What I learnt This Week – 28 June to 04 July 2020

The more Eagle-eyed reader might spot a difference this week.

Last Week I covered 22nd to 28th June. This week I’m starting on 28 June. I realised that publishing on Sunday was restricting me a little as I was including the day I published. So from now I will cover the previous Sunday to Saturday. That way if I learn something after publishing I don’t need to squeeze it in to Monday…

I’m aware no one reading this would know I had fudged it… but if it troubled me when I realised.

This article won’t double up on anything I learnt on 28th…

You may also have noticed I have dropped the ‘th’ in the date format. I am doing this as I am aware non-native English Speakers sometimes struggle with ‘st’ and ‘nd’. Dates are clear enough without them. I use Month name to avoid International/US date convention confusion.

So, what did I learn in this week? Continue reading

UK Native Horses

Adam_animals-199-9b8573fFrequent readers over the years will know of my interest in Horses. I haven’t ridden for decades but never lost my love for equines.

Watching Countryfile on Sunday 1th May 2020, Adam Henson presented a piece about his Horses and how he uses them to maintain parts of his farm naturally.

Living in Leeds I am lucky enough to have a prestigious Jousting competition nearby each Easter, the Easter Joust at the Royal Armouries. Attending and writing about the Easter Joust brought me to know the amazing Stunt Team Atkinson Action Horses who provide the Horses to Royal Armouries as well as Stunt Riders for a number of shows. TV and Film viewers will have seen the Horses and Riders of Atkinson Action Horses in shows such as Poldark, Victoria and Peaky Blinders.

DylanThere are a number of breeds of horses and each one has it’s own place in culture, be it for work or leisure. Stunt teams such as Atkinsons Action Horses train a variety of horses so that the different roles on screen can correctly be represented.

So, I’ve mentioned Horses used in entertainment, and briefly mentioned labour. But what of Domestic horses? The Horse in the foreground is Dylan is a Dales Pony, a Domestic Breed.

Wild Horses don’t technically exist in the UK, there are several free roaming herds but they are managed and not truly Wild, or even Feral. This sometimes reinforces the thought Horses are not Native.

Horses have been in the UK, and the surrounding Islands for a considerable length of time, there is archaeological evidence of their presence going back to 700,000BC. Continue reading

NASA: New Horizons – Exploring far reaches of the Solar System -Ultima Thule

UT artimpression.jpg

Artistic Impression

roughly 149 Million Kilometers from the Sun.

roughly 3600 Million Kilometers from the Sun.

Ultima Thule
roughly 6500 Million Kilometers from the Sun.

Ultima Thule is roughly translated as “beyond the known world” and pronounced as ‘Ultima Tooly’

That is why the object is currently known as Ultima Thule, this is not however an official name. ¬†The official name is ‘2014 MU69’, it is also designated as the Minor Planet number 485968.

With the flyby of NASA’s spacecraft New Horizons on the 1st January 2019 this is the furthest object from Earth to be closely surveyed.


At 31km long and 19km wide at the widest point Ultima Thule is classified as a Minot Planet. Its distant orbit of the sun is within the Kuiper Belt, an area of the Solar System with a large amount of objects, estimated at several 100 thousand, in a constant orbit of the sun.

New Horizons had previously visited Pluto and using measurements made by observations with the Hubble Telescope Ultima Thule was selected as the next target. To calculate the travel of a spacecraft to a planet 6500 Million Kilometers from the Sun and be on target is incredible.

All images in this article are from either NASA or their partner John Hopkins.

This article is my layman’s understanding of what is currently public knowledge. I will use the common name for the 2014 MU69 throughout this article. An official name will be chosen after extensive results have been received from New Horizons: there are internationally accepted conventions for the naming of objects in space.

Continue reading