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Monthly Archives: October 2015

Incredibly Detailed and Scary Face Painting

This makeup artist is all the scary you need (27 Photos)

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Very Strange Cakes

For your hump day amusement, a bizarre collection of well-crafted yet very strange cakes…

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Cute Dogs for Your Monday Blues…

A late edition, but will hopefully cheer up the rest of your week…

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Falcon Shield launches electronic attacks to take control of drones

Artist's impression. (Credit: Credit Finmeccanica-Selex)

Artist’s impression. (Credit: Credit Finmeccanica-Selex)

A new technology unleashes electronic attacks on enemy drones, enslaving them to its will.

Made by Finmeccanica-Selex ES, the Falcon Shield technology lets the good guys gain control of drones and land them safely.

Related: Anti-drone shoulder rifle lets police take control of UAVs with targeted radio pulses

Recently unveiled, Falcon Shield finds, fixes, tracks, identifies and defeats drones. Mini-drones are becoming a growing security concern, as evidenced by the quadcopter drone that crashed onto the White House grounds earlier this year.

The threat

Small-sized drones are cheap, widely commercially available, simple to assemble and easy to fly. These micro drones can be hard to detect and stop and could be used to attack targets by carrying threats like explosives or chemical and biological weapons.

The Falcon Shield is an adaptable system that can be deployed to protect VIPs. It could also be used to protect military convoys and patrols. Falcon Shield doesn’t need to be at a fixed location, and different versions of the technology can be carried by an individual or a vehicle.

On a much larger scale, Falcon Shield can be used to protect a military base or a skyscraper that acts as headquarters for a big corporation.

Related: The laser cannon that kills drones

Falcon Shield monitors an assigned area to detect potential threats and protect a specified location by going through five stages of engagement.

In the first stage, Falcon Shield locates both the drone threat and the ground station controlling it. The tech then uses this data to guide the next stage. To “fix” the target, radar and electronic monitoring work together with an electro-optical infrared camera.

The camera and radar then track and identify the threat. In the final phase, Falcon Shield focuses on defeating the drone. When Falcon defeats a drone it doesn’t just jam it. It seizes control of the drone.

How the technology takes control of the drones is shrouded in secrecy … but take control it does.  Say a micro drone is targeting a VIP, for example, the good guys can fly it away from the target. They can force it to land at a safe location where a team can investigate and fully neutralize the threat.

Ballet dancer turned defense specialist Allison Barrie has traveled around the world covering the military, terrorism, weapons advancements and life on the front line. You can reach her at wargames@foxnews.com or follow her on Twitter@Allison_Barrie.

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Thanks! Over 1.5 million hits so far this year…

I want to thank everyone.  Earlier in October my humble blog site reached over 1.5 million hits and is close to 1.6 million now.  Thank you all for looking at my blog this year and for enjoying my quirky blend of dogs, cosplay, quantum physics, history, and writing.  It reflects my own warped personality and interests, so it is reassuring to know that over 1.5 million times this year others were interested in the same things.  🙂

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First edition of King James Bible from 1611 found in church cupboard

Rev Jason Bray found the forgotten tome when doing a stock take at St Giles Church, Wrexham

The Rev Dr Jason Bray and the first edition King James Bible

The Rev Dr Jason Bray and the first edition King James Bible Photo: Cascade

A vicar clearing out a cupboard at his church found a forgotten first editionKing James Bible dating back to 1611.

There are believed to be fewer than 200 such Bibles still in existence.

The Rev Dr Jason Bray stumbled upon it as he was taking stock at St Giles Parish Church in Wrexham town centre.

He said: “We basically found it when we were going through the cupboards.

“We didn’t know it was a first edition, but we sent photographs to the National Library of Wales and they confirmed that it was, dating back to 1611.

“It has been authenticated, and as far as we know, has always been here.”

He added: “King James wanted everybody to use the same Bible and have it put in all the churches. What he was trying to do was create some sort of uniformity.”

The Bible is an important find for the church as it is one of just a few copies of the first edition of the authorised Bible, which set guidelines not just for Christian worship in the English language, but also for the English language itself.

It was printed in London by Robert Barker, printers to King James I, who commissioned the Bible’s translation at Hampton Court in 1604.

“We basically found it when we were going through the cupboards.”
Rev Dr Jason Bray

Known as the Authorised Version (AV) of the Bible in English, the King James Bible was the third Bible to be translated into English and officially approved by the Church, putting together a number of translations agreed on by scholars working in Westminster, Oxford and Cambridge.

It went on to become the internationally accepted and authorised version of the Bible in English, although parts of the Bible were first translated into English by William Tyndale and published nearly 100 years earlier.

The St Giles copy is not completely intact, with a frontispiece missing from the Old Testament and some pages missing from the back.

But it is otherwise in good condition and the text is still legible due to the use of woven paper, which has a low acid content.

Rare £10,000 bible discovered in Devon

A similar copy found in Great St Mary’s at Cambridge University in 2011, also a first edition, was valued at several thousand pounds.

Dr Bray, who has been at St Giles Church since April, said he read Alfred Palmer’s The History of the Parish Church of Wrexham and decided to go looking for some of the items mentioned as being in the church’s collection.

He added he was unable to guess at the value of the Bible.

“I have absolutely no idea of its value. I don’t know how many there are in existence and you can buy pages on the internet for about £500 each.

“It’s not absolutely complete, but it’s not far off.”

Dr Bray is now keen to see the church’s first edition given a proper storage and display space.

“We’re keeping it safe at the moment, but we would like to have somewhere to display it – but to do that, we’ll need money.”

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Futuristic warship design takes shape

What will warships look like in three decades? Meet the next-generation HMS Dreadnought.

The British Ministry of Defence and Royal Navy challenged young scientists and engineers to design a future warship and the results may surprise you. Defense procurement specialist Startpoint has released stunning images of what the futuristic ship could look like.

This cutting-edge ship concept has been dubbed Dreadnought 2050 in honor of the 1906 HMS Dreadnought, a Royal Naval battleship that eclipsed all other warships at the time.

Dreadnought 2050, made of futuristic material, features state of the art weapons, command center and more. The ship’s structure is made of ultra-strong acrylic composites that can be turned translucent so that crew can see through it.

This means that from the Ops Room, commanders could see through the hull and watch close-in battles play out.

Weapons

The new Dreadnought would be equipped with a range of state-of-the art weapons like high-velocity torpedoes, speed-of-light weapons and drones constructed on the ship using 3D printers.

The graphene coated acrylic hull would be super strong.

At the bow, Dreadnought 2050 has an electromagnetic railgun that can fire projectiles as far as long-range cruise missiles can go today.

Along the sides of the ship there are missile tubes. These tubes can launch missiles faster than Mach 5 – a hypersonic speed. The futuristic vessel is also equipped with directed energy weapons to thwart incoming threats.

Related: CTruk taps THOR for new military workboats

In the outrigger hulls, there are torpedo tubes that fire supercavitating torpedoes that travel at more than 300 knots.  Supercavitating torpedoes can travel at such whopping speeds because they move through water in a sort of air bubble that reduces drag and friction.

Instead of a standard mast, Dreadnought 2050 has a tethered quadcopter that flies above the ship.

The quadcopter is equipped with multi-spectral sensors that provide critical data. But it is also armed with a laser to take out threats like enemy aircraft, missiles and more.

To provide the significant power these capabilities require, the quadcopter’s tether is made of carbon nanotubes that are cryogenically cooled.

Assault

A floodable dock, or “moon pool,” is incorporated into the design so that amphibious teams like SEALs or Royal Marines can rapidly deploy. The moon pool could also be used to deploy unmanned underwater vehicles on missions such as searching for explosive devices.

Above the dock there is an extendable flight deck and hangar that can be used for a fleet of weaponized drones.

A similarly-sized warship operating today would require about 200 crew, but the innovative warship would require less than half as many personnel. A current Ops Room, for example, could require 25 sailors to run it. Dreadnought 2050’s Ops Room could be run by as few as five Sailors.

Command Table

Dreadnought 2050 features an Ops Room with a 3-D holographic command table. The holographic image can be rotated and commanders can zoom in on specific parts of the battlefield.

From the Ops Room, five or six people can control all operations from the deepest parts of the ocean through to outer space. From underwater and sea surface through to land and air, all areas of operation can be displayed and reviewed. Crew can use smaller holographic pods to manage specific areas of operation.

Real time data can be transmitted including secure voice, video or data to wherever it is needed.

Power

The Dreadnought 2050 warship is powered by a fusion reactor or highly efficient turbines. The turbines drive silent electric motors to water jets.

The graphene coating on the hull helps reduce drag and enhance speed. And the Dreadnought will have a low profile to ensure it is stealthy and hard to detect.

Ballet dancer turned defense specialist Allison Barrie has traveled around the world covering the military, terrorism, weapons advancements and life on the front line. You can reach her at wargames@foxnews.com or follow her on Twitter@Allison_Barrie.

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