SUMMARY / RELATED TOPICS

Phanerozoic

The Phanerozoic Eon is the current geologic eon in the geologic time scale, the one during which abundant animal and plant life has existed. It covers 541 million years to the present, began with the Cambrian Period when animals first developed hard shells preserved in the fossil record; the time before the Phanerozoic, called the Precambrian, is now divided into the Hadean and Proterozoic eons. The time span of the Phanerozoic starts with the sudden appearance of fossilized evidence of a number of animal phyla. Plant life on land appeared in the early Phanerozoic eon. During this time span, tectonic forces caused the continents to move and collect into a single landmass known as Pangaea, which separated into the current continental landmasses, its name was derived from the Ancient Greek words φανερός and ζωή, meaning visible life, since it was once believed that life began in the Cambrian, the first period of this eon. The term "Phanerozoic" was coined in 1930 by the American geologist George Halcott Chadwick.

The Proterozoic-Phanerozoic boundary is at 541 million years ago. In the 19th century, the boundary was set at time of appearance of the first abundant animal fossils but several hundred groups of metazoa of the earlier Proterozoic era have been identified since the systematic study of those forms started in the 1950s. Most geologists and paleontologists would set the Proterozoic-Phanerozoic boundary either at the classic point where the first trilobites and reef-building animals such as corals and others appear; the three different dividing points are within a few million years of each other. In the older literature, the term Phanerozoic is used as a label for the time period of interest to paleontologists, but that use of the term seems to be falling into disuse in more modern literature; the Phanerozoic is divided into three eras: the Paleozoic and Cenozoic, which are further subdivided into 12 periods. The Paleozoic features the rise of fish and reptiles; the Mesozoic is ruled by the reptiles, features the evolution of mammals, more famously, including birds.

The Cenozoic is the time of the mammals, more humans. The Paleozoic is a time in Earth's history when complex life forms evolved, took their first breath of oxygen on dry land, when the forerunners of all life on Earth began to diversify. There are six periods in the Paleozoic era: Cambrian, Silurian, Devonian and Permian; the Cambrian ran from 541 to 485 million years ago. The Cambrian sparked a rapid expansion in evolution in an event known as the Cambrian explosion during which the greatest number of creatures evolved in a single period in the history of Earth. Plants like algae evolved, the fauna was dominated by armored arthropods, such as trilobites. All marine phyla evolved in this period. During this time, the super-continent Pannotia began to break up, most of which recombined into the super-continent Gondwana; the Ordovician spans from 485 million years to 444 million years ago. The Ordovician was a time in Earth's history in which many species still prevalent today evolved, such as primitive fish and coral.

The most common forms of life, were trilobites and shellfish. More the first arthropods crept ashore to colonize Gondwana, a continent empty of animal life. By the end of the Ordovician, Gondwana had moved from the equator to the South Pole, Laurentia had collided with Baltica, closing the Iapetus Ocean; the glaciation of Gondwana resulted in a major drop in sea level, killing off all life that had established along its coast. Glaciation caused a snowball Earth, leading to the Ordovician–Silurian extinction, during which 60% of marine invertebrates and 25% of families became extinct; this is considered the second deadliest in the history of Earth. The Silurian spans from 444 million years to 419 million years ago, which saw a warming from snowball Earth; this period saw the mass evolution of fish, as jawless fish became more numerous, jawed fish evolved, the first freshwater fish evolved, though arthropods, such as sea scorpions, remained the apex predators. Terrestrial life evolved, which included early arachnids and centipedes.

The evolution of vascular plants allowed plants to gain a foothold on land. These early terrestrial plants are the forerunners of all plant life on land. During this time, there were four continents: Gondwana, Laurentia and Siberia; the recent rise in sea levels provided new habitats for many new species. The Devonian spans from 419 million years to 359 million years ago. Informally known as the "Age of the Fish", the Devonian features a huge diversification in fish, including armored fish like Dunkleosteus and lobe-finned fish which evolved into the first tetrapods. On land, plant groups diversified. By the Middle Devonian, shrub-like forests of primitive plants existed: lycophytes, horsetails and progymnosperm; this event allowed the diversification of arthropod life as they took advantage of t

Pfalz D.XII

The Pfalz D. XII was a German fighter aircraft built by Pfalz Flugzeugwerke. Designed by Rudolph Gehringer as a successor to the Pfalz D. III, the D. XII entered service in significant numbers near the end of the First World War, it was the last Pfalz aircraft to see widespread service. Though the D. XII was an effective fighter aircraft, it was overshadowed by the successful Fokker D. VII. In early 1918, the Idflieg distributed to German aircraft manufacturers a detailed engineering report on the SPAD S. VII, whose wing structure Idflieg considered to be well-designed. Pfalz accordingly produced several Pfalz D. III-derived prototypes with SPAD-type wings; these developed into the Pfalz D. XII; the new aircraft was powered by the 180 hp Mercedes D. IIIaü engine and continued the use of LFG-Roland's patented Wickelrumpf plywood-skinned monocoque fuselage construction. Unlike the earlier aircraft, the D. XII used a two-bay wing cellule. Furthermore, the flush wing radiator was replaced with a car-type radiator mounted in front of the engine.

The prototype D. XII first flew in March 1918. Subsequently, Idflieg issued a production order for 50 aircraft. Pfalz entered several D. XII prototypes in the second fighter competition at Adlershof in May/June 1918. Only Ernst Udet and Hans Weiss favored the D. XII over the Fokker D. VII, but Udet's opinion carried such weight that Pfalz received substantial production orders for the D. XII; the aircraft passed its Typenprüfung on 19 June 1918. Difficulties with the radiator, which used vertical tubes rather than the more common honeycomb structure, delayed initial deliveries of the D. XII until June; the first 200 production examples could be distinguished by their rectangular rudder. Subsequent aircraft featured a larger, rounded rudder profile; the D. XII began reaching the Jagdstaffeln Bavarian units, in July 1918. Most units operated the D. XII in conjunction with other fighter types, but units in quieter sectors of the front were equipped with the D. XII. While the D. XII was a marked improvement over the obsolescent Albatros D.

Va and Pfalz D. IIIa, it found little favor with German pilots, who preferred the Fokker D. VII. Leutnant Rudolf Stark, commander of Jasta 35, wrote: Thanks to its sturdy wing and thin airfoil section, the D. XII maintained the excellent high-speed dive characteristics of the earlier Pfalz D. III. Like most contemporary fighters, the D. XII had a pronounced tendency to spin. Furthermore, pilots criticized the D. XII for its long takeoff run, heavy controls, "clumsy" handling qualities in the air. Rate of roll, in particular, appears to have been deficient. Landings were difficult because the D. XII tended to float above the ground and the landing gear was weak. Ground crews disliked the extensive wire bracing of the two-bay wings, which required more maintenance than the Fokker D. VII's semi-cantilever wings. Evaluations of captured aircraft by Allied pilots were unfavorable. Between 750 and 800 D. XII scouts were completed by the Armistice. A substantial number as many as 175, were surrendered to the Allies.

Of these, a few were shipped to the United States and Canada for evaluation. During the development of the D. XII, Pfalz produced several Pfalz D. III-derived prototypes with SPAD-type wings and Windhoff "ear" radiators; the overcompressed BMW IIIa engine would have provided improved performance in the D. XIIf variant. Records show that Pfalz received 84 such engines between July and October 1918, but there is no photographic evidence of any production D. XII equipped with the BMW IIIa. In his autobiography, Anthony Fokker claimed that pilots deliberately wrecked D. XIIf aircraft so the engines could be salvaged and installed on Fokker D. VIIs; the Pfalz D. XIV was a derivative of the D. XII, utilizing the same fuselage and basic wing structure; the D. XIV differed by replacing the 180 hp Mercedes D. IIIaü with the 200 hp Benz Bz. IVü, a heavier engine. To cope with the increased power and weight, the D. XIV featured an enlarged vertical stabilizer. Enlarged ailerons were used to maintain rate of roll. A few prototypes were tested at the second Adlershof competition and a small production order ensued.

Production was terminated and the D. XIV did not see active service; the D. XIV did not offer an appreciable increase in performance over the D. XII, the Benz Bz. IVü engine was needed for reconnaissance aircraft. In the 1920s, two D. XIIs were sold as war surplus to the Crawford Supply Co. of Venice, California. Though badly deteriorated, the aircraft appeared as props in the 1930 movie The Dawn Patrol. Both D. XIIs were sold to private collectors. Today, one of these aircraft is now displayed at the Seattle Museum of Flight, after it was acquired from the defunct Champlin Fighter Museum, in Mesa, Arizona; the second is exhibited at the National Air and Space Museum, in Washington D. C. A preserved D. XII aircraft is displayed at the Musée de l'Air et de l'Espace in Paris. Serial 2600/18 was one of several Pfalz D. XIIs awarded to Australia in 1919 under the terms of the Armistice, its service history is unknown. In late 1919, the aircraft was shipped from 2nd Aircraft Salvage Depot in France to England, subsequently to Australia.

It was temporarily exhibited in Melbourne and Adelaide in 1920. In 1924, the aircraft went on display in Sydney. Serial 2600/18 was removed to storage in 2001. After an extensive restoration at the Treloar Technology Centre in Canberra, the aircraft went on display at the AWM's ANZAC Hall in 2008. German EmpireLuftstreitkräfte PolandPolish Air Force United StatesParamount Pictures property manager Louis Kinnell took one airframe to the s

Free Radio (network)

The Free group of radio stations is owned and operated by Bauer. The group launched on Monday 26 March 2012 as a result of the rebranding of four FM stations – BRMB, Beacon and Wyvern. On Tuesday 4 September 2012, a secondary AM station broadcasting 1980s chart music, Free 80s, was launched; the four FM stations are now subsumed into the Hits Radio network whilst the single AM station is part of the Greatest Hits Radio network. BRMB began broadcasting to Birmingham and the surrounding areas on 19 February 1974 – the fourth ILR station to launch in the UK and the first station of its kind outside London. Beacon Radio has served Wolverhampton and the Black Country since 12 April 1976 with its licence area expanded to cover Shropshire in 1987. Mercia Sound was launched in Coventry and Warwickshire on 23 May 1980, followed by Radio Wyvern in Herefordshire and Worcestershire on 4 October 1982; these stations were run independently of each other, although by the late 1980s, BRMB and Mercia were under the ownership of Midlands Radio plc, alongside AM station Xtra AM, which broadcast on both stations' former AM frequencies.

The group was bought for £18 million by Capital Radio plc in 1993, who sold Mercia to the GWR Group but retained BRMB. GWR went on to buy Beacon from its holding company BCCL in Wyvern FM two years later; the four licences came under the same ownership in 2005 when GWR and Capital merged to form GCap Media. GCap was taken over in 2007 by Global but the Office of Fair Trading ruled in August 2008 that Global would need to sell off BRMB, Mercia and Heart's East Midlands station due to concerns over competition interests; the stations were bought in May 2009 by a consortium led by former Chrysalis Radio chief executive Phil Riley, trading as Orion Media. Heart East Midlands continued to operate under a franchise agreement with Global until January 2011, when the station was rebranded as Gem 106 and replaced most networked output with local programming from Nottingham. On 9 January 2012, Orion announced that it would rebrand its four West Midlands stations as Free from March 2012 onwards; the former on-air station brands were phased out on Wednesday 21 March 2012 in preparation for the rebrand, which took place on Monday 26 March 2012 at 7pm.

On 6 May 2016, the network's owners, announced they had been bought by Bauer for an undisclosed fee between £40 and £50 million. As of August 2016, Free is aligned with the Hits Radio network, with the four stations beginning to carry networked programming from Hits Radio's Manchester headquarters in February 2017. In May 2019, following OFCOM's decision to relax local content obligations from commercial radio, Bauer announced it would cease local programming for two Free stations in Shropshire & the Black Country and in Herefordshire & Worcestershire; as of 8 July 2019, Free carries two separate breakfast shows - one for the Birmingham, Black Country and Shropshire areas and a second for Coventry, Warwickshire and Worcestershire. The four local drivetime shows were replaced by a single regional programme for the West Midlands, presented by Andy Goulding. Local news bulletins, traffic updates and advertising for the four licence areas are retained. Local weekend afternoon programming were replaced with additional network programming from Manchester.

From September 2019, the regional drivetime show was replaced with a further networked programming from Manchester, including opt-outs for local news and traffic. On 24 May 2012, Orion Media announced it would relaunch its Gold West Midlands stations on AM frequencies and DAB as Free 80s; the station broadcast locally produced programming playing 1980s chart music alongside news & information and sports programming. The station launched on Tuesday 4 September 2012. On 7 January 2019, Free 80s ceased broadcasting and replaced by Absolute Classic Rock on AM and DAB in Birmingham and Shropshire. Greatest Hits West Midlands launched as part of the Greatest Hits Radio network on 105.2 FM in Birmingham and on 1359 kHz and DAB in Coventry, Herefordshire and Worcestershire. All networked programming originates from Hits Radio's Manchester headquarters. Local programming is broadcast from Free's Birmingham studios weekdays from 6-10am. Hits at Breakfast, presented by Dan Morrissey, broadcasts to Free's stations in Birmingham and Shropshire & the Black Country.

Hits at Breakfast, presented by John Dalziel and Roisin McCourt, broadcasts to Free's stations in Coventry & Warwickshire and Herefordshire & Worcestershire. Local news bulletins are broadcast on all stations hourly from 6am to 7pm on weekdays and from 7am to 1pm on weekends with headlines on the half hour during weekday breakfast and drivetime. Most bulletins are broadcast from Free's Birmingham newsroom. Free Birmingham Free Shropshire & Black Country Free Coventry & Warwickshire Free Herefordshire & Worcestershire Greatest Hits West Midlands Free