The Anonymous Widower

‘Staycation Express’ To Return Along Full Length of S & C

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Rail Magazine.

These are the first three paragraphs,

This year’s ‘Staycation Express’ will use a refurbished High Speed Train and run the full length of the Settle-Carlisle Line.

The final plans are being confirmed by Rail Charter Services, which last year used locomotive-hauled trains between Skipton and Appleby. This year, the plan is for the HST to operate the 0930 Appleby-Skipton, 1130 Skipton-Carlisle, 1500 Carlisle-Skipton and 1730 Skipton-Appleby, although the timings are yet to be finalised.

The trains will run daily except for Fridays between mid-July and early September (dates still to be determined).

Full details will be published by Rail Charter Services in April, but after last year’s success a second year of services is not a surprise.

I wouldn’t be surprised to see Locomotive Services Ltd. supplying the rolling stock, as they have recently recreated the Blue Pullman using a redundant InterCity 125.

March 11, 2021 Posted by | Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Long Covid And Coeliac Disease

I recently heard an interview with Adrian Chiles on Radio 5 about the so-called long covid

I am 73 and the more I read about Long Covid, the more I think I had something similar around 1958, when I had just started Minchenden Grammar School, where I missed most of the Spring Term. This was at the time of the 1957-8 flu pandemic., which killed between one and four million people worldwide.

This article on New Decoder is a personal memory of that pandemic, from an experienced journalist called Harvey Morris.

Last night, I was listening to another program about kids with long covid and they seemed to be describing how I felt all those years ago.

In 1997, at the age of fifty, I was diagnosed as a coeliac and have been gluten-free ever since. From friends and acquaintances, who are also coeliac on a long-term gluten-free diet, it appears that none of us have had a serious dose of the covids, including one who works in an office with several cases of Covid-19.

This observation has been backed-up by peer-reviewed research at the University of Padua, who followed a group of coeliacs on a long-term gluten-free diet through the first wave of the pandemic. None caught the virus.

It should also be noted that Joe West at the University of Nottingham, has shown that coeliacs on a long-term gluten-free diet are 25 % less likely to get cancer, so do we have a strong immune system, that gives us this protection against against both cancer and the covids.

Coeliac disease has been called the many-headed hydra by many doctors, so could it be an alligator in the swamp of Covid-19?

Research needs to be done!

But could it be that in 1958, my less than perfect immune system, because I was not diagnosed as a coeliac and was not on a gluten-free diet, had difficulty overcoming the flu at the time?

March 11, 2021 Posted by | Health | , , , , | Leave a comment

Ex-Steelworks To Make Wind Farm Parts In Plan For 6,000 Green Jobs

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on The Times.

This is the introductory paragraph.

The government will invest almost £100 million creating new wind turbine ports in northeast England, with a big renewables company announcing plans to make crucial parts in Teesside.

The two ports will be on Teesside and North Lincolnshire.

The next generation of wind turbines in the North Sea will be very different.

Larger Turbines

They will be larger and the blades will be bigger, so building them close to, where they will be installed is a sensible idea.

We are also very good at aerodynamics in the UK. This is the reason Airbus designs and builds wings in the UK.

Floating Turbines

The next generation of wind farms will be floating, as for some reason, they have a higher capacity factor.

I am personally pleased about this, as it appears they are based on a patented but failed design of floating oil production platform from the 1970s, where I performed the calculations on how to install them.

Some of these floating wind turbines can also be floated into port for major services and upgrades, which probably means we need local manufacturing of as many parts as possible.

Hydrogen Rather Than Electrical Connection

They will also create hydrogen, rather than electricity, by using a combination of wind turbine and hydrogen electrolyser.

As distances between shore and wind farm get longer, it is cheaper to use a gas pipe, rather than a DC electricity link.

Hydrogen can also be stored in worked out gas fields and also brought ashore in redundant pipelines.

The hydrogen electrolysers will probably be built in the world’s largest electrolyser factory in Rotherham, owned by ITM Power; a UK company.

Conclusion

As we are going to build almost 70 GW of offshore wind in the next few years, we’re going to need a turbines and I believe increasingly, they will be built in the UK.

So these two wind ports at Teesside and in Lincolnshire are a good idea.

March 11, 2021 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage, Hydrogen | , | Leave a comment