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   Covid-19 is the short name for the disease known as Novel Corona Virus Disease 2019. Coronaviruses are a large group of similar viruses. All corona viruses are named for the crown-like spikes that cover the surface called spike or S-protein.  

   A virus infects your body by entering healthy cells. There, the invader makes  copies of itself and multiplies throughout your body. The new coronavirus latches  its spiky surface proteins to receptors on healthy cells, especially those in your  lungs. Specifically, the viral proteins bust into cells through ACE2 receptors. Once  inside, the coronavirus hijacks healthy cells and takes command. Eventually, it kills  some of the healthy cells.

   COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus, starts with droplets from an infected person’s cough, sneeze, or breath. They could be in the air or on a surface that you touch before touching your eyes, nose, or mouth. That gives the virus a passage to the mucous membranes in your throat. Within 2 to 14 days, your immune system may respond with symptoms including: fever, a cough, shortness of breath or trouble breathing, fatigue, chills, sometimes with shaking, body aches, headache, a sore throat, congestion or a runny nose, loss of taste, loss of smell, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea. 

   Then, the virus moves down your respiratory tract. That’s the airway that includes your mouth, nose, throat, and lungs. Your lower airways have more ACE2 receptors than the rest of your respiratory tract. So COVID-19 is more likely to go deeper than viruses like the common cold. 

   After that, your lungs might become inflamed, making it tough for you to breathe. This can lead to pneumonia, an infection of the tiny air sacs (called alveoli) inside your lungs where your blood exchanges oxygen and carbon dioxide.

   For most people, the symptoms end with a cough and a fever. More than 8 in 10 cases are mild. But for some, the infection gets more severe. About 5 to 8 days after symptoms begin, they have shortness of breath (known as dyspnea). Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) begins a few days later. 

   ARDS can cause rapid breathing, a fast heart rate, dizziness, and sweating. It damages the tissues and blood vessels in your alveoli, causing debris to collect inside them. This makes it harder or even impossible for you to breathe. Many people who get ARDS need help breathing from a machine called a ventilator.

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The Rainbow Mountains of China Are Earth's Paint Palette
Trevor Nace, Forbes, Mar 2, 2016

  The Rainbow Mountains of China within the Zhangye Danxia Landform Geological Park are a geological wonder of the world. These famous Chinese mountains are known for their otherworldly colors that mimic a rainbow painted over the tops of rolling mountains. What causes the Rainbow Mountains to be colored reds, greens, yellows, and blues? 
   The Rainbow Mountains are cretaceous sandstones and siltstones that were deposited in China before the Himalayan Mountains were formed. The sand and silt was deposited with iron and trace minerals that provided it with the key ingredient to form the colors we see today. 

   What was once a layered horizontal and flat stratigraphy was disrupted by the Indian Plate colliding into the Eurasian Plate approximately 55 million years ago. Much like when two cars get in a wreck and the bumpers fold and break, a similar process folded what was once flat sandstones into the Rainbow Mountains we see today. This process uplifted mountains and exposed sedimentary rocks that were otherwise hidden well below the surface of the earth. Weathering and erosion removed the overlying layers of continental siliciclastic rocks and exposed underlying formations with different mineralogy and chemistry. This causes the striking variation in colors seen across the Rainbow Mountains.

  The primary color is a deep red sandstone. The red coloring is due to an iron oxide coating and cementation, also known as hematite (Fe2O3), between the sandstone grains. This is the exact same process that takes place when a piece of metal is left out in the rain and forms a red layer of rust around the outside.

   Most of the time iron oxides impart a dark red pigment, however, there are instances where oxides form different colors. For example oxidized limonite or goethite will produce brown or yellow staining of sandstones, magnetite can form black staining of sandstones. If there is iron sulfide present, you will get a metallic yellow color imparted by the sulfur. Meanwhile, green coloring is often due to chlorite or iron silicate clays. These are just some examples of how sandstones can be altered in coloring during diagenesis. 

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