Friday, November 20, 2009

India and China's Satellites

List the names of satellites launched by ISRO

First Indian satellite. Provided technological experience in building and operating a satellite system. Launched by Russian launch vehicle Intercosmos.
First experimental remote sensing satellite. Carried TV and microwave cameras. Launched by Russian launch vehicle Intercosmos.
Second experimental remote sensing satellite similar to Bhaskara-1. Provided experience in building and operating a remote sensing satellite system on an end-to-end basis. Launched by Russian launch vehicle Intercosmos.
Ariane Passenger Payload Experiment (APPLE)
First experimental communication satellite. Provided experience in building and operating a three-axis stabilised communication satellite. Launched by the European Ariane.
Rohini Technology Payload (RTP)
Intended for measuring in-flight performance of first experimental flight of SLV-3, the first Indian launch vehicle. Could not be placed in orbit.
Rohini (RS-1)
Used for measuring in-flight performance of second experimental launch of SLV-3.
Rohini (RS-D1)
Used for conducting some remote sensing technology studies using a landmark sensor payload. Launched by the first developmental launch of SLV-3
Rohini (RS-D2)
Identical to RS-D1. Launched by the second developmental launch of SLV-3.
Stretched Rohini Satellite Series (SROSS-1)
Carried payload for launch vehicle performance monitoring and for Gamma Ray astronomy. Could not be placed in orbit.
Stretched Rohini Satellite Series (SROSS-2)
Carried remote sensing payload of German space agency in addition to Gamma Ray astronomy payload. Could not be placed in orbit.
Stretched Rohini Satellite Series (SROSS-C)
Launched by third developmental flight of ASLV. Carried Gamma Ray astronomy and aeronomy payload.
Stretched Rohini Satellite Series (SROSS-C2)
Launched by fourth developmental flight of ASLV. Identical to SROSS-C. Still in service.
Indian National Satellite System (INSAT)
First operational multi-purpose communication and meteorology satellite procured from USA. Worked only for six months. Launched by US Delta launch vehicle.
Identical to INSAT-1A. Served for more than design life of seven years. Launched by US Space Shuttle.
Same as INSAT-1A. Served for only one and a half years. Launched by European Ariane launch vehicle.
Identical to INSAT-1A. Launched by US Delta launch vehicle. Still in service.
First satellite in the second-generation Indian-built INSAT-2 series. Has enhanced capability than INSAT-1 series. Launched by European Ariane launch vehicle. Still in service.
Second satellite in INSAT-2 series. Identical to INSAT-2A. Launched by European Ariane launch vehicle. Still in service.
Has additional capabilities such as mobile satellite service, business communication and television outreach beyond Indian boundaries. Launched by European launch vehicle. In service.
Same as INSAT-2C. Launched by European launch vehicle Ariane. Inoperable since Oct 4, 97 due to power bus anomaly.
January 1998
Procured in orbit from ARABSAT
Multipurpose communication & meteorological satellite launched by Ariane.
Multipurpose communication - business communication, developmental communication and mobile communication purpose.
Experimental Satellite for the first developmental flight of Geo-synchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle, GSLV-D1.
To augment the existing INSAT capacity for communication and broadcasting, besides providing continuity of the services of INSAT-2C.
METSAT was the first exclusive meteorological satellite built by ISRO named after Kalpana Chawla.
Multipurpose Satellite for communication and broadcasting, besides providing meteorological services along with INSAT-2E and KALPANA-1.
Experimental Satellite for the second developmental test flight of India's Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle, GSLV
Exclusive communication satellite to augment the existing INSAT System.
India's first exclusive educational satellite.
Microsatellite for providing satellite based Amateur Radio Services to the national as well as the international community (HAMs).
The most advanced satellite for Direct-to-Home television broadcasting services.
State-of-the-art communication satellite - could not be placed in orbit.
An identical satellite to INSAT-4A further augment the INSAT capacity for Direct-To-Home (DTH) television services and other communications.
Designed to provide Direct-To-home (DTH) television services, Video Picture Transmission (VPT) and Digital Satellite News Gathering (DSNG), identical to INSAT- 4C .
Indian Remote Sensing Satellite (IRS)
First operational remote sensing satellite. Launched by a Russian Vostok.
Same as IRS-1A. Launched by a Russian Launch vehicle, Vostok. Still in service.
Carried remote sensing payloads. Could not be placed in orbit.
Carried remote sensing payload. Launched by second developmental flight of PSLV.
Carries advanced remote sensing cameras. Launched by Russian Molniya launch vehicle. Still in service.
Carries remote sensing payload and an X-ray astronomy payload. Launched by third developmental flight of PSLV. Still in service.
Same as IRS-1C. Launched by India's PSLV service. In service.
IRS-P4 Oceansat
Carries an Ocean Colour Monitor (OCM) and a Multi-frequency Scanning Microwave Radiometer (MSMR), Launched by India's PSLV-C2,
Technology Experiment Satellite (TES)
Technology Experiment Satellite Launched by PSLV-C3 .
IRS-P6 Resourcesat-1
Launched by PSLV - C5, carries three camera, names, LISS-4, LISS-3 and AwiFS
Launched by PSLV-C6, carries two panchromatic cameras - PAN (fore) and PAN (aft) - with 2.5 meter resolution. The cam mounted with a tilt of +26 deg and -5 deg along the track to provide stereo images.
Launched by PSLV-C7, it is an advanced remote sensing satellite carrying a panchromatic camera capable of providing scene specific spot imageries.
SRE - 1
Launched by PSLV-C7, Space capsule Recovery Experiment (SRE-1), intended to demonstrate the technology of an orbiting platform for performing experiments in microgravity conditions. SRE-1 was recovered successfully after 12 days over Bay of Bengal.
Identical to CARTOSAT - 2, launched by PSLV-C9
Launched by PSLV-C9 along with CARTOSAT-2A and other Eight

China’s satellites

The Peoples Republic of China launched its first satellite -- known as China 1 or Mao 1 -- to Earth orbit on its own "Long March" space rocket on April 24, 1970. The 390-lb. electronic ball floated around the Earth blaring the patriotic song The East Is Red.

The launch made China the fifth nation with a space rocket. Before that first successful launch, the Chinese may have sustained a launch failure in 1969. They may have suffered three failures in 1974 and another in 1979.

China has made scores of successful satellite launches since 1970. By the end of 2001, China had launched nearly 50 satellites with a 90 percent success rate. The spacecraft have included remote sensing, communications and weather satellites for both civilian and military use.

China started selling commercial space launches to foreign satellite owners in 1986 during a time when U.S. shuttles and European rockets were grounded. Numerous satellites have been launched for paying foreign owners. China's commercial space launch firm is the Great Wall Industrial Corp.

Pakistan's Badr-A. China launched Pakistan's first satellite to a 375-mi.-high circular orbit on July 16, 1990. The satellite, Badr-A, was launched aboard the maiden flight of the Long March 2E rocket from Xichang Launch Center in China. After 146 days in space, Badr-A fell into the atmosphere and burned.

China and AsiaSat. Western Union's Westar 6 satellite and the Indonesian satellite Palapa B2 were carried to orbit in 1984 by shuttle Challenger. Palapa and Westar were dropped off in orbits lower than planned so both satellites failed. Later that year, the pair were recaptured by astronauts spacewalking from shuttle Discovery. They were returned to Earth and refurbished on the ground.

The retrieved Westar 6 was renamed AsiaSat and launched by China using a Long March rocket, the first American satellite sent to orbit by a non-Western country.

Homing satellite. In November 1975, the first Long March 2 rocket carried China's first "homing satellite" to orbit. That made China the third nation capable of retrieving a satellite. Since then, the PRC has sent numerous satellites to orbit with packages to be retrieved from space.

Multiple Launches. The pace of China's space industry picked up in the 1980s and 1990s. In September 1981, the PRC successfully launched three satellites to orbit with one rocket.

Manned Capsules. In 1999, China launched and recovered an unmanned capsule designed to carry men and women into orbit in the 21st century. The successful launch was Nov. 20 and the controlled landing was Nov. 21.

The flight was part of preparations to send the PRC's first persons into orbit in the 21st century. China wants to become the third nation on Earth to put a human in space. Only the United States and Russia have done so using their own rockets.

The dome-shaped capsule was named "Shenzhou," meaning "Divine Vessel" or "Vessel of the Gods." Shenzhou is similar to Russia's Soyuz capsule, which carries cosmonauts to and from Russia's Mir space station.

The unmanned craft was launched atop a new model of China's Long March rocket from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China. About 10 minutes after liftoff, Shenzhou separated from its launch vehicle and went into orbit, circling Earth 14 times over 21 hours before controllers brought it down safely in Inner Mongolia.

State of the Art. China has come a long way in space. In 2000, Beijing orbited its first high-resolution electro-optical imaging satellite, which relays its state-of-the-art digital pictures by radio to ground stations. In the past, Chinese satellites snapped pictures on photographic film which then was dropped down to Earth in canisters.

The resolution of the digital-imaging satellite is less than the capability of the sharpest U.S. military reconnaissance satellites, but comparable to the sharp images produced by U.S. and European commercial satellites, which produce pictures with a resolution of about nine feet.

That means the Chinese satellite, named Ziyuan-2 (ZY-2), could produce photographs showing objects ranging in size down to nine feet across -- a resolution more than three times the capability of China's earlier earth sensing satellite, Ziyuan-1 (ZY-1). ZY-2 is lower in orbit than ZY-1, which also means the satellite could offer higher resolution.

Remote sensing. When the satellite was launched Sept. 1, 2000, from the Taiyuan Satellite Launching Center in the northern Shanxi Province, the official Xinhua news agency had called it Ziyuan-2 (ZY-2) and described it as a civilian "remote sensing" spacecraft. Ziyuan means "resource."

Earth sensing satellites monitor environmental changes and explore for natural resources on the ground. Xinhua said the satellite would be employed mostly for territorial surveying, city planning, crop yield assessment, disaster monitoring and space science experimentation.

More remote sensors. China successfully put a second ZY-2 in orbit on Oct. 27 2002. Then, on Nov. 6, 2004, China launched a third ZY-2 to orbit with a Long March 4-B rocket from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center in northern Shanxi Province.

The ZY-2 remote sensing satellites are used mainly for land resource surveying, environmental supervision and protection, city planning, crop yield assessment, disaster monitoring and other science experiments.

The first and second ZY-2 satellites are still in orbit. The third has improved performance and technology in comparison with the first two resource satellites.

Ground control for the satellites is at the Xi'an Satellite Monitor and Control Center in northwest China.

Upgraded Long March. The Long March 4-B booster rocket is an upgraded version of the Long March 4-A. The Nov. 5, 2004, launch was the 82nd time that a Long March rocket had been used and the 40th continuous success since China launched the first Long March 4 rocket in October 1996.

The big secret. There have been unsubstantiated reports that, in reality, Chinese military forces have merely disguised all or part of the ZY-2 satellites as civilian devices, while actually using them to spy on U.S. and other forces in Asia. That is according to a report in the Washington Times newspaper.

U.S. intelligence officers reportedly told the newspaper the spysats are orbiting with false identities as civilian Earth-monitoring systems. The reports held that publicly, the satellites are named Ziyuan-2 (ZY-2), but secretly they are designated Jianbing-3.

If the reports were accurate, such photo-reconnaissance satellites could be used for planning combat missions, targeting missiles at U.S. forces in Japan, or preparing aircraft strikes on Taiwan, an island nation that Beijing claims as a province of China.

The ZY-2/Jianbing-3 satellites complete elliptical orbits around Earth every 94.3 minutes at an altitude ranging from 294 to 305 miles.

Built by the Chinese Academy of Space Technology, each of the spacecraft is expected to work for two years in orbit.

Military satellites. China launched its first military communications satellite in January 2000 as part of a People's Liberation Army command-and-control network linking forces for combat.

China will launch more high-technology space platforms, including even-higher-resolution imagery satellites, electronic signals intelligence (SIGINT) satellites and military communications satellites.

Today, however, Chinese satellite technology not only serves military purposes, but it serves many areas of the national economy. Future satellites will be especially useful in developing the remote western areas of China.

Five year plan. China is planning to launch at least 35 different science and application satellites during the years 2002-2006, according to Xinhua News Agency. The satellites would be used for communications and direct-to-home broadcasting, meteorological and oceanographic observations, navigation and positioning, disaster mitigation, and seed breeding. They also plan to launch manned spacecraft.

CASC. China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) is a large state-owned enterprise that builds five different series of satellites. They include:
• Dongfanghong communications satellites
• Fengyun weather satellites
• Shijian science exploration satellites
• Ziyuan remote sensing Earth resource satellites
• Beidou navigation satellites
• retrievable satellites
• and other types of satellites
CAST. Chinese Academy of Space Technology (CAST) said some of the satellites -- such as a polar-orbiting Sun-synchronous weather satellite FY-1D and the oceanorgaphic satellite Haiyang-1 -- are being constructed, while others are in planning. a direct-broadcasting satellite (DBS) is being prepared for launch in 2004. That satellite would provide television broadcasts, and educational and information transmissions, as well as other services to the vast expanse of western China.

Chinese FY-1 weather satellite
Weather satellites. China's National Satellite Meteorological Center (NSMC)said the nation plans to launch six more Fengyun (FY) meteorological satellites from 2002-2007 before the Olympiad in 2008, according to the Beijing Evening Post.

Fengyun means "Wind and Cloud." The first of the six would be the polar-orbiting Sun-synchronous Fengyun-1D (FY-1D) to be launched in 2002 on a Changzheng-4 (Long March 4) rocket. Then, a geostationary weather satellite, FY-2C, would be launched in 2003.

The FY-3 series would be the next generation of polar-orbiting Sun-synchronous weather satellites. FY-3A would be launched in 2004 with FY-3B and FY-2D in 2006, and FY-3C in 2008. These satellites would be designed to work two to three years in space.

NSMC is a scientific research and operational facility affiliated with the China Meteorological Administration (CMA). It receives, processes and distributes satellite weather data to users.

The new satellites would forecast conditions and monitor bad weather around the clock, particularly convective rainstorms, thunderstorms and hailstorms. They also would monitor developing sandstorms as well as air quality and provide early warnings. The satellites launched in 2006 and 2008 would help forecasters predict weather for the Olympics.

Meteorological satellites are important not only in meteorology, but als in oceanography, agriculture, forestry, hydrology, aviation, navigation, environmental protection and national defense. They contribute to a national economy and to preventing and mitigating disasters.

Communications satellites. China refers to its communications satellites as Dongfanghong (DFH). Dongfanghong means "East Is Red." China's next generation of large communications satellites will carry C-, Ku-, Ka- and L-band transponders. That increased capacity will help the nation meet a growing demand for educational and commercial television broadcasts, stationary and mobile telecommunications, and data, voice and video transmissions for businesses.

Chinese HY-1 oceanographic satellite
in CAST artist concept
Oceanography satellites. China's Haiyang (HY-1 and HY-2) oceanographic microsatellites will carry radar altimeters, microwave scatterometers, ocean color scanners, and multichannel microwave radiometers for realtime views of oceans and coastal zones for biological resources, pollution monitoring and prevention, and monitoring of estuaries, bays and navigation routes. Haiyang means "Ocean."

The two satellites are to be launched on Changzheng-4 (Long March 4) rockets to 500-mile-high circular Sun-synchronous orbits, crossing the equator near noon local time, and passing over places on earth every 2 to 3 days.

Seed breeding satellites. Chinese scientists claim that seeds exposed to cosmic radiation yield superior quality produce. They would like to cultivate seedlings in space, then grow them in the climate of western China to help develop agriculture there. China's first satellite dedicated to seed breeding may fly in 2003. The satellite would house a variety of seeds and expose them to radiation before returning them to Earth.

Remote sensing satellites. China calls its remote sensing Earth resource satellites Ziyuan (ZY). Ziyuan means "Resource." First in the series was the China-Brazil Earth Resources Satellite (CBERS-1 or ZY-1). Later models will be able to take higher resolution photos and work longer in space. Scientists plan to use the ZY satellites to survey national resources, monitor crop growth and yields, watch for disasters and environment pollution, and evaluate project sites. They are used for city planning, surveying and cartography.

Microgravity satellites. Retrievable satellites are used to conduct experiments in space life science, space environment, and space materials and new technologies. China refers to its science exploration satellites as Shijian (SJ). Shijian means "Practice."

Chinese Double Star
artist concept
Double Star Satellite. China, in a project coordinated with the European Space Agency, will launch in 2003 a pair of Double Star Project (DSP) satellites to study the effects of the Sun on Earth's environment.

Ten European instruments will be inside each of the two Chinese Double Star spacecraft, which will complement ESA's four Cluster spacecraft already in space. An additional eight science experiments will be provided by Chinese institutes.

One of the Chinese satellites will fly an equatorial orbit. The other will be in a polar orbit. They will make observations of the magnetosphere.

The ten European instruments in Double Star are identical to those aboard the four Cluster satellites. The Chinese and European scientists hope all six satellites will be operational at the same time so they can coordinate data received from Cluster and Double Star. Studies with similar instruments are expected to increase the scientific return.

The equatorial satellite (DSP-1) will be launched on a Changzheng-2C (Long March 2C) rocket from Xichang in south Sichuan province, probably in June 2003. Six months later, another Changzheng-2C would ferry the polar satellite (DSP-2) from Taiyuan in the Shanxi province west of Beijing.

Astronomy satellites. China also plans to launch a Space Solar Telescope. The one-meter aperture telescope would be sent to a Sun-synchronous polar orbit in 2005 to observe phenomena on the Sun in daytime.

Environmental satellites. China National Space Administration (CNSA) -- China's space agency -- is planning a constellation of four optical and four synthetic aperture radar (SAR) microsatellites to carry out round-the-clock, all-weather surveillance of the environment and disasters.

Search and rescue satellites. Two optical satellites and one synthetic aperture radar (SAR) microsatellite would be launched. They would fly over a place on the ground every 32 hours.

Navigation satellites. China also has its Beidou Navigation Test Satellites (BNTS). Beidou means "Northern Dipper," a reference to the celestial constellation.

Chinese astronauts. China calls its manned spacecraft Shenzhou, which means "Magic Vessel" or "Divine Vessel." Its astronauts are "yuhangyuans." Elsewhere, they sometimes are referred to as "taikonauts." The nation is conducting a series of unmanned test flights of Shenzhou capsules on CZ-2F (Long March 2F) rockets.

A monkey, dog, rabbit and snails were sent into orbit aboard the second unpiloted Shenzhou flight. If the test flights go well, the first manned flight might come late in 2002 or early in 2003. [ more about the astronauts ]

Chinese lunar probe. China plans to explore the Moon, the official Xinhua News Agency said in 2001, quoting the head of the Chinese National Space Administration.

The nation would build a probe to be launched on a Long March rocket. Lunar exploration would allow China to Ñstruggle for a more important place in the world space science field and raise our deep space exploration technology to a higher standard,æ according to Xinhua. Lunar exploration also would have an Ñimmeasurable usefulness to raising national prestige and inspiring the nationalistic spirit,æ Xinhua said.

China also is planning to send a man to the Moon, according to the state-run newspaper China Daily in 2001.

Is Swastika a Symbol of Evil?

After days of deliberation, I have decided to write something on a cultural issue that I often had arguments with my Anglo-Saxon friends about. In countries like UK or US where Abramaic religions represent a majority of the population, the swastika has very little or no cultural significance. This lack of awareness, coupled with a general taboo of Nazi symbolism give the culturally ’sacred’ Swastika a negative connotation. A symbol that has had a rich history and millenniums of positive cultural meanings is often vilified, because of its resemblance to the Nazi emblem.

The Nazi Emblem Containing the Swastika
The Swastika officially became the emblem for the Nazi Party on August, 7, 1920, at the Salzburg Congress. Describing the new flag in Mein Kampf, the German fuhrer Hitler claimed that the swastika symbolized the victory of the ‘Aryan man’. Hitler had a penchant for distorting religious symbols which could be one of the reasons why he chose swastika with distortions. It is a cultural insult to use the Swastika as a war symbol, propagating a supersitition among Dharmic people(s) that the adoption of Swastika led Hitler to his downfall, despite his overwhelming military might. Today the symbol is commonly associated with Nazi Germany, the Holocaust, neo-Nazis and other hate groups who play on the fear psychosis and ignorance of Jews associated with Swastika.

Right facing Swastika used in a Buddhist temple in China
The Swastika originated and has been used for over 3000 years, with the anti-clockwise swastika dating back to 1000 BCE. It is used as a cultural symbol in China, India, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Japan, Vietnam and many other Eastern countries. As a religious symbol, the Swastika is used in Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and other Dharmic religions.In Buddhism, it represents resignation or enlightenment. In images and statues of Buddha, it could be seen on his chest, palms and feet during meditation or standing position. In Jainism the four arms Swastika re-affirms the belief of cycles of rebirth. The swastika was also a symbol of the Aryan people, a name which, in Sanskrit means “noble”. The Aryans were a group of people who settled in Iran, Northern India, Southern China, Pakistan, Slavic Russia, etc.. They believed themselves to be a pure race, superior to the other surrounding cultures. This inspired the National Socialist Germans to use the Swastika as an Aryan symbol as quite a number of North Germans were Nordic Aryans by ethnicity. Contrary to popular stereotypes, Aryans are not necessarily ‘white skinned blue eyed nordics’. Aryans come from different ethnicities across Eurasia, claiming their nobleness based on their numerous civilisations.

A left facting swastika used by Hindus and Jains
The word swastika is a corruptionof the word S-vasti-ka in Sanskrit which means “hastening of well being”. The Swastika is also given various names in different regions like wan-ji in Eastern China, man-ji in Japan, geg-gsang in Southern China, tetraskelion or gammadion in Greece.. It is a symbol of prosperity and good fortune in the Dharmic and Eastern cultures. It is widely used in both the ancient and modern world. One could find Swastika in temples, road signs, houses and various other public buildings in countries where cultural significance with the swastika is present. It could also be found on shops, necklaces, flags, letter pads and sometimes stamped on ballot papers during elections as a sign of good luck and fortune.

Road Signs in Taiwan Containing Swastika
The presence of Swastika in religious places in Asian countries gives the unaware or ignorant western tourists the impression they are ‘in the house of evil’ or the religious place has strong Nazi connections. Such an attitude leads to cultural clashes and racial insults which prompts the people to take drastic steps like having such tourists thrown out of the sacred places or the temple cleansed after their departure. In Puri in India, the Jagannath temple has been banned to foreigners and cleansed several times when an American couple insulted the Swastika symbol.

Beyond the Eastern and Southern Asia, the Swastika also used in many other cultures around the world. It was found in the relics of the lost city of Atlantis under the Atlantic Ocean. Greek priestesses branded Swastikas on their arms and goddess statues dug up at ancient Troy by Dr. Schliemann have Swastikas on the vulva. Romans took the Swastika with them on their march across Europe. It was emblemed in the female genitalia in those cultures as a sign of fertility or to ensure fertility.

Today more than half the world considers Swastika as most scared and precious symbol. The swastika has meant a lot to humans over this entire planet for all of our human history. It has had that high status and respect for thousands of years till today, the 23 years (1920-1943) when Nazis abused it is too short to smear the 3000+ years of elemental purity that this symbol represents.

Sadly there are groups today which still misuse the symbol of Swastika for racial hate and Antisemitism. This provokes people who think this symbol represents evil and Nazism and go ahead to insult the cultures associated with it. Condeming and banning the Swastika is the equivalent of banning the cross or the crescent - hardly a measure to combat racism. When we seek to stamp out an evil, we should take care not to perpetuate it in some other way. Hitler’s totalitarian regime banned many symbols. Adopting his methods is scarcely a wise way of removing his legacy. In ignoring the sensitivities and culture of people in the East, a ban would be an act of Western arrogance - the very kind of attitude Hitler encouraged. It would also be an ideological victory for Nazis and Adolf Hitler who would be deemed to have succeeded in robbing a religious symbol of its sacredness. The best way would be to let the Swastika be out in the open and give a sign to Nazi sympathisers that Hitler is not the winner, he failed in the desecration of a holy symbol of peace.

World's Military Strength:Top 10 List

The user should note that nuclear capability is not taken into account. This listing is purely a "numbers game" meant to spark debate and including such game-changers as nuclear weapons would clearly defeat the purpose of such an experiment. In any case, most any nation going to war would more than likely refrain from using such destructive warfare being that since the atomic bombs dropped in 1945, no nation has utilized this form of warfare for at least 60+ years despite there being a good amount of conflicts since then and more nuclear powers at play in the world. If there is a World War 3, it will most likely still be of the conventional sort.

The comparisons here are for consideration in a "straight-up" war based solely on a nation's capabilities from land, sea and through the air with other statistics covering the logistical and financial aspects of waging such a campaign. Statistic sources and years are stated whenever possible. Some statistics may be estimated if concrete numbers are not available.

Final Thoughts
It goes without saying that lists such can be completely subjective, though the GFP intention is to be wholly unbiased. No list could ever offer a proper display of accurate military firepower unless one had a full-time staff researching these numbers daily with many connections to these world governments. This listing is updating approximately once every 12 months based on new (if any) information garnered from various print and online sources.

The GFP final ranking is based on an in-house formula used to generate an average of all applicable statistics found on this website when compared against each country with applicable modifiers (bonuses and penalties) added to each nations score to present a more accurate list. The last major statistics review was in February of 2009. The GFP ranking list was updated in May of 2009. Changes to the list now include factors for current/recent military experiences, training levels and equipment quality. Denmark, South Africa and Georgia are new-adds bringing the country total to 42 nations.

Enjoy the numbers! It is hardly a super-accurate scientific measurement of military strengths but still entertaining to consider at the very least.











Know More

India vs China on Military Strength

China's Military Strength:Rank 2

Total Population: 1,330,044,544 [2008]
Population Available: 729,323,673 [2008]
Fit for Military Service: 609,273,077 [2008]
Reaching Military Age Annually: 20,470,412 [2008]
Active Military Personnel: 2,255,000 [2008]
Active Military Reserve: 800,000 [2008]
Active Paramilitary Units: 3,969,000 [2008]

Total Land-Based Weapons: 31,300
Tanks: 8,200 [2004]
Armored Personnel Carriers: 5,000 [2004]
Towed Artillery: 14,000 [2004]
Self-Propelled Guns: 1,700 [2004]
Multiple Rocket Launch Systems: 2,400 [2004]
Mortars: 16,000 [2001]
Anti-Tank Guided Weapons: 6,500 [2004]
Anti-Aircraft Weapons: 7,700 [2004]

Total Navy Ships: 760
Merchant Marine Strength: 1,822 [2008]
Major Ports and Harbors: 8
Aircraft Carriers: 1 [2010]
Destroyers: 21 [2004]
Submarines: 68 [2004]
Frigates: 42 [2004]
Patrol & Coastal Craft: 368 [2004]
Mine Warfare Craft: 39 [2004]
Amphibious Craft: 121 [2004]

Total Aircraft: 1,900 [2004]
Helicopters: 491 [2004]
Serviceable Airports: 467 [2007]

Defense Budget: $59,000,000,000 [2008]
Foreign Exch. & Gold: $1,534,000,000,000 [2007]
Purchasing Power: $7,099,000,000,000 [2007]

Oil Production: 3,725,000 bbl/day [2007]
Oil Consumption: 6,930,000 bbl/day [2007]
Proven Oil Reserves: 12,800,000,000 bbl [2007]

Labor Force: 800,700,000 [2007]
Roadways: 1,930,544 km
Railways: 75,438 km

Waterways: 124,000 km
Coastline: 14,500 km
Square Land Area: 9,596,960 km

India Military Strength :Rank 4

Total Population: 1,147,995,904 [2008]
Population Available: 584,141,225 [2008]
Fit for Military Service: 467,795,073 [2008]
Reaching Military Age Annually: 22,229,373 [2008]
Active Military Personnel: 1,325,000 [2008]
Active Military Reserve: 1,155,000 [2008]
Active Paramilitary Units: 1,293,300 [2008]

Total Land-Based Weapons: 10,340
Tanks: 3,898 [2004]
Armored Personnel Carriers: 317 [2004]
Towed Artillery: 4,175 [2004]
Self-Propelled Guns: 200 [2004]
Multiple Rocket Launch Systems: 150 [2004]
Anti-Aircraft Weapons: 2,424 [2004]

Total Navy Ships: 143
Merchant Marine Strength: 501 [2006]
Major Ports and Harbors: 9
Aircraft Carriers: 1 [2004]
Destroyers: 8 [2004]
Submarines: 18 [2004]
Frigates: 16 [2004]
Patrol & Coastal Craft: 43 [2008]
Mine Warfare Craft: 12 [2008]
Amphibious Craft: 7 [2004]

Total Aircraft: 1,007 [2004]
Helicopters: 240 [2004]
Serviceable Airports: 346 [2007]

Defense Budget: $32,350,000,000 [2006]
Foreign Exch. & Gold: $275,000,000,000 [2007]
Purchasing Power: $2,966,000,000,000 [2007]

Oil Production: 810,000 bbl/day [2007]
Oil Consumption: 2,438,000 bbl/day [2005]
Proven Oil Reserves: 5,700,000,000 bbl [2007]

Labor Force: 516,400,000 [2007]
Roadways: 3,316,452 km
Railways: 63,221 km

Waterways: 14,500 km
Coastline: 7,000 km
Square Land Area: 3,287,590 km

Sources: US Library of Congress; Central Intelligence Agency

The Top 10 Reasons Why You Should Fall in Love With Your Love Ones?

The top 10 reasons why you should fall in love with your love ones?

I must say that every couple would often wish to fall in love with our love ones after knowing that they can get along very well in the relationship. They do wish to see the love blossom with eggs being produced by the goose with many rewards being produced in which they feel that love is always in their wonderland, their imaginative world. In fact, everyone wants to be loved, and therefore, they have been working very hard to ensure that the other party is being in love by him or her. Let me share with you some of my colleagues or friends' experience in their love journey and relationship. There is no doubt about it: falling in love is the most amazing, exciting, terrific, wonderful, and outstanding.

Oh well, okay, I guess you have got the picture already. Falling in love is pretty doggone great. And if you're wondering, there are tons of reasons to fall in love, too. Of course, if you're looking for a reason to fall in love, I am very sure you have come to read a right article right now. Here are the 10 tips to fall in love so as to making up with your love ones back in the relationship. Before I proceed on, this article is to serve its own purpose to let the noobs or skeptics to understand how they can start off with their first move in making love with their loves one. They love their freedom, they cherish their independence, and they fawn over their self-reliance. So if you're already in love, there is no need to keep reading; this post is for the skeptics who need a little inspiration.

Furthermore, please do take note that you need some reasons why falling in love is a smart move? Here is a list of ten of them for you, but they certainly are not the only reasons why you should get involved in a romantic relationship or marriage as soon as possible. And for you romantic veterans who don't need convincing, why not kindly add a few reasons of your own for yourself in this article? We would love to hear from you. Let me state that if this article has served you a great purpose in making your relationship a successful one, please do come more often and forward this piece of article to your friends so that they could also enjoy the luxury and pleasure to have the love abundance with the loves ones. If this post does end up convincing you to give love a try, do not go rushing out and falling head over heals for someone right away. Take your time, for crying out loud if your relationship cannot be worked out. However, please do not worry; this piece of article really serves you the best to give you the best advices for you to fall in love with your love ones.

Here is Top Ten Reasons Why You Should Fall in Love. 1. Falling in love makes you smile all the darn time. Ever seen the guy who is always tackling everything life throws at him with optimism and a grin? Well that dude is probably in love. And before you poke fun at him, you should know that you're more likely to succeed at everything you do if you can tackle it with a smile on your face. So go ahead, stay away from love and keep frowning. Just get used to always being one step behind of the guy who is in love and smiling. 2. Falling in love makes you better looking. No, really, it does. And I'm not just talking about a healthy glow, either. When we are in love, we are more likely to take better care of ourselves, as you'll see in number seven, and take more pride in our appearance. When you have a reason to look good, you do look good.

3. Falling in love makes you love yourself more, too. Like we have said before, being in a romantic, loving relationship has a way of helping you to learn to love yourself, too. Most of us don't realize that we have so many good qualities, and seeing yourself through the eyes of a person who is crazy about us can be one heck of an exhilarating experience. 4. Falling in love makes you richer. This is not just our opinion. Countless studies have proved that people in long-term, committed romantic relationships go on to earn more than people who stay single. So if you won't fall in love for your heart is sake, do it for your wallet.

5. Falling in love makes you see stuff you did not notice before. No, I don't mean pink elephants or UFO's. The stuff you notice when you're in love was always there, you just never thought it was important enough to pay attention to before. When you're truly in love you are able to take things slower, be more observant, notice more details, and have a greater understanding of things. 6. Falling in love makes you a nicer person. This one is a no-brainer. It is tough to be mean to everyone when there is a wonderful person in your life who is making every day special and exciting. I mean, it is no cure-all if you're a complete jerk, but it can at least take the edge off a little.

7. Falling in love makes you take better care of yourself. Like I said in number two, falling in love makes you look better because it gets you in better shape. Being in love with someone is a great way to get motivated to become a healthier person, lose weight, and take better overall care of yourself. It won't make you into a fitness guru or anything, but it is easier to go for a jog when you know there is a special person in your life. 8. Falling in love gives you something to dedicate yourself to. It is a little-known fact that having something to dedicate yourself to makes you more successful at everything you try to do. That something can be a concept or an idea, but it is much better and more satisfying if it is a person. And making the person you love proud of you is one heck of a great feeling.

9. Falling in love makes you grow up . . . in a good way. Being more grown-up is not always a good thing . . . in fact, there are plenty of childlike qualities that go a long way to help a romantic relationship and make it more fun and exciting. But being in love will also make you more responsible, more mature, and more careful. And if you can master those qualities while still letting yourself have fun, you'll have one heck of a great relationship. 10. Falling in love makes you live longer. Don't take our word for it. It is, like, totally common knowledge that people who are in long-term, loving relationships simply live longer than people who are not. Want to live to see your 100th birthday? Then you better start looking for that special someone to celebrate it with.

Therefore, these are the top 10 reasons of why you should fall in love with your love ones, this is to make sure that your expectations could be reached so that the loved ones can be treasured and loved by you. I do hope that this piece of article can serve as an inspiration and motivation for you, so that you can start to fall in love with your love ones. Please do let your friends read this piece of article if they are in the need to love with their like very desperately.

Indeed, life is short. Don't let another day go by without taking a chance on happiness. You will never know until you try, so remember to make a move today. It can change or affect the rest of your life, therefore, at the very least, you can try to come out something for your ex love partner during your weekend plans. With a little practice, perseverance and patience, I believe that your relationship could be enhanced with the tips that I have shared earlier. If you have faced any problems with your loved ones, do not hesitate to visit this piece of article again.

I really have a strong belief that if you can understand what I have explained and applied what you have learnt from this piece of article, your problems can be eventually solved and your making up relationship can become more stable and stronger. I wish all the best for your making up relationship with your partner. Do always remember to spread word of mouth to your fellow friends for supporting the decision of having making up than breaking up.

Lifestyle:Top Ten Reasons for Divorce

Some people marry each other, divorce and then re-marry. This sounds ridiculous but it happens and in most of the cases marriage ends in divorce, never to come together again. Most people try to linger on to their marriage. They do not know when to divorce. Let us try to understand the reasons why people want to divorce.
Some frequently cited reasons for divorce:

1. Lack of commitment towards marriage, sexual incompatibility and infidelity
Commitment may be lacking in one of the partners because marriage happens not always out of love. It could be seen as making a good deal and when it is found that the deal is not what he or she expected divorce happens. Besides, people looking for quick solutions cannot sustain marriage for long.

Philandering habits die hard and this leads to infidelity. People with uncontrollable libido or unhappy with his or her partner cannot be loyal to their partners. So when the wife or husband comes to know of his or her partner cheating on him or her divorce turns out to be the answer. The question that arises is when to divorce.

2. Lack of communication between spouses
Without communication no relationship can be effective. Keeping your resentments simmering within, your partner does not come to know what is happening with you and this is likely to create distance between you and your partner.

3.Abandonment, Alcohol Addiction, Substance Abuse
When one of the partners deserts his or her partner for quite some time or a longer period divorce emerges as the answer. One leaves his or her partner because of the latter’s bad habits.

Alcohol addiction and abuse prevent marital bliss because of the change in behavior pattern which makes an adverse impact upon mental peace and physical security.

4. Physical Abuse, Sexual Abuse and Emotional Abuse
These abuses are not uncommon and tolerating them is not good and a person who loves himself or herself would not put with such abuses.

5.Inability to manage or resolve conflict
Lack of maturity disables one to manage conflicts and handle personality differences or ‘irreconcilable differences’

6.Differences in personal and career goals
People who cohabit before marriage have higher rates of divorce than people who didn’t cohabit before marriage because differences become gigantic in course of time. Initial comfort before marriage was imagined to take things ahead in future but in reality it does not happen.

7. Different expectations about household tasks and financial problems
When expectations do not match it affects relationships most. This leads to personality conflict because none of them are willing to do things or are ready to sacrifice their time and comfort.

Because what one wants the other to do, the other does not do there is dissatisfaction and frustration. In such instances love becomes sour. This exacerbates with financial problems because material needs remain unfulfilled and creates discontent in the minds of both the partners as one cannot give and feels humiliated and the other is frustrated because of long standing inconveniences.

8. Intellectual Incompatibility and Inflexibility
Intellectual incompatibility creates misunderstandings. And the smarter person feels frustrated while the less intelligent partner is mad about not reaching the level of intelligence of the other and makes life miserable for himself or herself and for the others also.

9. Mental Instability or Mental Illness
Insanity does not allow space for normal communication.

10. Religious beliefs, cultural and lifestyle differences
Cultural values clash unless we are highly adaptive in nature. Orthodoxy leads to intolerance and conservatism gags the spontaneity of life. So this leads to divorce after some time of marriage

When a person has a valid reason to divorce, he or she knows when to divorce. After all, there is no point in hanging on to a person. One should take appropriate action and break-off the relationship.

Photo Corner--Hyderabad:At Different Angle





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Monday, November 16, 2009

Future Tyres:Michelin

These tyres are airless and are scheduled to be out on the market very soon.The bad news for the US. Law Enforcement is that spike strips will not work on these tyres.

A. no more air valves.
B. no more air compressors at gas stations.
C. no more repair kits.
D. no more flats.

These are actual pictures taken in the South Carolina plant of Michelin.

Nibiru:The Myth

Nibiru, to the Babylonians, was the celestial body associated with the god Marduk. The name is Akkadian and means 'crossing place' or 'place of transition'. In most Babylonian texts it is identified with the planet Jupiter. In Tablet 5 of the Enuma Elish it may be the pole star, which at the time was Thuban or possibly Kochab (Ursa Minor).

The term "Nibiru" comes from the Sumerian cuneiform tablets and writings dating 5,000 years old. The term Nibiru means "Planet of the crossing", and it's cuneiform sign was often a cross, or various winged disc. The Sumerian culture was located in the fertile lands between the Euphrates and Tigris rivers, at the southern part of today's Iraq.

Due to its use in opposition to the phrase itebbiru "who used to cross," Landsberger and Kinnier Wilson suggest that it refers to a stationary point in the heavens.1 In a reconstruction of Tablet V of the Enûma Elish by Landsberger and Kinnier Wilson, the word ni-bi-ri (variant: ni-bi-ru and ni-bi-a-na) is translated as "pole star."1 The authors add in the footnotes that "Applied to Marduk, there is no question that in the late periods neberu is a planet, whether Jupiter or Mercury" however for the referenced translation of Tablet V, "pole star" is used.


Some authors believe that the observations of ancient astronomers provide proof that Nibiru is an actual planet or brown dwarf in our solar system. These claims are for the most part dismissed as fringe science or pseudoscience by the mainstream scientific communities of archaeology and astronomy.

According to proponents such as renowned historian, Hebrew scholar, author, speaker and archaeologist Zecharia Sitchin and Burak Eldem the Nibiru appearing in Sumerian records correctly refers to a large planetary body. Their research proposes that it possesses a highly elliptical, 3630-year orbit. Such a planet would be approximately in the same orbit as 2000 CR105.

According to these theories of Sumerian cosmology, Nibiru was the twelfth member in the solar system family of planets (which includes 10 planets, the Sun, and the Moon). Its catastrophic collision with Tiamat, a planet that was between Mars and Jupiter, would have formed the planet Earth, the asteroid belt, and the Moon.

This was the result of one of Nibiru's host satellites colliding with Tiamat, appropriately leaving half a planet, comparable to our Pangea (our current knowledge of all the continents as one land mass), and leaving deeps rifts in the crust beneath the Pacific ocean. It was until recently thought impossible for such large celestial bodies to collide due to intense magnetic force, however, this concept has been given a new life since the introduction of the Orpheus Theory, and the simulation of a collision between objects such as our own earth, and an object half it's size.

It was the home of a technologically advanced human-like alien race, the Anunnaki of Sumerian myth, who, Sitchin claims, survived and later came to Earth. Sitchin has also transcribed that their travelling to earth was the result of their failing atmosphere (having since been drawn into our solar system from its cosmic passing, the atmosphere of Nibiru was subjected to intense external stress from our sun).

They came in search of gold particles used for their reflective properties (recognized even today by Nasa who plate various objects including astronaut helmet eyeshields) to place in their atmosphere. According to Sitchin, they subsequently genetically engineered our species, originally as slave workers to work in their gold mines, by crossing their genes with those of Homo erectus.

The Anunnaki ("those who from heaven came to earth" in Sumerian) came upon evolution on earth as it had been progressing for billions of years however, they desired to create a worker who could communicate and learn from them. After a slew of failed prototypes an Anunnaki goddess engineered a perfect specimen- the Adam. This was done using 80% of the Inferior specimen and 20% of the superior Anunnaki specimen. It is only recently that we understand DNA as having a double-helix nature, The Sumerians depicted their goddess creator along with snakes in a double helix form with thin bars connecting between them in a spiral fashion. The intertwined snakes are also modern day representatives for the field of medicine.

Sitchin says some sources speak about the same planet, possibly being a brown dwarf star and still in a highly elliptic orbit around the Sun, with a perihelion passage some 3,600 years ago and assumed orbital period of about 3,600 to 3,760 years or 3,741 years.

Sitchin attributes these figures to astronomers of the Maya civilization. Many involved in research of this kind predict a return date of Nibiru passing Earth coinciding with the Winter Solstice of 2012; specifically at 11.11 UT, 21st December 12, 2012.

This also coincides with a rare alignment of the Earth, Sun and centre of the Milky Way , and is asserted to be likely to cause a pole shift. However, scientists argue that a planet with such an orbit would eventually either develop a circular orbit or fly off into space and overwhelmingly consider Sitchin's claims to be pseudoscience.

The similar orbit of 2000 CR105, however, is accepted by scientists. A brown dwarf with a period of 3,760 years would be clearly evident through infrared and gravitational observations. And it has been. In 1993 Nasa launched the IRAS telescope which picked up the faint image of a large celestial body 3 times the distance of Pluto in our own solar system. In the press conference, the two scientists one named Gerry Neugebauer said that these objects could be "almost anything, from a tenth planet in our solar system to distant galaxies".

Later much deeper images were taken, and some of the objects were found to be dense gas clouds in our own Galaxy, while others turned out to be very distant galaxies. In fact, these observations heralded the discovery of a new type of object: Ultra-luminous Infrared Galaxies (ULIRGs).

These are galaxies in which there is a burst of stars being born. The cocoons of dust in which the stars are enshrouded generates copious infrared, which is what was detected by IRAS. They published these results in the prestigious Astrophysical Journal.

Another interesting discovery also brought Nibiru into light recently. Eris, the largest known dwarf planet has been discovered on the 21st of October 2003, announced in July 2005 and officially named from 2003 UB313 to "136199 Eris" in 2006.

Originally it was considered as the tenth planet of our Solar System, but in April 2006, according to the new, more precise definition of the term "planet", it has been designated as a "dwarf planet" along with Pluto and Ceres. Eris has an orbital period of 556.7 years, and currently lies at almost its maximum possible distance from the Sun (aphelion) and will enter Pisces in 2036.

Monalisa In cups!!

Artist assistants stand next to 3,604 cups of coffee which have been made into a giant Mona Lisa in Sydney, Australia. The 3,604 cups of coffee were each filled with different amounts of milk to create the different shades!!

Nibiru and Doomsday 2012: Questions and Answers

The Truth about 2012 from NASA Lunar Science Institute on Vimeo.

Stories about the fictional planet Nibiru and predictions of doomsday in December 2012 have blossomed on the Internet. There are now (June 2009) more than 175 books listed on dealing with the 2012 doomsday. As this hoax spreads, many more disaster scenarios are being suggested. “Ask an Astrobiologist” has received nearly a thousand questions about Nibiru and 2012, with more than 200 answers posted. Many new questions are similar to those already answered. Following is a list of the most popular “Twenty Questions” organized in a logical succession and answered in some detail.

In addition to my responses, there are some other good resources

NASA home page story 2012: Beginning of the End or Why the World Won’t End?
Neil de Grassse Tyson posted a nice video clip on the Nibiru-2012 issue.
Wikipedia has several useful entries. Start with Nibiru Collision, then look at Nibiru Mythology and Nibiru Sitchin). Also informative is the entry for 2012 doomsday predictions.
For a detailed description of the origin of the Planet X / Nibiru cult see the discussion by Phil Plait on his Badastronomy website.
David Morrison,
NAI Senior Scientist
June 1, 2009

1. What is the origin of the prediction that the world will end in December 2012?
The story started with claims that Nibiru, a supposed planet discovered by the Sumerians, is headed toward Earth. Zecharia Sitchin, who writes fiction about the ancient Mesopotamian civilization of Sumer, claimed in several books (e.g., The Twelfth Planet, published in 1976) that he has found and translated Sumerian documents that identify the planet Nibiru, orbiting the Sun every 3600 years. These Sumerian fables include stories of “ancient astronauts” visiting Earth from a civilization of aliens called the Anunnaki. Then Nancy Lieder, a self-declared psychic who claims she is channeling aliens, wrote on her website Zetatalk that the inhabitants of a fictional planet around the star Zeta Reticuli warned her that the Earth was in danger from Planet X or Nibiru. This catastrophe was initially predicted for May 2003, but when nothing happened the doomsday date was moved forward to December 2012. Only recently have these two fables been linked to the end of the Mayan long-count at the winter solstice in 2012 – hence the predicted doomsday date of December 21, 2012.

2. The Sumerians were the first great civilization, and they made many accurate astronomical predictions, including the existence of the planets Uranus, Neptune and Pluto. So why should we not believe their predictions about Nibiru?
Nibiru is a name in Babylonian astrology sometimes associated with the god Marduk. Nibiru appears as a minor character in the Babylonian creation poem Enuma Elish as recorded in the library of Assurbanipal, King of Assyria (668-627 BCE). Sumer flourished much earlier, from about the 23rd century to the 17th century BCE. The claims that Nibiru is a planet and was known to the Sumerians are contradicted by scholars who (unlike Zecharia Sitchin) study and translate the written records of ancient Mesopotamia. Sumer was indeed a great civilization, important for the development of agriculture, water management, urban life, and especially writing. However, they left very few records dealing with astronomy. Certainly they did not know about the existence of Uranus, Neptune or Pluto. They also had no understanding that the planets orbited the Sun, an idea that first developed in ancient Greece two millennia after the end of Sumer. Claims that Sumerians had a sophisticated astronomy, or that they even had a god named Nibiru, are the product of Sitchin’s imagination.

3. How can you deny the existence of Nibiru when discovered it in 1983 and the story appeared in leading newspapers? At that time you called it Planet X, and later it was named Xena or Eris.
IRAS (the NASA Infrared Astronomy Satellite, which carried out a sky survey for 10 months in 1983) discovered many infrared sources, but none of them was Nibiru or Planet X or any other objects in the outer solar system. There is a good discussion from Caltech to be found at ( Briefly, IRAS cataloged 350,000 infrared sources, and initially many of these sources were unidentified (which was the point, of course, of making such a survey). All of these observations have been followed up by subsequent studies with more powerful instruments both on the ground and in space. The rumor about a “tenth planet” erupted in 1984 after a scientific paper was published in Astrophysical Journal Letters titled “Unidentified point sources in the IRAS minisurvey”, which discussed several infrared sources with “no counterparts”. But these “mystery objects” were subsequently found to be distant galaxies (except one, which was a wisp of “infrared cirrus”), as published in 1987. No IRAS source has ever turned out to be a planet. A good discussion of this whole issue is to be found on Phil Plait’s website ( The bottom line is that Nibiru is a myth, with no basis in fact. To an astronomer, persistent claims about a planet that is “nearby” but “invisible” are just plain silly.

4. Maybe we should be asking about Planet X or Eris, not Nibiru. Why does keep secret the orbit of Eris?
“Planet X” is an oxymoron when applied to a real object. The term has been used by astronomers over the past century for a possible or suspected object. Once the object is found, it is given a real name, as was done with Pluto and Eris, both of which were at some time referred to as Planet X. If a new object turns out to be not real, or not a planet, then you won’t hear about it again. If it is real, it is not called Planet X.

Eris is one of several dwarf planets recently found by astronomers in the outer solar system, all of them on normal orbits that will never bring them near Earth. Like Pluto, Eris is smaller than our Moon. It is very far away, and its orbit never brings it closer than about 4 billion miles. There is no secret about Eris and its orbit, as you can easily verify by googling it or looking it up in Wikipedia.

5. Do you deny that built a South Pole Telescope () to track Nibiru? Why else would they build a telescope at the South Pole?
There is a telescope at the South Pole, but it was not built by NASA and not used to study Nibiru. The South Pole Telescope was supported by the National Science Foundation, and it is a radio telescope, not an optical instrument. It cannot take images or photos. You can look it up on Wikipedia. The Antarctic is a great place for astronomical infrared and short-wave-radio observations, and it also has the advantage that objects can be observed continuously without the interference of the day-night cycle.

I should add that it is impossible to imagine a geometry in which an object can be seen only from the South Pole. Even if it were due south of the Earth, it could be seen from the entire southern hemisphere.

6. There are many photos and videos of Nibiru on the Internet. Isn’t that proof that it exists?
The great majority of the photos and videos on the Internet are of some feature near the Sun (apparently supporting the claim that Nibiru has been hiding behind the Sun for the past several years.) These are actually false images of the Sun caused by internal reflections in the lens, often called lens flare. You can identify them easily by the fact that they appear diametrically opposite the real solar image, as if reflected across the center of the image. This is especially obvious in videos, where as the camera moves, the false image dances about always exactly opposite the real image. Similar lens flare is a source of many UFO photos taken at night with strong light sources such as streetlights in the frame. I am surprised that people don’t recognize this common photo artifact. I am also amazed that these photos showing something nearly as large and bright as the Sun (a “second sun”) are accepted together with claims made on some of the same websites that Nibiru is too faint to be seen or photographed except with large telescopes.

One widely reported telescopic photo ( shows two views of an expanding gas cloud far beyond the solar system, which is not moving; you can see this from the fact that the stars are the same in both pictures. A sharp-eyed reader of this website identified these photos as a gas shell around the star V838 Mon. Wikipedia has a nice write-up and a beautiful photo of it from Hubble. Another high school student was initially impressed by posted images of a red blob that were said to be of Nibiru. Then he worked out in his Photoshop class how to make just such pictures starting from scratch.
One video posted in summer 2008 on Youtube ( shows a guy standing in his kitchen claiming that one of the objects discovered by a NASA x-ray telescope is Nibiru. What is his evidence? That since this false-color x-ray image released by NASA is blue, this must really be a nearby planet with an ocean. This would be hilarious if it were not used to frighten people.

7. Can you explain the fact that the area at (5h 53m 27s, -6 10’ 58”) has been blackened out in Google Sky and Microsoft Telescope? People suggest that these have been blackened out because those are the co-ordinates where Nibiru is located at present.
Several people have asked me about this blank rectangle in Orion in Google Sky, which is a presentation of images from the Sloan Digital Survey. This can’t be a “hiding place” for Nibiru, since it is a part of the sky that could be seen from almost everywhere on the Earth in the winter of 2007-08 when much of the talk about Nibiru began. That would contradict the claims that Nibiru was hiding behind the Sun or that it could be seen only from the southern hemisphere. But I too was curious about this blank rectangle, so I asked a friend who is a senior scientist at Google. He replied that he “found out that the missing data is due to a processing error in the image stitching program we use to display the Sloan survey images. The team assures me that in the next run through, this will be fixed!”

8. If the government knew about Nibiru, wouldn’t they keep it a secret to avoid panic? Isn’t it the government’s job to keep the population at ease?
There are many objectives of government, but they do not include keeping the population at ease. My experience is that sometimes parts of the government do just the opposite, as in the frequent references to various terrorist threats or warnings about driving accidents on long holiday weekends, which are no more dangerous than any other time. There is a long history of associating bad things with political opponents (older readers will remember the “missile gap” in the 1960 election, younger ones will note the many current references to who is or is not keeping the U.S. safe from terrorists). Further, social scientists have pointed out that many of our concepts of public panic are the product of Hollywood, while in the real world people have a good record of helping each other in a time of danger. I think everyone also recognizes that keeping bad news secret usually backfires, making the issue even worse when the facts finally come out. And in the case of Nibiru, these facts would come out very soon indeed.

Even if they wanted to, the government could not keep Nibiru a secret. If it were real, it would be tracked by thousands of astronomers, amateurs as well a professional. These astronomers are spread all over the world. I know the astronomy community, and these scientists would not keep a secret even if ordered to. You just can’t hide a planet on its way to the inner solar system!

9. Why does the Mayan calendar say the world will end in 2012? I have heard that they have been pretty accurate in the past with other planetary predictions. How can you be sure you know more than they did?
Calendars exist for keeping track of the passage of time, not for predicting the future. The Mayan astronomers were clever, and they developed a very complex calendar. Ancient calendars are interesting to historians, but of they cannot match the ability we have today to keep track of time, or the precision of the calendars currently in use. The main point, however, is that calendars, whether contemporary or ancient, cannot predict the future of our planet or warn of things to happen on a specific date such as 2012.

I note that my desk calendar ends much sooner, on December 31 2009, but I do not interpret this as a prediction of Armageddon. It is just the beginning of a new year.

10. What is the polar shift theory? Is it true that the earth’s crust does a 180-degree rotation around the core in a matter of days if not hours? Does this have something to do to do with our solar system dipping beneath the galactic equator?
A reversal in the rotation of Earth is impossible. It has never happened and never will. There are slow movements of the continents (for example Antarctica was near the equator hundreds of millions of years ago), but that is irrelevant to claims of reversal of the rotational poles. However, many of the disaster websites pull a bait-and-shift to fool people. They claim a relationship between the rotation and the magnetic polarity of Earth, which does change irregularly with a magnetic reversal taking place every 400,000 years on average. As far as we know, such a magnetic reversal doesn’t cause any harm to life on Earth. A magnetic reversal is very unlikely to happen in the next few millennia, anyway. But they falsely claim that a magnetic reversal is coming soon (in 2012) and that this is the same as, or will trigger, a reversal of rotational poles. The bottom line is: (a) Rotation direction and magnetic polarity are not related. (b) There is no reason to expect a reversal of magnetic polarity any time soon, or to anticipate any bad effects on life when it does eventually happen. © A sudden shift in rotational pole with disastrous consequences is impossible. Also, none of this has anything to do with the galactic equator or any of the other nonsense about alignments that appears on many of the conspiracy theory websites.

11. When most of the planets align in 2012 and planet Earth is in the center of the Milky Way, what will the effects of this be on planet Earth? Could it cause a pole shift, and if so what could we expect?
There is no planet alignment in 2012 or any other time in the next several decades. As to the Earth being in the center of the Milky Way, I don’t know what this phrase means. If you are referring to the Milky Way Galaxy, we are rather far toward the edge of this spiral galaxy, some 30,000 light years from the center. We circle the galactic center in a period of 225-250 million years, always keeping approximately the same distance. Concerning a pole shift, I also don’t know what this means. If it means some sudden change in the position of the pole (that is, the rotation axis of the Earth), then that is impossible, as noted in the answer to Question 10. What many websites do discuss is the alignment of the Earth and Sun with the center of the Milky Way in the constellation of Sagittarius. This happens every December, with no bad consequences, and there is no reason to expect 2012 to be different from any other year.

12. When the sun and the Earth line up on the galactic plane at the same time with the black whole being in the center couldn’t that cause something to happen, due to the fact that the black hole has such a strong gravitational pull.
There is a giant black hole in the center of our Milky Way galaxy, and like any concentration of mass it exerts gravitational force on the rest of the Galaxy. However, the galactic center is very far away, approximately 30,000 light years, so it has negligible effects on the solar system or the Earth. There are no special forces from the galactic plane or the galactic center. The only important force that acts on the Earth is the gravitation of the Sun and Moon. As far as the influence of the galactic plane, there is nothing special about this location. The last time the Earth was in the galactic plane was several million years ago. Claims that we are about to cross the galactic plane are untrue.

13. I am scared about the fact that the Earth will enter the Dark Rift in the Milky Way. What will this do? Will the Earth be swallowed up?
The “dark rift” is a popular name for the broad and diffuse dust clouds in the
inner arm of the Milky Way Galaxy, which block our view of the galactic
center. The entire “galactic alignment” scare is pretty crazy. Late in
December the Sun is always approximately in the direction of the center of
the Galaxy as seen from the Earth, but so what? Apparently the con-men who are trying to scare you have decided to use these meaningless phrases about “alignments” and the “dark rift” and “photon belt” precisely because they are not understood by the public. It is too bad, but there is no law against lying on the Internet or anywhere else except in a court of law. As far as the safety of the Earth is concerned, the important threats are from global warming and loss of biological diversity, and perhaps someday from collision with an asteroid or comet, not the pseudoscientific claims about 2012.

14. I have heard that the Earth’s magnetic field will flip in 2012 just when the strongest level of solar storms in history is predicted to take place. Will this kill us or destroy our civilization?
Near solar maximum (which happens every 11 years approximately), there are many more solar flares and coronal mass ejections than near solar minimum. Flares and mass ejections are no danger for humans or other life on Earth. They could endanger astronauts in deep space or on the Moon, and this is something that NASA must learn to deal with, but it is not a problem for you or me. Large outbursts can interrupt radio transmission, cause bright displays of the aurora (Northern and Southern Lights), and damage the electronics of some satellites in space. Today many satellites are designed to deal with this possibility, for example by switching off some of their more delicate circuits and going into a “safe” mode for a few hours. In extreme cases solar activity can also disrupt electrical transmissions on the ground, possibly leading to electrical blackouts, but this is rare.

The last solar maximum occurred in 2001, so the next one was predicted for around 2012, 11 years later. However, the most recent solar minimum was unusual, with a period of a couple of years with almost no sunspots or other indications of solar activity, so scientists now guess that the next maximum will be delayed, perhaps to 2013. However, the details of the solar cycle remain basically unpredictable.

You are correct that the Earth’s magnetic field protects us by creating a large region in space, called the Earth’s magnetosphere, within which most of the material ejected from the Sun is captured or deflected, but there is no reason to expect a reversal of magnetic polarity any time soon. These magnetic reversals happen only once in 400,000 years on average.

15. I am confused about a report on the Fox News website that in 2012 a “Powerful Solar Storm Could Shut Down U.S. for Months”. They referred to a report from the National Academy of Sciences that was commissioned and paid for by . If nothing is going to happen as a result of the event in 2012, why would allow such nonsense to be reported?
NASA is pleased with the National Research Council report on heliophysics. As you note, this report includes a worst-case analysis of what could happen today if there were a repetition of the biggest solar storm ever recorded (in 1859). The problem is the way such information can be used out of context. There is no reason to expect such a large solar storm in the near future, certainly not in 2012 specifically. Your reference to “the event in 2012” illustrates this problem. There is no prediction of an “event in 2012”. We don’t even know if the next solar maximum will take place in that year. The whole 2012 disaster scenario is a hoax, fueled by ads for the Hollywood science-fiction disaster film “2012”. I can only hope that most people are able to distinguish Hollywood film plots from reality.

16. All my school friends are telling me that we are all going to die in the year 2012 due to a meteor hitting earth. Is this true?
Your friends are wrong. The Earth has always been subject to impacts by comets and asteroids, although big hits are very rare. The last big impact was 65 million years ago, and that led to the extinction of the dinosaurs. Today NASA astronomers are carrying out a survey called the Spaceguard Survey to find any large near-Earth asteroids long before they hit. We have already determined that there are no threatening asteroids as large as the one that killed the dinosaurs. All this work is done openly with the discoveries posted every day on the NASA NEO Program Office website (, so you can see for yourself that nothing is predicted to hit in 2012.

17. If Nibiru is a hoax, why doesn’t issue a denial? How can you permit these stores to circulate and frighten people? Why doesn’t the U.S. government do something about it!
If you go to the NASA home page,, you will see many stories that expose the Nibiru-2012 hoax. Try searching under “Nibiru” or “2012”. There is not much more that NASA can do. These hoaxes have nothing to do with NASA and are not based on NASA data, so we as an agency are not directly involved. But scientists, both within NASA and outside, recognize that this hoax with its effort to frighten people is a distraction from more important science concerns, such as global warming and loss of biological diversity. We live in a country where there is freedom of speech, and that includes freedom to lie. You should be glad there are no censors. But if you will just use common sense I am sure you can recognize the lies. As we approach 2012, the lies will be come even more obvious.

18. Can you prove to me that Nibiru is a hoax? There are so many reports that something terrible will happen in 2012. I need proof because the government and are keeping so much from us.
It is not logical to ask for proof that the 2012 doomsday is a hoax. Your questions should be to the doomsday advocates to prove that what they are saying is true, not to NASA to prove it is false. If someone claimed on the Internet that there were 50-foot tall purple elephants walking through Cleveland, would anyone expect NASA to prove this wrong? The burden of proof falls on those who make wild claims. Remember the often-quoted comment from Carl Sagan that extraordinary claims demand extraordinary levels of evidence if they are to be believed.

However, I think that astronomers have reached the point where we can offer extremely strong arguments that Nibiru does not exist. A large planet (or a brown dwarf) in our solar system would have been known to astronomers for many years, both indirectly from its gravitational perturbations on other objects and by direct detection in the infrared. The NASA Infrared Astronomy Satellite (IRAS) carried out the first all-sky survey in 1983, and several subsequent surveys would also have seen Nibiru if it were there. Further, if a large mass passed through the inner solar system every 3600 years, we would see its disruptive effects on the orbits of the inner planets, and we don’t.

You don’t need to take my word for it. Just use common sense. Have you seen Nibiru? In 2008 many websites said it would be visible to the naked eye in spring 2009. If a large planet or brown dwarf were headed for the inner solar system in 2012, it would already be tracked by hundreds of thousands of astronomers, professional and amateur, all over the world. Do you know any amateur astronomers who are watching it? Have you seen any photos or discussion of it in the big popular astronomy magazines like Sky & Telescope? Just think about it. No one could hide Nibiru if it existed.

19. What about the scary ads for the new film 2012? They tell us to look at these Internet sites to verify the doomsday threat.
The pseudoscientific claims about Nibiru and a doomsday in 2012, together with distrust of the government, are being amplified by publicity for the new film from Columbia Pictures titled 2012, to be released in November 2009. The film’s trailer, appearing in theaters and on their website , shows a tidal wave breaking over the Himalayas, with only the following words: “How would the governments of our planet prepare 6 billion people for the end of the world? [long pause] They wouldn’t. [long pause] Find out the Truth. Google search 2012”.

The film publicity includes creation of a faux scientific website ( for “The Institute for Human Continuity”, which is entirely fictitious. According to this website, the IHC is dedicated to scientific research and public preparedness. Its mission is the survival of mankind. The website explains that the Institute was founded 1978 by international leaders of government, business, and science. They say that in 2004, IHC scientists confirmed with 94% certainty that the world would be destroyed in 2012. This website encourages people to register for a lottery to select those who will be saved; a colleague submitted the name of her cat, which was accepted. I learned from Wikipedia that creating this sort of fake website is a new advertising technique called “Viral Marketing”, by analogy with computer viruses.

20. Is it possible that the influx of questions you describe is part of some kind of campaign for a book or movie, in the hopes that the volume of denials is taken as more “evidence” that there is a conspiracy?
I ask myself the same questions every day, as the volume of mail I receive about Nibiru (along with various alignments and pole shifts) keeps increasing — now more than 20 per week. Clearly there is money to be made from people’s fear about an approaching doomsday. Some of this hype is apparently advertising for the science fiction disaster movie 2012 (see Question 19). Many websites are selling books and tapes about Nibiru or even “survival kits”. It is all very sad, that with so many real issues (such as global warming and financial collapse) people are being taken in by these lies. In the final chapter of a new astronomy book (The Hunt for Planet X) by Govert Shilling, he writes: “There is plenty to do for the debunkers – the archaeologists and astronomers who take a long and skeptical look at the tidal wave of Nibiru nonsense and explain with scientific precision what is wrong with this cosmic fairy-tale. They will have their work cut out in the next few years. And on December 22, 2012 there will be a new pseudoscientific cock-and-bull story doing the rounds and the whole circus will start all over again. Because no matter how many new celestial bodies are found in our solar system, there will always be a need for a mysterious Planet X.”


Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Shah Rukh ‘owns’ land on the moon

BELIEVE it or not, but a crazy Australian fan “buys” Shah Rukh Khan a piece of the moon every year on his birthday.

“Yes, an Australian lady buys a little land on the moon for me every year on my birthday. She has been buying it for a while now and I get these certificates from the Lunar Republic Society,” Shah Rukh Khan told a newspaper.

The Bollywood star who celebrated his 44th birthday on Monday has apparently met his fan and she keeps in touch with him all year through mail.

“She writes me colourful e-mail (in the sense one line is red, one is blue and so on).

“I feel blessed to have the love of so many people worldwide,” he said.

According to one online lunar real estate agency,, the “Sea of Tranquility” is the most sought-after address on the moon.

A 4,047 sq m plot of land costs US$37.50 (RM128.066). The actor currently “owns” several acres on the moon.

Putin warns Europe about winter gas supply amid more rows with Ukraine

COMMENT: it's time to see through Gazprom
Yesterday, Mr Putin urged the EU to lend Ukraine money to buy gas and accused it of being ungenerous. “Let the Europeans throw in a lousy billion,” he said. “Why have they gotten so stingy down there? Let them get something out of their pockets.”

The Russian Prime Minister’s warning of a gas conflict relates to mounting tension in Ukraine between Yulia Tymoshenko, the country’s Prime Minister, and President Yuschenko. Both are candidates in presidential elections due to be held in January and Russia hopes that the winner will be more sympathetic to Moscow than the incumbent. According to Mr Putin, Mr Yuschenko is blocking the transfer of funds needed to pay for gas. Mr Putin insists that Ukraine has the funds to pay its gas bills but the money is being withheld. “According to the International Monetary Fund, Ukraine does have the money. Furthermore, the IMF thinks paying for Russian gas out of Ukraine’s foreign reserves is possible,” Mr Putin said.

A fifth of Europe’s gas arrives in Europe through pipelines that traverse Ukraine. In January 2006, arguments over unpaid gas bills led to Gazprom cutting supplies to Ukraine, which in turn led to severe shortages felt across Central Europe and in Germany, Italy and France.

However, the EU has been reluctant to step into the breach and lend money to Ukraine to pay for gas.

The recession is increasing the financial pressure on Gazprom to secure payment, but it is also likely to stay the utility’s hand in any new winter threat to cut off supplies. Demand for gas has fallen sharply in Europe amid the contraction in industrial activity and Gazprom will be reluctant to take any action that might reduce shipments to European customers.

Europe’s big utilities, including E.ON, of Germany, Eni, of Italy, and GDF-Suez, of France, are clamouring for price renegotiations after a fall of almost two thirds in the spot price of natural gas. Plentiful supplies of liquefied natural gas (LNG) are undercutting Russia’s pipeline gas markets.

To avoid Ukraine, Gazprom is building two new pipelines, including Nordstream, linking Russia and Germany under the Baltic Sea, and South Stream, under the Black Sea from Russia to the Balkans.

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