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IACS has unanimously adopted new harmonised Common Structural Rules (CSR) for oil tankers and bulk carriers at its 68th session of the IACS Council meeting, held on 18-19 December in London. The new rules will apply to all oil tankers over 150 m and bulk carriers over 90 m in length contracted for construction on or after 1 July 2015.The CSR will be presented to the IMO which will verify their compliance with the IMO GBS that will be compulsory for new building contracts signed on or after 1 July 2016.Mr Roberto Cazzulo, Chairman of the IACS Council, said “This is a historic achievement and the culmination of many years of hard work by technical specialists from all member societies and intensive and continuing consultation with industry and authorities at every stage. Together we have invested a huge amount of time and money to develop these rules.”Among the main benefits of the new CSR: ship designers will be able to work to one common standard applicable to both ship types; more comprehensive structural analyses including FEM calculations covering fore and aft parts; new rule checks including new buckling, fatigue and ultimate strength criteria; all this will enhance safety and reliability of the structure.“These harmonised rules take into account feedback from experience of the Common Structural Rules, introduced in 2006, and very extensive input from the industry.”At the same meeting, Council decided to take a proactive approach to structural safety of containerships, following a comprehensive review of existing technical requirements for hull structural design, construction and survey. IACS decided to expand the scope of current IACS unified requirements for post-Panamax containerships. These requirements will cover two important areas: scope of hull girder strength assessment and specific loading cases that will provide more comprehensive safety margins.“The new IACS unified requirements should be considered as a proactive measure to ensure an acceptable level of consistency amongst all IACS Societies and will ensure that Class and Industry follow a state-of-the-art methodology for structural analysis of post-Panamax containerships.”[mappress]IACS, December 20, 2013
Judges are expected to get tougher on offenders who breach court orders, which could result in an already overcrowded prison population becoming more dangerously squeezed.Today the Sentencing Council published new guidelines to tighten the way courts deal people who have breached suspended sentence, community, restraining and sexual harm orders.Where sexual harm and restraining orders have been breached, courts will look at an offender’s motivation and intention to assess the seriousness of the breach. Judges and magistrates will be instructed to look at any harm caused and, for the first time, the risk of harm being caused.Legislation states that an offender must go to prison if a suspended sentence order is breached unless it would be unjust to do so. However, to avoid going to jail, an offender must show there are ‘new and exceptional’ circumstances – not present when the order was imposed – that prevented compliance. These could include caring for a disabled relative when this has affected their ability to comply with an unpaid work requirement.Sentencing Council member Julian Goose said: ‘Court orders are there to protect individuals and the wider public from particular types of offending or continuing criminal behaviour by offenders. Making sure that offenders comply with court orders is crucial in reinforcing public confidence in sentencing. Where offenders do not comply, the public have a right to expect that this is properly addressed by the courts.’The tougher guidelines could result in the prison population increasing, despite already ‘chronic overcrowding’, according to the Howard League for Penal Reform, a prison charity. The charity’s campaigns manager, Rob Preece, told a London South Bank University event on ‘the true cost of prison’ yesterday that some London prisons were holding a greater number of prisoners than they were designed to hold. HMP Wandsworth was designed to hold 841 prisoners but currently holds 1,384; HMP Pentonville was designed to hold 906 but currently houses 1,384 prisoners.The Sentencing Council tweeted this afternoon that it doesn’t expect overall increases in sentences. Sentences may increase for the most serious breaches, such as breaches of restraining orders and sexual harm prevention orders where the most serious offenders pose a continuing risk to individuals or the public.The Sentencing Council’s guideline will be introduced in October.
TRINITY Rail GmbH, a European subsidiary of US firm Trinity Rail Group, has announced it is to end production of wagons at the Thrall Vagónka Studénka workshops in the Czech Republic. Blaming ’weaker than anticipated demand’, Trinity Rail GmbH President Chris Schmalbruch said wagon building would be consolidated at Trinity’s plant at Arad in Romania. Trinity’s forging business, based at the same Studénka site, will ’continue to operate as an on-going business’ as a subcontractor for the production of metal forgings. The number of staff at Studénka is to be reduced from 820 to 370.H Vagónka Cesk
ARGENTINA: Minister of the Interior & Transport Florencio Randazzo announced on September 8 that China Machinery Engineering Corp had signed a letter of intent to double the amount of funding it is providing to revive Argentina’s rail freight network.‘It is a second tranche of US$2⋅4bn which we will entirely invest in renewing track and rail freight infrastructure through Argentinian companies’, said Randazzo, speaking during an official visit to China.The minister pointed out that the first tranche of CMEC funding was already being used to ‘improve 3 000 km of track, repair wagons and acquire new locomotives and wagons which are now being built in China’. Deliveries of the 100 diesel locos being supplied by CRRC were expected to be completed within 90 days.During his visit, Randazzo also agreed heads of terms for CRRC to establish a manufacturing and maintenance presence in Argentina. Chinese companies are to undertake ‘at no cost to Argentina’ a feasibility study for electrifying the San Martín commuter route in Buenos Aires, he announced following a meeting with China Railway Construction Corp.
EUROPE: Franco-Italian base tunnel promoter Tunnel Euralpin Lyon-Turin has awarded three project management contracts totalling €90m to oversee civil engineering work on the French side of the border, accounting for around 80% of the 57·5 km tunnel.Announcing the contract awards on February 1, TELT Managing Director Mario Virano said it was ‘an important step towards the completion of the Lyon – Torino base tunnel’. The alignment between the portal at Villard-Clément and the border has been split into three sections. The process to award a fourth contract for the Italian section is currently underway. The project management contracts cover the boring of access tunnels which will in due course support completion of the main running tunnels.Lot 1 comprises the 24 km between Villarodin-Bourget and the Modane access shaft, where two tunnel boring machines will be used to drive the base tunnels up to 2 000 m below ground. Valued at €40m, the 10-year project management contract has been awarded to the Alliance Lyon Turin Ingénierie consortium, which brings together Arcadis, BG Consulting Engineers, Neosia, Lombardi Engineering and Amberg.Lot 2 covers two parallel single-track bores between the access points at Saint-Martin-La-Porte and Le Praz, as well as two bores heading towards Modane from La Praz, which will require the use of three TBMs. The north tunnel on the Saint-Martin – La Praz section includes an exploratory bore which is already being excavated. The €37m project management contract has been awarded to the S2IP consortium of Setec, Systra, Italferr and Pini Swiss Engineers, and is also expected to run for around 10 years.Priced at €13·7m and running for 4½ years, the Lot 3 contract covers project management for a 5 km section of the base tunnel starting from the Villard-Clément portal, which is to be excavated using traditional tunnelling methods. This has been awarded to Egis, Ingérop, Alpina and Geodata.
AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to LinkedInLinkedInLinkedInDumfries and Galloway Council Customer Services Advisor Nikki Steel has become the 1000th local government worker to gain their Customer Service Professional (CSP) certificate.Nikki has worked for the Council since 2007, based in Newton Stewart and Wigtown libraries, and has successfully completed the Award level qualification.The Customer Service Professional (CSP) suite of qualifications is the only Scottish local government online professional qualification certificated by the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA). The qualifications have been developed by Renfrewshire Council under the direction of the Improvement Service, with ongoing financial and leadership support provided by COSLA. The Customer Service Professional Qualification (CSP) helps public sector organisations deliver better quality customer service, enhanced customer satisfaction, improved responsiveness, increased staff loyalty and greater efficiency by improving the skills, knowledge and confidence of staff working in customer-facing roles, internally or externally.The Qualification is available at three levels, Award (SVQ2), Certificate (SVQ3) and Professional Development Award (PDA) SVQ4). No prior learning is required before registering for any of the qualifications. The Award and Certification qualifications contain 3 Units covering 8 individual modules with an on-line exam at the end of each Unit, each module also has workbook that candidates complete to reinforce the learning:CSP was piloted in within Dumfries and Galloway Council during 2009 with 24 candidates and rolled out in 2010.Our Council has actively promoted the CSP since 2010 and can boast the following success stories in relation to CSP;• 3rd highest number of registrations in the country:-151 (131 Award, 16 Certificate; 4PDA)• Highest number of graduates in the country: – 121 (110 Award, 11 Certificates);• 80% pass rate (one of the highest in Scotland)Councillor Tom McAughtrie, Chair of the Council’s Community and Customer Services Committee said;“The Customer Service Professional qualification has proved to be of exceptional value to our staff and customers during a period of change which has seen customer services, libraries and registration merged into one service. Our customers are at the heart of all that we do and by ensuring that our employees have the right tools and training we aim to ensure that we deliver high quality customer services at all times, resolving our customers queries at the first time of asking. I am delighted that Nikki’s hard work has resulted in her being the 1,000th CSP graduate.”Nikki said after receiving her award;“I am very pleased that Dumfries and Galloway Council has encouraged its Customer Service employees to undertake this nationally recognised course. It provides useful tools to allow Customer Service personnel to provide a very professional service, focusing on making the experience for the customer a positive one that gets it right first time at the first point of contact. I was delighted to find that I was the 1000th candidate to pass and achieve this qualification.”The attached photo shows Nikki receiving her award from Cllr Tom McAughtrie.
Mobile phones are used for a variety of reasons: To keep in touch with friends and family, to conduct business or even to keep one entertained using various social media apps. Now, imagine if that mobile phone could prevent a health epidemic. Sounds like science fiction but that is what the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Polio Geographic Information System (GIS) Technology is doing in 43 countries in Africa.Speaking at the African Health Forum held in Praia, Cabo Verde, WHO Regional Director for Africa told participants of the session that this was one of the most exciting things happening in the WHO regional office in Africa.How will the app work?Health workers visit remote villages to check if local inhabitants have any symptoms of a range of life-threatening infectious diseases, such as polio and measles. Then, with the mobile app, they quickly and easily alert WHO.The system allows WHO and health ministries to monitor in real time the visits that people and caregivers make to the most remote areas and to make sure that people most in need are being reached.“Overlaying the geographical location of the mobile phone signal and the route of the roads, we noticed that sometimes visits were only made along the main road and not to the most remote places, which is where we need to be if there is a problem,” explained Dr Moeti in describing the GIS app.Supported by the Melinda and Bill Gates Foundation and created primarily for polio surveillance, GIS uses the AVADAR (Auto-Visual AFP Detection and Reporting) computer platform, which records changes in the health of inhabitants and identifies possible disease outbreaks.“The AVADAR is very versatile and simple and can be used by everyone,” said Dr Magaran Bagayoko, Acting Director of the Health Systems Strengthening Cluster.With more than 6 000 community outreach workers and more than 1 000 health workers, the programme for research and geographical control of diseases is the future of health surveillance.WHO hopes that this will ensure that diseases are not just prevented but that they are completely eradicated.Related Ugandan Phone App For Revelers Mobile phone software helps detect plant disease outbreaks on time Talk Africa:Mobile money security
Sharing is caring! SAMMY… faces mounting pressure as Windies Test skipper. RAMDIN… report suggests he could be in line to lead Windies against New ZealandPORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC) — Darren Sammy is set to be axed as West Indies Test captain and replaced by Denesh Ramdin for the upcoming New Zealand series, the Trinidad Guardian is reporting.Quoting an unnamed source in a report carried on Thursday, the newspaper said Ramdin had already received the nod from the West Indies selectors and the final decision would be made during a teleconference among West Indies Cricket Board directors later in the day.“Denesh received a call from chairman of the selection panel Clyde Butts, who asked him whether or not he was interested in leading the regional team in Test cricket,” the Guardian quoted the source as saying.“Denesh indicated that he was willing to take on the challenge and this message was passed on to the WICB for ratification. By the end of the teleconference tonight, the region would know who will be at the helm for the New Zealand series.” Sammy took over the helm of the West Indies team in 2010, but last year was relieved of his duties as one-day captain, and replaced by all-rounder Dwayne Bravo.He has continued to lead the Test and Twenty20 units, but disastrous results on the Test tours of India and New Zealand last year raised fresh doubts about his position. The Guardian’s source said Sammy’s inability to command a place in the Test XI outside of his role as captain was of concern.“Although the WICB has not made a decision on whether they will go with Ramdin or stick with Sammy, it seems that the all-rounder is under serious pressure this time around. He has not commanded a place in the team outside of being captain, and some see his inclusion as one that has thrown off selectors when it comes to getting the right XI on the park,” the source said.“His record has not been up to par in recent time and this will do him no favours when the directors give their two cents at this teleconference. Ramdin, on the other hand, has improved tremendously with the bat over the last year or so and is tactically a better leader than Sammy.”During his tenure in charge, Sammy has been credited with uniting the squad and returning stability and discipline. Despite this, however, West Indies continue to languish at number eight in the International Cricket Council’s Test rankings.Ramdin, meanwhile, has served as Sammy’s deputy in the past, but is no stranger to controversy.Only last year during the Champions Trophy in England, he was fined his full match fee and suspended for two one-day matches for wrongly claiming a catch against Pakistan.In 2012 during the Test tour of England, he was fined 20 per cent of his match fee for a taunt aimed at West Indies legend, Sir Viv Richards, after scoring a century at Edgbaston.Caribbean Media Corporation NewsSports Sammy faces axe by: – May 9, 2014 31 Views no discussions Share Tweet Share Share
The AWMF-0141 and AWMF-0143 are similar to the previously released ICs in the IGB family, and provide a PA, LNA, 6-bit gain and phase control solution without the T/R switch, all integrated into single IC in Ku and Ka-bands. Removing the T/R switch allows more flexibility and improved output power and noise figure. The AWMF-0141 operates from 10.5 GHz to 16.0 GHz providing +13.5 dBm power output during transmit and 1.5 dB noise figure during receive. The AWMF-0143 operates from 26.0 GHz to 30.0 GHz with +13 dBm of power output during transmit and 3.0 dB noise figure during receive. Both ICs provide 31.5 dB of dynamic range and are packaged in a 2.5 mm x 2.5 mm WLCSP.Anokiwave offers evaluation kits for ease of adoption of the technology and capabilities. The kits include boards with the IC, USB-SPI interface module with drivers, and all required cables. Pilot production deliveries are available now. Click here to learn more about these products. Anokiwave has released a set of two new ICs in a family of multi-function microwave and millimeter-wave Silicon ICs, offering complete transmit/receive functionality with active gain and phase control. The new IC family, also called “Intelligent Gain Blocks” (IGB), offer versatile RF blocks that can be used in wide range of applications including SATCOM, RADAR, 5G communications, and sensing.