29 September 2011The Square Kilometre Array South Africa team have reached another milestone with the completion of the seven antennas of the prototype KAT-7 and the delivery of the telescope’s first astronomical image.South Africa, allied with eight other African countries, is competing against Australia (allied with New Zealand) to host the €1.5-billion Square Kilometre Array (SKA), an instrument 50-100 times more sensitive and 10 000 times faster than any radio imaging telescope yet built.The KAT-7 is a prototype for the MeerKAT radio telescope array, an 80-dish precursor instrument for the SKA, being built by the SKA South Africa team on the Karoo Astronomy Reserve outside the small town of Carnarvon in the Northern Cape province.First astronomical imageLast month, SKA South Africa announced that all seven of the KAT-7’s dishes had been fitted with “cold” radio receivers, signaling the successful completion of the telescope antennas.The first astronomical image – of the galaxy Centaurus A, whose intense radio emission is powered by a massive black hole in the centre of the galaxy – has already been made using cold receivers on all seven KAT-7 dishes.According to SKA South Africa, the resulting image was much more sensitive than a preliminary image made with just four of the KAT-7 dishes fitted with un-cooled receivers in 2010.“The radio receivers and all their components are cooled to about 70 Kelvin (minus 203 Celsius) in order to reduce the ‘noise’ which is inherent in all radio (and TV) receivers,” SKA South Africa said in a statement. “This allows the telescope to see much fainter objects than it would if the receivers and ‘feeds’ operated at room temperature and were not cooled.”‘Early science’ for the MeerKAT and SKAThe improvement would allow the KAT-7 to perform “early science” in preparation for the MeerKAT and the SKA.“These preliminary observations will be focused on the needs of the MeerKAT large survey projects, and include imaging of nearby galaxies and work on radio transients and pulsars, for which KAT-7 is well suited.”The KAT-7 is testing technology for the MeerKAT, which is in its early construction phase and is due for completion in 2016.The MeerKAT, besides being an important step towards the realization of the SKA, will be among the most powerful telescopes in the world in its own right, providing African scientists and engineers with a cutting-edge instrument for revolutionary science and technology.“This latest milestone in the development of the KAT-7 telescope has again been achieved on schedule,” said MeerKAT project manager Willem Esterhuyse.Esterhuyse commended the technical staff on the site – Siyabulela Tshongweni, Sibusiso Wakhaba, Andre Walker and Matthys Maree – all of whom have been trained in their special high-tech skills by the SKA SA project.The international science funding agencies and governments involved in the international SKA consortium are due to announce the winning bidder for the SKA in 2012, with construction likely to start in 2016 and take place in phases over several years, with completion by about 2022.SAinfo reporter
Making ventilation chutes on siteWhen I realized the AccuVent wasn’t right for our project, it was a moment of, “Uh-oh, now what the hell do I do?”I assumed there must be a sturdier plastic baffle, but I never found one. Instead, I came across this article by Martin Holladay. As usual, old reliable — GBA — had already addressed the issue.It was nice to have a solution, but I also knew it would be time-consuming and back-breaking (also neck-straining) — the only thing worse than working with sheet goods is working with sheet goods above your head on a ladder. Nevertheless, I would sleep better knowing it was panels of OSB rubbing up against two feet of blown-in cellulose insulation rather than sheets of flimsy plastic. Long-term solutions do wonders for peace of mind.I used 2×4 blocks as a base for each ventilation chute — first, screwing the blocks to the roof trusses, then after putting the OSB into place, screwing through the OSB and into the bottom of each block. The image at the top of this post shows the first chute after I had put it into place and sealed the perimeter with OSI Quad Max sealant.There weren’t always sizable gaps where the OSB chute met the top of the Zip wall sheathing, but they did occur. When there was a gap, caused by a bend in the OSB chute or unevenness in the top of the wall sheathing, it looked like Image #3, below. These gaps could be fixed with narrow strips of OSB and OSI sealant, in the end looking like Image #4.I showed up on one rainy morning to continue installing the chutes. Image #5 shows the dramatic difference in before and after — light spilling into the interior through the soffits without chutes, and with chutes installed and sealed on the right. Image #6 shows the top of the wall from the outside with an air gap that will allow air to flow from the soffit into the attic, and then out at the ridge vents.Once the chutes were installed, I was finally ready to put the Intello membrane on the ceiling, which thankfully I didn’t have to install by myself (Image #7). I’ll describe that process in my next post here at GBA. Our structure was designed with a “cold roof,” or ventilated roof assembly. By having continuous ventilation in our north and south soffits, with a ridge vent on the top of our roof, outdoor air can freely enter the soffits and exit out the ridge vent. The benefits of this set-up are explained in this article by the Building Science Corporation, plus the first two articles you see listed in the “Related Articles” sidebar below.We plan on using Cor-A-Vent in the soffits.In order to make this kind of roof assembly work, ventilation baffles (also called ventilation chutes) are necessary, especially if the attic is going to have a significant amount of insulation, in particular blown-in insulation, that could potentially move around and block off the soffit ventilation from the attic, thereby short circuiting air flow from the soffits through the roof’s ridge vent.When it was time to install the ventilation baffles, I assumed I could just go to one of the big box stores and (thankfully for a change) just buy something off the shelf. It didn’t work out that way. Home Depot had Durovent (a foam-based ventilation baffle) and an AccuVent baffle (black plastic). Both were a disappointment.I didn’t buy the Durovent — when I saw it on the shelf and handled it in the store it looked cheap and unimpressive. It was hard to imagine it holding up under the pressure of any significant amount of blown-in insulation pressing against it. RELATED ARTICLES All About Attic Venting A Crash Course in Roof VentingSite-Built Ventilation Baffles for RoofsFans in the Attic: Do They Help or Do They Hurt?Q&A: Is Soffit Venting Necessary With a Vented Rainscreen? BLOGS BY ERIC WHETZEL Up on the RoofA Light Down BelowKneewalls, Subfloor, and Exterior WallsLet the Framing BeginDetails for an Insulated FoundationThe Cedar Siding Is Here — Let’s Burn ItAn Introduction to a New Passive House Project The AccuVent product that Home Depot carried only worked in a straight line (no curve to wrap over the back of the Zip sheathing at the top of our wall assembly), which would be ideal for a cathedral ceiling application. After looking around online, I found another AccuVent product described in a company video that looked like it would work (see Image #2, below.)Seeing the video made me think it would be an easy installation, but once I had the product and tried to install one, the realization hit that they would be a pain to air seal properly, and again, I had concerns about how it would do over the long term with blown-in insulation pressing up against it. Editor’s note: This post is one of a series by Eric Whetzel about the design and construction of his house in Palatine, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. The first blog in his series was called An Introduction to a New Passive House Project; a list of Eric’s previous posts appears below. For more details, see Eric’s blog, Kimchi & Kraut.
Does your local Association or Permit run on the strength and hard work of volunteers and always need more assistance in terms of equipment? This information may just strike a chord with you. On 27 January 2005, the Minister for Family and Community Services Kay Patterson announced funding for the Volunteer Small Equipment Grants 2005 to help Australia’s volunteers to carry on with their vital work. Organisations can apply for grants of up to $3000 to buy small equipment items that support the work of volunteers by making it easier, safer and/or more enjoyable. Under the Volunteer Small Equipment Grants 2005, priority will be given to organisations that: * have relatively small operating budgets with limited funding sources and a relatively high volunteer to staff ratio; * demonstrate that their requested equipment will provide maximum benefit to all their volunteers by making their work safer, easier and/or more enjoyable; * demonstrate that the organisation’s work supports families and/or strengthens their local communities; * have requested equipment that will have maximum benefit in the local community for a small outlay; and * have not received funding under VSEG 2003 or VSEG 2004. Organisations are encouraged to complete and submit their application form online. For more information or the online application form, simply use the following link to visit the Australian Government website. For further information or to request an application form be posted to you, please phone the toll free Volunteer Small Equipment Grants 2005 Hotline on 1800 153 477. Organisations with special needs may contact the department on TTY 1800 055 001. Applications close at 5pm EDST Friday 4 March 2005. It is important to note that online applications received and postal applications post-marked after this date will not be included in the assessment process. Before completing the application form, please ensure that you have read the guidelines and that you are familiar with the purpose of the Volunteer Small Equipment Grants 2005. GRANTS OPPORTUNITY FOR TOUCH VOLUNTEERS
The September edition of ‘Touch-e-Talk’, the online newsletter has been released. It contains several feature stories on the upcoming National 18’s Championships and also the All Nations tournament, Volunteer of the Month, coaching drills and more. Please click here to view the newsletter: TOUCH-e-TALK SEPTEMBER 2005 EDITION If you would like to join the mailing list for future newsletters, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Solskjaer confident getting Man Utd players to play for himby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester United caretaker boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is confident getting the players to play for him.Solskjaer says he’s done it all as a player and manager.He told MUTV: “I’ve had 300-400 games as a first-team manager. I’m confident. I’ve won the league, I’ve won cups, I’ve been relegated.”It’s about man management. It’s about managing players, staff and it’s about getting the best out of everyone.”The boss [Sir Alex Ferguson] will always be the best at that. I get my managerial style from him. He’s been the biggest influence but then again we’re different. I’m a different personality.”I like to speak to people, I like to engange with people, I want to see people express themselves. That makes me happy.”On assistant manager Mike Phelan, he added: “That (appointing him) was the first thing I thought about. I’m young, Kieran and Michael are young.”I rang him and he was at a coaching course in Burnley when I rang him. He’s an incredible calming influence. His football knowledge is really really good.”
Crystal Palace plan new January move for Chelsea striker Batshuayiby Paul Vegas18 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveCrystal Palace are planning a new move for Chelsea striker Michy Batshuayi in January.Palace, who are currently sixth in the Premier League, plan to bolster their attack when the transfer window reopens and have made Chelsea striker Batshuayi a leading target, says the Daily Mail.The 26 year-old spent the second half of last season on loan at Selhurst Park and was a popular figure, scoring six times in 11 starts and 13 appearances in total.Palace hope Chelsea could be persuaded to part with Batshuayi due to Tammy Abraham’s emergence, along with the presence of Olivier Giroud in Frank Lampard’s squad, and also the Belgian’s contract situation.Batshuayi signed a five-year deal when he joined Chelsea, who beat Palace to his signature, from Marseille in 2016 for £33m. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
When you’re undefeated and dominating the competition like No. 1 Kentucky is, you’re bound to inspire passionate fans to drum up unique ways to express their love and appreciation. What better way for two fans to show their devotion to UK basketball than with a little Bluegrass tribute?That’s what the Jenkins twins decided to do. They recorded a musical ode to their beloved Wildcats, complete with shout outs of every key player, and jokes about Roy Williams, Rick Pitino and Bill Self drinking vodka. The chorus of the song features the line “We’re going to ‘Nap town on this Big Blue Train.” It’s a reference to Indianapolis, or ‘Nap Town, where the 2015 Final Four will be held.All in all, it’s entertaining in a quirky and hilarious way. [H/T : @KySportsRadio ]
Source = TravelManagers Australia Click Here to join TravelManagers Exclusive London and Prague famil a delight for Personal Travel ManagerThe city of Prague has long enjoyed a reputation as one of the most beautiful and atmospheric cities in Europe, with centuries of history layered together to create an effect that personal travel manager Janice Lee found to be quite addictive on her recent famil.Lee, who is TravelManagers’ representative for Surry Hills in Sydney, spent three nights soaking up the historic city’s sights on a luxury famil organised exclusively for CT Partners members and hosted by British Airways and the Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group.TravelManagers qualified for a place on the famil as one of CT Partners’ top three British Airways-selling members. Lee herself was selected by TravelManagers’ to take part in the famil on the basis of her British Airways sales during this period.TravelManagers’ Executive General Manager, Michael Gazal, says the company are always supportive of personal travel managers (PTMs) taking part in such famils.“We encourage any opportunity for our PTMs to experience new destinations for themselves as we know that first-hand experience leads to better service for clients and increased sales.”Prior to her arrival in Prague, Lee and her group were also treated to three nights at the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park in London, providing them with the perfect base from which to get in touch (or, as in Lee’s case, back in touch) with its sights.“I haven’t been to London for several years so really enjoyed getting reacquainted with the feel and vibrancy of London,” says Lee. “The Mandarin Oriental is in a wonderful location over the road from Hyde Park and it gives you a great feeling of being a local as there are lots of apartments and inner city living, with easy access to the fantastic public transport system.”For Lee, one of the highlights of the London leg of the famil was opportunity to dine at the hotel’s “Dinner by Heston Blumenthal” restaurant.“It was such a unique experience; there was always an air of expectancy when each course arrived. The general consensus was that the pâté (which looked like a Mandarin) was the highlight of the meal.”The famil was also an opportunity to experience British Airways A380 business class product between Singapore and London.“We really enjoyed the A380 and Club World experience, especially as it meant we arrived in London fresh and ready to cope with a new day. We were also really impressed by the wonderful arrivals lounge at Heathrow where business clients can shower and breakfast before heading off to meetings.”At the end of the group’s time in London, they were whisked off to Heathrow where they saw first-hand the significant amount of construction work taking place, before boarding another British Airways flight for the two-hour journey to Prague.“Prague is one of the most beautiful cities I have visited and far exceeded my expectations. It’s a fantastic walking city, although the cobblestones make for hard going unless you have decent walking shoes,” she says.Lee and her group spent three nights at the stunning Mandarin Oriental Prague.“The hotel, which was previously a monastery, has a lovely charm and boasts an amazing Spa which we all had the opportunity to experience. I can honestly say it was one of the best I have been to recently.”For Lee, their two half-day walking tours were a highlight of her time in Prague. Led by an 82-year-old local woman, they were an opportunity not just to walk around the sights but also to gain a personal insight into the changes the city has seen during and after the war.“It was my first famil with TravelManagers, so I was very excited to find I had won a spot on such a luxurious trip,” says Lee. “Since my first trip overseas in 1977, I’ve been continually amazed and intrigued by the unique sights, sounds and tastes of different countries, customs and cuisines, but this was definitely a high point. All in all, it was a wonderful experience and I learnt so much.”For more information or to speak to someone confidentially about TravelManagers please contact Suzanne Laister on 1800 019 599
Belarusian service provider Beltelecom is boosting the number of movies available on its Virtual Cinema movie service from six a day to nine a day.The price of the service will remain the same – BYR9,900 (€0.70).Virtual Cinema offers a choice of seven movies during daytime hours and two adult movies during night-time hours.
Since I was thinking about bond yields, I called Dr. Lacy Hunt (one of the more brilliant economists in the country, and not just in my opinion). He has been forecasting interest rates for a long time and been the guiding light at Hoisington Asset Management, which has established perhaps the best track record I know of on bond returns. They have been long bonds for quite some time, which has been the correct position, if a difficult and lonely one. Most bond managers think rates are set to rise. Not Lacy. He thinks we will get close to 2% on the 30-year bond and has said so for decades. Dr. Gary Shilling wrote his first book in 1998, called simply Deflation, and followed it up recently with another great work, titled The Age of Deleveraging. He first went long bonds in 1982, which has been one of the great trades of the last 30 years. He lists a whole host of reasons for a deflationary period over the next few years. The “Muddle-Through” economy is deflationary The argument for deflation is rather straightforward. The boom in the US and much of the world from 1982 until 2008 was partially the result of financial innovations and massive leveraging. That process has come to an end, and the private sector is deleveraging and will do so even further as the economy softens and we slip into the next recession. Governments are approaching the end of their ability to borrow money at reasonable rates in Europe, and soon in Japan, and eventually in the US (and that time is not as far off as we would like). I described the whole process in my book Endgame. Assuming the US government deals with its coming deficit crisis in a realistic manner, the results will be deflationary – a big assumption, I grant you! The next big deflationary force is the slowing of the velocity of money. Very simply, money velocity is the rate at which money moves through the economy from one transaction to another and is a good barometer of economic vitality. It has been falling for five years, pretty much as I wrote it would back in 2006. We are now close to the historical average velocity of money; but, since velocity is mean-reverting, it will continue to fall until it bottoms well below the historical average. This cycle takes years, not months, by the way. A slow-growth, muddle-through economy is deflationary. High and persistent unemployment is deflationary. Absent some new piece of data that I just don’t see right now, rates in the US are going lower and are going to stay low for longer than any of us can afford to bet against them. I think the Fed will respond if the government does finally act in a fiscally responsible manner (which would be inherently deflationary), by fighting that deflation with the only tool it has left: the outright monetization of debt. They will call it something else, of course, but that will not alter the bottom line: the money presses will run day and night. They will be able to monetize more debt than you can shake a stick at, and do so without causing a repeat of the 1970s Great Inflation. Yes, it will eventually catch up with us – there is no free lunch – but they are betting on keeping the lid on actual price inflation by raising rates and cutting back on the money supply. We are some years away from that, but we had better listen when The Inflationator says, “I’ll be back.” Anybody who says they know the timing is a lot more confident in their crystal ball than I am. But I think I can see out a year or so, and it looks like continued low rates and deflation. By the way, just to appease the gold bugs out there, given my deflationary call, I will note that quality gold stocks were up hugely during the deflationary Great Depression of the 1930s. Even with the dollar on the gold standard. Just saying. A Quadrillion Here, A Quadrillion There And speaking of more money than we can imagine, and the wholesale monetization of government debt, I’d like to close with an instructive vignette from the Land of the Rising Yen. You may remember Everett Dirksen, the Republican Senator from Illinois who, back in the 1960s, was credited with saying, “A billion here, a billion there, and pretty soon you are talking about real money.” Thorough research fails to confirm that he actually used that line, although one reporter claims he asked Dirksen about it and received the reply, “Oh, I never said that. A newspaper fella misquoted me once, and I thought it sounded so good that I never bothered to deny it.” But that quote has lodged in our collective memory; whether or not he said it, it does make a salient point. Today we have become rather casual in our use of the word trillion. “A trillion dollars” slips so easily from the tongue, but it’s just too big a number for most of us to even fathom. Estimates of the total stars in our galaxy run between 100 and 400 billion. A trillion barrels of oil would fuel the world for over 30 years. One trillion seconds is almost 32,000 years. The mind boggles. Yet today we think almost nothing of adding a trillion dollars every year to the already bloated US debt! In fact, economists like Paul Krugman fume that we are not adding more trillions to the debt each year, as if debt carried no consequences. By this thinking, Greece should not be forced to suffer any austerity because it has taken on too much debt. Rather, other nations should be taxed to give Greece the money that will enable them to go even deeper into debt – debt that it cannot and most likely will not repay! So, I must admit that when I came across this next item, it gave me pause. We turn now to a report published by Bloomberg and authored by my friend Dr. Gary Shilling, talking about the massive debt that has been accumulated by Japan. Gary argues that Japan is reaching a critical point where its debt cannot be financed except by extreme monetization by its central bank, because turning to world markets to sell the debt will drive up interest rates to unsustainable levels. I have made similar arguments. Says Gary: “As Japan’s government debt of 1,085 trillion yen matures over time, it will be subject to … higher refinancing rates. The average maturity of Japanese government debt is six years and 11 months. Yet 17 percent of that debt matures this year, 52 percent in the next five years and 76 percent in the next decade. Markets anticipate, so Japanese bonds throughout the spectrum will probably plummet in price and leap in yield at the first sign of a current- account deficit, maybe even before.” One thousand trillion yen. That’s 32,000,000 years’ worth of seconds. Yes, I know the yen has two extra zeros in relation to the dollar, but we are talking about one quadrillion yen. Are we really ready for the word quadrillion to enter the lexicon in what is supposed to be the developed world? In the case of Japan, we are apparently already there. A hundred years ago, a deficit of US$1 billion would have been unthinkable. We actually had balanced budgets during most of our first 200 years, except during wars and economic crashes. And now we talk trillions, albeit in the wake of inflation that has made the word trillion less than it was 100 years ago. Will our grandchildren in the latter half of this century talk quadrillions? Or quintillions? Is that even thinkable? Let’s just hope the word quadrillion doesn’t come into common parlance any time soon. This article is a reprint from the World Money Analyst. [John Mauldin is a highly sought-after contributor to major financial publications including The Financial Times, The Daily Reckoning, as well as a regular guest on CNBC, Yahoo Tech Ticker, and Bloomberg TV. He also contributes to World Money Analyst – a service that regularly provides up to date coverage on issues and opportunities for international investors. Click here to learn more about our 100% risk-free test drive – including three highly actionable special briefings designed to get you started on the right foot right away – but only available for a limited time.] John Mauldin, International Man I am frequently asked in meetings or after a speech whether I think we will have inflation or deflation. “Yes,” I readily reply, trying hard not to smirk, as the questioner tries to digest the answer. And while my answer is flippant, it’s also the truth, as I do expect both outcomes. Following the obligatory chuckle from the rest of the group comes a follow-up request for a few more specifics. And they are that I expect we will first see deflation and then inflation, but the key is the timing. Recessions are by definition deflationary. Deleveraging events are also deflationary. A recession accompanied by deleveraging is deflationary in spades. That is why central banks worldwide have been able to print money in amounts that in prior periods would have sent inflation spiraling out of control. This drives gold bugs nuts, but they are not factoring in the velocity of money. If velocity were flat, inflation would be quite significant by now. But velocity has been falling and is going to fall further. The US Fed and the ECB are going to be able to print more money than we can imagine without stoking inflation … at least for a while. One of the longtime champions of the deflationary outlook has been my friend David Rosenberg (formerly chief economist at Merrill and now with Gluskin Sheff in Toronto). He has been talking for years about a target of 1.5% for the 10-year US bond. Today, as I’m writing this, we got down to 1.5% and did not even pause, ending the day at 1.47%. I will also note that I spoke with Rich Yamarone, the chief economist at Bloomberg, and he said he believes we will scare 50 basis points (the 10-year T-bill hits 0.50%) before we are through. To which Rosenberg replied in a later conversation, “He’s nuts!” Look at this table of 10-year bond yields: