River Range. So early in the year of 2012, we set our sights on the Cirque of the Towers, located in the Southern portion of the Wind River Range. The planning began in earnest.

 

For our 2012 backpacking trip, we invited Fred's sister, whom I shall call "SQ". Fred had told me about her before. He claimed that she was an excellent hiker, backpacker and outdoors person and would be fun to have on our backpacking trip. He was 100% right.

 

Both Fred and SQ both work (they aren't old living on government dole like me) so we set the Cirque of the Towers backpacking trip dates for Friday 9.6.12; Saturday 9.7.12; and Sunday 9.8.12. Weekends might mean more people on the trails but for good company on a backpacking trip, that didn't bother me...so subject to a "reasonable" weather forecast, those are the days we picked.

 

When we got we got within a ten day weather forecast window of our backpacking trip and the forecast looked good, the three of us agreed to "go for it". We all reserved cabins at the Log Cabin Motel in Pinedale, Wyoming for Thursday night September 6th. Our plan would be to head for the Big Sandy trail head on Friday morning - - backpacks loaded and ready.

 

As a shiftless (you could add lazy, stubborn, and unconventional to that) retiree, who no longer works (my wife still works part time), I was free to drive down to the trail head and return back home, at my own whims and predilections. Early on, my wife and I agreed not to include her on this particular backpacking trip as we didn't know how "tough or easy" the route up Jackass Pass (10,800') might be and it would be difficult to get the right days off in September.

 

"THE STORY" DAY ONE: I left our home in Eastern Washington at four in the morning. I had our small, old, high mileage SUV packed with both my backpacking gear and "road travel" gear. It had been packed and double checked, the night before.

 

As with any road trip or hike, the earlier I get going the better I like it. I'm like a kid in that respect. Can't wait.

 

I drove the interstate (I-90) east and at a steady pace. My goal was to reach a camping spot anywhere between Red Lodge, Montana and the Beartooth Pass, leading into the Northeast entrance of Yellowstone National Park.

 

I stayed on I-90 all the way through Spokane, Missoula, Three Forks, Bozeman, and the small town of Columbus, Montana. Here I left the interstate and purposefully drove a highway I had never traveled before. I took Montana highway 78 through Abarokee and "downtown" Roscoe to Red Lodge, Montana.

 

My plan was to camp between Red Lodge and Northeast entrance to Yellowstone NP, so I could travel the spectacular Beartooth Pass highway, right at dawn. My wife and I had tried to travel the pass a few years ago (from south to north) but it was closed so we improvised an took the scenic highway 296 highway to Cody, Wyoming on that trip. But it had been many years since last crossing the Beartooth Pass (10,947') and I was anxious to do so again.

 

There was a problem and that was forest fires. Whether started by lightening, careless people, or on purpose as "managed" fires as they call them, the smoke can diminish the scenic beauty of an area quickly and I had driven through lots of such wildfire smoke on this trip already.

 

I found an excellent place to camp just as dark started to arrive. I backed my old RAV4 up to within a stone's toss of the rumbling creek (Rock Creek) and slept in the bed I had prepared in the back of the old Toyota RAV4 with 150,000 miles on it. Breaking camp the next morning would consist of crawling from the bed in the back to the driver's seat and starting the engine (followed closely by turning the heat to high and the fan to full).

 

"THE STORY" DAY TWO: I arrived at the summit of Beartooth Pass at dawn. As I suspected and feared, the forest fire smoke filtered the landscape views and at times irritated my eyes. Still, I enjoyed every minute of the drive. It is big, spectacular country and I kept reminding myself that forest fires were as much a part of the grand scheme of Mother Nature, as were winds, rain, four seasons, and flowing rivers and streams.

 

I stopped to take a few photos at "Little Bear Lake" and then continued on through Cooke City and Silver Gate into Yellowstone. I drove slowly through Yellowstone, admiring the wildlife (bison, pronghorn, elk, deer, and sandhill cranes) and the scenery. Dunraven Pass had lots of wildfire smoke so I didn't linger there. On through Canyon Village then Lake Village exiting the park on highway 191.

 

Entering Grand Teton National Park on the venerable highway 191 route, I decided to stray from convention and loop over to Jenny Lake, a place I had not visited for many years. So at the south end of Jackson Lake, I took the Teton Park Road to the Jenny Lake visitor center. Lots of people. The tent camp was already full so I spent some quality time talking to a young lady park ranger, with a map spread out in front of us, talking about any places I might camp that night, that wouldn't be full. She recommended Gros Ventre camp, so off I went.

 

At Moose Junction I turned back north on hwy 191 to Antelope Flats Road and headed east. I went past the north end of "Mormon Row" but didn't take time to stop as I wanted most of all to secure a campsite for the night. I then took the paved narrow two lane road south to Kelly (a small "pocket town" on the Gros Ventre River), and turned back west to the Gros Ventre campground. On the way I passed the south end of the gravel road that travels the Mormon Row barns and homesteads, so I now had the lay of the land in my mind.

 

Two women at the campground office worked at finding me a campsite for the night that would lend itself to my goal of a quiet night's sleep with an early morning departure. They put me up at site #199 in Loop "D" for a modest "senior's rate" camp fee. It turned out perfect. My only camping neighbor was a nice couple from Emmett, Idaho, who were in a truck camper and as they said "prepared to camp until the leaves changed color". I liked that.

 

Having secured (posted my receipt on the campsite post) my camping spot for the night, I drove the gravel road north to enjoy the much photographed old buildings of Mormon Row

The places along this row of farms were built in the 1910s up into the early 1930s. The people, who lived here were mostly the Moultons, some Chambers, Thomas Murphy and Thomas Perry. Many of the buildings are gone and all that remain are now part of the national park system. The views of the Grand Teton Mountains from these old buildings are spectacular.

 

After taking some smoke filtered landscape photos at Mormon Row, I was hungry. I carried and ice chest full of cold soda pop and a well stocked plastic tote of sandwich making material, so I drove north up to the Snake River Overlook (a place my wife and I have often stopped at when driving highway 191 through Grand Teton NP).

 

Here I fixed and ate dinner, walked the rim of the Snake River and waited with others for the sun to set behind the Grand Teton range. Now I began to appreciate the forest fire smoke in the area as the sky turned bright orange and pink behind the mountains as the sun disappeared behind them. Well worth the wait. After the sunset scene, I drove back to my campsite, read John Muir's "Travels in Alaska" by LED headlamp, and fell blissfully asleep.

 

"THE STORY" DAY THREE: This was an uneventful, slow paced, rest up, organize, and get ready for the backpacking trip day. Enjoyable.

 

I drove the Moose Entrance to Wilson "scenic road" for the first time. The north end had some good "moose country" habitat and it was an enjoyable drive, but even early in the morning don't expect solitude. It is a popular route. Postscript: I didn't see a single moose along the MOOSE to Wilson road (which reminds me of a joke):

 

Said a well traveled young man: "I spent an entire week on the Canary Islands and during my entire stay, I didn't see one canary. I then traveled to the Virgin Islands for a week long visit there as well. And you know what? ..................... I didn't see a single canary there either.".

 

I stocked up on "hiking food" (scones) at the Albertson store in Jackson Hole, Wyoming then drove on to Hoback Junction and on to Pinedale, Wyoming. I checked into my cabin there and started organizing my backpacking gear, making sandwiches for the backpacking trip, reading, relaxing and hoping that Fred and SQ would arrive without problems from there homes in the Boise, Idaho area.

 

Fred called me by cell phone at 1:30 pm on Thursday and said that they were "on their way" with an ETA of around 9:30 pm (which is about when they arrived). Fred came to my cabin when they got to Pinedale (SQ went directly to her cabin) and the two of us talked about the upcoming hike plans and agreed upon when we would leave Pinedale in the morning.

  

"THE STORY" DAY FOUR: We drove to the Subway for our last "civilization" meal for a few days, then headed off to the Big Sandy trailhead. In some hiking guide books, they make finding the correct turns to make as complicated and difficult. We found quite the contrary. There are just two major turns to make after leaving the pavement on Wyoming highway 353. They aren't hard to find. The dirt roads are in great shape except the last ten miles (when you make the last turn north). There it is pretty rough in places but the scenery and anticipation of the high quality hiking to come, makes it a cinch as well.

 

We signed in at the trail head, shouldered our backpacks and headed up the 5.5 mile trail (with only 600 ft. of elevation gain) to Big Sandy Lake. Fred is a strong hiker and a professional photographer (in addition to his professional "day job"). So it is difficult for him to leave a tripod, camera body, or lens ... behind. SQ whispered to me that he was able to leave his wooden pin hole camera behind on this hike but he took it with him on our September 2011 Titcomb Basin hike.

 

Fred always carries the biggest and heaviest pack but he knows what he is capable of and takes the cameras, lenses, and photographic equipment it takes to get the professional results he does with his photography.

 

SQ had the next biggest and heaviest pack. She too is a strong competent hiker and backpacker and as Fred once warned me "She will out hike us both"...she did. So we put SQ in the lead and asked her to slow down if she saw us "fading" on the trail.

 

I'm the wimp. I carried the lightest load of the three of us. And here comes the first of a couple of backpacking vignettes: Leading up to our backpacking trip, Fred and I exchanged emails dithering and deliberating over how to save weight to carry on our backpacking trip.

This meant all was subject to being left behind , except camera gear for Fred (of course).

 

We both decided that with the favorable weather forecast, for example, we could leave rain pants behind. Nylon hiking pant and long poly prop underwear would handle that issue for me. Then the topic came up of "bear vaults". Both Fred and I have each owned one for years but NEVER has either of us used ours. Hell they weigh TWO pounds each and they are bulky. Besides, we are real men. We can hang our food properly in a bear bag over a cliff or on an sturdy tree limb. So went the thinking.

 

When I confirmed by phone that bear vaults weren't mandatory in the Wind River Range, Fred and I gleefully agreed that we would leave ours at home. Well you have probably already figured out the punch line. given our situation of "the beauty" (SQ) hiking with "the two beasts" (Fred and me). SQ brought her bear vault and Fred and I shamelessly made use of the bear vault SQ packed all the way to Big Sandy Lake in her large heavy backpack.

 

We leap frogged a few backpackers on our way up to Big Sandy Lake. Two women and their four pack carrying dogs became our instant trail favorites. We would run into each other on the backpack into Big Sandy Lake; on the trail coming out of the Cirque of the Towers on Saturday and at least twice on our backpack out to the trail head on Sunday.

 

The four happy hiking trail dogs were a real study in different dog personalities. Walter, was the smallest, slightest built dog of the four and clearly liked to lead. He was also the most affectionate to trail strangers (like us) and seemed to be having the most fun. He was a mutt, as many smart endearing dogs are and a mix between a beagle and Australian shepherd. The other three were magnificent purebred German Shepherds.

 

Walter was always "first up the trail". He made friends quickly with his adorable expression and straight forward manner. As soon as the three German Shepherds saw how well Walter was being petted and scratched behind his ears...they lined up and competed for attention.

 

Almost 75% of the people we saw hiking in and out of Big Sandy Lake had dogs with them and I can tell you that every dog we passed was well mannered and friendly. They were welcome trail companions in my book.

 

The three of us arrived at Big Sandy Lake and were impressed by both the appeal of the lake and the dramatic mountains that surround it. It is a truly lovely lake. I think if any of us had hiked the Cirque of the Towers trail up over Jackass Pass before, and seen the available "best tent sites" in the area, we might have continued to hike there on Friday. We had enough daylight. But with a wind and clouds rolling in at the moment, we decided it would be best to secure a good camping spot at the far end of Big Sandy Lake and then do our exploring with day hikes to the Cirque of the Towers and later to the Clear Lake & Deep Lake - East Temple Peak area - - if we had time.

 

That decided, we set up our three small lightweight backpacking tents in a well spaced row up the left bank of the almost dry creek bed of Lost Creek. The spacing would assure that SQ would not have to lose a night's sleep listening to two world class snorers (Fred and I have our reputations to uphold in that classification). SQ took the top site up close to the marmot's boulder field; then Fred's tent; then mine. We all had quality views of Sandy Mountain; Big Sandy Lake; Haystack and East Temple peaks.

 

Our intent was to spend both Friday and Saturday nights at our Big Sandy Lake/Lost Creek "base camp". Then we could spend all of our time hiking our favorite trails with light day packs (though with Fred's camera gear, I'm pretty certain his day pack load would be close to my entire backpack load in weight). This is what we did and it worked out great.

 

We ate camp dinner and talked for awhile and took a couple of short "reconnaissance" hikes close by camp. We now had a feel for the "Miller Lake/Little Sandy Lake" trail; the Clear Lake/Deep Lake trail; the Black Joe Lake trail as well as the trail junction for the hike up past North Lake and Arrowhead Lake, over Jackass Pass and into the spectacular Cirque of the Towers area.

 

We all retired to our tents for the night. I had brought along a copy of the Sep+Oct 2012 Washington Trails magazine for camp reading. The magazine came with membership in the Washington Trails Association that was "gifted" to me by a good hiking friend of mine, HC.

 

I turned on my LED headlamp and opened up the magazine. There on page three was a familiar name: Andy Porter. He was listed as a "guest contributor". He is a flickr contact of mine and he does indeed take excellent photographs. It seemed ironic, that I had written one person about a waterfall location, in the Cirque area between Hidden and Lonesome Lake, and that was Andy. He was quick to send me a Flickr email back with information that I requested. His Flickr site is: I8Seattle.

 

A quick side note: Flickr has been a wonderful resource for me when researching upcoming hikes and road trips. I really appreciate people like Andy, who willingly share information. I always write to thank people for their help. Some people sent me a flickr email a couple of months ago asking for camping information for the Titcomb Basin hike and some specific camp location questions. I wrote them providing what they asked, and never heard another word. There are people that are "takers" out there, who think nothing of requesting information then are too lazy (or rude) to send a two word reply back. Thank you.

 

Thanks Andy for the "waterfalls" info. Thanks too "HC" for the WTA membership gift and the Trails magazine that comes with it.

 

"THE STORY" DAY FIVE: Fred, the professional photographer, wanted to head up the 2+ mile trail over Jackass Pass before dawn, hiking with a headlamp. I told him I would be happy to join him and asked that he call for me outside my tent if he got up before I did.

 

SQ, who doesn't carry a camera but instead hikes to see and enjoy the scenery, said she would sleep in Saturday morning and start up the trail when she had something to eat and was good and ready. I hope you are starting to get the picture here. A competent smart woman hiker and her brother and her brother's hiking friend (me) that can't seem to wait to get going .. no matter what.

 

What happened Saturday morning? I got up at six. I went over to Fred's tent and said in a nice strong voice "Fred, Fred...Fred". No response. I headed down where we had placed SQ's Bear Vault (filled equally with her food, our food, and our camp food garbage). My intent was to open the bear vault and get some hiking food for my day hike up into the Cirque of the Towers.

 

The lid of the bear vault was iced over and try as I might I couldn't get it open. I squeezed the lid in; wrestled with it; cursed it; but could not open it. I admit to being shamed in knowing that a black bear in the Adirondack Mountains has learned to open the blasted things..yet I could not.

 

I decided with my ample "fat reserve" that I could make it without food for my day hike over and back to the Cirque of the Towers. I threw a couple bottles of diet Mt. Dew (my caffeine fix) in my pack; two small cameras (Canon G9 & G10) a few essentials and a coat, into my light Marmot "day pack" and got ready to head out.

 

Then I noticed that Fred's pack wasn't in sight. So I returned to his tent and called his name a few more times then opened the rain fly of his tent to find him gone.

 

I now concluded correctly that: #1 he had left before dawn and had been unable to stir me from my sleep. AND #2 incorrectly that Fred too had been unable to open the bear vault so he too would be hiking without trail food. I thought the ice and frost on the bear vault lid proved that but I was wrong. Fred (like the black bear in the Adirondacks) did get the vault open but had left so early that a new coating of ice and frost had formed on the lid by the time I tried it. Off I went.

 

It was light enough for me to hike easily without a headlamp up the Cirque of the Towers trail. It did get tough to find the route in a couple of places though and the trail was much more work that I thought it would be so it took a little longer than I might have guessed. I was just amazed that Fred had been able to successfully negotiate the route in the dark, even with a good map and headlamp, given that none of the three of us had ever hiked in the area.

 

I saw Fred's boot prints on the occasional dirt or sand portion of the trail. I just didn't know how early he had left camp, nor how fast or slow he might be hiking, given his load of camera gear.

 

I won't try to describe how magnificent the scenery was on this hike and I hope a photo or two of mine does some justice to it, but my head was constantly on swivel enjoying the ever unfolding beauty of this world class rock climbing area.

 

After a few steep ups and downs in the cairn marked trail, I came to a four way trail intersection above Arrowhead Lake. To my left a faint path lead down to the north end of Arrowhead Lake. to my right was a straight up the hill wide, heavily eroded, rock strewn trail that was clearly the route to Jackass pass (10,800 ft.).

 

Straight ahead was a faint but inviting "climbers' path" that led up to a notched saddle, that I just knew would have a tremendous view of the Cirque, the rock faces, and the landscape as the morning sun was starting to move down the rock faces. I chose to take the path straight ahead.

 

Coming over the crest of the saddle and looking down below at the Cirque and across at all the tremendous spires, faces, and peaks of the Cirque of the Towers was the most dramatic moment of this trip. Wonderful. Beyond words.

 

Right in the middle of the Cirque was "the waterfalls" I wanted to visit and photograph. It was right where Andy Porter said it would be. I could follow the creek down from Hidden Lake (not labeled on all maps you will see of the area) and then see it as it flowed down over the falls and on into the Lonesome Lake basin.

 

I studied the topography of the cirque basin for awhile and picked a line of travel that would avoid tight patches of alpine conifers and the boulder fields that might slow my progress. I had lots of choices and I sat off on what looked like the "best route" down to the waterfalls.

 

The waterfalls are small but their setting makes them dramatic. While at the falls I saw a few rock climbers making their way to Pingora or Wolf Head or some other peak of the Cirque of the Towers, with their rock climbing gear slung across their shoulders.

 

I met a retired backpacker from Kellogg, Idaho, who was camped a ways down stream from the waterfalls. He had his binoculars out and was getting ready to watch the rock climber ply their avocation and skills.

 

I contoured from the waterfalls over to intercept the trail between Lonesome Lake and Jackass Pass. No sign of Fred anywhere but I just knew wherever he was he had a big grin on his face and was happily following photo op after photo op. I knew he was in his element.

 

When I got to the main trail, without losing any altitude, it was a short hike up over Jackass Pass, heading south. Quietly I hoped I could hike fast enough to get back to camp at Big Sandy Lake, eat something (I was determined to get into the Yogi Bear proof bear vault) then head out for a hike to one or more of the lakes down by Temple Mountain.

 

Between Arrowhead Lake and North Lake, on the trail on my way back to Big Sandy Lake camp, I saw SQ coming up the trail at a nice even brisk pace. We hadn't talked much up to this point but there is something about a "side of the trail" talk, that brings out topic after topic.

 

When she found out I hadn't been able to get into the "anybody can do it" (except me), bear vault she started throwing food out of her day pack, insisting that I eat something of hers. I didn't have the heart to eat any of her precious trail chocolate but willingly ate one of her mini-bagel peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

 

We talked on and on and every few minutes, hikers or climber going in or out of the Cirque of the Towers would stop by and the conversation would expand in topic and in number of participants. What fun.

 

Then we looked down the trail and saw a familiar face coming up the trail. It was "Walter the wonder dog" the trail beagle/Australian shepherd mix, sweetheart of a dog. He seemed to recognize us and made a bee line over for some ear scratching and encouraging "dog talk". He may have also spotted SQ's trail snacks.

 

A much repeated trail ritual ensued with Walter's big German Shepherd companions appearing on the trail The moment they spotted Walter getting attention they once again lined up for their share. The two women, who owned the dogs (by now regular "trail friends") came up too and another animated trail information sessions began again. They told me of how much they had enjoyed the granite slab rock hike between Deep and Clear Lakes, so that nugget of information lodged in my mind.

 

Finally SQ and I headed our different ways. She headed up toward Jackass Pass (armed with my recommendation for at least sampling the "climbers' trail" to the notch). She would find Fred and probably the two of them would spend the rest of the day in the Cirque of the Towers area. I expressed my wish to eat at camp; secure food; and then head south from Big Sandy Lake to hike the Clear Lake/Deep Lake slab stone route OR the entire loop if I found I had time (returning down the Miller Lake route).

 

By 1:30 pm I had successfully opened the bear vault back at "base camp" and had a big lunch. I packed my day pack with more water and my water filter and readied for a day hike toward Temple Mountain. I left an irreverent note for Fred and SQ in the bear vault, so they would know what time I headed out and what my intended destination would be.

 

More hikers and backpackers were now arriving at Big Sandy Lake. That came as no surprise to me given the great weather and it being a Saturday. What did surprise me is that when I took off on the trail up to Clear Lake, I didn't see another person or backpacking tent, until I had hiked up to Deep Lake and returned to Clear Lake. Then, and only then did I run into a few hikers.

 

The hike up the granite slab rock between Clear Lake and Deep Lake was the most enjoyable section of "trail" that I have hiked in the Wind River Range. I just loved it. The steep white granite walls of Haystack and East Temple Mountain were tremendous sights.

 

When I looked at my hiking maps the route from Clear to Deep Lake was obvious so I ignored the cairns and any trails wandering in and out of the woods and just hiked the slab rock to my heart's content. It was really great hiking.

 

I lingered at Deep Lake to filter some water (tasted great), and just enjoy the outstanding views. I was tempted to hang around or perhaps hike on over to Temple Lake so I could be at Deep Lake when the pink early evening light started to hit East Temple Peak. But I thought it best to return the way I came and get back to Big Sandy Lake "base camp" in time to have a early evening meal with Fred & SQ, who would likely be returning from the Cirque of the Towers at around the same time.

 

The weather forecast for Sunday was a 20% chance of rain, which according to hikers coming in, had jumped up to 30%. Fred and SQ had the two plus hour backpack out from Big Sandy Lake to the trail head to do Sunday morning; then a two plus hour drive to Pinedale; then an 8 hour trip back home to Boise - - to be ready for work Monday morning.

 

When the three of us ended up together at our tents at our Big Sandy Lake "base camp" we all agreed to "sleep in" then head out together first thing Sunday morning. Saturday night was a still star filled night. It was a great way to finish out this backpacking trip. We all went to sleep with our own thoughts.

 

"THE STORY" DAY SIX: We all got up the next morning about the same time. Without words we immediately ate something and started striking our tents and packing our packs. Ice had formed on the inside of my rain fly as I had slept with the rain fly door wide open. Still I wouldn't have missed the night view of the stars.

 

At 8 am Sunday morning we shouldered our backpacks and headed down the gentle easy trail from Big Sandy Lake back to our vehicles at the trail head.

 

We talked to several hikers and backpackers as they were heading in and we were heading out. We met two older, but fit looking, women with quality backpacking gear, coming up the trail. Their accents quickly gave them away. They were from Adelaide, Australia.

 

I quickly teased them about the 1/2 hour time zones I had run into when working the area in the 1980s. SQ and the two Aussie women found some common topic threads and a full scale trail meeting began in earnest. Fred and I slowly backed away into the shade of a small pine and watched with pleasure and amusement as the women adroitly shifted topics and punctuated their discussion with hand waving.

 

Then a familiar hiker came running down the trail toward us. Walter the wonder beagle. How funny. Same routine, different location. Now the two dog owning women hikers; joined the two Aussie women; and SQ (surrounded by attention seeking canines) and the trail meeting took on a life of its own.

 

I circled the trail meeting with my camera trying to catch a snapshot that would capture the essence and the spirit of the "meeting". The meeting finally ended and off we all went. it was a good ending to our trail encounters with other hikers and Walter will always have a special place in my heart and a deserved title as "Trail Ambassador" and a very cute and clever dog.

 

We were at our vehicles by 11 am and digging into our ice chests for cold rewards for our three day backpacking and day hiking efforts. We chatted and talked trip highlights at the trail head then convoyed our vehicles back to the paved road. I stopped to photograph a cow and calf moose along the road on the way back to Pinedale but ran into Fred & SQ at the Subway, where we parted ways for the last time on this trip.

 

It had been a wonderful backpacking trip for me. If you made a short list of the qualities you would want in backpacking and hiking companions it would probably include adjectives such as: dependable, fair, courteous, considerate, flexible tolerant, competent, confident, honest, happy, flexible, fit, and a couple of phrases like "great attitude" "self sufficient" etc. Fred and his sister were all of those and more.

 

I have a feeling we will hike together again, unless I get too old too soon to keep up with the two of them. If they ever switch to lighter packs, then I'm already out matched. But somehow, I think the two of them would be fine with hiking slower because that is the kind of nice people that they are. Thanks Fred. Thanks SQ.

 

By the way if you have not yet hiked this area and are thinking about doing so, I highly recommend the map "Cirque of the Towers Wind River Range" by Backpacker Magazine (mytopo - a Trimble company). Fred found it and being the considerate person that he is, bought and sent a copy of the map to both me and to his sister, before our backpacking trip.

 

Also: I have read many backpacking "guides" and the one that hits the right balance for me and seems to be filled with good and "reasonable" advice is: Backpacker: "The Hiking Light Handbook" (carry less and enjoy more) by Karen Berger. I highly recommend it.

 

After leaving Pinedale in the early afternoon I had a planned stop at Trappers Point, just north of Pinedale off highway 191. You can't miss the place now as they are putting in a million dollar "antelope, deer, elk, and cattle" overpass right near the site.. You take a short rough dirt road to the top of a hill and you are looking down upon where Horse Creek enters the Snake River. Here six of the sixteen fur trading "rendezvous" took place.

 

Looking down upon the scene it doesn't take much imagination to time transport your thoughts to the 1830s and 1840s and imagine the colorful events that took place where you are looking. You will be standing where many Native Americans have stood, when hunting at this natural big game corridor. You can understand why this location was chosen for the rendezvous with - - the combination of wood, water, grazing, and bountiful game that would have made this the "place to be" for those many years.

 

You will share views and boot prints with mountain men like Jim Bridger (my hero); the Sublette brothers; Thomas Fitzpatrick; and Jedediah Smith (his story is a great read).

 

After spending much time at Trappers Point, I drove the familiar route through Bondurant, to the Hoback Junction; then down the Snake River to Alpine. From here I purposefully took yet another back road I had never before driven. I took highway 34 through small towns like Freedom, Henry and Soda Springs. I saw moose and pronghorn along the way and lots of early fall color.

 

When I arrived at Interstate 15 the "get home" bug hit me in full and I kept with the interstates from then on, driving up to Pocatello; then over to Burley, Twin Falls, Boise, La Grande, Pendleton and home. I pulled into rest stops, picnic areas, forest camps etc. to catch three of four hours of sleep in my RAV car camping bed, then drove on sipping cold diet Pepsi and eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches I made along the way using fresh coarse great tasting wheat bread I purchased near Daniel, Wyoming.

 

I got back home Monday morning. You might think I surprised my wife by getting home so early after leaving the trail head at close to noon on Sunday, but not so. She knows me well and greeted me with a big hug and a knowing smile. A good trip. I hope you enjoy some of the photographs and perhaps a bit of the "story" as well. OMT September 2012

 

If you liked the photos and the story that go along with this backpacking trip into the Cirque of the Towers in Wyoming's Wind River Range, you may enjoy sampling some of my photos from a September 2011 backpacking trip into Titcomb Basin in the Northern part of the Wind River Range. Fred was a co-conspirator and participant on that backpacking trip as well as this one:

www.flickr.com/photos/12150532@N04/sets/72157627678112546/</

Paris is the capital and most populous city of France. Situated on the Seine River, in the north of the country, it is at the heart of the Île-de-France region, also known as the région parisienne (Paris Region in English). The city of Paris has a population of 2,249,975 inhabitants (January 2011), while its metropolitan area is one of the largest population centres in Europe, with 12,292,895 inhabitants at the January 2011 census. About 2.7 million of this total were born outside Metropolitan France and represent a multitude of different countries and territories from around the world.

 

Paris was founded in the 3rd century BC by a Celtic people called the Parisii, who gave the city its name. By the 12th century, Paris was the largest city in the western world, a prosperous trading centre, the home of the University of Paris, and one of the most influential centres of learning in Europe. In the eighteenth century, it was the centre stage for the Enlightenment, the French Revolution, and an important centre of commerce, fashion, science, and the arts.

 

The Paris Region has one of the largest GDPs in the world, €612 billion (US$760 billion) in 2012. It hosts the world headquarters of twenty-nine of the largest companies in the world listed in the Fortune Global 500. Paris is today one of the world's leading business and cultural centres and has a global influence in politics, education, entertainment, media, science, and the arts. Paris is also one the world's leading tourist destinations; the City of Paris welcomed 29.3 million tourists in 2013. The Paris Region, which includes Disneyland Paris, the most visited tourist attraction in France, welcomed 32.3 million visitors. Paris is the third largest earner from tourism worldwide, after London and New York.

 

Paris in 2013 was home to three of the ten most visited art museums in the world: the Louvre, the Musée d'Orsay, and the Centre Georges Pompidou. It also is the home of several of the most visited architectural landmarks, including the Cathedral of Notre-Dame-de-Paris (12th century); Sainte-Chapelle (13th century); the Eiffel Tower (1889); and the Basilica of Sacre-Coeur on Montmartre (1919).

 

Paris is known for its fashion designers, high-end boutiques, and the twice-yearly Paris Fashion Week. It is world-renowned for its haute cuisine, and celebrated three-star restaurants. Most of France's major universities and Grandes Écoles are in Paris or its suburbs, and most of France's major newspapers, including Le Monde, Le Figaro, and Libération, are based in the city, while Le Parisien in the suburb Saint-Ouen.

 

Paris is home to the association football club Paris Saint-Germain FC and the rugby union club Stade Français. Paris hosts the annual French Open Grand Slam tennis tournament on the red clay of Roland Garros. Paris played host to the 1900 and 1924 Summer Olympics, the 1938 and 1998 FIFA World Cup, and the 2007 Rugby World Cup. The 80,000-seat Stade de France in Saint-Denis was built for the 1998 FIFA World Cup. The city is a major rail, highway, and air-transport hub, served by the two international airports Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Paris-Orly. Opened in 1900, the city's subway system, the Paris Métro, serves 5.23 million passengers daily. Paris is the hub of the national road network, and is surrounded by three orbital roads: the Boulevard Périphérique, the A86 motorway, and the Francilienne motorway in the outer suburbs.

 

From Wikipedia

 

(Color pencils on paper, enhanced with ArcSoft PhotoImpressions software)

 

("For the first time, the General Social Survey--a large, national survey conducted every two years and widely considered to represent the gold standard for public opinion research--shows a majority of Americans favoring the legalization of marijuana."

 

---Christopher Ingraham, the Washington Post, 3.4. 2015.)

 

("Forty-four percent of Americans say they have tried cannabis, according to a new Gallup poll.

 

The American research-based consulting company, which is best known for its opinion polls, says this is the highest percentage to admit to having tried the soft drug since it first started asking the question in 1969 — when only 4 percent said they had sampled it."

 

---Michael Walsh, Yahoo News, 7.22. 2015.)

  

(“...good people don’t smoke marijuana."

 

---Jeff Sessions, a republican U.S. Senator from Alabama, speaking at a Senate caucus convened by anti-marijuana Senators Dianne Feinstein and Chuck Grassley. Reported by Christopher Ingraham, The Washington Post, 4.5. 2016.

 

WTF? Apparently Jeff Sessions is frankly psychotic!!!)

  

(During the course of my career in non-profit quality control, I smoked marijuana every day for 29 of the past 42 years. Marijuana can be a good medicine, and I found that it often inspired me.

 

My favorite imported kinds of marijuana were Punta Roja Colombian, "Thai sticks", and Mexican from Oaxaca.

 

I also enjoyed some of the hashish that came from Lebanon, Afghanistan, and Nepal. The hashoil I smoked that came from Morocco greatly lifted my spirits and provided unique insight. "Bubble Hash" made in Berkeley gave me wonderful visions.

 

[Willie Nelson won 10 Grammy awards, and has appeared in 37 movies and TV shows. More than 40 million copies of his more than 100 albums have been sold. He has smoked marijuana for MANY years. Nelson is an outspoken advocate for the drug and has been arrested several times for possession of marijuana. He was arrested in 2006 for possessing marijuana and hallucinogenic mushrooms. His latest song is titled "Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die".

 

---from an Associated Press news report, 4.21. 2012.]

  

Here is a list of some of the kinds of cannabis I have smoked that were obtained from "medical marijuana" stores in the San Francisco bay area. [I saved the labels.]

  

Blueberry

Tsunami

Outdoor Rom

Trainwreck

Red Widow

Smoothelove

Dutch Passionkush

Northern Green

Spice

Nor Kali Black Spice

Sensi Star

Organic Main Wreck

Sour Diesel

Ice Ice

Fruity Bliss

Organic Remedy

NYC Diesel

S1-5

Organic Super Silver Haze

Morning Star

Snow Cap

Jedi

Sweet Nightmare

Dirty Little Pig

Durbin Poison

Oracle

Bubble Haze

White Widow

Mountain Kick

Snow White

Yumbolt

Co-op

Organic Flo

Silvercratic

Organic Purple Haze

Goo-5

Nor Kali Kaui Kola

Dynomite

Nor Kali Buddha's Haze

Old Grand Huck

Grape Ape

Buddha's Sister

Super Jack

Organic Rom Thai

Third Eye

World Wide Widow

Afgootiva

Greased Lightening

Outdoor Organic Humboldt

Balance

Peak 19

Organic Mazar

Outdoor Train Crossing

Organic Shaman

Super Star

Rhino

Burmese

Jelly

Caramel

Kahuna

Shiva's Tears

Organic A-10

Purple Burmese

Lemon Skunk x Royal Orange

Mendo Blendo

The Sativa

Organic Hawaiian Snow

Purple Kush Domina

Organic Ultra Skunk

Sage 'n' Sour

Outdoor Organic Kam

Tree-W

Da Kind

Jack Frost

Pot O' Gold

Shiva Afghani

Gorilla's Mist

Strawberry Cough

Sativa 2

Organic Jane

Organic Purple Way

Outdoor Organic Bonkers

Organic Purps

Outdoor Organic Goo

Juicy Fruit

Mind Eraser

Pearly Baker

White Russian

Sonoma Coma

Organic Sticky Nurple

MK Ultra

Outdoor Organic Trainwreck x White Widow

Organic Sweetleaf

Organic Purple Ice

Jack Herer

God's Gift

Outdoor Organic Purple Mendo

Organic Ogre

Organic Trance

William's Wonder x Northern Lights

Blue Ogre

Organic Lamb's Bread

Champagne

Black Bunanna

Super Chunk

Organic Rom Cross

Rom Hottie

Organic Slider

El Bueno

Jakki

Organic Time Warp

Organic Mist

Mantanuska TF

Pineapple Trainwreck

Organic Mantanuska Mist

Organic Mothership

Traincrash

Swazi Haze

Golden Goo

Organic Trance

Jack'l Berry

Outdoor Mysty

Purple Peak 19

Sage

Motor City

Purple Erkel

Crazy Hazy

Bright Star

Power Plant

Organic Cindy 99

Skunk #2

Organic Bonana

Outdoor Organic Hash Plant

Baby Blues

Cat Piss

African Sativa

Romadelic

AK-47

Outdoor Organic Madness

Outdoor Organic Blue Dot

Sour Daze

Spicy Jack

Outdoor Organic Pure Rezin

Old Mother Sativa

Mountain Girl

Super Wreck

Sapphire Star

Bombshell

Also Known As

Pea Soup

Pirate's Kush

Leda Una

Northern Lights x Big Bud

All Star Organic Oaktown Wreck

"Shiva Crystals" hashish

  

I have also eaten a variety of cannabis preparations sold at "medical marijuana" stores in Berkeley, including:

 

"Butter Brothers" brand Brownies, Phat Mints, Blackberry Streusel, Ginger Snaps, and Peanut Butter Cookies.

"Ganja Candy" brand Caramel, Blackberry, and Dr. Pepper.

"Tainted" brand Thin Mints

"Dank" candy

"420 Grand" candy

"Double-Strength Medi Pills" [cannabis oil capsules]

"Shiva Candy" [hashish candy]

"Rhino Pellet" [tiny cookie]

"Evil Aunt Emily's Seriously Psychotic Suckers" [cannabis oil candy])

 

IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT SALES OF SO-CALLED "MEDICAL MARIJUANA" AT STORES IN BERKELEY:

 

I have seen marijuana contaminated by toxic insecticides that was purchased from (city-approved) so-called "medical marijuana" stores in Berkeley. I have seen marijuana contaminated with other toxic chemicals that was purchased from so-called "medical marijuana" stores in Berkeley. I have seen marijuana contaminated with toxic mold that was purchased at so-called "medical marijuana" stores in Berkeley. There are no enforced standards that designate who may or may not be so-called "medical marijuana" grower-sellers in the city of Berkeley. These for-profit privately-owned stores charge an obscenely high price for their questionable products. THERE IS NO DOUBT THAT MARIJUANA CAN BE ONE OF THE VERY BEST MEDICINES IN THE WORLD!!!!!!!! (Depending upon the type and dose of marijuana, the route of administration, and the set and setting in which it is used.) BUT BEWARE: Greedy and/or stupid capitalists selling untested products grown by greedy and/or stupid amateurs ARE NOT GOOD PEOPLE!

  

("...marijuana is not legal."

 

---Ed Rosenthal, interviewed by Paul Kilduff, The Monthly, December 2014.)

  

("Indeed, positive hits for pathogenic mold are already changing grower operations. 'You smoke ten random samples of cannabis and you've most likely smoked aspergillus [mold],' said Dave, one of the lab's two founders. 'It's in there, often at unacceptable levels. Now it's up to the industry to respond. We also are not in a position where we want to make enemies and piss people off. We want to see it happen in the best way for the movement and the industry to kind of just naturally evolve.'

While the distributed nature of California's cannabis supply network obviously benefits mom-and-pop growers, it doesn't encourage quality assurance. Consequently, Dave and his peers believe that some pot consumers are in danger.

'It's expensive to test every single thing that comes through the door — that's the price you pay with a decentralized supply system,' Dave said. 'But that's what you've got. You've got five pounds coming from here and two from there and one individual. I mean, a dog walks in the grow room, and wags its tail — anything can be coming off that dog's tail. It's gross. Fertilizers with E. coli. Compost teas that they don't make right, anaerobic tea that has elevated levels of E. coli and salmonella...There's no way that this is sustainable. All it takes is one story of immune-compromised people dying from aspergillus infection. The myth that cannabis hasn't killed a single person in 3,000 years is allowed to go on. Well, it's not cannabis that kills people, it's all the shit that's in it.'

 

[From "The Manhattan Project of Marijuana", David Downs, the East Bay Express, 3.4. 2009.])

 

(Steep Hill Lab says eighty-five percent of the medical marijuana samples it tests "show traces of mold".

 

---Peter Hecht, "Pot Lab Fills Need for Oversight", the Sacramento Bee, 4.6. 2010. The owners of Steep Hill Lab in Oakland California [which is NOT a Federally-certified laboratory] are extremely in favor of medical marijuana...)

 

("We find e.coli in hash. We're seeing pseudomonas aeruginosa, a bacteria that's found in filth."

 

---Robert Martin, of the Association of California Cannabis Labs. Martin was quoted by David Downs in the East Bay Express, 4.11. 2012.)

 

("It's a nasty little secret in the medical marijuana world that many growers spray their plants liberally with pesticides..."

 

---Robert Gammon, the East Bay Express, 7.28. 2010.)

  

("...the true danger in untested cannabis comes from the potential pathogens--pseudomonas, aspergillis, and E. coli are routinely found by our laboratory [CW Analytical]."

 

---David Egerton, in a letter to the editor of the East Bay Express, 7.18. 2012.)

  

("While I am grateful for access to the pot clubs...I am at a bit of a loss to understand why, given the virtual absence of risk in producing and distributing pot, it is still so expensive."

"What we have...are facilities charging the high end of street prices to people who are already ostensibly facing hardship."

 

["An ounce for $300 to $400..."]

 

"...besides basic capitalist greed, why does it still cost so much? Most of the truly disabled and terminally ill are on a fixed income, rendering the cost of pot not at all that compassionate."

 

--- Quotes from a letter written by Steve Stevens to the editor of the San Francisco Weekly, 1.20. 2010.)

 

("According to Rand Corporation estimates...legalized...high-grade pot would cost just $20 per pound to produce. And low-grade weed would cost only $5 per pound."

 

---David Downs, East Bay Express, 10.9. 2013.)

  

(Since May 2011, four marijuana stores in Richmond, California [near Berkeley and Oakland] "...have paid $486,390 in police fees."

 

"To some, the situation evokes...the protection racket."

 

---David Downs, East Bay Express, 8.28. 2013)

 

("I've never met so many greedy slugs in my whole life."

 

---Michelle LaMay, chairwoman of the Teapot Party in Colorado, describing having to deal with the more than 3,000 people who have contacted her because they want to start their own cannabis business. [Willie Nelson was arrested in Texas for possessing marijuana on November 26, 2010. Following his arrest, Nelson founded the Teapot Party.] The quote is from an article by Eric Spitznagel, Bloomberg Businessweek, that was published in the San Francisco Chronicle, 11.20. 2011)

 

("We did $20 million in sales last year."

 

---Steve DeAngelo, executive director of Harborside Health Collective, a marijuana store in Oakland. DeAngelo was quoted by Kathleen Pender in an article, "Push to Protect Banks on Legal Pot Business". The San Francisco Chronicle, 5.25. 2010.)

 

("California's medical marijuana dispensaries now generate as much as $1.3 billion in sales and $105 million in state sales taxes each year, according to new---and dramatically increased---state sales estimates by California's Board of Equalization."

 

"The Board of Equalization earlier this year estimated medical marijuana sales at only $98 million annually..."

 

--- the Sacramento Bee, 5.8. 2010.)

 

(The Berkeley Patients Group is "a dispensary with about 10,000 patients in the Bay Area". In 2007 the DEA "pounced on a Southern California offshoot of the Berkeley nonprofit for distributing a federally controlled substance. Agents seized nearly everything on-site as well as $100,000 in funds in a bank account."

 

"The Berkeley dispensary actually got the money back after the City of Berkeley stood up for it. The city stated in a 2008 resolution 'seizures of assets of medical marijuana dispensaries and collectives have blocked payments of taxes to the state of California and the City of Berkeley.' The city asked federal authorities to back off and they did."

 

"Berkeley Patients Group, along with two other Berkeley clubs, net about $18.5 million per year."

 

---David Downs, the East Bay Express, 9.15. 2010.)

  

("The city of Berkeley filed a legal claim Wednesday in a federal asset forfeiture case against the landlord of a medical marijuana dispensary here, saying it would lose tax money from pot sales if the dispensary is forced to close."

 

---Doug Oakley, West County Times, 7.4. 2013.)

  

("Oakland's lawsuit said the closure would damage the city, which expects to collect more than $1.4 million this year in business taxes from Harborside and three other city-licensed dispensaries."

 

---Bob Egelko, San Francisco Chronicle, 10.14. 2012. Seeking to prevent the forced closure of Harborside Health Center, a "medical marijuana" dispensary, the City of Oakland filed a lawsuit against the federal government.)

  

Years ago there was a legitimate drug testing laboratory in California where a user could anonymously have a sample of their "dope" tested. Unfortunately, such drug-testing laboratories were declared illegal by Federal law enforcement officials and were forced to cease operation. The public no longer has access to any Federally-certified drug testing laboratories.

 

Many of the anti-drug police say they believe that "harm reduction" strategies increase drug use and are thus unacceptable. Some anti-drug police believe that the world would be a better place if users of illegal drugs died...

 

("Casual drug users should be taken out and shot. Smoke a joint, lose your life."

 

---Darryl Gates,

Head of Los Angeles Police Department, speaking to a

United States Senate Judiciary Committee on September 5, 1990.

[Gates said the above because he felt casual drug users were guilty of "treason", according to author Martin Torgoff, writing in his book "CAN'T FIND MY WAY HOME--America in the Great Stoned Age, 1945-2000" (Simon & Schuster, 2004.)])

 

("In 1996, Newt Gingrich introduced a bill mandating the death penalty for bringing two ounces of marijuana into the country!"

 

[quote from a document published by Unitarian Universalists for Drug Policy Reform].)

  

("William Bennett, federal drug policy coordinator, said Thursday night he had no moral qualms about beheading convicted drug dealers.

 

'Morally, I don't have any problem with that at all,' Bennett said when asked on the CNN program 'Larry King Live' call-in television show..."

 

---Los Angeles Times, 6.16. 1989.)

  

("Quinlivan told the judges that nobody has a right to use marijuana... "

 

"Judge Harry Pregerson asked Quinlivan whether it was OK for Raich to die or succumb to 'unbearable suffering.'

'So go ahead and die. That would be all right?' he asked.

'Congress has made that value judgement,' Quinlivan replied."

 

---David Kravets, the Oakland Tribune, 3.28. 2006, in an article about a hearing before a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Angel McClary Raich is a very seriously ill patient that multiple doctors say must use marijuana as a medicine or she will likely die. Mark T. Quinlivan is an Assistant U.S. Attorney.)

  

("I'm a firm believer that drugs are the root of all evil."

 

---Conta Costa County [California] deputy sheriff Andy VanZelf,

quoted 10.4. 2009 in the Conta Costa Times by columnist Tom Barnidge. "VanZelf [a police officer for 23 years] ...was born to the job--his mother, father, and brother were cops--but that's not why he stuck with it. 'Putting bad guys in jail is very satisfying,' he said.")

 

("According to the FBI's annual Uniform Crime Report, in 2007 there were 872,721 arrests in the U.S. for marijuana violations."

 

---Adam Tschorn, the Los Angeles Times, 9.3. 2009.)

 

("It was downtown San Jose and another police officer had made a stop on three kids who were touring San Jose on a Saturday night. You know, driving around in circles like American Graffitti. And the officer pulled three kids out of the car and he didn't know but one kid panicked and tried to swallow a small bag of marijuana---and I pulled up just to watch and assist if needed and didn't realize what was going on either. And this kid died in front of us choking on a bag of marijuana. He didn't die because of marijuana, he died because he panicked over these stupid laws we have."

 

---former San Jose, California undercover narcotics detective Russ Jones, quoted by David Downs, the East Bay Express, 5.12. 2010. Russ Jones is a spokesman for the "Law Enforcement Against Prohibition" organization.)

 

(Because I am a disabled homeless person who has VERY little money, I cannot afford the fee that doctors charge to issue a recommendation that I be allowed to use "medical marijuana". Nor can I afford the administrative fee charged for the issuance of a "medical marijuana" card. Even if I had the proper paperwork, I am too poor to be able to pay the high prices the local "medical marijuana" stores charge. I have never grown marijuana. Because I am homeless I have no place where I can grow marijuana.)

 

A randomly-edited selection of approximately 700 of my pictures may be viewed by clicking on the link below:

www.flickr.com/groups/psychedelicart/pool/43237970@N00/

 

Please click here to read my "autobiography":

thewordsofjdyf333.blogspot.com/

 

And my "profile" page may be viewed by clicking on this link:

www.flickr.com/people/jdyf333/

 

My telephone number is: 510-260-9695

  

Please note: DEPICTION IS NOT ADVOCACY!!!

Full story here: www.nasa.gov/centers/jpl/news/cassini20130429.html

 

The spinning vortex of Saturn's north polar storm resembles a deep red rose of giant proportions surrounded by green foliage in this false-color image from NASA's Cassini spacecraft. Measurements have sized the eye at a staggering 1,250 miles (2,000 kilometers) across with cloud speeds as fast as 330 miles per hour (150 meters per second).

 

This image is among the first sunlit views of Saturn's north pole captured by Cassini's imaging cameras. When the spacecraft arrived in the Saturnian system in 2004, it was northern winter and the north pole was in darkness. Saturn's north pole was last imaged under sunlight by NASA's Voyager 2 in 1981; however, the observation geometry did not allow for detailed views of the poles. Consequently, it is not known how long this newly discovered north-polar hurricane has been active.

 

The images were taken with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Nov. 27, 2012, using a combination of spectral filters sensitive to wavelengths of near-infrared light. The images filtered at 890 nanometers are projected as blue. The images filtered at 728 nanometers are projected as green, and images filtered at 752 nanometers are projected as red. In this scheme, red indicates low clouds and green indicates high ones.

 

The view was acquired at a distance of approximately 261,000 miles (419,000 kilometers) from Saturn and at a sun-Saturn-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 94 degrees. Image scale is 1 mile (2 kilometers) per pixel. The Cassini-Huygens mission is a cooperative project of NASA, the European Space Agency and the Italian Space Agency. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C. The Cassini orbiter and its two onboard cameras were designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The imaging operations center is based at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colo.

 

For more information about the Cassini-Huygens mission, visit: www.nasa.gov/cassini and saturn.jpl.nasa.gov. The Cassini imaging team homepage is at ciclops.org.

 

Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SSI

 

NASA image use policy.

 

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission.

 

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Editor's note: hello Flickr friends! Evening is falling here in Huntsville, Ala., and it will be a late night for the Web/Flickr team. This famous image and these lyrics seem fitting for tonight. Shamelessly poaching from our sister center at Goddard, and apologies if you've already seen this incredible image from 2012...

 

"I am made from the dust of the stars

And the oceans flow in my veins

Here I hide in the heart of the city

Like a stranger coming out of the rain

 

The evening plane rises up from the runway

Over constellations of light

I look down into a million houses

And wonder what you're doing tonight...

 

--"Presto," Rush, lyrics by Neil Peart

  

(Image and caption courtesy of Goddard Space Center)

 

NASA image acquired April 18 - October 23, 2012

 

This image of the Earth at night is a composite assembled from data acquired by the Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (Suomi NPP) satellite over nine days in April 2012 and thirteen days in October 2012. It took 312 orbits and 2.5 terabytes of data to get a clear shot of every parcel of Earth’s land surface and islands.

 

The nighttime view of Earth in visible light was made possible by the “day-night band” of the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite. VIIRS detects light in a range of wavelengths from green to near-infrared and uses filtering techniques to observe dim signals such as gas flares, auroras, wildfires, city lights, and reflected moonlight. In this case, auroras, fires, and other stray light have been removed to emphasize the city lights.

 

Named for satellite meteorology pioneer Verner Suomi, NPP flies over any given point on Earth’s surface twice each day at roughly 1:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. The spacecraft flies 824 kilometers (512 miles) above the surface in a polar orbit, circling the planet about 14 times a day. Suomi NPP sends its data once per orbit to a ground station in Svalbard, Norway, and continuously to local direct broadcast users distributed around the world. The mission is managed by NASA with operational support from NOAA and its Joint Polar Satellite System, which manages the satellite's ground system.

 

NASA Earth Observatory image by Robert Simmon, using Suomi NPP VIIRS data provided courtesy of Chris Elvidge (NOAA National Geophysical Data Center). Suomi NPP is the result of a partnership between NASA, NOAA, and the Department of Defense. Caption by Mike Carlowicz.

 

Instrument: Suomi NPP - VIIRS

 

Credit: NASA Earth Observatory

 

Click here to view all of the Earth at Night 2012 images

 

Click here to read more about this image

  

NASA image use policy.

 

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission.

 

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Editor's note: this pretty image is a rotated and cropped version of the original, located here: chandra.harvard.edu/photo/2012/m83/. A nice one from Chandra!

 

NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has discovered an extraordinary outburst by a black hole in the spiral galaxy M83, located about 15 million light years from Earth. Using Chandra, astronomers found a new ultraluminous X-ray source (ULX), objects that give off more X-rays than most "normal" binary systems in which a companion star is in orbit around a neutron star or black hole.

 

On the left is an optical image of M83 from the Very Large Telescope in Chile, operated by the European Southern Observatory. On the right is a composite image showing X-ray data from Chandra in pink and optical data from the Hubble Space Telescope in blue and yellow. The ULX is located near the bottom of the composite image.

 

In Chandra observations that spanned several years, the ULX in M83 increased in X-ray brightness by at least 3,000 times. This sudden brightening is one of the largest changes in X-rays ever seen for this type of object, which do not usually show dormant periods.

 

Optical images reveal a bright blue source at the position of the ULX during the X-ray outburst. Before the outburst the blue source is not seen. These results imply that the companion to the black hole in M83 is a red giant star, more than about 500 million years old, with a mass less than about four times the Sun's. According to theoretical models for the evolution of stars, the black hole should be almost as old as its companion.

 

Astronomers think that the bright, blue optical emission seen during the X-ray outburst must have been caused by a disk surrounding the black hole that brightened dramatically as it gained more material from the companion star.

 

Another highly variable ULX with an old, red star as a companion to a black hole was found recently in M31. The new ULXs in M83 and M31 provide direct evidence for a population of black holes that are much older and more volatile than those usually considered to be found in these objects.

 

The researchers estimate a mass range for the M83 ULX from 40 to 100 times that of the Sun. Lower masses of about 15 times the mass of the Sun are possible, but only if the ULX is producing more X-rays than predicted by standard models of how material falls onto black holes.

 

Evidence was also found that the black hole in this system may have formed from a star surprisingly rich in "metals", as astronomers call elements heavier than helium. The ULX is located in a region that is known, from previous observations, to be rich with metals.

 

Large numbers of metals increase the mass-loss rate for massive stars, decreasing their mass before they collapse. This, in turn, decreases the mass of the resulting black hole. Theoretical models suggest that with a high metal content only black holes with masses less than about 15 times that of the Sun should form. Therefore, these results may challenge these models.

 

This surprisingly rich "recipe" for a black hole is not the only possible explanation. It may also be that the black hole is so old that it formed at a time when heavy elements were much less abundant in M83, before seeding by later generations of supernovas. Another explanation is that the mass of the black hole is only about 15 times that of the sun.

 

Read entire caption/view more images: chandra.harvard.edu/photo/2012/m83/

 

Credit: Left image - Optical: ESO/VLT; Close-up - X-ray: NASA/CXC/Curtin University/R.Soria et al., Optical: NASA/STScI/Middlebury College/F.Winkler et al.

 

Read entire caption/view more images: chandra.harvard.edu/photo/2012/m83/

 

Caption credit: Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

 

Read more about Chandra:

www.nasa.gov/chandra

 

p.s. You can see all of our Chandra photos in the Chandra Group in Flickr at: www.flickr.com/groups/chandranasa/ We'd love to have you as a member!

  

_____________________________________________

These official NASA photographs are being made available for publication by news organizations and/or for personal use printing by the subject(s) of the photographs. The photographs may not be used in materials, advertisements, products, or promotions that in any way suggest approval or endorsement by NASA. All Images used must be credited. For information on usage rights please visit: www.nasa.gov/audience/formedia/features/MP_Photo_Guidelin...

Editor's note: Happy Pink Day! To celebrate, here's one of our favorites from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory in 2012. This pretty image is a rotated and cropped version of the original, located at: chandra.harvard.edu/photo/2012/m83/.

 

(From 2012) NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has discovered an extraordinary outburst by a black hole in the spiral galaxy M83, located about 15 million light years from Earth. Using Chandra, astronomers found a new ultraluminous X-ray source (ULX), objects that give off more X-rays than most "normal" binary systems in which a companion star is in orbit around a neutron star or black hole.

 

This is a composite image showing X-ray data from Chandra in pink and optical data from the Hubble Space Telescope in blue and yellow. The ULX is located near the bottom of the composite image.

 

In Chandra observations that spanned several years, the ULX in M83 increased in X-ray brightness by at least 3,000 times. This sudden brightening is one of the largest changes in X-rays ever seen for this type of object, which do not usually show dormant periods.

 

Astronomers think that the bright, blue optical emission seen during the X-ray outburst must have been caused by a disk surrounding the black hole that brightened dramatically as it gained more material from the companion star.

 

The researchers estimate a mass range for the M83 ULX from 40 to 100 times that of the Sun. Lower masses of about 15 times the mass of the Sun are possible, but only if the ULX is producing more X-rays than predicted by standard models of how material falls onto black holes.

 

Evidence was also found that the black hole in this system may have formed from a star surprisingly rich in "metals", as astronomers call elements heavier than helium. The ULX is located in a region that is known, from previous observations, to be rich with metals.

 

Large numbers of metals increase the mass-loss rate for massive stars, decreasing their mass before they collapse. This, in turn, decreases the mass of the resulting black hole. Theoretical models suggest that with a high metal content only black holes with masses less than about 15 times that of the Sun should form. Therefore, these results may challenge these models.

 

This surprisingly rich "recipe" for a black hole is not the only possible explanation. It may also be that the black hole is so old that it formed at a time when heavy elements were much less abundant in M83, before seeding by later generations of supernovas. Another explanation is that the mass of the black hole is only about 15 times that of the sun.

 

Read entire caption/view more images: chandra.harvard.edu/photo/2012/m83/

 

Credit: Close-up - X-ray: NASA/CXC/Curtin University/R.Soria et al., Optical: NASA/STScI/Middlebury College/F.Winkler et al.

 

Read entire caption/view more images: chandra.harvard.edu/photo/2012/m83/

 

Caption credit: Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

 

Read more about Chandra:

www.nasa.gov/chandra

 

Flickr album: NASA Goes Pink:

www.flickr.com/photos/nasamarshall/sets/72157625045060125/

 

______________________________

These official NASA photographs are being made available for publication by news organizations and/or for personal use printing by the subject(s) of the photographs. The photographs may not be used in materials, advertisements, products, or promotions that in any way suggest approval or endorsement by NASA. All Images used must be credited. For information on usage rights please visit: www.nasa.gov/audience/formedia/features/MP_Photo_Guidelin...

This specific image was shot with Canon EOS6D handheld, actually one handed since I had my umbrella on my left hand.

 

The 5DMK2 sensor was one of the worst sensors(read noise wise) in digital camera history, and from that crappy banding machine to the Nikon D800E was a huge leap in terms of IQ, but after that?

 

The sad reality we must face if we are at least a bit honest with ourselves and sensor test data is that basically, image quality of so-called fullframe sensor hasn't improved since about 2012. The tech around it has been in stagnation, not any advancing. But according to the DPR,etc the A7R2 is a real game changer, so great that we should even change our own value and standard for system functionality, ergonomics preferences,etc, to get that specific camera. But in reality, as I said, the image quality of the 42.4 mp sensor is basically the same or identical to the old 36 mp sensor first introduced in the D800 in 2012. In fact, if the base ISO image quality is the most important aspect of a camera to you as DPR forced us to believe, then even the venerable D800 would still beat the A7R2. The A6300 is basically a bit more glorified, refined version of the NEX7 from the 2012, nothing more than that, but those so-called reviewers just intentionally dramatize, grandiose the minor difference in the feature set of these 2 APS-C cameras, to call the A6300 a true game changer......before it they did the same to the A6000, which was actually a dumbed-down version of the NEX7.

The OM-D EM5MK2 is the same exactly the same as the ancient EM5 IQ wise and so on. No format is actually getting better in terms of sheer image quality and basic functionality.

  

So are those so-called pro reviewers the worst kind of perpetuators in camera world?

 

1, we have to define what is pro camera for most ? But is there really such a thing as pro camera?

I remember Marissa Mayer of Yahoo,who introduced the current style of Flick two years ago once said: "there is no such thing as professional photographer."

 

I don't actually agree with her, but the opinion out there that shared by many influential, powerful people like her and others can be very influential and strongly affect or even change the courses of thinking or opinion making process of many people. In the photography world, the CEO of the company that owns Flickr is a person whose opinions really have that kind of power, whose opinions can influence many many people, as I said that can or may change opinions of many many people. So we like her opinion or not, it is very very strongly influential.

 

There was the always interesting anecdote from one of those few former CEO's of Phase One, I did not know if it was true or not, though : once we asked Phase people who actually were buying their real high-end cameras? Phase answered was shocking to some,"CEO's of small companies and Dentists." Not so-called "professionals" are usual their customers, but more well heeled guys. I found it extremely interesting, but it may be true. When I asked a few of our main pro customers who mostly shoot architectures about their opinions on the above Phase anecdote, they replied to us,"well, it may be true,we sometimes used Phase One Backs but we never bought them but just rented their amazing products when we actually needed that kind of resolution,we do not consider ourselves professionals, though."

Very interesting, indeed.

 

I'd be willing to bet serious money that an overwhelming majority of A7R2, D810s and 5Ds camera users are just well heeled guys or girls, not shooting anything their "main" income-generating works. I'd put money somewhere around the 80% to 85% of those high end FF users are amatures or part time pros, or just geeks like us.

 

"Professional" (like "prosumer" or "enthusiast") is a marketing word, anyway. When someone from Nikon or Canon or any major camera company tells you that the new D5XS mark 4 is a true "professional" camera, they aren't saying anything meaningful about the camera itself. They're making an advertising pitch to your ego or pride.

Since, right now, most actually "professional" using camera in the Nikon lineup might be the cheap but excellent D5500. Or may even be the refubished D3300? But its AF is primitive! It's plastic! It's not weather sealed! Who cares: the D3300's most "professional" feature is the tiny investment for the amazing IQ it stacks against any profit. Real professionals are stingy people and care about money spent on camera gear much more seriously than well heeled amatures or part time professionals. The D3300 is better than the D300s from 2009 in almost every way,and some even consider it a better camera than the D700 and there are very few clients who wouldn't be thrilled by what comes out of a D700 shot with skill and vision. So in terms of sheer IQ, the D5500 can be considered as a pro camera.

I have many PRO customers shooting a EOS70D or a Nikon D5500 or a D7200 and many of them use a D3300 as a back-up. Not all pros or serious amatures need super fast AF or 4k video, and I think if they need serious 4k, they buy a dedicated 4k pro camera that can record much longer than 29 minutes

a session anyway. It is actually cheaper than buying a half-baked 4k camera like the A7R2 or the GH4 in the long run.

So who needs commercial reviewers brainwashing us what they actually want to sell is the best camera or the actual best selling camera ?

 

2, some die-hard D-SLR loving reviewers always describe the A7X menu system as "inane" or confusing, but which camera has more organized menu system?

I've never understood anyone's criticism of camera menu systems. Because every camera's menu is the same, not exactly the same but identically disorganized. They're categorized lists with nested options. None of them are truly optimized for speed, they all bury (different) critical options, they all require a little practice to build familiarity.

That's why they love Canon or Nikon menu system better, and they do get confused just being more familiar to them with better for all. But I personally prefer the A7X menu better since it is more customizable, and actually I am more used to it than anything else now.

Controlling a camera with a menu is a stupid concept. It was a lazy, terrible idea in 1993 and it remains quite silly and terrible in 2015.

Many many many so-called reviewers are really really confused and forcing us to share the really silly "one menu system is more intuitive than the others" kinda concept.

But again, what they actually saying is they are more used to the one system than the other systems' menu lay-out or just they are too obtuse to understand anything a bit different than what they are used to using.

I guess most of so-called reviewers do not know cameras they think they are testing enough to test it and publish rushed-out reviews, so they never understand how to set up the Sony A7X or even how to shoot it well. If they do understand it, then they should know it is quite customizable and it is less menu-driven than the Canon 5DS or the Nikon D810.

The A7X has 4 dials and you can actually change shutter speed, F number, EV value and ISO without diving into the menu.If they have to dive into the deep menu system all the time, then they do not understand how to set it up or customize the buttons ans the dials of the Sony, and without even understand it properly they rush to pan the menu system hard.

So what do you expect from so-called reviews?

 

3,SONY SONY SONY!!! why are they worshiping for the Sony,especially for the A7R2 and the A7S2 all the time and keep releasing so-called hands-on or reviews every other day ?

 

Well be realistic! Most of die-hard high end Nikon or Canon boys and girls are fanatics and difficult to influence or change; as camera sales swirl down the toilet bowl, so does any review site's readership. Writing about or recommending two-year-old cameras or very old fashioned, 1950th minded big conventional cameras that many of their readers already own doesn't sell anything from their affiliates website. It's that simple.

When did you actually read any review of any camera last time? a decade ago?

Have you ever expected any so-called review pan or even mildly criticize any camera?

Do you actually trust any so-called review? I think all your answer should be no to all the 3 questions above.

They never criticize as I said, even completely lazy, behind-the-curve products like the Fuji X-M1(only 16mp dated sensor), the Canon 7D(remember that terrible banding machine?), the Sony A58 (worst ergonomics in camera world)and the Nikon D3200(truly just announced to be already dated kind of junk) all got decent scores. No so-called reviewers actually pan anything they review, and definitely never say "we hated this product X or Y", or anything like that because their affiliate will stop feeding them if they actually do that.

Meanwhile, actual users of cameras, hate various cameras and lenses all the time. Well, they can't all be unreasonable,obtuse cranks. Then why the views or opinions of real camera users and so-called reviewers are so dramatically different?

Well it is easy all review sites are affiliated with several big online camera sellers, such as Amazon, Adorama, B&H,etc in the USA, Digital Rev, Rakuten, Amazon,etc in Asia. So they cannot do real test such as using cameras in a humid Thailand jungle or testing it in an Icelandic mountain, or anything like that.

They do not even test cameras with Capture One since Adobe is a big sponsor of those junk camera review sites, but most of us who tether cameras or shoot studio portrait prefer Capture One pro to the cranky slow unreliable LR for tethering work.

Well after all, those commercial reviewers never buy any camera with their own money, so they do not get up-set or irritated even if a camera they are reviewing now is a real crap.

We real camera users, on the other hand, actually spend our own money to buy our cameras, so we always complain if they are craps, of course.

  

4, all so-called reviewers usually love the latest and greatest like the Sony A7R2 or theA7S2 or something very gadgetry like the Panasonic GH4 or the Samsung NX1, but none of them actually like Leica or Phase,why?

Well easy, they do not sell well, I mean how many more Leicas will sell if those reviews seriously recommend Leica in their silly so-called reviews? None, since we who like Leica cameras already know why we do love their cameras and we do not need any moron in disguise of a pro(oh well)reviewer to tell us about how good or amazing it is.

As for Phase, it is not their area, they do not understand that kind of real high quality products anyway, what kind of high end commercial photographers whose main cameras are some sort of Phase One or even Mamiya will be interested in moronic reviews' opinion on Phase cameras ? No one. Can those so-called reviewers from commercial sites possibly some how change opinion of the actual Phase users? never.

Well, so-called reviewers are professionals but not photographic pros, they are marketing pros whose main interest is cheating manipulating naive new camera buyers.

All so-called reviews are just poorly designed marketing materials and nothing else, so they just recommend something they can sell with high-margin.

Then, why are almost all so-called pro reviewers recommending Sony, pushing Sony A7R2 so hard to any one reading them now?

Well it is very simple, because it is what their affiliate want to sell and easier to sell because of the user base of that camera is not very narrow-minded like the core user base of the D810 or the 5DS. The potential high-end Sony owners the only kind of high-end camera users that may be willing to listen to so-called reviewers, thus the reviewers think they may be able to manipulate them into buying more of their affiliate pushing products. So they naturally focus on these Sony high-end, high-margin products.

  

And anyway: why shouldn't a high-end camera from 2015 outperform a high-end camera from 2012 ? It should.

But the sad reality is that the latest gear does not outperform the 2012 camera.

The actual(in practical sense )performance is the same or almost identical, no dramatic improvement has made in the sensor design since 2012(the D800E). The D810 is better than the D800E only at the very base ISO albeit the slower exposure time due to the ISO64 vs the SIO100 base sensitivity difference . The A7R2 is only better than the D800E in video department and at very high ISO for a lot more money.

But commercial review sites cannot say it honestly, how can they? if they say it then they cannot sell anything new any more.

 

I just used the Sony A7R2 and the D810 as typical example cases for the kind of products so-called review sites want to hard push to the naive readers, but I know they are actually quite fantastic products, just not as amazing or dramatic game-changers as those silly commercial camera review sites try to make them out to be. But they are good indeed.

 

Do not just listen to the hype too much that just obviously follows the money.

  

Update : now, Canon has just announced its new sensor development policy. Canon seems to have built a new sensor plant in Mie prefecture of Japan. It seems like Canon is going on new 65nm process rule and all upcoming Canon sensors will be produced at there.

I think the 1DX2 and the 80D sensors are processed at the new plant.

Sony is still leading the CMOS imaging industry, but giants like Samsung are in close pursuit. Also big players like Panasonic are forming joint ventures with the likes of TowerJazz to offer 12-inch wafer fabrication with state-of-the-art quantum efficiency and dark current performance at 65 nano meters, and additional 45nm digital technology, and added available capacity of approximately 800,000 8-inch wafers per year in three manufacturing plants in Japan, according to TowerJazz.

 

The stakes are huge. The CMOS image sensor market will reached the historic $10 billion milestone in 2015, according to Yale, and with new applications popping up in automotive, medical and surveillance, while smartphones begin adopting high-definition front facing cameras, the industry is likely to hit the $16 billion mark by 2020. So nobody is just sleeping and Sony has to consolidate its position ASAP, or probably Sony will lose it again just like its short-lived TV business.

 

Maybe Sony will be the final loser, not Nikon or Canon?

 

UPDATE 2: today Nikon announced some serious VR related issue with the D5 and the D500. I am not very sure what the real issue is here, their manual is really inanely written and hard for most of people to understand it. Me? I will wait what Thom says on this issue, it is much easier to read his article than annoyingly tedious Nikon manual.

But some Nikon technicians at Nikon Fukuoka warn me not use the VR in all lenses at super high ISO settings due to possible horizontal banding caused by the combination of high ISO plus the VR, I read this issue and many many people actually wondering what this issue really is and how serious it is.

I think Nikon really has some serious problem(probably internal power games in management) and all the current board members of Nikon corp should be replaced. The current president Kimura is terrible and running down the company to the worst possible, he has wasted about 40 percent of its total revenue money for nothing but silly one inch sensor compact business.

 

UPDATE3: Looks like Sony has actually done something right this year.

Sony was the only one of those 3 camera companies to break even this time, and was actually profitable for the year in Imaging, though it’s difficult to say how much of that is contributed by pro video gear. The Imaging Products group at Sony posted slightly lower sales (-1.7%) but a very healthy profit (up 30.4b yen and hitting about 10% of sales).

In terms of unit volume, digital cameras at Sony dropped from 8.5m units to 6.1m units year-to-year. That’s mostly compact camera sales that dried up. Sony won’t say exactly how that shift is working other than to say “improvement in the product mix of digital cameras.” In other words, they suggest that by getting rid of compact camera volume and focusing all its effort on high priced ILC units they are getting a better profit margin.

The other two camera companies still making some money out of their camera business are Fuji and Canon. We do not know Canon's result in detail yet.

I think it is fair to say Fujifilm has a hobby camera business as their Digital cameras are about 2.5% of the company’s overall revenue stream. That they give us any insight into how that business is working is actually a bit surprising. Sales for digital cameras were down 8.2% year-to-year, yet it is still quite profitable.Fujifilm Japan says the imaging business earned 9 percent more profit to them and it was the best of the last 9 years.

To me, the most surprising finding is that Casio's camera division is still profitable and they sell only compact cameras.

But how do they make any serious money out of that compact camera sells is a big mystery to me.

  

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