England to increase its nuclear weapons stockpile.

ATLANTIC OCEAN (May 9, 2019) An unarmed Trident II D5 missile launches from the Ohio-class ballistic missile submarine USS Rhode Island (SSBN 740) off the coast of Cape Canaveral, Florida, May 9, 2019. The successful launch certified the readiness of the SSBN crew and the operation performance of the submarine’s strategic weapons
system following completion of its engineered refueling overhaul before
returning to operational availability. (U.S. Navy photo by John Kowalski/Released)

In a significant policy shift, England is planning to expand its nuclear weapon stockpile. The current guess from outsiders is they have 190 nuclear weapons. The previously announced goal was to draw down the inventory to 180 or less by the mid-2020s.

Instead they will build up to a stockpile of not more than 260.

Continue reading “England to increase its nuclear weapons stockpile.”

Behold the creativity of cheaters.

Need to fabricate an excuse to bail on your meeting? There’s an app for that. Image courtesy of Adobe Stock.

I am continually amazed at the creativity of cheaters. A few examples in the news recently:

  • Restaurant offering receipts with menu items relabeled as office supplies
  • Generate disruptions to get out of a zoom meeting
  • Fake Covid test results

I mentioned these for the laughter value and more importantly for the educational value.

The stories are amusing. If you work in the finance area or are leading an organization, having an awareness of these schemes might help you recognize one if presented to you.

Your entertainment and anti-fraud training for the day:

Continue reading “Behold the creativity of cheaters.”

US is developing new ICBM and new strategic bomber.

The United States is working on developing a new ICBM to replace the Minuteman III and new Stealth bomber to replace the B-2.

1/15/21 – Air Force Magazine – Second B-21 Under Construction as Bomber Moves Toward First Flight Northrop Grumman is building a second B-21 Raider bomber. The first is expected to roll off the production line early in 2020 and fly sometime the following summer. Goal is for the newest bar to operational in 2026 or maybe 2027.

Cost of the first 100 off the production line is expected to be around $80 billion adjusted to 2016 dollars. That is around $800 million a piece.

Continue reading “US is developing new ICBM and new strategic bomber.”

747s, B-52s, and F-35Cs

747 cargo aircraft taking off from Denver airport on 8-22-20. Photo by James Ulvog.

Background articles on:

  • Jumbo jet that opened up international travel to the masses reaching end of production run
  • Background on why B-52 has been around for 50 years and will still be in service after other heavy bombers have long since retired
  • New F-35C deploying to the fleet

9/8/20 – Wall Street Journal – The Jumbo Jet Was the Pinnacle of Air Luxury – Now It’s Days Are Numbered – Boeing will shut its 747 production line in 2022 when the last of the already ordered freighters is completed. Airbus will close its A380 super jumbo line in 2021 when the last dozen planes are finished. The double-decker A380 was designed as the peer-to-peer competitor to the 747.

Article has lots of fun stats on both planes. I will provide some of the fun detail:

The 747 was the revolutionary jumbo jet. It opened up international travel to the masses. It was a major part of the rapid expansion in air travel.

The 747 debuted in 1969. The A380 in 2000 with first commercial flight in 2007.

747 cargo aircraft taking off from Denver airport. Photo by James Ulvog.

Over 50 years there have been 1,556 747s produced. Forecast for the A380 had been 1,200 planes but only 242 have been delivered.

Seating capacity:

Continue reading “747s, B-52s, and F-35Cs”

Surveillance society, peaceful ocean view edition.

Photo by James Ulvog.

Does that photo seem like it is just a peaceful view of the scenic California coast off Point Loma in California with some cool pelicans gliding by?

Well, that it may be, but there is more to it.

Anytime you are in public, you are probably on camera.

Another view of those pelicans:

Photo by James Ulvog.

Continue reading “Surveillance society, peaceful ocean view edition.”

SpaceX launches another 60 Starlink satellites into orbit, successfully recovers Dragon booster.

Starlink Mission on 3/18/20 by Official SpaceX Photos is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

Missed the live broadcast so watched the archived copy. SpaceX put another 60 Starlink sats into their constellation which will provide worldwide internet access. Link to video of the launch is at the end of this post.

Previous missions lifted 362 satellites, so adding these 60 makes 422 by my count.

This is the fourth flight for the booster and the second flight for one of the fairings.

Continue reading “SpaceX launches another 60 Starlink satellites into orbit, successfully recovers Dragon booster.”

Costs of some big projects.

Artist rendering of a B-21 Raider concept in a hangar at Whiteman, Air Force Base, Missouri, one of the future bases to host the new airframe. (Courtesy photo by Northrop Grumman) (also courtesy of U.S. Air Force). Cost $550M each.

For a few indicators of the cost for some big projects and thus some reference points for big numbers, take a look at the Nuclear Notebook – United States nuclear forces, 2020, published by The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists.

Some projects with their specific costs mentioned in the article:

Continue reading “Costs of some big projects.”

SpaceX launches another 60 Starlink satellites.

Starlink Mission by Official SpaceX Photos is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

SpaceX boosted another 60 satellites into orbit this morning. These will be part of its Starlink system providing high speed internet access to any point on the planet.

Video link to replay of launch is at end of this post.

This is the fourth launch for the Starlink project and increases the sat count to 182. The first launch was a test with only 2 satellites. The other three launches, including the one today, each carried 60.

Continue reading “SpaceX launches another 60 Starlink satellites.”

SpaceX launches 60 more satellites for their Starlink system

Starlink Mission on 11/11/19 by Official SpaceX Photos is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

SpaceX is one of the companies working to get a constellation of sattelites in low-earth orbit which can provide high speed internet access across the planet. Tonight they launched 60 more sats into orbit, bringing their total to about 180.

The video on the launch was incredible. Amazing view from the ground, all the way to main engine cutoff at 50 kilometers altitude.

Continue reading “SpaceX launches 60 more satellites for their Starlink system”

In October 2019 North Dakota continues record setting level of oil production after one month break

Oil pad with four wells; one with pumpjack and three without. Looks like there is room for another six or more wells eventually. Photo by James Ulvog.

Crude oil production hit yet another record level in October at 1,517,796 barrels of oil per day (BOPD) (preliminary). September was not a record at 1,443,980 BOPD (revised). September was only the third highest production.

During 2019, record level of production was hit in October, August, July, June, and January. Record was broken in 2018 during December, October, September, August, July, and May.

Huge amount of room on that site for additional wells. Already have two rows of wells. Photo by James Ulvog.

What does the average daily production trend look like? Check it out:

Continue reading “In October 2019 North Dakota continues record setting level of oil production after one month break”

A sixth branch of the United States military?

Image courtesy of Adobe Stock.

We are about to get a sixth branch of the U.S. military. There are currently five branches:

  • Army
  • Navy
  • Marine Corps
  • Air Force

And most people forget to include the:

  • Coast Guard

The soon to be approved sixth branch?

  • United States Space Force

Yes, the Congress is just about to approve moving space missions out of the Air Force and into a new branch.

10/10/19 – Behind the Black – Congress approves establishment of Space Force Continue reading “A sixth branch of the United States military?”

Where are they now? Minor updates to status and location of Silk Road players.

Image courtesy of Adobe Stock.

Just checked on the status of the players in the Silk Road dark web bazaar.

Updated previous post for the location and release date for Andrew Michael Jones. Release date and location for Gary Davis is now listed. Release date for Carl Mark Force has been shorted one month.

I won’t repost all the details. Check out the status at: