Hi, I'm LightandDark2000 (or BlueHypercane761 on Wikimedia Commons). I am deeply fascinated with science, and I enjoy editing articles related to tropical cyclones and current events, as well as other articles with topics that interest me. I live in California, and I also have an interest in electronics and computer-related stuff. I am always trying to improve Wikipedia, and I try to keep articles vandalism-free. Near the top of my userpage is a large-scale "featured image," which I feel like highlighting at the moment. My featured images aren't permanent. There will probably be an image that I may keep up for a really long time, but if I feel like it, I may rotate or switch the image. Also, if any of the previous images were really good in my opinion (or depicted major things or events) you can find them in the image gallery below.
A Barnstar for you!Edit
|The Anti-Vandalism Barnstar|
|Dear LightandDark2000, you have been editing Wikipedia for several months now, and I noticed that in your contributions, you often revert vandalism, surprisingly without a wiki account! You deserve the Anti-Vandalism Barnstar, for all your efforts. But I noticed that you often attack users who vandalize pages. Please warn them only when they commit more than one act of vandalism, and be polite and welcoming to the new users. Thank You. I award you this Barnstar, so that you can be a better Wikipedian! Keep up the good work! Earth100 (talk) 12:32, 1 June 2012 (UTC)|
- Fly High in the Sky
A beer for you!Edit
|So sorry to hear that you've been harassed by User:Mr Wiki Pro's newest sockpuppet. You're not alone. He's been doing the EXACT same things to me! Hang in there; keep reporting him every time he makes his presence known, if he's not blocked by then. Meanwhile, here's a beer to cheer you up! :) —This lousy T-shirt— (talk) 06:31, 14 April 2014 (UTC)|
A cheese wheel for you!Edit
|A hard-earned cheese wheel of the finest quality|
|Enjoy this cheese wheel for your hard work fighting vandalism.... you've earned it! Dustin (talk) 03:28, 7 June 2014 (UTC)|
A cheeseburger for you!Edit
|For edits at War on Terror, I hereby present to you this cheeseburger. May it fuel your continued edits on Wikipedia. RightCowLeftCoast (talk) 05:45, 5 February 2015 (UTC)|
A barnstar for you!Edit
|The Original Barnstar|
|Good work on the (2015 Egyptian military intervention in Libya) article. Hashima20 (talk) 08:54, 21 February 2015 (UTC)|
Some falafel for you!Edit
|Thanks for the fine edits to the Syria map. You corrected several errors that were present. Pbfreespace3 (talk) 00:23, 16 June 2015 (UTC)|
Barnstar for being such a tireless map updaterEdit
|The Original Barnstar|
|220.127.116.11 (talk) 16:34, 24 June 2015 (UTC)|
A barnstar for you!Edit
|The Special Barnstar|
|I just want to thank you for being civil. I hope I didn't come across as mean, because I didn't mean it that way. I just want to make sure the wiki map stays within encyclopedic standards. Thanks for the compromise. Pbfreespace3 (talk) 21:03, 13 August 2015 (UTC)|
A barnstar for you!Edit
|The Graphic Designer's Barnstar|
|I give you this barnstar for the map you've created for the Sinai insurgency map! Good work. Bolter21 (talk) 12:40, 12 November 2015 (UTC)|
Some baklava for you!Edit
|Bruskom talk to me 19:28, 22 December 2015 (UTC)|
A barnstar for you!Edit
|The Outlaw Halo Award|
|For honourably beating back countless split proposals (and one merge proposal), for relentlessly resisting suggestions to summarise the content, and for snatching the highly prestigious title of Longest non-list article on the English Wikipedia, please accept this Glorious Outlaw Halo Award. (Battle of Mosul (2016–17).)|
- I decided to copy this "award" to my user page since I was a major contributor to the article in question. By the way, I'll take that as a compliment. LightandDark2000 🌀 (talk) 13:50, 13 September 2017 (UTC)
A barnstar for you!Edit
|The Tireless Contributor Barnstar|
|For all your great work with October 2007 California wildfires!!! Zackmann08 (Talk to me/What I been doing) 00:48, 10 November 2017 (UTC)|
A barnstar for you!Edit
|The Tireless Contributor Barnstar|
|You are kicking some serious butt with all the contributions to fire articles. Keep up the great work!!! Zackmann08 (Talk to me/What I been doing) 17:18, 15 December 2017 (UTC)|
A barnstar for you!Edit
|The Anti-Vandalism Barnstar|
|For reverting 3 VANDALIZED REVISIONS made by ONE PERSON Thewinrat (talk) 02:07, 27 March 2018 (UTC)|
A barnstar for you!Edit
|The Editor's Barnstar|
|Keep it. Thanks a lot for your contributions. I've left you one more barnstar. Source Content Self-Maker (talk) 18:47, 17 August 2018 (UTC)|
A barnstar for you!Edit
|The Anti-Vandalism Barnstar|
|Impressive work! Sakaimover (talk) 01:04, 24 September 2018 (UTC)|
A barnstar for you!Edit
|The Original Barnstar|
|Thanks for fighting vandalism/disruptive edits and contributing to tropical cyclones! INeedSupport(Care free to give me support?) 21:29, 25 September 2018 (UTC)|
A barnstar for you!Edit
|The Tireless Contributor Barnstar|
|You have made a lot of edits, and you have often improved my work. Keep it up. Northatlantic320 (talk) 17:23, 12 October 2018 (UTC)|
A barnstar for you!Edit
|The Special Barnstar|
|Thanks for helping keep Wikipedia vandal-free! I've also noticed from your user page that we have a bunch in common! andritolion (talk) 04:42, 6 June 2019 (UTC)|
A kitten for you!Edit
Thank you for helping keeping Wikipedia clean!
A barnstar for you!Edit
|The Anti-Vandalism Barnstar|
|For your work at Catherine of Aragon. -- DannyS712 (talk) 06:01, 10 June 2019 (UTC)|
A Barnstar for you!Edit
|The Reviewer's Barnstar|
|This is for your valuable efforts for reviewing articles under pending changes protection. Thank you PATH SLOPU 14:28, 14 June 2019 (UTC)|
- Other links - IRC, Philippines NDRRMC, GMDSS, WX Trop, MT Archive, NRL imagery, Dundee, Temporary TC advisory archive, NOAA Ocean Coverage Satellite Imagery, Eastern Pacific Tropical Weather Discussion, Ocean Prediction Center, WPC North America Surface Analysis/Satellite Composite maps, 850mb Vorticity - West Pacific atmospheric circulation map, Ten Spider Weather - Tropical Cyclone, Typhoon & Hurricane Tracking, NOAA El Niño & La Niña data, GFS Weather Model page, ECMWF (European) Weather Model, Weather Underground tropical cyclone tracker, Weather Underground Weather Map & Models, Tropical Tidbits Current Storm tracker, NOAA CLASS satellite images, NASA EOSDIS Worldview satellite imagery
Cold War II (August 2008–Present)Edit
The Second Cold War (which began on August 7, 2008, at the start of the Russo-Georgian War) escalated during the 2014 conflicts and civil unrest in Ukraine. The Russian actions toward the events escalated tensions between the United States and Russia, which may spark World War III. On March 21, 2014, Russian annexed Crimea, leading to a heightened escalation in tensions between Ukraine and Russia. On May 8, 2014, and later in mid-June 2014, Russia began flying fighter jets off the coast of California and Guam, preparing for a possible military strike. In response, President Obama visited military leaders in California on May 9, to debrief them on the Russian threats. In the first week of June 2014, Russian fighter jets began making passes over U.S. military vehicles, likely in preparation for an attack. On April 23, a Russian fighter jet passed within 100 feet of a U.S. military plane, and tilted itself just enough so that the U.S. crew could see that the plane was armed with missiles. Earlier in April, a Russian fighter plane had made a dozen passes over the USS Donald Cook, in addition to multiple flights over or near the border of many NATO nations. The Government declared that this flight put the lives of the entire U.S. crew in jeopardy. If displays of aggression like these continue, a Russian attack may not be that far off the horizon. On July 17, 2014, the Pro-Russian rebels shot down Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 over Ukraine, using missiles supplied by Russia. This resulted in a heightening of tensions between Russia and NATO, as well as additional measures to circumvent flights passing over Ukraine. On July 27, 2014, Russia began firing missiles over the Ukrainian border into Eastern Ukraine, in support of the Pro-Russian rebels. This may lead to a full-scale war if Ukraine decides to retaliate.
On January 29, 2015, two Russian bomber jets were intercepted by the British Royal Air Force over the English Channel, forcing civilian flights within the region to be re-routed. This escalated already strained NATO–Russia relations even further, and caused more panic over the fears of possible Russian aircraft collisions with civilian aircraft. This was the latest of Russia's "dark" military flights (as of January 29, 2015), which have jeopardized civilian lives and escalated tensions to Cold War-levels. NATO reported having intercepted over 100 Russian military flights in 2014, over 3 times the amount in 2013.
The scheduled summit at Minsk, attended by both foreign leaders and leaders in the War on Donbass, met on 11 February which resulted in the signing of a new package of peacemaking measures, called Minsk II, on 12 February. The plan, similar in content to the failed Minsk Protocol, called for an unconditional ceasefire, to begin on 15 February, amongst many other measures.
Debaltseve, one of the sites where the ceasefire was not implemented (and the site of the heaviest fighting around the time of Minsk II' implementation), was captured by the Donetsk People's Republic of Novorossiya on February 18, 2015. After capturing the city, they announced that they would be withdrawing their heavy artillery as required by Minsk II.
On January 25, 2016, a Russian fighter jet came within 15 feet of a U.S. Air Force Reconnaissance plane, over the Black Sea. If Russia continues these dangerous passes, it may lead to another incident, like the Turkish shootdown of a Russian jet in November 2015, or to a higher level military escalation. On April 17, 2016, a Russian fighter jet barrel-rolled over a US Air Force reconnaissance aircraft, over the Baltic Sea, coming withing 50 feet of the plane. The US criticized such a dangerous move, but the Russian Defense Ministry claimed that the move was part of its "defense protocol."
On April 7, 2017, the 2017 Shayrat missile strike, authorized by US President Donald Trump, in retaliation for a chemical weapon attack in Khan Shaykhun (blamed on the Syrian Government), deteriorated relations between the United States and Russia.
- See the Ukrainian crisis, the 2014 pro-Russian unrest in Ukraine, the War in Donbass, 2014–15 Russian military intervention in Ukraine, Battle of Debaltseve, Battle of Avdiivka, and NATO–Russia relations for more information
- CNN latest news coverage on the Ukrainian crisis (in the event that I forget to update this, change the data in the web address to today's date in order to obtain the latest new coverage. But first, click on the 2nd bullet down from the top in the Crisis in Ukraine section.) LightandDark2000 🌀 (talk) 06:22, 13 May 2014 (UTC)
California Natural DisastersEdit
In early January 2016, the 2014–16 El Niño event tied the 1997–98 El Niño as the strongest one on record. This coincided with a wave of 5 winter storms that were impacting the West Coast of the United States during the same week. The 4th winter storm triggered severe thunderstorms across San Diego County on January 6, with one tornado reported. In late May 2016, the record-tying El Niño episode finally ended.
In January 2017, 2 sets of powerful winter storms opened up massive Pineapple Express atmospheric rivers, causing massive amounts of rain and snowfall in California. The first series of storms (especially Winter Storm Iras), lasting from January 8 to 13, and consisting of 3 storms, triggered the worst flooding in Northern and Central California since 2005. The second wave, consisting of 3 winter storms, impacted the state from January 19 to 24, and triggered the worst flooding Southern California has experienced since December 2010. Winter Storm Kori (II), was so far, the worst storm in the 2nd wave of storms. Winter Storm Leo (storm 3) was stated by the Nation Weather Service to be the worst of the triad of storms impacting California.
In April 2017, the rainfall from the powerful winter storms had turned the 2016–17 California rainy season into the wettest one on record. The large amounts of rainfall also effectively ended the drought in most of the state.
In early December 2017, a swarm of wildfires were ignited across Southern California, and spurred on by powerful Santa Ana winds. The largest fire in the group was the Thomas Fire, which burned 281,893 acres (1,140.78 km2), becoming the largest wildfire in modern California history. The Thomas Fire also became California's 8th most destructive wildfire (as of August 2018), costing at least $2.176 billion (2018 USD) in damages. On January 12, 2018, the Thomas Fire was fully extinguished, following heavy rainfall from Winter Storm Hunter.
- See Climate change in California, 2011–17 California drought, and 2017 California wildfires, for more information on the worst Californian drought in 1,200 years, the wildfires that burned across the state in 2017, and the other effects of the recent natural disasters in California. LightandDark2000 🌀 (talk) 04:23, 31 December 2014 (UTC)
- U.S. Drought Monitor
- USGS Latest Earthquakes map
- California could be hit by an 8.2 mega-earthquake, and it would be catastrophic
- 2010 Baja California earthquake
From December 2013 through 2016, the deadliest Ebola outbreak infected over 28,600 people in West Africa, Western Europe, and even the United States, with over 11,300 of them dead from the virus. This caused a race for vaccines and a cure, as well as mass hysteria across the US and other countries in the world.
In the United States, 4 people were infected (2 while in West Africa), two of whom died soon after their infection. The other two patients recovered by mid-November 2014. A possible Ebola patient entered San Diego County in early September 2014; however, he was quickly evacuated to a emergency treatment center in Sacramento, California.
In Spring 2015, the outbreak gave signs of winding down, and the number of Ebola cases dropped rapidly. In July 2015, the first Ebola vaccine was completed, and it began to be mass distributed, along with of couple of other different vaccines near the end of the trial period. In November 2015, Guinea and Liberia became the last 2 known countries with an active outbreak. By December 2015, no new cases of Ebola were reported. Guinea and Liberia have both entered a 90-day period of surveillance, which are set to end on February 5, 2016. If no new cases of Ebola surfaces within that period of time, the outbreak will officially be declared over. On January 15, 2016, a new case of Ebola resurfaced in Sierra Lione, only hours after the WHO declared the outbreak to be "over." The flare-ups continued across West Africa, before finally ending on June 9, 2016.
In Spring 2018, another new Ebola outbreak broke out in parts of Central Africa.
- See the Ebola virus epidemic in West Africa timeline for more information on the sequence of events of this outbreak. LightandDark2000 🌀 (talk) 04:40, 31 December 2014 (UTC)
- Official Map of Zika-transmitting Mosquitoes in the US
The War on ISIL (December 2013–Present)Edit
On February 3, 2014, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (also known by the acronym ISIS or ISIL), formerly known as al-Qaeda in Iraq, split from al-Qaeda and began a massive military campaign to conquer the entire region of the Levant and Greater Syria, causing thousands of civilians in Iraq and Syria to flee their homes. ISIL's campaigns also brought it into conflict with the al-Nusra Front, or al-Qaeda in Syria, despite several local truces and joint military operations at times.
On June 29, 2014, ISIL renamed itself to simply the Islamic State and declared itself to be a Worldwide Caliphate, with Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi as its Caliph, and claimed the entire world as its territory. ISIL then increased its campaigns in Iraq and Syria, conquering over a third of each country, and force 16 million people to live under its harsh version of Sharia rule. The ensuing conflicts caused over 400,000 Syrian civilians to flee to Turkey, to escape advancing ISIL forces. ISIL also managed to expand into Turkey, Lebanon, Libya, the Gaza Strip, the Sinai Peninsula, Pakistan, and the Philippines, mainly through pledges of allegiance from other terrorist groups already present in those countries (usually al-Qaeda branches). This prompted the United States to lead a Anti-ISIL coalition in an international military campaign against ISIL, in an attempt to destabilize and destroy the terrorist organization before it grew out of control.
In late September 2014, it was revealed that ISIL planned to kill 10 million Americans.
In December 2014, it was revealed that the US planned to retake the city of Mosul in January 2015, 7 months after the Fall of Mosul in June 2014. Also, from December 17–22, the Kurds launched a massive offensive, breaking the Siege of Mount Sinjar and effectively retaking most of the villages in the Sinjar region, as well as pushing into the city of Sinjar itself.
On January 21, 2015, the planned Liberation of Mosul finally began, with the Kurdish Peshmerga retaking some nearby villages, cutting off of key supply route to Mosul, and opening up three fronts to the northwest of the city itself. Over 200 ISIL militants were killed on the first day of the Kurdish offensive. On February 4, 2015, Jordan joined the intervention in Iraq, launching a massive airstrike campaign in Mosul, in retaliation against ISIL's brutal killing of Jordanian pilot Muath al-Kasasbeh. The airstrikes killed 55 ISIL militants, including the chief ISIL senior commander in Mosul, who was known as the "Prince of Nineveh."
On February 1, 2015, Iraq's Prime Minister declared that the War on ISIL was effectively "World War III", due to ISIL's declaration of a Worldwide Caliphate, its aims to conquer the world, and its success in spreading the conflict to multiple countries outside of the Levant region.
On 4 February 2015, Jordan began launching airstrikes on ISIL positions in Iraq, in retaliation for ISIL's brutal killing of Jordanian pilot Muath al-Kasasbeh. The airstrikes killed 55 ISIL militants in Mosul, including a senior ISIL commander known as the "Prince of Nineveh."
On 5 February 2015, Jordan elevated its role in the US-led Coalition in Syria, launching one of the largest airstrike campaigns since early January 2015, targeting ISIL militants near Ar-Raqqah, the de facto ISIL capital, inflicting an unknown number of casualties and damaging ISIL facilities. This was done in retaliation against ISIL's brutal murder of Muath al-Kasasbeh.
After ISIL killed 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians in Libya, Egypt began conducting airstrikes on ISIL targets in Libya on 16 February 2015, killing a total of 64 ISIL militants (50 in Derna) by the end of that day. Warplanes acting under orders from the "official" Libyan government also struck targets in Derna, reportedly in coordination with Egypt's airstrikes. A Libyan official stated that more joint airstrikes would follow. The airstrikes ended on February 18, with Egypt seeking more support from the US-led Coalition and the Arab World. The US and Italy also began conducting surveillance flights over Libya, due to concerns of further ISIL expansion.
On March 1, 2015, Iraqi Army forces and Shi'ite militias launched the Salahuddin offensive to liberate the Saladin Governorate from ISIL occupation. On the next day, 30,000 Iraqi Army soldiers, Sunni fighters, ad Shi'ite militiamen launched the Second Battle of Tikrit (March–April 2015), to recapture the city of Tikrit, the provincial capital of Salahuddin that was being held by 13,000 ISIL militants. On April 17, 2015, the battle finally ended in a decisive anti-ISIL victory.
On March 19, 2015, the 4 concurrent insurgencies in Yemen (the al-Qaeda, Houthi, Southern Movement, and ISIL insurgencies) all merged into a single, full-blown conflict, the Yemeni Civil War. On March 25, 2015, after Houthi and Saleh loyalist forces pushed Hadi's Yemeni forces to the critical city of Aden, Saudi Arabia decided to lead the Gulf Cooperation Council and other Arab states in a military intervention against the Houthi forces. On April 1, 2015, the Southern Movement, whose territory was reduced to merely the Yemeni city of Ataq, decided to join forces with Hadi's internationally-recognized government, against the other warring factions. Ataq was captured by the Houthis on April 9. al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) decided to take advantage of the chaos, launching an offensive in the northern part of Yemen and the southeastern coastal region, initially capturing the city of Al Mukalla on April 2, only to lose half of the city to local Yemeni tribes on April 7, with the battle continuing afterwards. However, al-Qaeda eventually managed to capture the city on April 16. However, al-Qaeda also lost most of the territory it held in Yemen's southwestern region.
On April 8, 2015, the Iraqi Army and 10,000 Sunni tribal fighters launched the Anbar offensive (2015) to retake the Anbar Governorate. In response, ISIL executed 300 people and launched its own counter-offensive in kind, resulting in fierce clashes around Ramadi.
- Also see Operation Inherent Resolve, Fall of Mosul, 2014 Eastern Syria offensive, Siege of Deir ez-Zor (2014–17), Siege of Kobanî, Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant occupation of Derna, Fall of Nofaliya (2015), Al-Hasakah offensive (February–March 2015), Battle of Baiji (2014–15), Second Battle of Tikrit (March–April 2015), Battle of Sarrin (June–July 2015), Second Battle of Idlib, Battle of Yarmouk Camp (2015), Qalamoun offensive (May 2015), Palmyra offensive (May 2015), Battle of Ramadi (2015–16), Al-Hawl offensive, Al-Shaddadi offensive (2016), Siege of Fallujah (2016), Mosul offensive (2016), Third Battle of Fallujah, Battle of Sirte (2016), Manbij offensive (2016), Battle of al-Bab, Battle of Mosul (2016–2017), Raqqa campaign (2016–2017), Palmyra offensive (2017), Southern Syrian Desert campaign (December 2016–April 2017), Central Syria campaign (2017), 2017 Mayadin offensive, Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant in Libya, Military of ISIL, Timeline of ISIL related events, List of wars and battles involving ISIL, Second Iraqi War, Syrian Civil War, Spillover of the Syrian Civil War, Turkish military intervention in Syria, Lebanese Civil War, Libyan Civil War (2014–present), Sinai insurgency, Boko Haram insurgency, and War on Terror for more information and ISIL military campaigns and Counter-ISIL operations, as well as other related conflicts. LightandDark2000 🌀 (talk) 21:50, 31 December 2014 (UTC)
- Alternate OIR airstrike log site (site navigation required)
- CJTF–OIR airstrike log on Facebook
- Airstrike log for Day 1 of "Operation Free Sinjar" (Nov. 2015)
- ISIL leadership chart
- ISIL frontline maps (Iraq and Syria)
- Siege of Kobanî frontline maps (Part 1: ISIL offensive)
- Siege of Kobanî frontline maps (Part 2: YPG and FSA counter-offensive)
- Khabur Valley Battle frontline maps (part of the Al-Hasakah offensive)
- Map of the current military situation in Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon
- Map of the current military situation in Libya
- Map of the current military situation in Nigeria
- Map of the current military situation in Sinai
- Map of the current military situation in Yemen
- Map of the current military situation in Afghanistan
- Deputy Emir takes over for al-Baghdadi
- Syrian Kurds plan Northern Syria offensive (2016)
- War in the Levant territorial control animation video (March 15, 2011 – August 15, 2015: Exact control is approximated.)
Recent & Upcoming Astronomical EventsEdit
The events of the rare 2014–2015 Blood Moon Tetrad are featured below. (See List of 21st-century lunar eclipses and List of solar eclipses in the 21st century for more info). Also included are other spectacular astronomical events that will be taking place in the meantime. The dates and times are listed for the Pacific Time Zone, when applicable. Dates:
2014–2015 Lunar Tetrad
- Tuesday, April 15, 2014
- Wednesday, October 8, 2014
- Saturday, April 4, 2015 - The shortest Total Lunar Eclipse since 1529!
- Monday, September 28, 2015 - A rare Blood Supermoon. The next Lunar Tetrad will be in 2032–33, beginning in April 2032
- Tuesday, April 29, 2014 - Rare Annular Solar Eclipse
- Thursday, October 23, 2014 - Partial Solar Eclipse
- Friday, March 20, 2015 - Total Solar Eclipse
- Sunday, September 13, 2015 - Partial Solar Eclipse
- August, 21, 2017 - Total Solar Eclipse - The total eclipse was visible in a path of land extending from Salem, Oregon, to Grand Teton National Park, all the way to South Carolina. It was the first total eclipse visible in mainland America in almost 100 years.
Supermoon Triad of Summer 2014
- Supermoon of July 13, 2014 - A Golden Supermoon
- Supermoon of August 10, 2014 - The largest Supermoon in the unusual triad of Supermoons in 2014
- Supermoon of September 9, 2014 - The last of the Supermoons in 2014
Jupiter and Venus Conjunction Tetrad (2014–2016)!!!
- August 18, 2014 - Full conjunction of Jupiter and Venus, distance of 1/6th Degree!!
- June 30, 2015 - Full conjunction of Jupiter and Venus, distance of 1/3rd Degree!!! (The planets will remain as close as 2 Degrees until July 4th. Best dates for viewing are June 30–July 1.)
- October 26, 2015 - Partial conjunction of Jupiter and Venus, distance of 1 Degree
- August 27, 2016 - Full conjunction of Jupiter and Venus, distance of only 0.04 Degrees (or 1/24th of a Degree)!!! The next Major Conjunction won't happen until November 22, 2065.
- Comet 67P - Peaked in brightness on the night of October 5, 2016; may have experienced a break-up in late 2015.
- Comet Catalina - Visible from December 2015 to January 2016. The comet made its closest approach to Earth on January 17, 2016. Afterwards, the comet will leave the Solar System and may never return again.
- Comet 209P/LINEAR - Visible during March 2016. The comet made its closest approach on March 21, 2016. It is unknown when this comet will return.
- Blood Moon of February 22, 2014 - An extremely rare Lunar Eclipse-like event in Southern California, during a large waning moon.
- Blood Moon of July 29, 2014 - An extremely rare Lunar Eclipse-like event in Southern California, during a thin waxing moon.
- Strawberry Moon on June 21, 2016. It was the first one since 1948.
- Black Moon on September 30, 2016. "Black Moons" are the 2nd New Moons in a month, and they normally occur about every 32 months (about every 2.5 years).
- Extra Large Supermoon on November 14, 2016. This was the largest Supermoon since 1948, and the next Supermoon this size will occur on November 25, 2034.
Major Celestial Events
- Sagittarius A*, the Milky Way's central Supermassive black hole, began to absorb a large stellar cloud in January 2014, causing it to "activate" and release larger bursts of radiation for the first time in 10,000 years.
Upcoming Jupiter and Venus Conjunctions
- February 11, 2021 - Conjunction of Jupiter and Venus, distance of nearly 1/4th Degree.
- April 30, 2022 - Full Conjunction of Jupiter and Venus, distance of about 1/7th Degree!!
- March 2, 2023 - Partial Jupiter-Venus Conjunction, distance of about 1/3rd Degree. Also see this article.
- May 23, 2024 - Full Conjunction of Jupiter and Venus, distance of 1/9th Degree!! However, this conjunction will not be observable.
- August 12, 2025 - Partial Jupiter-Venus Conjunction, distance of nearly 1/2 Degree.
- August 25, 2027 - Partial Jupiter-Venus Conjunction, distance about 1/3rd Degree.
- November 20, 2030 - Partial Jupiter-Venus Conjunction, distance of nearly 1/3rd Degree.
- February 6, 2032 - Conjunction of Jupiter and Venus, distance of 1/5th Degree!!
- February 22, 2034 - Partial Jupiter-Venus Conjunction, distance of about 1/3rd Degree.
- May 17, 2035 - Partial Jupiter-Venus Conjunction, distance of about 1/3rd Degree.
- June 3, 2036 - Partial Jupiter-Venus Conjunction, distance of nearly 1/3rd Degree. This conjunction will not be observable.
- August 22, 2038 - Conjunction of Jupiter and Venus, distance of about 1/5th Degree!
- November 2, 2039 - Full Conjunction of Jupiter and Venus, distance of about 1/7th Degree!!!
- September 1, 2040 - Full Conjunction of Jupiter and Venus, distance of 1/9th Degree!!!
- November 17, 2041 - Full Conjunction of Jupiter and Venus, distance of about 1/12th Degree!!! However, this conjunction will not be observable from Western North America.
- February 16, 2045 - Partial Jupiter-Venus Conjunction, distance of about 1/3rd Degree. However, this conjunction will not be observable.
- May 7, 2046 - Partial Jupiter-Venus Conjunction, distance of nearly 1/3rd Degree.
- March 8, 2047 - Partial Jupiter-Venus Conjunction, distance of about 3/5ths of a Degree.
- May 28, 2048 - Partial Jupiter-Venus Conjunction, distance of about 1/4th Degree. This conjunction will not be observable.
- August 17, 2049 - Partial Jupiter-Venus Conjunction, distance of 1/3rd Degree.
- November 22, 2065 - Major Jupiter-Venus Conjunction, distance comparable to the Major Conjunction on August 27, 2016!!! Further details will be posted when available.
Meteor Showers in 2018
- Quadrantids - January 2–3, 2018, peaking sharply during the early morning of January 3.
- Lyrids - April 21–23, peaking from April 21–22. The visibility of this meteor shower was greatly diminished by the light from the moon.
- Eta Aquariids - May 5–6, peaking just after midnight on May 6.
- Southern Delta Aquariids - July 28–30, peaking during the early morning of July 30.
- Perseids - August 11–13, 2018, peaking around August 12–13. (There was a Perseids outburst on the night of August 11–12, 2016, with up to 200 meteors per hour.)
- Orionids - October 21–22, peaking during the early morning hours of October 22.
- Taurids (Halloween Fireballs) - November 4–18, peaking just after midnight on November 12. A Taurids outburst is expected in November 2019.
- Leonids - November 17–18, peaking during the early morning hours of November 18. Next meteor storm is in c. November 2031–2034.
- Geminids - December 12–14, the most spectacular meteor shower of the year. It peaks before dawn, on December 14. Possible meteor storm in December 2017 and 2018.
- Remnants of Comet PanSTARRS C/2017 S3 (the green "Incredible Hulk" comet) will pass by the Earth on August 7–8, 2018.
- Halley's Comet will return on July 28, 2061.
- A new Boom Star, generated by 2 colliding stars about 1,795 years ago, will become visible in 2022. It will be the brightest star in the night sky for about 6 months.
Did you know...
- The Universe is approximately 94 billion light-years across in diameter.
- The Universe is currently expanding at a rate about 6.643 times faster than the speed of light. This means that the edge of the Universe itself is expanding at about 3.32 times faster than the speed of light. Also, despite the Universe' accelerating expansion rate, the expansion is actually decreasing in terms of the ratio of volume vs. the amount of expansion.
- Literal blue moons actually do occur. They are extremely rare, and it only happens during volcanic eruptions or large wildfires.
- Yellowstone's magma chamber is actually 2.5 times larger than scientists have originally thought. That makes Yellowstone's magma chamber about the same size it was during its last major eruption around 640,000 years ago.
- Scientists discovered the existence of Quadruple helix DNA on March 20, 2013.
- Black holes actually have a limit on how large they could become (theoretically about 50 billion solar masses at this time).
- The Quasar APM 08279+5255 is currently the largest source of water known, with the galaxy containing 100 trillion times the water found in all of Earth's oceans! The central black hole itself has a mass of 23 billion Suns.
- The largest black hole known is the Quasar S5 0014+81, which has a mass of 40 billion solar masses, about 10,000 times more massive than the Milky Way's central black hole. It also has an event horizon with a diameter of 240 billion kilometers (1,600 AU), about 6.3 times the diameter of our Solar System's Heliosheath!!
- Black holes eventually evaporate into planck-sized objects once they are no longer able to absorb any new material. When this happens, the black hole releases a large amount of energy in an explosion.
- Continent-size hurricanes, known as Hypercanes used to ravage the Earth (especially during the Paleocene Epoch). Those storms had winds at 500 mph, a central minimum pressure of around 700 millibars (21 inHg), and lasted for weeks on average. In fact, many cave systems and canyons exist today because of the erosion caused by these Hypercanes.
- California is currently overdue for a Megastorm. If such a storm occurs, much of Central Valley will be submerged under 10 feet of water, and the event will result in at least $750 billion (2011 USD) in damages.
- San Diego is actually overdue for a hurricane. Southern California actually has a history of being directly impacted by Tropical cyclones and hurricane-remnants, but it has been over 150 years since Southern California has actually been directly impacted by a hurricane.
- The United States is currently $19.428 Trillion (2016 USD) in debt, despite what politicians say. About $6.324 trillion dollars of that debt belongs to foreign countries, of which $1.181 trillion belongs to China. This is actually the worst period of national debt America has ever seen in its entire history.
- Wikipedia is actually more reliable than most people believe. In fact, Wikipedia is one of the fastest-growing encyclopedias, with a higher correction rate than many other online encyclopedias. Despite the large amount of vandalism in many different areas, these are handled through administrative actions involving blocks.
- The United States has at least 400 Neo-Nazis. (Yes, sadly, there are Nazis in the United States) As a matter of fact, after the failure of disciplinary action for many of the "lesser" Nazis during the Nuremberg trials, most of them went on to found various Neo-Nazi movements. Neo-Nazis in America have also founded their own institute, which exists even today and continues to deny the Holocaust. Additionally, despite the differences between the views of the various Neo-Nazi factions, most of the hardcore groups plan to: 1. Gain power in Germany and acquire Nuclear weapons. 2.) Use their new nuclear weapons to force the world to surrender and create a global Fourth Reich. 3.) Complete the elimination of all "inferior races" (well, you already know who the Nazis are going to target). 4.) Genetically engineer future "Aryan" generations into "perfect Superhumans" capable of unimaginable tasks. And finally, colonizing planets in the entire Milky Way Galaxy with their "Super-Aryans" to create a Galactic Reich.
- American pharmaceuticals have a rather nasty habit of blowing up the prices of medical drugs by anywhere from ten times, to thousands of times, despite the fact that there is no economic or cost-related reasons for doing so. This has led to a domino effect in which millions of Americans have ended up falling into bankruptcy, suffering worsening medical problems (due to the inability to purchase their drugs), giving up college educations and other goals, among other life crises. This is also a major factor that is severely straining the U.S. healthcare industry. Despite the repeated scandals and bursts of outrage in the public, the vast majority of major pharmaceuticals have refused to change their practices, even stealthily continuing to jack up costs in the face of U.S. President Donald Trump's demands for lower drug prices.
- Genetic engineering can actually cure cancer and other genetic diseases once and for all. The problem is, the treatments haven't been completely perfected for all of the diseases (even though cancer treatments in this field have almost been nailed), and there is still quite a lot of opposition in varying places to this kind of technology.
- Prions are misfolded proteins that actually cause any proteins they come into contact with to become new prions. Mad Cow Disease is actually caused by a prion. Prions cause the rapid degeneration of nervous tissue due to cellular destruction, until death occurs. Due to their small size, the body has no immune response to it, but scientists are currently working on a treatment to eliminate prions. Since the destruction prions cause start out slow, no symptoms are visible for the first several years, but by the time symptoms can be identified, it is already too late for the patient. For reasons scientists still do not understand, all known prions only target Nervous Cells.
- HIV started out as SIV, which only infected monkeys, until it jumped over into humans during the early 1900s and mutated into HIV. Today, HIV is causing a global pandemic.
- Allergies and other autoimmune diseases cannot be transmitted to another person (except through genetic inheritance from parents to their children). This is because such diseases are genetic diseases meaning that they are not contagious because it is impossible for a person to acquire another person's genetic disease through normal means (unless the affected person somehow inserts their disease-causing gene into the other person's entire genome, which is impossible). Additionally, most people in the United States have some form of allergies. There is no cure at present for allergies or any autoimmune diseases; only drugs (and herbs) are available, which treat the symptoms of the diseases.
- Many geniuses and inventors had some kind of mental disability (including Autism), or displayed erratic behavior. This includes many famous people who we recognize today, including Albert Einstein.
- Contrary to popular belief, many kids in the younger generations of Americans are actually becoming shorter, most notably for guys.
- Certain drugs and vaccinations had toxic chemicals that eventually lead to cancer and/or Alzheimers, following repeated exposure.
- Many food companies/restaurants use MSG as a flavor enhancer to open up your appetite, without ever telling you that it's there (including ingredient lists on food products). Despite this, studies have shown that continued exposure to MSG leads to cancer and brain damage.
- Superstring theory has been the only possible candidate so far for a Theory of everything. String Theory, if proven, would effectively unite General relativity and Quantum mechanics, the 2 major fields encompassing all of the laws of physics. String Theory would also bridge the gap between Gravity and the other 3 Fundamental Forces, in addition to explaining its behavior. Although the M-theory (the most likely candidate for String Theory) requires 11 dimensions to work, it is most likely that we don't see the other 8 dimensions (including Time) because we are simply unable to perceive anything beyond three dimensions. Thus, an 11-dimensional object would appear 3D to us.
- There are many scientific and mathematical anomalies that scientists currently are unable to explain.
- UY Scuti, the largest known star (at 1,708 Solar Radii), would extent beyond the orbit of Saturn if it was placed in the Sun's position. It is also not the most massive star.
- R136a1, the most massive star known, is a Wolf–Rayet Blue Hypergiant with an estimated mass of 265 Suns. Tt is also the most luminous star known, at 8,700,000 times the luminosity of the Sun.
- Quadruple Rainbows can form under extremely rare conditions. Rainbow clouds are also a rarity, as are clouds in the shape of Double Helixes (such as the cloud structure in Typhoon Tip's eye while it was at peak intensity).
- Fire tornadoes (also known as Firenadoes) actually form under extreme conditions present only in powerful wildfires.
- Contrary to the popular (and ridiculous) assumption of some people, al-Qaeda is actually active and very much alive. Although its leadership has been driven into hiding, the current leader, Ayman al-Zawahiri, has ordered his subordinates to launch an attack on America. Their possible targets include Los Angeles, among other major U.S. cities. Their attacks were planned to avenge the death of their former leader, Osama bin Laden. In addition, al-Qaeda's Syrian branch, Tahrir al-Sham (formerly known as the al-Nusra Front) has become the most powerful anti-Assad fighting force in Syria.
- We (Americans) actually helped the Taliban rise to power when the U.S. Government send aid to Islamic resistance groups to help topple Afghanistan's Communist regime. As such, the United States does have a responsibility to make sure that the Taliban goes down and stays down.
- Unlike what most people believe, everyone is constantly being surveyed by the government in public, no matter where they go (specifically, the governments of developed countries). Soon, with the new development of advanced drones, this surveillance may eventually intrude into the private lives of citizens without their knowing or consent.
- Studies have proven that billions of humans could survive a Nuclear war. People will survive, even if some countries do not.
- Russia has more nuclear missiles (as well as much more powerful ones) than the United States. Even though the United States has more allies (and more nuclear powers on their side), Russia still has the most powerful nukes, as of now.
- Most people reject things/people that "stand out" by habit, even if they refuse to acknowledge it. They also snub and shun people/groups who do things differently, even to an alarming degree (including abuse of power in the workplace). Additionally, most people give in to social conformity in order to "blend in", and they are also heavily addicted to electronics because they refuse to take their time off such devices and try to spend their time building real social relationships. As a result, modern generations are becoming more ignorant and socially deficient. There is psychological evidence backing the existence of this phenomenon; unfortunately, it stifles diversity and social/technological advancements.
- Yellowstone actually experienced a smaller eruption about 174,000 years ago. That eruption generated the West Thumb portion of Yellowstone Lake.
- Both Russia and the United States have developed laser defenses against potential nuclear attacks. Conventional laser weapons actually aren't all that far off.
- In the past, Quasars used to be bunched up close together. A recent discovery in January 2007 found a Quasar Triplet near the visible edge of the Universe.
- Scientists were recently able to map the Gravitational shockwaves of the universe. This could also be proof of the existence of Gravitons, the yet undiscovered particles responsible for Gravity.
- On September 5, 2013, scientists discovered that Tamu Massif was actually the single largest volcano on Earth. It is about 14,620 feet high from its base, and 120,000 square miles across (around the size of New Mexico). The volcano is approximately 1,000 miles east of Japan. The volcano is also so large, its size rivals that of Olympus Mons.
- In late March 2014, scientists discovered 10199 Chariklo, the first known asteroid to have rings.
- IC 1101 is the largest known galaxy in existence. It is a supergiant Elliptical galaxy at the heart of the Abell 2029 Galaxy cluster. It is about 1.07 billion light-years away, in the constellation of Virgo. IC 1101 is an Elliptical Lenticular Galaxy that measures 2.8 million light-years across. The second-largest galaxy, NGC 262 (an unusually large Spiral Galaxy, measures about 2.6 million light-years across.
- In April 2014, scientists discovered the largest meteor impact ever known on the Earth, near the Barberton greenstone belt. The asteroid was approximately 5 times larger than the one responsible for the Chicxulub crater, around 23 miles (47 km) wide in diameter. The crater caused by the Barberton asteroid is estimated to be approximately 297 miles (487 km) across in diameter, though subsequent erosion and tectonic activity have largely erased the crater itself.
- The Hercules–Corona Borealis Great Wall is the largest observable object in the Universe! It is a galaxy filament that measures approximately 10 billion light-years across!
- There is currently an effective treatment for HIV. It's a drug named Truvada, which prevents the HIV virus from replicating, effectively curbing viral growth and allowing the human immune system to destroy the virus before it is able to reproduce. The only problem is that most people at risk/infected are not taking this drug (and it is also quite expensive).
- That ZMapp is one of the few possible effective treatments for the 2014 Ebola virus. ZMapp successfully saved the lives of 2 missionaries infected with Ebola in West Africa in June 2014, when they decided to try out the drug as an experimental trial; however, the drug is still experiment and has yet to be widely tested by major companies.
- In 2014, scientists discovered that the Transition Zone in the Earth's mantle contains 3 times the amount of water present in all of the Earth's oceans, at a depth between 410 and 660 kilometers (255 to 410 miles). This water is contained within a type of blue colored rock called ringwoodite, which is a type of olivine. This subterranean source of water is where the Earth's oceans actually came from. The rare Blue diamonds also form around this level, at a depth of about 660 kilometers (410 miles) beneath the surface of the Earth.
- That the largest known diamond in the universe is actually the partially-crystallized core of the white dwarf BPM 37093, also nicknamed "Diamond Lucy". The white dwarf has a diameter of 2,500-mile (4,000 km), and about 90% of its carbon core is estimated to have already crystallized. Scientists believe that this kind of crystallization also happens in the cores of other white dwarfs, meaning that gigantic diamonds are probably a common occurrence in the universe.
- On the gas giant HAT-P-7b, it rains rubies and sapphires. Additionally, it rains solid diamonds on Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune.
- That ASASSN-15lh is the most luminous Hypernova ever spotted by astronomers. It was first spotted in May 2015, shining 570 times brighter than the Sun, and 20 times brighter than the total light emitted by the Milky Way, though it was in another galaxy. If this hypernova had exploded in the Milky Way Galaxy, it would have outshone the full moon in the night sky.
- Great Britain used to be connected to France via a large land bridge, thousands of years ago, until the land bridge was destroyed by megafloods that came from the seawater that was previously held back by the land bridge. (The very first geological Brexit. :))
- On Sunday, April 8, 2012, a meteorite exploded over Sutter's Mill, generating loud sonic booms and a bright flash of light across much of California and Nevada.
- The supernova star iPTF14hls has repeatedly defied death. This star went supernova over 60 years ago, in 1954, before going supernova again with even greater intensity in 2014. As of 2017, the star has still been exploding (for over 3 years now), and is still in the process of undergoing a supernova. The supernova star iPTF14hls has generated some of the most unusual supernovae ever observed.Cite error: The
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4. The full track of Cyclone Katrina–Victor–Cindy, the longest-lived tropical cyclone ever recorded in the Southern Hemisphere, from December 30, 1997 to February 19, 1998.
5. Satellite image of the largest wildfires burning in San Diego County, on May 15, 2014.
6. An extratropical cyclone over the Central United States, which would later transition into Tropical Storm Sean (2011). The system had previously made landfall in Southern California as an extratropical cyclone on Sunday, October 30, 2011.
8. An image of a Quadruple Helix DNA strand, which is only present in the non-gene part of DNA strands. Quadruple helix DNA actually stabilizes the ends of chromosome strands. It was not discovered until January 20, 2013.
10. A rare rainbow cloud spotted above Boynton Beach in Florida, on July 31, 2012.
11. An image of a double circular rainbow (a faint outer rainbow can be seen outside of the primary ring).
12. An image of a fire tornado, which only occurs under extreme conditions in large wildfires.
14. A map of the flood areas of the 1861–1862 California Megastorm. California is currently overdue for another ARkStorm, and should another one hit, the same areas are expected to be flooded, with severe consequences for the entire United States worse than those of California's long-overdue major earthquake.
15. Mount St. Helens' new spine lava dome, during its 2004–2008 Eruption, on May 4, 2006. From March 2005 to January 2008, the volcano extruded a solid slab of rock, only for it to collapse subsequently multiple times, leading to an increase in the size of its lava dome. By the end of January 2008, volcanic activity had tapered off and the eruption ended.
17. Aerial photograph of Mount Kilimanjaro on January 30, 2014.
18. Aerial photograph of Mount Fuji on December 3, 2013.
19. Close-up view of the Hope Diamond, a navy-blue diamond.
20. A picture of some Diatoms, microscope creatures made of glass.
21. Image of a Rainbow Cloud band, or Fire Rainbow, in San Diego County, on Sunday, June 1, 2014. The image was taken by LightandDark2000.
24. A map of the shockwaves left behind by Gravitational Waves early during the formation of the Universe. The Gravitational Waves are actually shockwaves in the Space-time fabric of the Universe. This Cosmic gravitational wave background was discovered by scientists on March 17, 2014.
27. A computer-generated image of the Milky Way Galaxy, using advanced modern technology, and based on astronomers' knowledge of our galaxy's layout.
28. A Hubble image of the Andromeda Galaxy.
34. Satellite image of Olympus Mons, the largest volcano in the Solar System.
36. Halley's Comet in March 1986.
37. Comet Hale–Bopp in April 1997, shortly after perihelion.
39. Eta Carinae, a blue supergiant, in the process of shedding its outer layers. Eta Carinae is expected to go Hypernova within the next 1,000 years, with a pretty good chance within this century. If it goes Hypernova, it will outshine all of the stars in the galaxy (minus the Sun) in the night sky for some time.
41. A composite image of Kepler's Supernova (Supernova 1604).
42. Composite image of Supernova SN 1987A.
43. Hubble Space Telescope image of the Ring Nebula.
45. A composite image of the Cartwheel Galaxy.
48. Image of the Earth eclipsing the Sun, as seen from the Moon, during the Apollo 12 mission in November 1969.
49. A Leonid meteor during the height of the Leonid Meteor Shower, on November 17, 2009.
50. A close-up image of what a stage of the Andromeda–Milky Way collision may look like in the future.
52. NASA satellite image of the smoke from the October 2007 California firestorm, on Monday, October 22, 2007, near the height of the wildfire spread.
54. Image of the One World Trade Center tower in 2014, which is one of the replacements for the Twin Towers in the World Trade Center, following the 9/11 terrorist attacks.