I'd like to lend NASA a word
Weather has again delayed the fourth launch of NASA's super pressure balloon (SPB) from Wanaka in New Zealand. The giant windbag, meant to stay aloft for around 100 days at 33.5 km altitude, has been waiting for the weather to turn in its favour since the beginning of the month. The problem is that even six knots of wind at …
In December last year, someone from our Achieving Excellence department said in an engineering meeting "Going forward, as we cascade into the progression of the next phase of the project..."
What he meant was "Next year."
I've seriously considered a buzz-word bingo board, for any time anyone from that department steps into a real meeting. It would include "sub-team level", "lads", "cascade", "team board", "keep the wolf from the door", "going forward" etc. These are all said, with a straight face, daily. I wish these people would read Dilbert, or watch The Office, just to get an ounce of self awareness. It's embarrassing.
Since us folks in Blighty are heading into a (very windy) late spring, I assume that the antipodean islands are heading into a late autumn...which is a season that is noted for progressively more wind as it shunts into winter.
I assume that there is a good reason for launching at this time, given that a window to launch would be less likely.
You're not too far away.
Most of New Zealand gets gales in the Spring and Autumn, what with being two tiny islands at the bottom of the world's largest ocean.
The difference between New Zild and Britain is that we don't have a continent anywhere close to affect our weather. In fact, if you run a straight line East or West from Wanaka, you won't hit land until you reach South America.
I'm going to assume that NASA is aware of all this and are confident of some calm mornings. They would do the job somewhere else otherwise.
"Since us folks in Blighty are heading into a (very windy) late spring,"
If they'd been anywhere in the north east of England on Tuesday they could have launched without problem. I did a 300 mile round trip and didn't see a single one of the many wind turbines I passed doing any actual work. Not one was turning.
If they really wanted it to get launched without a hitch surely they should just get a small child to hold onto the tether?
Give it 5 mins and it'll be airborne before you know you know it. (usually followed by crying and an explanation of how they should have held onto it better...).
Mines the one with a handful of nappy bags thrust into the pockets.... (which incidentally works wonders as sandwich bags too.. before use natch).
Especially to the cat-herders. I mean, it's bad enough trying to herd 6 (and not highly-successful at that - some of them are not considerate enough to have sufficient vices to exploit..)!
I would image the cats are having a good laugh though. All those sheep to sharpen their claws on..
"Start with a large box and a laser pointer."
Even easier, just set the box in a room the cat aren't in, then say loudly, "Damn cats better keep the hell away from this box!".
Then exit room, close door, count to three, re-enter room.
Some-freakin'-how, the cats are all in the box.
I grew up not far from there, and it touted as one of the best places in the world for gliders, due to the great amount of wind and updrafts created by the surrounding plains and hills.
FYI, it's pronounced 'Wah Nuh Kuh'. I always used to laugh when Yanks say 'Wha Nay Kay'.
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