Contest #632 — Noor III CSP, Ouarzazate Solar Power Station, Morrocco

Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) refers to electricity generation by reflection and concentration of sunlight on a target, either a trough or a tower, heating that target and using that heat to run generators (boil water -> steam, etc).

The Ouarzazate Power Station has 3 CSP nodes, Noor I and Noor II are “trough” CSPs and Noor III, the image in the contest, is the world’s second tower CSP with storage (the first being Crescent Dunes in Nevada, USA). The sunlight heats a molten salt tank at the top, which stores the energy through the non-sunlight hours.

The sustained power generation from this site is about 150MW.

Those who got lit by these mirrors before the hint were:

  • Garfield
  • Paul Voestermans
  • Martin de Bock
  • Lighthouse
  • Walter_V_R
  • Phil Ower
  • hhgygy
  • Glenmorren
  • Gillian B
  • Rob de Wolff
  • Chris Nason
  • Andreas Meister
  • Yusef Yakub Hoca Fendi
  • Luís Filipe Miguel
  • Nancy Barbato
  • MC Solaar
  • John Gospel IV
  • Teemu Pukki
  • MiranDese-12
  • krenek
  • Luciano P.
  • pizzaro_12
  • Riel L
  • J.V. Conyers

And after the hint:

  • VliegendeHollander999
  • Elrober
  • Robin
  • David Kozina
  • MuThDdDe
  • Root007-1
  • Wista

Contest #631: Santa Teresa Blade Facility, just west of El Paso, Texas, US

We started off this series of 10 with a location where wind turbine blades are stored – the Santa Teresa Blade Facility.

Diamond WTG Engineering & Services, Inc. provides wind farm owners with parts and services. The blades are constructed in Mexico and moved across the border to many locations like this one.

  • Glenmorren
  • Martin de Bock
  • Paul Voestermans
  • Garfield
  • hhgygy
  • Phil Ower
  • Lighthouse
  • LegoGame
  • Walter Schirra
  • BurningSoul
  • Fernando Antonio
  • Борис Карлофф
  • René De La Carte
  • Hans1789
  • WENDY COBURN
  • JimCricket1981
  • Walter_V_R

Contest #630: Calipatria “Sea Level” Flagpole, Calipatria, California

The municipal flagpole in the small desert community of Calipatria, California was, at the time of build, the tallest flagpole in the world. The base of the flagpole sits 184 feet (56 M) below sea level, and the ball at the top sits at exactly sea level.

CalipatriaFlagPole.jpg
By Perdelsky (talk) – Link

CalipatriaPlaque.jpg
By Perdelsky (talk) – Link

The “Good Neigborliness” on the plaque is a reference to one Harry Momita. Harry was the town pharmacist in 1957. He and his wife Helen had lived in the Japanese internment camps during World War II, but Harry was a dedicated patriot, proud of his inherited home.

On a trip to visit their son in Los Angeles, the Momitas were in a horrible car crash. Helen was killed instantly, and Harry was critically wounded. The community drew together — they kept the pharmacy open with the help of a pharmacist from the next town over, they collected donations towards paying for Helen’s funeral and Harry’s medical care. When Harry was released and returned home, he was so touched by the graciousness of the town, that he decided he would work to create something that would make the town stand out.

The town’s elevation had long involved jokes about creating a building or something that would top out at sea level, but Harry took this idea seriously. He began to collect donations to build the flagpole, he got an architect and engineer to donate their time, he got a steel pipe company to agree to do the job for cost. Harry’s story and his quest started to make national and international news.

In May of 1958, the television program “This Is Your Life” featured him (the previous week’s guest was Kirk Douglas). They spotlighted this immigrant with a tragic past, still staunchly patriotic. They talked about his and Helen’s time in the detention camps. They also talked about his desire to build this monument to “Good Neighborliness”. Through the program, he won a car and several other prizes, including $1000 in cash — the last bit of cash he needed to start construction.

Those who found it — all before the hint:

  • Walter_V_R
  • hhgygy
  • Garfield
  • Eloy Cano
  • Lighthouse
  • Phil Ower
  • Paul Voestermans
  • Martin de Bock
  • Jean Noyau

Congratulations to the series winners, with perfect scores, hhgygy, Garfield, Lighthouse, and Jean Noyau.

Contest #628: the Bleriot ferry near Drumheller, Canada

This week’s contest was the ridiculously short Bleriot Ferry across the Red Deer River near Drumheller, Alberta, Canada.

The hint was in reference to the fact that the first operator was Andre Bleriot, brother of aviator Louis Blériot who was first to fly across the English Channel.

It’s 103 metres across, making it one of the shortest rides in the world. It probably took me twice as long to write this post as it does to cross the ferry.

If anyone has a spare ferry around, send it to me and we can set up a double ferry ride with no need for the ferries to actually move. Drive-on-off-on-off.

Link to short video of ferry

Those who took no time at all to solve the puzzle:

  • Paul Voestermans
  • Wakter_V_R
  • Martin de Bock
  • Garfield
  • Phil Ower
  • hhgygy
  • Eloy Cano
  • Lighthouse
  • Jeather
  • David Kozina
  • Rob de Wolff
  • Jean Noyau
  • Andreas Meister

Contest #627: the Foreshore Freeway Bridge on Cape Town, South Africa

Construction started on the Foreshore Freeway Bridge in Cape Town in 1970, but stalled in 1977 and has not resumed. All that is there are two sections – a ramp up in the west and what is now a parking garage in the east. Several urban legends have surfaced over the years about the reasons why it was never finished. One is that the design team had made a calculation error resulting in the two ends failing to link up. Another was that construction was halted due to a disgruntled shop owner who refused to sell his property that stood where the flyover would pass. However, the official explanation to date is that the city had run out of money with traffic numbers at the time not justifying its continuation and the project had to be abandoned.

The hint referred to the vuvuzela during the 2010 World Cup Soccer tournament hosted by South Africa. The world’s largest (35 m (114.83 ft)) operational vuvuzela sponsored by Hyundai was mounted on the western side and meant to sound at the start of each game. The city council, however, decided not to use it as the jarring sound and volume level was a cause of concern. When one of your humble contest moderators read that, this reveal took a quick turn.

See, the moderator in question **HATES** vuvuzelas with a white-hot passion. He refers them to as “loser soccer horns”. He is a big hockey fan, and when these abominations show up at the rink, he loses all enjoyment of the game (and his favorite team invariably starts to lose, or, at least, win by less of a margin). Were it up to him, they would all be thrown into the pit of hell (from contest #184). The fact that the creators of this awful thing never got to hear it sounded as planned brings him no end of joy. But we digress…

FORTY YEARS!?!?!??! That seems like an excessive construction delay, n’est ce pas?

Found despite no end in sight:

  • Martin de Bock
  • hhgygy
  • Phil Ower
  • Garfield
  • Paul Voestermans
  • Eloy Cano
  • Walter_V_R
  • David Kozina
  • Rob de Wolff
  • Lighthouse
  • Andreas Meister
  • Jean Noyau
  • Robin Giles

No-one after the hint.

Contest #626: The Twelve Apostles Cottages, Catacol, Scotland

The Twelve Apostles at Catacol Bay - geograph.org.uk - 679050.jpg
By Wendy Kirkwood, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link

The Highland Clearances were a very controversial set of policies carried out in Scotland in the mid-1700s to the mid-1800s. Landlords, trying to increase income, pushed out traditional open-space farmers and sustenance hunters to make way for large-scale sheep farms (which paid much higher rent). The farmers and hunters who were pushed out of these lands were expected to find employment in other industries, including fishing.

To this end, on the Isle of Arran, this row of cottages was built to house those who were cleared from the countryside who were expected to turn to fishing in the Firth of Clyde. The builders put a different type of window in the upstairs in each cottage, with the idea that the family of one of the fishermen could signal them by lighting a candle in that window and the fisherman who lived there would know to come in.

Of course, it didn’t really work that way — for one thing, the folks who were cleared from the land weren’t too keen to just jump into fishing. The cottages sat empty for a long time.

Currently, they are used as vacation lodging (think AirBNB or VRBO).

Those who saw the light included:

  • Phil Ower
  • Martin de Bock
  • Paul Voestermans
  • Eloy Cano
  • Garfield
  • Lighthouse
  • Walter_V_R
  • hhgygy
  • Jean Noyau

None after the hint.

Contest #625: Ovnipuerto Cachi, northwest Argentina

In 2008, Werner Jaisal received a message from the captain of a UFO asking him to build a UFO landing pad with the words “If you build it, they will come.” Not quite the same as the famous saying from the book/movie Field of Dreams which is “If you build it, I will come,” but enough about baseball…

Following the plans given to him, Werner Jaisal built Ovnipuerto Cachi with piles of rocks into the pattern we now see.

Found, perhaps with the help of aliens:

  • hhgygy
  • Lighthouse
  • Walter_V_R
  • Martin de Bock
  • Eloy Cano
  • Paul Voestermans
  • Garfield
  • Phil Ower
  • Andreas Meister
  • Jean Noyau

No-one got it after the hint.

Contest #624: the Trans Alaska Pipeline and Dalton Highway near Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, US

The Trans Alaska Pipeline runs over 1200 km south from Prudhoe Bay all the way to Valdez, Alaska. The Dalton Highway goes about 666 km to near Fairbanks.

They criss and cross each other and cross numerous rivers on the way, reaching an altitude of 1444 metres at Atigun Pass in the Brooks Range.

By 2010, the pipeline had shipped over 16 billion barrels of oil south. However, at this time it only transports a fraction of the maximum of about 2 million barrels of oil per day.

Found before the hint:

  • Garfield
  • Lighthouse
  • hhgygy
  • Eloy Cano
  • Paul Voestermans
  • Walter_V_R
  • Martin de Bock
  • Jean Noyau

After the hint:

  • David Kozina
  • Rob de Wolff
  • Wista

Contest #623: Malleco Viaduct, central Chile

The Malleco Viaduct in central Chile passes across the Malleco Valley, and when opened in 1890 was the highest railway bridge in the world.

Some claim it was designed by Gustavo Eiffel, designer of the Eiffel Tower in Paris. But he just proposed a design that was rejected in favour of a design by Aurelio Lastarria.

Found before the hint:

  • Martin de Bock
  • Paul Voestermans
  • Garfield
  • Lighthouse
  • hhgygy
  • Rob de Wolff
  • Eloy Cano
  • Phil Ower
  • Jean Noyau
  • Andreas Meister

After the hint:

  • Waltewr_V_R

Contest #622: the Brooks Aqueduct, Brooks, Alberta, Canada

Built in 1914, the Brooks Aqueduct was to irrigate a large section of land near Brooks, Alberta. It was the largest concrete structure in existence at the time and crossed a lowland area. The Canadian Pacific Railway passed through the area and the Aqueduct passed under the railway with an inverted siphon.

The siphon is an inverted reinforced steel concrete pipe that operates on the Venturi Principle. It was built to a depth of 40 feet underneath the tracks and narrows in the middle to increase the pressure on the water passing through.

The Aqueduct

And the siphon

Found before the hint:

  • Phil Ower
  • Lighthouse
  • Garfield
  • Eloy Cano
  • Jean Noyau
  • hhgygy
  • Walter_V_R

After the hint:

  • Martin de Bock
  • Paul Voestermans