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Light cruiser

A light cruiser is a type of small- or medium-sized warship. The term is a shortening of the phrase "light armored cruiser", describing a small ship that carried armor in the same way as an armored cruiser: a protective belt and deck. Prior to this smaller cruisers had been of the protected cruiser model, possessing armored decks only. While lighter and smaller than other contemporary ships they were still true cruisers, retaining the extended radius of action and self-sufficiency to act independently across the world. Through their history they served in a variety of roles as convoy escorts and destroyer command ships, but as scouts and fleet support vessels for battle fleets; the first small steam-powered cruisers were built for the British Royal Navy with HMS Mercury launched in 1878. Such second and third class protected cruisers evolved becoming faster, better armed and better protected. Germany took a lead in small cruiser design in the 1890s, building a class of fast cruisers—the Gazelle class—copied by other nations.

Such vessels were powered by coal-fired boilers and reciprocating steam engines and relied in part on the arrangement of coal bunkers for their protection. The adoption of oil-fired water-tube boilers and steam turbine engines meant that older small cruisers became obsolete. Furthermore, new construction could not rely on the protection of coal bunkers and would therefore have to adopt some form of side armoring; the British Bristol group of Town-class cruisers were a departure from previous designs. Thus, by definition, they were armoured cruisers, despite displacing only 4,800 tons; the first true modern light cruisers were the Arethusa class which had all oil-firing and used lightweight destroyer-type machinery to make 29 knots. By World War I, British light cruisers had either two 6-inch and eight 4-inch guns, or a uniform armament of 6-inch guns on a ship of around 5,000 tons, while German light cruisers progressed during the war from 4.1-inch to 5.9-inch guns. Cruiser construction in Britain continued uninterrupted until Admiral "Jacky" Fisher's appointment as First Sea Lord in 1904.

Due in part to the desire to curtail excess expenditures in light of the increasing cost of keeping up with German naval production and in part because he felt the type to be outdated, Fisher authorized few new cruisers and scrapped 70 older ones. Fisher's belief that battlecruisers would take the place of light cruisers to protect commercial shipping soon proved impractical, as their high construction cost precluded their availability in sufficient numbers to do so, destroyers were too small for scouting duties; the group of 21 Town-class cruisers begun in 1910 proved excellent in scouting in all types of weather and could carry enough fuel and ammunition to guard the shipping lanes. The Arethusa class, launched three years was successful. British designers continued refining subsequent cruiser designs throughout the war; the Germans built a number of light cruisers in the belief that they were good multi-purpose vessels. Unlike the British, who built both long-range cruisers like the Town class for commerce protection and short-range "scout" cruisers for fleet support, the Germans built a single series of light cruisers for both functions.

Compared to the British "scout" type the German ships were bigger and less manoeuvrable but, through a successive series of classes, improved in seagoing qualities. However, the Germans were late in adapting 5.9-inch guns. For about a three-year period after the British Weymouth class of the Town series, completed with a uniform armament of 6-inch guns, before the German Pillau class, German light cruisers were faster but maintained a lighter 104 mm main armament compared to their British Town-class counterparts. With the Pillau and Wiesbaden-class cruisers the Germans followed the British example of heavier guns. Earlier German light cruisers were in competition with a series of British scout cruisers which had a higher speed of 25 knots, but smaller 3-inch 12 pounder guns or 4-inch guns; the Germans completed the last two of their Bremen-class cruisers in 1906 and 1907 and followed them up with four Königsberg-class and two Dresden-class cruisers between 1905 and 1908. These last two classes and faster than the Bremens, were armed the same and carried less deck armor.

Other major powers built few cruisers. The United States and Austria-Hungary each built only a handful of scout cruisers while Japan and Spain added a few examples based on British designs. During World War I, the Germans continued building larger cruisers with 150 mm guns while the British Arethusa class and early C-class cruisers reverted to an emphasis on superior speed with a more lightly-armed design for fleet support; the United States resumed building light cruisers in 1918 because the ships it had in service had become obsolete. The first of these, the ten Omaha-class ships, displaced 7,050 tons and were armed with twelve 6-inch guns. Eight of these guns were mounted in double-story casemates at the bow and stern, a reflection of the US prewar preference for heavy end-on fire. Fast and maneuverable, they were well-liked as seaboats despite being wet in rough weather; the term light cruiser was given a definition by the Lon

Adam Biddle (soccer)

Adam Biddle was an Australian footballer who played for Sydney FC and Bankstown City. Biddle was educated at Saint Ignatius' College, Riverview When part of the Parramatta-Melita Eagles, he was awarded the chance to trial with Manchester United, he has had spells with a number of NSW State squads over the years. Biddle joined Blacktown City Demons at the age of 17, was part of the 2006 squad that won the Johnny Warren Cup and the 2007 New South Wales Premier League. Impressive form for New South Wales Premier League side Blacktown City Demons earned him much praise, after trialling amongst several other players, was signed on a 2-year deal by manager Branko Culina as one of three Under-20 players required by each A-League club. Biddle made his debut for Sydney FC against the Central Coast Mariners in the opening game of the season on 24 August 2007. Under new manager John Kosmina, Biddle played his first full game for the club in the Los Angeles Galaxy exhibition match at Telstra Stadium on 27 November, shot to fame for retaliating, when he was stomped on by Galaxy defender Kevin Harmse.

Only weeks playing the club he debuted against, Biddle showed moments of brilliance and scored his first goal for Sydney FC to level the scores 3–3, on the way to the famous 5–4 victory over the Central Coast Mariners at Bluetongue Stadium in Gosford. In his debut season with the club, Biddle started two games, appeared as a substitute on ten more occasions, featured in other trial and exhibition matches, as well as the inaugural Pan-Pacific Championships in Hawaii and won the Sydney FC Young Player of the Year award. Sydney FC opted to release Biddle after the 2008/2009 season, in February 2009 he joined Sydney Olympic FC. In April 2009, Biddle accepted an offer at FF Jaro in Finland, but the move was blocked at the last hour by the Sydney Olympic board. Biddle suffered from injury throughout the 2011 seasons, he took long leave in an effort to rest the injury problems, signed with Northern Tigers FC for the 2012 season. He signed with Central Coast Mariners Academy in 2013 and after a string of injuries and surgeries he took time off from football, focusing on establishing his landscaping company in Noosa, QLD.

In 2018 Biddle signed with Noosa Lions FC and again for the 2020 season. Sydney FC profile www.instylehabitats.com

Baljek Airport

Baljek Airport is a public airport located at Baljek, 33 km North-east of Tura in Meghalaya, India. The proposal for the airport was sent to the Central Government in 1983 and the project was sanctioned in 1995; the airport was inaugurated in October 2008. It was built at a cost of Rs 12.52 crore and was designed to handle 20 seater aircraft like the Dornier Do 228. The Airports Authority of India is developing the airport for operation of ATR 42/ATR 72 type of aircraft; the 3,300 foot runway will be extended by another 1,200 feet. A total of 58 acres of additional land was acquired at a cost of Rs 2.58 crore to aid the expansion of the airport. No scheduled commercial air service are available at the Baljek Airport at this time; the nearest airport is Shillong Airport, operating scheduled flights from Shillong to Kolkata