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Hoover Dam, originally known as Boulder Dam, is a concrete arch-gravity dam in the Black Canyon of the Colorado River, on the border between the U.S. states of Arizona and Nevada. When completed in 1936, it was both the world's largest electric-power generating station and the world's largest concrete structure. It was surpassed in both these respects by the Grand Coulee Dam in 1945. It is currently the world's 35th-largest hydroelectric generating station. This dam, located 30 miles (48 km) southeast of Las Vegas, Nevada, is named after Herbert Hoover, who played an instrumental role in its construction, first as the Secretary of Commerce and then later as the President of the United States. Construction began in 1931 and was completed in 1936, more than two years ahead of schedule. There were 112 deaths associated with the construction of the dam. There are different accounts as to how many people died while working on the dam and who was the first and last to die. A popular story holds that the first person to die in the construction of Hoover Dam was J. G. Tierney, a surveyor who drowned while looking for an ideal spot for the dam. Coincidentally, his son, Patrick W. Tierney, was the last man to die working on the dam, 13 years to the day later. The dam and the power plant are operated by the Bureau of Reclamation of the U.S. Department of the Interior. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1981, Hoover Dam was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1985. Lake Mead is the reservoir created behind the dam, named after Elwood Mead, who oversaw the construction of the dam. Because of the Sept 11th attack, the Hoover Dam Bypass project was expedited. Traffic across Hoover Dam is presently restricted. Some types of vehicles are inspected prior to crossing the dam while semi-trailer trucks, buses carrying luggage, and enclosed-box trucks over 40 feet (12 m) long are not allowed on the dam at all. That traffic is diverted south to a Colorado River bridge at Laughlin, Nevada. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE]



The Lun-class ekranoplan Ground effect vehicle was an unusual aircraft designed by Rostislav Evgenievich Alexeev and used by the Soviet and Russian navies from 1987 to sometime in the late '90s. Ground effect aircraft use the extra lift of their large wings when in proximity to the surface (about one to four meters). It is one of the largest ever built, with a length of 73m, rivaling the Hughes H-4 Hercules ("Spruce Goose") and many modern jumbo jets. The sole vessel of her class, MD-160 entered service with the Black Sea Fleet in 1987. Eight Kuznetsov NK-87 turbojets were mounted on forward canards, each delivering 127.4 kN (28,600 lbf) of thrust. MD-160 had a flying boat-like hull with a large deflecting plate at the bottom of the hull to provide a "step" for takeoff. The aircraft was equipped for anti-surface warfare, carrying the P-270 Moskit missile. It was fitted with six missile launchers, mounted in pairs on the dorsal surface of the fuselage, and advanced tracking systems mounted in the nose and tail. A development of the Lun was planned for use as a mobile field hospital for rapid deployment to any ocean or coastal location. Work was 90% complete on this model, the Spasatel, but military funding ceased and it was never completed. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE]



The Nine Emperor Gods Festival is a nine-day Taoist celebration beginning on the eve of 9th lunar month of the Chinese calendar, which is observed primarily in Southeast Asian countries like Myanmar, Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand, and also the Riau Islands. The Nine Emperors is formed by the 7 stars of the Big Dipper of the North Ursa Major (visible) and two assistant stars (invisible). When viewed closely, the arrangement of the 7 stars "the Ladle" and the 2 assistant stars on its left and right resembles a Yin-Yang pattern form. n the eve of the ninth moon, temples of the deities hold a ceremony to invoke and welcome the nine emperors. Since the arrival of the gods are believed to be through the waterways, processions are held from temples to the sea-shore or river to symbolize this belief. Devotees dressed in traditional white, carrying incense and candles, await the arrival of their excellencies. A carnival-like atmosphere pervades the temple throughout the nine-day festival. During this period of time, the constant tinkling of a prayer bell and chants from the temple priests are heard. Most devotees stay at the temple, eat vegetarian meals and recite continuous chanting of prayer. It is believed that there will be rain throughout the nine days of celebration. The ninth day of the festival is its climax. A procession which draws scores of devotees send the deities back home. In Thailand this festival is called Tesagan Gin Je the Vegetarian Festival. It is celebrated throughout the entire country, but the festivities are at their height in Phuket, where about 35% of the population is Chinese. he festivities in Phuket include a procession of mah song wearing elaborate costumes who pierce their cheeks and tongues with all manner of things, including swords, banners, machine guns, table lamps, and flowers. While the face is the most common area pierced, some also pierce their arms with pins and fishhooks. Teams of people accompany the mah song to keep their wounds clean and to help support the heavier piercings. It is believed that while they are possessed the mah song will not feel any pain. They can also be seen shaking their heads back and forth continually, and usually do not seem to "see" their surroundings. At the temple during the festival there is also firewalking and blade-ladder climbing. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE]



A cerebral or brain aneurysm is a cerebrovascular disorder in which weakness in the wall of a cerebral artery or vein causes a localized dilation or ballooning of the blood vessel. A common location of cerebral aneurysms is on the arteries at the base of the brain, known as the Circle of Willis. Approximately 85% of cerebral aneurysms develop in the anterior part of the Circle of Willis, and involve the internal carotid arteries and their major branches that supply the anterior and middle sections of the brain. The most common sites include the anterior cerebral artery and anterior communicating artery, the bifurcation, division of two branches, of the internal carotid and posterior communicating artery, the bifurcation of the middle cerebral artery, the bifurcation of the basilar artery, and the remaining posterior circulation arteries. Aneurysms may result from congenital defects, preexisting conditions such as high blood pressure and atherosclerosis, or head trauma. Cerebral aneurysms occur more commonly in adults than in children but they may occur at any age. They are more common in women than in men, by a ratio of 3 to 2. Cerebral aneurysms are classified both by size and shape. Small aneurysms have a diameter of less than 15 mm. Larger aneurysms include those classified as large (15 to 25 mm), giant (25 to 50 mm), and super giant (over 50 mm). Saccular aneurysms are those with a saccular outpouching and are the least common form of cerebral aneurysm. Berry aneurysms are saccular aneurysms with necks or stems resembling a berry. Fusiform aneurysms are aneurysms without stems. A small, unchanging aneurysm will produce little, if any, symptoms. Before a larger aneurysm ruptures, the individual may experience such symptoms as a sudden and unusually severe headache, nausea, vision impairment, vomiting, and loss of consciousness, or the individual may be asymptomatic, experiencing no symptoms at all. Onset is usually sudden and without warning. Rupture of a cerebral aneurysm is dangerous and usually results in bleeding into the meninges or the brain itself, leading to a subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) or intracranial hematoma (ICH), either of which constitutes a stroke. Emergency treatment for individuals with a ruptured cerebral aneurysm generally includes restoring deteriorating respiration and reducing intracranial pressure. Currently there are three treatment options for brain aneurysms: medical hypotensive therapy; surgical clipping or endovascular coiling. If possible, either surgical clipping or endovascular coiling is usually performed within the first 24 hours after bleeding to occlude the ruptured aneurysm and reduce the risk of rebleeding. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE]



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