North American Battery Supply Chain Emerging

Despite having all of the critical ingredients for lithium-ion batteries — nickel, cobalt, lithium, graphite — Canada doesn’t have any EV cell or component manufacturing; and it has only about 10% of the battery demand of the U.S. Combined with a lack of government support for the battery supply chain, it had seemed that Canada was destined to lose the value-add of its raw materials as they are exported to countries that had invested in battery production…

Despite the promising foundations for Canada to be a cornerstone of the North American battery supply chain, until recently it had appeared that there was a lack of support at the government/policy level to attract the industry. This is no longer the case, in just the last two weeks two cell manufacturers have been enticed to set up shop in Canada, with plans to build gigawatt-hour scale cell manufacturing facilities in the country.

Once a country has cell manufacturing capacity, the rest of the component manufacturing industry tends to follow as suppliers move close to their customers. So, Canada is now on course to create a strong domestic battery supply chain…

As EV growth continues in North America, a new supply chain super-hub is growing to challenge the dominance of China, and it is quickly catching up with the growing industry in Europe.

Since the GOUSA is the earliest, potentially-growing EV market, we may wake up some morning and learn the folks smart enough to bankroll electric cars and trucks have decided it’s worthwhile playing in every portion of this 21st Century marketplace.

Truly impressive braided hair

For many of us, styling our hair is a way to express ourselves. However, Macedonian artist Trendafilka Kirova takes creative hairdos to the next level. She creates extraordinary hair braids that would be fit for a khaleesi à la Game of Thrones. Each look—featuring interwoven loops and plaits—almost looks like a basket or textile weave. It’s incredible to think that each intricate design is carefully created with soft human hair.

Kirova originally started braiding her own hair while she was pregnant with her first child. “I started watching a lot of tutorials and started doing simple braids,” she tells My Modern Met. “I find braiding to be so calming and after a while I started learning new, more complicated techniques.” Kirova’s soothing hobby soon grew into an “obsession and passion” and she started mastering complex braids. She left her accountant and auditor job and began working full time as a freelance hairstylist.

Today, Kirova is an expert of creating extraordinary hair braids of all kinds, from woven fishtails to complex zigzag plaits. Some even incorporate colorful textiles, woven within strands of hair. Kirova finds inspiration almost anywhere, from tattoos to rug patterns. “I love this art form because it’s limitless and there are no rules to creating it,” she says. “It allows me to express myself in so many more ways than words can. It’s also fun, therapeutic and rewarding. Artistic expression is what colors the world.”

Amazing work. Photographs of her most complex creations inside this article.

Thanks, UrsaRodinia

The 50 Most Miserable Cities In America

My hometown.

Of course, Bridgeport, Connecticut made the list. The view of Bridgeport harbor is one of the ugliest harborviews of the American coastline. Which is saying something for (what was) an urban manufacturing center that was known as the Park City when I was born.

Most of those early years we had a phony Socialist mayor who wasn’t even up to the mediocre standards of what passes for Social Democrats in the GOUSA. Ol’ Jasper McLevy was elected and re-elected a kajillion times on a platform that wouldn’t have made a sensible moderate Republican blush.

We had lots of parks, the schools had damned good teachers IMHO (and experience). The air was tough to breathe some days in the industrial neighborhoods; but, you could usually find a job at GE, Remington Arms or Bridgeport Brass.

OECD reaches landmark deal on a global corporate tax rate

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development on Friday announced a major breakthrough on corporate tax rates, after years of disagreement.

The group of developed nations agreed to a global minimum corporate tax rate of 15%. This marks a huge shift for smaller economies, such as the Republic of Ireland, which have attracted international firms — to a large extent — via a lower tax rate…

“The landmark deal, agreed by 136 countries and jurisdictions representing more than 90% of global GDP, will also reallocate more than USD 125 billion of profits from around 100 of the world’s largest and most profitable MultiNational Enterprises to countries worldwide, ensuring that these firms pay a fair share of tax wherever they operate and generate profits,” the OECD said in a statement Friday…

The breakthrough comes after some changes were made to the original text, notably that the rate of 15% will not be increased at a later date, and that small businesses will not be hit with the new rates…

Countries now have to work out some outstanding details so the new deal is ready to kick in during 2023.

Most of the hard work for most of the countries ready to sign on to this extraordinary deal is done and dusted. Part of getting to this announcement included the tweaks needed to bring on the broadest coalition possible. The agreement is between experienced international negotiators with a strong voice in enabling the process in their home countries.

We’re going to have a unique problem here in the GOUSA. Changes in tax relationships with other nations can only become reality via treaty law in the United States. Anyone ready to hazard a guess on whether you think the United States can sort out an international treaty of this scope in the next two years?

Captain Kirk will be the oldest man launched into space

Star Trek alum William Shatner is making his way to space, and at 90 years old, he will set the record for the oldest person to do so!

…Jeff Bezos’ aerospace company Blue Origin announced the Emmy Award-winning actor will travel on the New Shepard rocket for the NS-18 mission – the historic program’s eighteenth mission…which lifts off from Launch Site One in West Texas on Oct. 12.

According to the official website, the New Shepard seats six astronauts, and since the ship is “fully autonomous,” there is no pilot, making everyone onboard a passenger. The reusable vehicle takes 11-minute flights into space, “designed to take astronauts and research payloads past the Kármán line — the internationally recognized boundary of space.”

Live long and prosper, Jim!

Meet the humble snot snake!

Meet the humble hagfish, an ugly, gray, eel-like creature affectionately known as a “snot snake” because of its unique defense mechanism. The hagfish can unleash a full liter of sticky slime from pores located all over its body in less than one second. That’s sufficient to, say, clog the gills of a predatory shark, suffocating the would-be predator. A new paper published in the journal Current Biology reports that the slime produced by larger hagfish contains much larger cells than slime produced by smaller hagfish—an unusual example of cell size scaling with body size in nature.

Hagfish slime is an example of a non-Newtonian fluid, in which the viscosity changes in response to an applied strain or shearing force. … Applying a strain or shearing force will increase viscosity—in the case of ketchup, pudding, gravy, or that classic mix of water and corn starch called “oobleck”—or decrease it, like non-drip paint that brushes on easily but becomes more viscous once it’s on the wall.

Hagfish slime can be both. It turns out that the suction feeding employed by many of the hagfish’s predators creates a unidirectional flow. The elongated stress of that sucking flow increases the goo’s viscosity, the better to suffocate said predators by clogging of the gills. But when the hagfish is trying to escape from its own slime, its motion creates a shear-thinning flow that actually reduces the viscosity of the slime, making it easier to escape. In fact, the slimy network quickly collapses in the face of a shear-thinning flow.

Lots more exciting, thought-provoking analysis like this in the article.

As a youth, our family fed ourselves significantly by coastal fishing. I caught a hagfish – once! I wish I hadn’t.

Earth’s submarine cable network

Should I admit to how old this admission makes me? I worked in the testing lab of one of the firms that made the copper alloy wire inside many of these cables…in 1956. Before folks started using fibre-optic cables.

Coffee linked to DNA integrity

A controlled randomized study conducted on 100 healthy Europeans just vindicated you and your coffee obsession. As far as DNA integrity is concerned coffee is actually more beneficial than water

The coffee group exhibited much less DNA strand breakage than the control group by the end of the 4-week span…

As it stands – all coffee is rich with anti-oxidants, a compound that enables cells to better repair themselves in the wake of the damage done by free radicals. Free radicals, birthed by sunlight, oxygen, and pollution, deteriorate the collagen fibers in the skin. The microbial properties in coffee help ward off germs in the skin. Its caffeic acid boosts collagen levels which in turn reduces the aging process…The antioxidants found in coffee are also instrumental in fighting diseases, preventing cavities, diabetes, cirrhosis of the liver and various forms of cancer.

Take a minute to click through to the original – and you’ll discover even more great reasons to drink coffee. Good old dark roast used in most of this research. Delicioso!