Sunday, July 24, 2016

Cascade Mountain, Utah County

I hiked Cascade Mountain, one of the seven peaks in Utah County, several weeks ago. Here is a map I gave to a friend...

Monday, July 18, 2016

Utah Lake Algea

Last week, potentially toxic algae in Utah Lake bloomed uncontrollably causing the lake to close. Check out the lake from space...

And this time lapse:

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

I Love Fireworks

I love watching fireworks! Since air quality is an area of interest I had to check the pollution levels around Utah from the last week. Over the last few nights you see a several-hour increase in PM 2.5 which is due to fireworks. There are very high levels in Salt Lake County on the night of the 4th due to the many large firework shows. Several nights before the 4th had high levels from other city and residential fireworks (I imagine the large city firework shows has a bigger impact than residential fireworks, but I wonder if levels have been higher since areal fireworks were legalized a few years ago). Utah County saw the highest levels on the night of July 2nd. This was the night of the Stadium of Fire.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Thunderstorm threat

At my teams softball game I was worried we might get rained on, but instead the sky showed off some really neat clouds. It looked like the thunderstorm was being sheered apart by strong winds aloft.

Some neat mammatus clouds

NASA/OrbitalATK SLS Rocket Booster Test: Promontory Point, Ut

Hundreds of people, including myself and fellow NASA nerdy classmates, gathered at the seemingly desolate Promontory Point in Utah, the location the transcontinental railroad was finished, to watch a rocket! NASA and Orbital ATK tested a booster rocket for the Space Launch System (SLS), the most powerful rocket ever built and designed to carry humans to Mars.

It was a sunny morning with some scattered alto-cumulus that made for a great sunrise.

After picking up the NASA swag (stickers, pens, posters) we met an astronaut, Don Tomas!

The test was delayed an hour due to computer issues. With hundreds of people in the crowd we were anxious to start the countdown...

Then the countdown began...and then ignition, and the cheers erupted! (Video)