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Paladin

Will the recession give us clearer skies?

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Here's the theory. Shoot it down if you wish.

Even relatively clear night skies appear to have a thin layer of high altitude cloud obscuring our vision. On one day last week, I watched as five separate aircraft vapour trails fused in to one thin cloud.

Of course, I cannot claim to be the first to notice this phenomenon, which seems to have become more prevalent with cheaper air travel that we all enjoy.

One of the effects of the economic downturn will probably be less foreign travel as we tighten our belts. Result; clearer skies.

Just a thought.

Paul

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An interesting thought. One thing that is immediately and starkly apparent in Oz skies around Brisbane is that there are no vapour trails. It must have looked like that in UK about 50 years ago, the sky is beautifully clear. The difference it makes is amazing, both to nightime and daytime clarity.

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Apparently the skies were substantially clearer, in terms of contrails, in the few days after 9/11 when all air travel was banned in the US. Whether it was noticeable to people on the ground or not I don't know but scientists reckon it allowed considerably more sunlight/heat through to the ground.

James

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Yep, I guess that should be true. I live next to Coventry airport and also on the flight path from Birmingham airport. There are ALWAYS vapour trails here, and very often they link up to form long clouds. They dont show on satellite pics, but even what are supposed to be perfectly clear nights are often spoilt by them :hello2:

Mind you, I went down to pick something up from Modern Astronomy the other sunday, and passed Heathrow on the way. At one point we could see 5 large planes in the air, including two that seemed to be virtually on top of each other. My son took this picture through the sunroof just as the uppermost one veered sharply to starboard.

10331_normal.jpeg

(click to enlarge)

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I live on one of the major flight paths into / out of the Uk towards Europe , its well know in Astro circles of the effect of Con trails :hello2:

On another matter , the planes really mess up your imaging subs when you keep getting the plane lights trailling through the image.

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Apparently the skies were substantially clearer, in terms of contrails, in the few days after 9/11 when all air travel was banned in the US. Whether it was noticeable to people on the ground or not I don't know but scientists reckon it allowed considerably more sunlight/heat through to the ground.

James

Indeed they did. The differance in temperature was significant, leading to some suggesting that one way to help combat global warming might be to put giant reflectors in the sky to bounce the sun's rays back into space. They have also suggested that the ice-caps perform a similar task - the white colouration acting as a reflector, so, perhaps we should just paint all that horrid, black tarmac and those lumps of concrete in white to help nature?!

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Well, dont look at me, I'm already doing my bit with shiny reflective surfaces, just ask my barber........

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LOL :hello2: Perhaps everyone needs to leave their scopes pointing skywards during the day to bounce some light back up?!

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less folk travelling, means more unemployment for cabin crew and pilots.

So i fail to see that a better subframe is worth higher unemployment.

Also, presumably you had some choice as to where you live (you werent forced by gun to live where you do), yet you chose to live next to an airport or under a flight path. And you complain about it too!

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Well, that's the argument put forward by Michael Leary, Ryanair boss.. don't live near an airport or under a flight path.. unfortunately, flight paths now criss-cross most of the South-East of England, are getting denser and lower. So it's not a matter of choosing to live near an airport, it's now getting impossible to avoid the effects.

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yes, the number of routes is increasing...

fortunately i only see a few, and with a small ccd, we dont see a large patch of sky.

i can imagine that the south of england is pretty bad for airways

paul

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At my home in NZ is really unusual to see a contrail, so much so my kids were really perplexed when they saw lots of "line clouds" when we got here.

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The way its going the recession will be giving me more observing time if nothing else. I got put on short hours last week (no financial hit yet though). :hello2:

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The Contrails can be very frustrating some days...as they just smear and dont clear under certain conditions...

Not as bad here as the SE but sit under some of the lanes for the Transatlantic Flights....

Triremes .. thats what we need...solve the contrail and un-employment problem in one hit... take a while to get anywhere though...and I baggsy the job as drummer....

Billy...

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Well Easy Jet announced lowered profits, so its in the right direction.

Thomsonfly at the airport next door just pulled out, making 300 or so redundant, including fire crews and ground staff, not so much as a result of recession, but rather competition and unfavourable planning laws.

Paul, you've got that cockyness about your post that upset folks in the past. My house choice was by what I could afford. The whole point is, and you appeared to have missed/overlooked it, is that although I live next door to an airport, and just down the road from a major international airport, neither of which have planes at high enough altitude to leave contrails, the skies are STILL full of them. They aren't caused by air traffic from the two local airports, so must be from airports far away, thus indicating that no matter where you are in the UK, contrails could present a problem.

This pic of the USA indicates the extent, and this was 14 years ago!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Contrails_southeast_lrg.gif

My own personal opinion, like or hate it, is that the sooner there are the minimum amount of planes in the skies, the better off we, and the planet will be. From a short term point of view, the more Britons that take a holiday in Britain, the quicker our economy will recover. Its time to buy British folks! Unemployment is reaching into every field, so to tie that in to a 'subframe' seems almost bizarre, whatever were you thinking! So yes, I'd gladly swap the several million tonnes of pollutants and contrails that regularly belch out of aircraft (both on the ground whilst warming up for 20 mins and whilst airbourne), for clearer darker skies, something every human born should have the natural right to.

There's also the conspiracy theorists with this (and no, I dont follow them)

Loads of contrail/chemtrail stuff on youtube, the one thing they do highlight is the amount of unwanted carp in the air.

Cheers

TJ

Oh, it'd be quieter too.

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I personally think the simple solution to the current problem on the job front is for firms to quit moving their company over to India or China.

I'm amused to find Tesco bleating they are trying to bring together local communities, yet have their financial dept over in India, so much for helping the local communities! All they provide is menial jobs on the cheap, as if we have any choice not to take it, and buy things from all over the world paying pittance to local growers for their produce.

Consumer power is there, yet no one is doing anything.

As for planes, I grew up in a village at the end of the Newcastle Airport runway, it never effected the sky at night, even in the summer. It was cities that provided most of the haze even if they were at a distance. So maybe, the increase of planes in the sky doesn't really do anything to the skies, but the city haze themselves, buildings hold the heat during the day and then release it at night.

Just my two pence worth of inane opinion.

StarLight

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Hello..,

Here's the theory. Shoot it down if you wish.

<snipped>

One of the effects of the economic downturn will probably be less foreign travel as we tighten our belts. Result; clearer skies.

Just a thought.

Paul

Err.., this kinda reads like: "Sorry about your job and that house you lost, but cheer up..., let's all hope for a clear night tonight!"

My $0.02..,

Regards,

astro84

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Astro84

How can anyone misunderstand my post?

I was simply making an observation about the effects of the economic downturn. I certainly don't consider financial ruin to be a good thing. After all, we are all in the same boat, me included.

Therefore, am I right to assume that you think that any sky pollution is good as long as someone is making money because of it? That would certainly be a unique opinion for an amateur astronomer.

Paul

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Astro84

How can anyone misunderstand my post?

I was simply making an observation about the effects of the economic downturn. I certainly don't consider financial ruin to be a good thing. After all, we are all in the same boat, me included.

Therefore, am I right to assume that you think that any sky pollution is good as long as someone is making money because of it? That would certainly be a unique opinion for an amateur astronomer.

Paul

It was just astro84 who misunderstood it, maybe he needs some sleep or something. My opinion is that we won't see a reduction of contrails and pollution in general until we redduce the size of the population as they go hand in hand. 61 million people on an island this size is just ridiculous, i'm not surprised Oz has so little contrails, it's almost the size of North America with a population 1/3 of the UK's, the only real choice is too emigrate.

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I dont think anyone would minimize the importance of the economy. It keeps me awake at night (hmm, is that a bonus for astronomy?) just wondering where the next job is going to come from, and how the staff will be paid. There's hardly a sector which is untouched.

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Hello,

Astro84

How can anyone misunderstand my post?

I was simply making an observation about the effects of the economic downturn. I certainly don't consider financial ruin to be a good thing. After all, we are all in the same boat, me included.

As I said, to me.., that's how your post reads to me.., that's it.

Therefore, am I right to assume that you think that any sky pollution is good as long as someone is making money because of it? That would certainly be a unique opinion for an amateur astronomer.

Paul

You are not correct in the assumtion you have made here.

Regards,

astro84

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Hello,

<snipped>

It was just astro84 who misunderstood it, maybe he needs some sleep or something.

I actually had quite a good rest last night, thanks :hello2:

Regards,

astro84

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Astro

I was simply applying the same logic to your post that you did to mine.

I am reminded of the phrase, "don't shoot the messenger".

Paul

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Come now everyone, I'm sure Paul does not wish for one minute that anyone would lose their job so please, lets keep it friendly eh?

Ta.

Tony..

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