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Everything posted by Skyumpi

  1. Magnificent! Well done Hamron. I witnessed most of that 40 seconds as weel, almost on the stroke of 11pm? Looked up in the middle of changing a lens and WOW! I've never seen so much happen in the sky so quickly. It hasn't been a great winter for Auroras but your image captures the very best of it.
  2. Gosh. What a to do over very little. One of the things that continues to surprise me is the fuss made over whether being gay comes down to simple genetics or a matter of choice - like deciding what your favourite colour is. Maybe it's something you can change through an act of will - "I really do prefer blue!" or maybe it isn't. The implication that "maybe it's not their fault" might make it OK whereas same sex sex through choice is somehow worse baffles me. Surely the point is...... who should really care if your favourite colour is red, you're a girl who prefers girls, or a boy who lusts after other boys this year but might not next year when you meet this most amazingly interesting lass? Who cares if choose to be gay on Tuesday and Wednesday but straight the rest of the time? In answer to some of the fears expressed over how gay marriage might affect the mankinds viability, there are a lot of things that might compromise the future of the human race. The percentage of homosexuals is not one of them.
  3. I am delighted to learn that there is an Astronomical Society in Shetland and will now be attending their Solar Storms/Mirrie Dancers lecture on 2nd Febuary. Shetlink can expand your mind!
  4. First go of my 11-16mm Tokina that arrived yesterday 3secs at ISO 1000 and f2.8 for this shot.
  5. Lovely moon tonight.......... http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8076/8408729663_40dd4dbf75_c.jpg
  6. Not at all! If du could see dee wye tae takkin awa da next couple o poles as weel dat wid be fine as dey fair mess up da sunsets oot da voe. This where I wanted to take some shots without all the clutter and light pollution but they were all but gone by the time I got there. http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8504/8393803827_c53ddc6761_z.jpg
  7. Managed to catch a bright-but-brief flare up of the Mirrie Dancers at the back o tea time last night. Apologies for the poor quality but I was really just nippin oot for a look and they went mad in the space of about 90 secs. This was a 28mm lens and shows probably about a third of the display that stretched from NW to NE. Headed out for dark places to try and get some proper shots but it all seemed to fall away to a background glow in no time. http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8468/8392493092_a078814370_z.jpg http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8463/8391408417_f79baff98d_z.jpg http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8498/8391409035_866163fdc6_z.jpg Looks like there's a reasonable chance of more lights over the weekend, so have a look to the skies if you're out and about.
  8. Kavi, I've got a Nikon D90 with <7k actuations that I'm thinking to part with. I'll have a rummage around but it probably has 3 batteries, an 8GB card, a remote release, a "How to" book and a few other bits and pieces to go with it. I'm keeping most of the lenses but I'd chuck in a 70-300mm Nikon f4-5.6G as I've superceded that one. Might find a polarising filter and a UV filter to go with it. The D90 has the advantage of working with just about any lens that Nikon has produced in the last 30 years - and it's a bloomin' good camera too. £400 if you're interested. (Although be prepared to spend more money if the DSLR bug bites! )
  9. Jump out of a balloon from 23 miles above the Earth? Pfffffttt! That's nothing. I once fell down the stairs in the Lounge and survived. Well done Felix and crew - that may take a bit of beating.
  10. These were taken in Stromfirth, Dave. There was a really short window where the lights were really active, maybe only 15-20 mins. The camera always gathers more light than the human eye in these sort of pics so the display is less intense in "realtime".
  11. Bit of trial and error for me..... First three are with a 28mm f1.8 lens and exposures from 4-7 seconds and ISO speeds of 400-800. The fourth and fifth were taken on a slower f4 zoom at 14mm and 24mm with ISO's of 800 and 2500 respectively. Saw quite few meteors as well but only captured one small one on camera.
  12. Anybody catch the display between around 10pm last night? Didn't seem to last long then fell right away to just the normal background glow. http://i700.photobucket.com/albums/ww2/rasmie/Mirrie%20Dancers/14thOct2012MirrieDancers-1.jpg http://i700.photobucket.com/albums/ww2/rasmie/Mirrie%20Dancers/14thOct2012MirrieDancers-2.jpg http://i700.photobucket.com/albums/ww2/rasmie/Mirrie%20Dancers/14thOct2012MirrieDancers-3.jpg http://i700.photobucket.com/albums/ww2/rasmie/Mirrie%20Dancers/14thOct2012MirrieDancers-4.jpg http://i700.photobucket.com/albums/ww2/rasmie/Mirrie%20Dancers/14thOct2012MirrieDancers-5.jpg
  13. Got to admit to being a bit of an Apollo nerd, but Neil Armstrong's death has quite saddened me. I suppose he may have been one of the most famous people ever to have lived - yet he would appear to have been a modest man, unwilling to cash in on the fame of his place in maybe the greatest ever engineering achievement in human history. To anyone remotely interested in the Apollo program I'd recommend watching the "In the Shadow of the Moon" documentary with commentary from the astronauts themselves. It's available on Channel 4 On Demand here: http://www.channel4.com/programmes/in-the-shadow-of-the-moon/4od One of the things that strikes you is that they are now all old men. The youngest is 76 and it there is a very real chance that there may well soon be no-one alive that has ever moved beyond low earth orbit. The Chinese have plans to re-visit the moon sometime in the 2020's but America's own plans were shelved. NASA's fleet of robotic rovers are doind some great science but it's sending humans that truly fires the imagination. One of the outcomes of the Apollo program was that people saw the earth for what it was - a tiny, fragile thing hanging in a vast emptiness and we have all our eggs in one basket, so to speak. I sincerely hope that someday humans will be able to sort out the mess we are slowly making of this planet but we also have to look beyond - and men like Neil Armstrong will have helped make it possible.
  14. No fairly night, but late enoch ta be caad night onywhaur else Taen fae da Hill o Weisdale da streen, lookin Waast ower St Magnus' Bay as da sun gied doon...... http://i700.photobucket.com/albums/ww2/rasmie/Shetland%20Landscapes/StMagnusBaySunset01.jpg anidder efter it wis gone....... http://i700.photobucket.com/albums/ww2/rasmie/Shetland%20Landscapes/Foula01-001.jpg an anidder later still wi da moon ower Foula. http://i700.photobucket.com/albums/ww2/rasmie/Shetland%20Landscapes/Foula012-001.jpg Fine night tae be oot wi. Maks you affil blyde tae be whaur you ir.
  15. From the above article ^^^ "The company said services will be extensively modernised, with a more innovative approach to marketing and improvements in customer care at every stage of the journey - from ticket purchase through to arrival and disembarkation." Has anyone used Scatsta or Broomfield House to experience Serco's customer care?!? Nah, seriously though, hope it all works out for us. Got to give them every chance as this is world's apart from what they're doing for the oil companies, or the MoD, or Kilmarnock prison..........
  16. Wow. So the people who don't want a giant windfarm on their doorstep are just selfish? The people who don't want to see a huge network of roads, quarries and massive construction work tear apart a beautiful area of Shetland are just selfish? BUT the people who want this imposed on others so that the richest local authority in Scotland can become even richer are not? Those who the windfarm will have little or no impact on but are "banging on about VE" are not?
  17. Derick, I you take a walk round the Maa Lochs or along the spine of hills from Weisdale to Voe or follow one of the burns to its source then you would maybe understand why so many people think "desecrate" seems a suitable word for what VE has planned.
  18. Thanks for that, Trowie. It's in item no.8 on the Mythbusters page, refuting claims that windfarms deter tourists. I had found a reference to it before somewhere in the reams of documents on the VE site but it only suggested there might be cycle paths or walking routes whereas this page says they do plan to accommodate them. It was discussed at a meeting of the Shetland Access Forum some time ago but no firm proposals or routes were put forward.
  19. Once landscaped and regrown there will still be almost 80km of roads cut into these hills. The "single width" roads have a 6m wide running surface - sort of like the main A970 running through the Kames. The double width are now reduced to only 10m wide. That'll be a bit like the new Nort road leaving Lerwick, I'd guess, and there'll be 20km of it to minimise congestion on the main arterial routes through the wind farm. Whilst on the subject of access, has anyone ever heard if VE will allow anyone onto the wind farm roads? Can anyone point me to info on this? If I had to guess, I don't think anyone will be driving to the lochs or to check out the views from the hill tops.
  20. Do you mean one of the big 350-400kw ones like VE propose? Are there any areas in Shetland you think wouldn't be suitable for large scale wind turbines, Paul?
  21. Current production forecasts from the West of Shetland fields mean that gas should be getting piped into Shetland for much longer than the 25 year lifespan of the VE wind farm. These forecasts tend to be on the conservative side, the ones from the the East of Shetland certainly were. New technologies develop which allow further reserves to be squeezed out of existing wells. A clean gas burning power station would be a big improvement on shipping in diesel. And yes, I know, this topic is about windfarms. Sorry!
  22. I was at the meeting on Tuesday and commented as well on the average age of those attending. I don't know if that means that more of Shetland's young folk are in favour of the windfarm, don't care or just had more exciting things to do aboot da night. Sorry to hark back to gearboxes, transformers and oil but here's a small extract from VE's environmental statement. Potential oil pollution is a bigger deal during construction and there are a quite a few special conditions to minimise it but this refers to the operational phase of the windfarm: "Pollution The potential risk of pollution to peat and groundwater during the operational phase is substantially lower than during construction because of the decreased levels of activity. The majority of potential pollutants will have been removed upon completion of construction although the possibility will remain of leaks of turbine gearbox lubricants, transformer oils and fuel from maintenance vehicles. Despite the reduction in the number of potential pollutants the magnitude of a pollution incident, without mitigation in place, is moderate. The implementation of the proposed pollution prevention plan will reduce the potential impact of a pollution incident to one of minor magnitude and of possible occurrence. Residues and emissions resulting from operation of the wind farm are expected to be negligible. With the probability of occurrence being unlikely the anticipated order of effect is minor for both peat and groundwater." I haven't yet been able to find out what the mitigation they intend to employ is. I think I'll give up with it though. Light turbine or transformer oil is bad but, truthfully, there is only a small potential for a significant spill. Chances are the hill would swallow it up. It pales into insignificance alongside the carnage that construction will wreak. Kinda tears my heart out thinking about it.
  23. Gosh. I've never posted on the windfarm issue before. Are you always this ornery, AT? Allowing myself to start in to one these replying-to-each-issue-in-turn type posts is probably a bad idea, but here goes anyway..... My reply about the volumes of oil was as a little supporting evidence for another poster you accused of lying. He was pretty much right, there will be "tens of thousands of gallons" involved in the turbines and ancilliary equipment. As for me being against mains electricity - that's quite a jump is it not? Transformers do leak sometimes. Do you think that VE should not consider the risk of oil contamination? No, you probably don't remember me protesting about the gas plant you're referring to. I don't think I did any protesting about it on Shetlink, nor did I cite it as being "green". It is, however, a very localised development onshore that can hardly be seen from anywhere other than from the existing oil terminal. It is very different on so many levels from the proposed windfarm which, as you rightly pointed out earlier, is the subject of discussion here.
  24. Oh come on, PJ. I know you're against this thing, but stop making up lies. It doesn't help your case. If they are to be Siemens 3.6MW turbines then 104 of them would contain over 17 thousand gallons in their transmission system gearboxes alone. http://www.energy.siemens.com/hq/en/power-generation/renewables/wind-power/wind-turbines/swt-3-6-107.htm#content=Technical%20Specification How much do you think will be in the Substation transformers?
  25. Here's a link showing a partially prepared base for a much smaller 2MW turbine. The VE turbines are sustantially larger at 3.6MW, possibly rising to 4+MW in light of the reduced number. How can tearing apart our hills to build over a hundred of these and the network of roads, substations, crane pads, quarries and compounds be seen as "green"?
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