Jump to content

Smoke billows from fires in Turkey

Recommended Posts

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Similar Topics

    • By European Space Agency
      Image: This Copernicus Sentinel-3 image from October 2023 captures the plains of northern India and Pakistan under a white veil of haze and smoke. View the full article
    • By NASA
      6 min read
      Preparations for Next Moonwalk Simulations Underway (and Underwater)
      On Christmas Day in 1968, the three-man Apollo 8 crew of Frank Borman, Jim Lovell, and Bill Anders found a surprise in their food locker: a specially packed Christmas dinner wrapped in foil and decorated with red and green ribbons. Something as simple as a “home-cooked meal,” or as close as NASA could get for a spaceflight at the time, greatly improved the crew’s morale and appetite. More importantly, the meal marked a turning point in space food history.
      The prime crew of the Apollo 8 lunar orbit mission pose for a portrait next to the Apollo Mission Simulator at the Kennedy Space Center (KSC). Left to right, they are James A. Lovell Jr., command module pilot; William A. Anders, lunar module pilot; and Frank Borman, commander.NASA On their way to the Moon, the Apollo 8 crew was not very hungry. Food scientist Malcolm Smith later documented just how little the crew ate. Borman ate the least of the three, eating only 881 calories on day two, which concerned flight surgeon Chuck Berry. Most of the food, Borman later explained, was “unappetizing.” The crew ate few of the compressed, bite-sized items, and when they rehydrated their meals, the food took on the flavor of their wrappings instead of the actual food in the container. “If that doesn’t sound like a rousing endorsement, it isn’t,” he told viewers watching the Apollo 8 crew in space ahead of their surprise meal. As Anders demonstrated to the television audience how the astronauts prepared a meal and ate in space, Borman announced his wish, that folks back on Earth would “have better Christmas dinners” than the one the flight crew would be consuming that day.1
      If that doesn’t sound like a rousing endorsement, it isn’t.
      Frank Borman
      Apollo 8 Astronaut
      Over the 1960s, there were many complaints about the food from astronauts and others working at the Manned Spacecraft Center (now NASA’s Johnson Space Center). After evaluating the food that the Apollo 8 crew would be consuming onboard their upcoming flight, Apollo 9 astronaut Jim McDivitt penciled a note to the food lab about his in-flight preferences. Using the back of the Apollo 8 crew menu, he directed them to decrease the number of compressed bite-sized items “to a bare minimum” and to include more meat and potato items. “I get awfully hungry,” he wrote, “and I’m afraid I’m going to starve to death on that menu.”2
      In 1969, Rita Rapp, a physiologist who led the Apollo Food System team, asked Donald Arabian, head of the Mission Evaluation Room, to evaluate a four-day food supply used for the Apollo missions. Arabian identified himself as someone who “would eat almost anything. … you might say [I am] somewhat of a human garbage can.” But even he found the food lacked the flavor, aroma, appearance, texture, and taste he was accustomed to. At the end of his four-day assessment he concluded that “the pleasures of eating were lost to the point where interest in eating was essentially curtailed.”3
      Food used on the Gemini-Titan IV flight. Packages include beef sandwich cubes, strawberry cereal cubes, dehydrated peaches, and dehydrated beef and gravy. A water gun on the Gemini spacecraft is used to reconstitute the dehydrated food and scissors are used to open the packaging.NASA Apollo 8 commander Frank Borman concurred with Arabian’s assessment of the Apollo food. The one item Borman enjoyed? It was the contents of the Christmas meal wrapped in ribbons: turkey and gravy. The Christmas dinner was so delicious that the crew contacted Houston to inform them of their good fortune. “It appears that we did a great injustice to the food people,” Lovell told capsule communicator (CAPCOM) Mike Collins. “Just after our TV show, Santa Claus brought us a TV dinner each; it was delicious. Turkey and gravy, cranberry sauce, grape punch; [it was] outstanding.” In response, Collins expressed delight in hearing the good news but shared that the flight control team was not as lucky. Instead, they were “eating cold coffee and baloney sandwiches.”4
      The Apollo 8 Christmas menu included dehydrated grape drink, cranberry-applesauce, and coffee, as well as a wetpack containing turkey and gravy.U.S. Natick Soldier Systems Center Photographic Collection The Apollo 8 meal was a “breakthrough.” Until that mission, the food choices for Apollo crews were limited to freeze dried foods that required water to be added before they could be consumed, and ready-to-eat compressed foods formed into cubes. Most space food was highly processed. On this mission NASA introduced the “wetpack”: a thermostabilized package of turkey and gravy that retained its normal water content and could be eaten with a spoon. Astronauts had consumed thermostabilized pureed food on the Project Mercury missions in the early 1960s, but never chunks of meat like turkey. For the Project Gemini and Apollo 7 spaceflights, astronauts used their fingers to pop bite-sized cubes of food into their mouths and zero-G feeder tubes to consume rehydrated food. The inclusion of the wetpack for the Apollo 8 crew was years in the making. The U.S. Army Natick Labs in Massachusetts developed the packaging, and the U.S. Air Force conducted numerous parabolic flights to test eating from the package with a spoon.5
      Smith called the meal a real “morale booster.” He noted several reasons for its appeal: the new packaging allowed the astronauts to see and smell the turkey and gravy; the meat’s texture and flavor were not altered by adding water from the spacecraft or the rehydration process; and finally, the crew did not have to go through the process of adding water, kneading the package, and then waiting to consume their meal. Smith concluded that the Christmas dinner demonstrated “the importance of the methods of presentation and serving of food.” Eating from a spoon instead of the zero-G feeder improved the inflight feeding experience, mimicking the way people eat on Earth: using utensils, not squirting pureed food out of a pouch into their mouths. Using a spoon also simplified eating and meal preparation. NASA added more wetpacks onboard Apollo 9, and the crew experimented eating other foods, including a rehydrated meal item, with the spoon.6
      Malcolm Smith demonstrates eating space food.NASA Food was one of the few creature comforts the crew had on the Apollo 8 flight, and this meal demonstrated the psychological importance of being able to smell, taste, and see the turkey prior to consuming their meal, something that was lacking in the first four days of the flight. Seeing appetizing food triggers hunger and encourages eating. In other words, if food looks and smells good, then it must taste good. Little things like this improvement to the Apollo Food System made a huge difference to the crews who simply wanted some of the same eating experiences in orbit and on the Moon that they enjoyed on Earth.
      [1] Apollo 8 Mission Commentary, Dec. 25, 1968, p. 543, https://historycollection.jsc.nasa.gov/JSCHistoryPortal/history/mission_trans/AS08_PAO.PDF; Apollo 8 Technical Debriefing, Jan. 2, 1969, 078-15, Apollo Series, University of Houston-Clear Lake, Houston, Texas (hereafter UHCL); Malcolm C. Smith to Director of Medical Research and Operations, “Nutrient consumption on Apollo VII and VIII,” Jan. 13, 1969, Rita Rapp Papers, Box 1, UHCL.
      [2] Jim McDivitt food evaluation form, n.d., Box 17, Rapp Papers, UHCL.   
      [3] Donald Arabian to Rapp, “Evaluation of four-day food supply,” May 8, 1969, Box 17, Rapp Papers, UHCL.
      [4] Apollo 8 Mission Commentary, Dec. 25, 1968, p. 545.
      [5] Malcolm Smith, “The Apollo Food Program,” in Aerospace Food Technology, NASA SP-202 (Washington, DC: 1970), pp. 5–8; Whirlpool Corporation, “Space Food Systems: Mercury through Apollo,” Dec. 1970, Box 9, Rapp Papers, UHCL.
      [6] Smith, “The Apollo Food Program,” pp. 7–8; Smith to the Record, “Christmas Dinner for Apollo VIII,” Jan. 10, 1969, Box 1, Rapp Papers, UHCL; Smith et al, “Apollo Food Technology,” in Biomedical Results of Apollo, NASA SP-368 (Washington, DC: NASA, 1975), p. 456.
      About the Author
      Jennifer Ross-Nazzal
      NASA Human Spaceflight HistorianJennifer Ross-Nazzal is the NASA Human Spaceflight Historian. She is the author of Winning the West for Women: The Life of Suffragist Emma Smith DeVoe and Making Space for Women: Stories from Trailblazing Women of NASA's Johnson Space Center.
      Last Updated Dec 21, 2023 EditorMichele Ostovar Related Terms
      NASA History Apollo 8 Frank Borman Humans in Space Explore More
      12 min read Space Station 20th: Food on ISS
      Article 3 years ago 4 min read Apollo 8: Christmas at the Moon
      Article 4 years ago 4 min read To the Moon and Back: Apollo 8 and the Future of Lunar Exploration
      Article 5 years ago Keep Exploring Discover More Topics From NASA
      NASA History
      Humans In Space
      The Apollo Program
      Johnson Space Center History
      View the full article
    • By European Space Agency
      Video: 00:01:25 Cinq, quatre, trois, deux, un. Allumage Vulcain! This is the moment Ariane 6’s main engine was sparked into life, and the entire main stage of the new rocket and the many parts of the launch pad in Kourou, French Guiana, practised for the full duration of a launch. Of course, as planned, the test model did not leave the ground.
      Without its boosters, instead of piercing the clouds Ariane 6’ created its own on Earth: a clean byproduct of the Vulcain 2.1 engine’s oxygen and hydrogen propellants, which came together to send out impressive swirls of H2O.
      After the almost 150 tonnes of propellant was burnt through and the clouds dispersed, the curtains closed on the successful rehearsal. The data from thousands of monitors around the rocket will be crunched in the coming weeks to learn all that’s needed for Ariane’s next, real, flight.
      Access the related broadcast quality video material.
      View the full article
    • By NASA
      Tundra wetlands are shown in late spring at the Yukon Delta National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska. Scientists are studying how fire and ice drive methane emissions in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, within which the refuge is located.U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Methane ‘hot spots’ in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta are more likely to be found where recent wildfires burned into the tundra, altering carbon emissions from the land.
      In Alaska’s largest river delta, tundra that has been scorched by wildfire is emitting more methane than the rest of the landscape long after the flames died, scientists have found. The potent greenhouse gas can originate from decomposing carbon stored in permafrost for thousands of years. Its release could accelerate climate warming and lead to more frequent wildfires in the tundra, where blazes have been historically rare.
      The new study was conducted by a team of scientists working as part of NASA’s Arctic-Boreal Vulnerability Experiment (ABoVE), a large-scale study of environmental change in Alaska and Western Canada. Researchers found that methane hot spots were roughly 29% more likely to occur in tundra that had been scorched by wildfire in the past 50 years compared to unburned areas. The correlation nearly tripled in areas where a fire burned to the edge of a lake, stream, or other standing-water body. The highest ratio of hot spots occurred in recently burned wetlands.
      The researchers first observed the methane hot spots using NASA’s next-generation Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS-NG) in 2017. Mounted on the belly of a research plane, the instrument has an optical sensor that records the interaction of sunlight with molecules near the land surface and in the air, and it has been used to measure and monitor hazards ranging from oil spills to crop disease.
      Methane bubbles pop on the surface of an Alaskan lake being studied by scientists with NASA’s Arctic-Boreal Vulnerability Experiment. A potent greenhouse gas, methane is released in bubble seeps when microbes consume carbon released from thawing permafrost.NASA/Kate Ramsayer Roughly 2 million hot spots – defined as areas showing an excess of 3,000 parts per million of methane between the aircraft and the ground – were detected across some 11,583 square miles (30,000 square kilometers) of the Arctic landscape. Regionally, the number of hot spot detections in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta were anomalously high in 2018 surveys, but scientists didn’t know what was driving their formation.
      Ice and Fire
      To help fill this gap, Elizabeth Yoseph, an intern at the time with the ABoVE campaign, focused on a methane-active region located in a wet and peaty area of the massive delta. Yoseph and the team used the AVIRIS-NG data to pinpoint hot spots across more than 687 square miles (1,780 square kilometers), then overlaid their findings on historical wildfire maps.
      “What we uncovered is a very clear and strong relationship between fire history and the distribution of methane hot spots,” said Yoseph, lead author of the new study.
      The connection arises from what happens when fire burns into the carbon-rich frozen soil, or permafrost, that underlies the tundra. Permafrost sequesters carbon from the atmosphere and can store it for tens of thousands of years. But when it thaws and breaks down in wet areas, flourishing microbes feed on and convert that old carbon to methane gas. The saturated soils around lakes and wetlands are especially rich stocks of carbon because they contain large amounts of dead vegetation and animal matter.
      To view this video please enable JavaScript, and consider upgrading to a web browser that supports HTML5 video
      Methane emission hot spots were observed from the air using NASA’s AVIRIS-NG instrument across broad regions of the North American Arctic as part of the agency’s Arctic-Boreal Vulnerability Experiment. Credit: NASA’s Scientific Visualization Studio “When fire burns into permafrost, there are catastrophic changes to the land surface that are different from a fire burning here in California, for example,” said Clayton Elder, co-author and scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California, which developed AVIRIS-NG. “It’s changing something that was frozen to thawed, and that has a cascading impact on that ecosystem long after the fire.”
      Rare but Increasing Risk
      Because of the cool marshes, low shrubs, and grasses, tundra wildfires are relatively rare compared to those in other environments, such as evergreen-filled forests. However, by some projections the fire risk in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta could quadruple by the end of the century due to warming conditions and increased lightning storms – the leading cause of tundra fires. Two of the largest tundra fires on record in Alaska occurred in 2022, burning more than 380 square miles (100,000 hectares) of primarily tundra landscapes.
      More research is needed to understand how a future of increasing blazes at high latitudes could impact the global climate. Arctic permafrost holds an estimated 1,700 billion metric tons of carbon – roughly 51 times the amount of carbon the world released as fossil fuel emissions in 2019.
      All that stored carbon also means that the carbon intensity of fire emissions from burning tundra is extremely high, said co-author Elizabeth Hoy, a fire researcher at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. “Tundra fires occur in areas that are remote and difficult to get to, and often can be understudied,” she noted. “Using satellites and airborne remote sensing is a really powerful way to better understand these phenomena.”
      The scientists hope to continue exploring methane hot spots occurring throughout Alaska. Ground-based investigation is needed to better understand the links between fire, ice, and greenhouse gas emissions at the doorstep of the Arctic.
      The study was published in the journal Environmental Research Letters.
      News Media Contacts
      Jane J. Lee / Andrew Wang
      Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.
      818-354-0307 / 626-379-6874
      jane.j.lee@jpl.nasa.gov / andrew.wang@jpl.nasa.gov
      Written by Sally Younger
      Last Updated Nov 01, 2023 Related Terms
      Carbon Cycle Climate Change Earth Jet Propulsion Laboratory Natural Disasters Wildfires Explore More
      4 min read 2023 Ozone Hole Ranks 16th Largest, NASA and NOAA Researchers Find
      Article 2 hours ago 3 min read JPL Engineers Put Their Skills to the Test With Halloween Pumpkins
      Article 16 hours ago 4 min read NASA, Partners Explore Sustainable Fuel’s Effects on Aircraft Contrails
      Article 2 days ago View the full article
    • By NASA
      iss070e001546 (Sept. 30, 2023) — Two lakes in Turkey, the larger Van Lake and the smaller Erçek Lake, are pictured from the International Space Station as it orbited 259 miles above the Eurasian region near the Caspian Sea.NASAView the full article
  • Check out these Videos

  • Create New...