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The Lamborghini Countach was a mid-engined sports car produced by Italian automaker Lamborghini from 1974 to 1990. Its design both pioneered and popularized the wedge-shaped, sharply angled look popular in many high performance sports cars. The cabin-forward design concept, which pushes the passenger compartment forward in order to accommodate a larger engine, was also popularized by the Countach. In 2004, Sports Car International named this car number three on the list of Top Sports Cars of the 1970s, and it was listed as number ten on their list of Top Sports Cars of the 1980s. The Countach was styled by Marcello Gandini of the Bertone design studio, the same designer and studio that designed the Miura. Gandini was then a young, inexperienced designer—not very experienced in the practical, ergonomic aspects of automobile design, but at the same time unhindered by them. He produced a quite striking design. The Countach shape was wide and low (42.1 inches), but not very long. The doors, a Countach trademark, were scissor doors: hinged at the front with horizontal hinges, so that the doors lifted up and tilted forwards. The main reason is the car's tubular spaceframe chassis results in very high and wide door sills. It was also partly for style, and partly because the width of the car made conventional doors impossible to use in an even slightly confined space. Care needed to be taken, though, in opening the doors with a low roof overhead. The car's poor rear visibility and wide sills led to drivers adopting a method of reversing the car for parking by opening the door, sitting on the sill, and reversing while looking over the back of the car from outside. The rear wheels were driven by a traditional Lamborghini V12 engine mounted longitudinally with a mid-engined configuration. For better weight distribution, the engine is pointed 'backwards'; the output shaft is at the front, and the gearbox is in front of the engine, the driveshaft running back through the engine's sump to a differential at the rear. Although originally planned as a 5 liter powerplant, the first production cars used the Lamborghini Miura's 4 liter engine. Later advances increased the displacement to 5 liters and then 5.2 L with four valves per cylinder. The Countach used a skin of aircraft-grade aluminum over a tubular space frame, as in a racing car. This is expensive to build but is immensely strong and very light in spite of its size, the car weighs approximately 1,400 kg (3,100 lb). The underbody tray was fiberglass. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE]

The Tomb of the Unknowns (also known as the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, although it has never been officially named) is a monument dedicated to American servicemen who have died without their remains being identified. It is located in Arlington National Cemetery in the United States. The "Unknown Soldier" of World War I is a recipient of the Medal of Honor, the Victoria Cross, and several other foreign nations' highest service awards. The U.S. Unknown Soldiers who were interred afterwards are also recipients of the Medal of Honor, presented by the U.S. presidents who presided over their funerals. It is considered one of the highest honors to serve as a sentinel at the Tomb of the Unknowns. Less than 20% of all volunteers are accepted for training and of those only a fraction pass training to become full-fledged Tomb Guards. The sentinels do not wear rank insignia on their uniforms so that they do not outrank the Unknowns, whatever their rank may have been. Cracking and erosion are causing concerns for the long-term preservation of the Tomb Monument. A November 1963 report first recorded horizontal cracking of the monument's marble die block. Though this was the first time that the damage was documented, the report made it clear that the cracks had become visible some time before that date. In 1963-1964, there were two cracks—referred to as "primary" and "secondary"—extending approximately 34 feet around the die block. By 1974, they had extended to 40 feet. They grew another 4.6 feet over the next 15 years. Inspection has determined that the cracks have increased horizontally since 1990. Analysis also indicates that the cracks are not surficial but extend partially through the block and will eventually extend all the way through. In June 2009 Arlington National Cemetery and The Army Corps of Engineers announced that the monument was to be repaired, not replaced. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE]

The shortfin mako shark, Isurus oxyrinchus ("sharp nose"), is a large mackerel shark. Along with the closely related longfin mako (Isurus paucus) it is commonly referred to as "mako shark". This species grows to an average full-grown length of 1.82–3.2 m (6–10 ft) and to a weight of approximately 60–400 kg (135-880 lb). The largest reported mako was said to be 1,000 kg (2,200 lb) and 4 m (13.2 ft), although the largest confirmed size is 3.96 m (13 ft) and 794 kg (1,750 lb). It has a bluish back and white underside. Although the sexes grow at about the same rate, females are thought to have a longer life span, and grow larger and weigh more than the males. Shortfin makos are renowned for their speed and their ability to leap out of the water. In fact, there are cases when an angry mako will jump out of the water and into the boat after it has been caught on the hook. The shortfin mako feeds mainly upon bony fishes including mackerels, tunas, bonitos, swordfish, and sailfish, but it may also eat other sharks, porpoises, sea turtles, and seabirds. In Ganzirri and Isola Lipari, Sicily, shortfin makos have been found with amputated swordfish bills impaled into their head and gills, suggesting from the dangerous location of the wounds found on the Mako sharks that swordfish seriously injure and likely kill makos. In addition, this location, off the coast of Sicily and the timing, late spring and early summer, corresponding to the swordfish's spawning cycle suggests that these makos prey on swordfish while they are most vulnerable, typical of many predators. The shortfin mako's speed has been recorded at 50 km/h (31 mph), and there are reports that it can achieve bursts of up to 74 km/h (46 mph). It can jump up to 9 m (28 ft.) in the air. Due to its speed and agility, this high-leaping fish is sought as game worldwide. This shark is highly migratory. Its endothermic constitution partly accounts for its relatively great speed. The shortfin mako has a formidable and foreboding appearance. The ISAF statistics on attacking species of sharks purports that between 1580 and 2007, the shortfin mako has had eight recorded unprovoked attacks on humans with two ending in fatality and twenty boat attacks. In New Zealand Mako sharks are often encountered in the waters of the North Island. Sharks can be attracted to caught fish with accounts of spear fishermen being approached by curious sharks and even being "slapped" with cavitation bubbles from a swift tail flick. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE]

Nuclear artillery is a subset of limited-yield tactical nuclear weapons, in particular those weapons that are launched from the ground at battlefield targets. Nuclear artillery is commonly associated with shells delivered by a cannon, but in a technical sense short-range rockets or missiles are also included. The development of nuclear artillery was part of a broad push by nuclear weapons countries to develop nuclear weapons which could be used tactically against enemy armies in the field (as opposed to strategic uses against cities, military bases, and heavy industry). Nuclear artillery was both developed and deployed by a small group of nations, including the USA, USSR, and France. The United Kingdom planned and partially developed such weapon systems (the Blue water missile and the Yellow Anvil artillery shell) but did not put these systems into production. A second group of nations has derivative association with nuclear artillery. These nations fielded artillery units trained and equipped to use nuclear weapons, but did not control the devices themselves. Instead, the devices were held by embedded custodial units of developing countries. These custodial units retained control of the nuclear weapons until they were released for use in a crisis. This second group has included such NATO countries as Belgium, West Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Turkey, and the United Kingdom. The first artillery test was on May 25, 1953 at the Nevada Test Site. Fired as part of Operation Upshot-Knothole and codenamed Shot GRABLE, a 280 mm (11 inch) shell with a gun-type fission warhead was fired 10,000 m (6.2 miles) and detonated 160 m (525 ft) above the ground with an estimated yield of 15 kilotons. This was the only nuclear artillery shell ever actually fired in the U.S. nuclear weapons test program. The shell was 1384 mm (4.5 ft) long and weighed 365 kg (805 lb). It was fired from a special, very large, artillery piece, nicknamed the "Atomic Annie", built by the Artillery Test Unit of Fort Sill, Oklahoma. About 3,200 soldiers and civilians were present. The warhead was designated the W9 nuclear warhead and 80 were produced in 1952 to 1953 for the T-124 shell. It was retired in 1957. Nowadays, nuclear artillery has almost been replaced with mobile tactical ballistic missile launchers carrying missiles with nuclear warheads. However, some countries, such as China, India and Pakistan (and there is a rumor that North Korea is capable of using nuclear artillery), are still using nuclear artillery as an alternative method derived from conventional ballistic missiles. [READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE] is not affiliated with or endorsed by wikipedia. wikipedia and the wikipedia globe are registered trademarks of
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