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first_imgSANTA CLARA – Running back Matt Breida’s pursuit of a 1,000-yard season appears ready to resume Sunday when the 49ers host the Seattle Seahawks.“As long as everything keeps going the way it has, they gave me the green light and I’ll be ready to go,” Breida said Friday.Inactive last game to rest his season-long ankle injury, Breida was limited in practice all week and is officially listed as questionable.With rain in the forecast, the 49ers (3-10) could rely more on running the ball in their …last_img read more

first_imgSouth Africa has won the top global award at the United Nations Investment Promotion Awards for its excellence in boosting investment sectors that have social and economic benefits and help countries meet the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).The awards, organised by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), honours investment promotions agencies and their governments for their achievements, but also showcases best practices in attracting investment into SDG-related projects that can inspire investment promotion practitioners in developing and developed countries. The award was presented at a high-profile ceremony in the Assembly Hall of the Palais des Nations, Geneva, Switzerland, at the grand opening of the World Investment Forum yesterday.              South Africa was also recently named as the Global Destination of the Year at the 2018 Global Sourcing Association Awards ceremony alongside the Global Sourcing Summit in Cape Town. This award was South Africa’s fifth since 2012, and is further accolade and recognition of South Africa’s value proposition and credible offering that combines global best practice, a talented and scalable labour pool with government support to attract international outsourcing work into South Africa.“This prestigious global award indicates that South Africa’s industrial development is playing an important role towards its economic growth and our investment drive is already starting to make a significant contribution towards achieving its sustainable development goals. InvestSA is now globally recognised to compete in investment promotion and facilitation of large scale investments. As part of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s mobilisation drive to attract investments, these global awards signify and demonstrate that government is committed to improving its investment climate and service to investors,” says Davies                     The prestigious global award was presented to InvestSA for its role in facilitating two pioneering waste-to-nutrient recycling projects to up-cycle organic waste into natural, sustainable high-protein animal feed. Each project will offer much-needed jobs in local communities and is expected to save an annual 80 000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions by diverting organic waste from the landfill. The award was presented by the President of the 73rd session of the United Nations General Assembly, Ms María Fernanda Espinosa Garcés.Minister Davies says that the award is a commendable international recognition that partnerships play an important role in boosting investments in sectors as the award is for an intergovernmental projects facilitated together with the Gauteng provincial government, Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) and GreenCape.“These awards are indicative that our investment mobilisation efforts are making a valuable contribution to social and economic development. We are enhancing our investment facilitation service and InvestSA is able to fast track, unblock and reduce red tape in government through our one-stop shop approach,” says Davies.Issued by: The Department of Trade and Industrylast_img read more

first_img* Because of the limitations in PHPP discovered in the field, PHIUS partnered in 2011 with Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics and Owens Corning to collaborate on a new passive design tool that would appropriately predict energy performance for passive buildings in all climates. We now use WUFI Passive, capable of static (similar to PHPP) as well as a more detailed dynamic simulation to assess whole building energy performance, comfort conditions, hygrothermal performances of envelope assemblies, and hygric interaction of the enclosure and the living space. But between consulting on some projects and certifying and reviewing many others, we learned that the concept of a single Holy Grail standard for North America’s varied climates is just too good to be true.In practice, designers have arguably been forced into non-optimal decisions and designs in pursuit of the European 15 kWh/m²•year metric. For example, in the colder climates they tended to seriously overinsulate — with diminishing returns in the outer layers — and tended to overglaze (with expensive high-performance windows, no less). The projects relied heavily on solar gain to make the energy balance work.With some exceptions (e.g., the Pacific Northwest), the North American continent has design temperatures that are much more challenging than central Europe. It gets significantly colder during the winter, even while the number of heating degree days (HDDs) on an annual basis can look very similar to those in Europe. Madison, Wisconsin, is a perfect example: It has a colder design temperature than Oslo, Norway, while its HDDs are almost 2,000 lower than Oslo’s. PHPP problems in hot, humid climatesThese issues also manifested in the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP). Because PHPP is a massive Excel spreadsheet, users can “look under the hood,” which makes it a nice teaching and learning tool. But while well validated for heating-dominated climates, the tool proved inaccurate when we consulted on the LeBois House in Lafayette, Louisiana.The project was intended to be a proof-of-concept project in the Lafayette climate, and to demonstrate that designers could confidently use PHPP in hot and humid climates. The project plan included monitoring for two years after it was inhabited. During that period it became clear that in PHPP, cooling demand and sensible peak algorithms were off by a large margin. Moreover, we learned that latent loads really need to be accounted for in the standard (they were not at the time).The project was performing significantly better on the sensible cooling demand side than PHPP had predicted, by about 30%*, but worse on the peak — a situation that makes system sizing difficult. On the other hand, RESNET’s energy modeling tool REMRate predicted the actual performance almost spot on.Overall, the project was a huge success. We proved that hot climate passive principles do apply, resulting in superior comfort and significant energy savings. An overreliance on solar gainAlthough design temperatures are colder, there is generally very good solar potential in North America. Therefore designers in the U.S. and Canada tried to compensate by becoming essentially “solar Passivhauses” to get closer to the target, which in return caused overheating and comfort issues. (The passive solar movement learned those lessons in the 1970s. Ironically, those lessons were the ones that led to the development of the original passive house concept that deemphasized solar and reemphasized insulation.)Let’s face it: the annual heating demand of 15 kWh/m²•year was a result of meeting 10 W/m2 peak load in a specific climate, the European climate, with less extreme design temperatures — which as a bonus also allowed “supply air heating only” — the flagship core definition of a Passivhaus as established by the Passivhaus Institut (PHI).The specific relationship of annual demand and peak load in the European climate has led to the characteristic definition of the standard. Yet, the relationship of annual heating demand and peak load is not a strong one, and is very different on the North American continent. This is likely the reason why the pioneers in the 1970s and 1980s had identified generally similar peak loads as energy targets but paid little attention to limit their peaks to “supply air only,” because they could not get there, and comfort was still assured with slightly higher peak loads and greater annual demands. By August of 2011, eight years had passed since we completed the Smith House, the first home in the United States to be built to the European Passivhaus standard. Those eight years were heady and full: We founded the national non-profit Passive House Institute U.S. (PHIUS). We created a Certified Passive House Consultant (CPHC) training curriculum and delivered trainings to hundreds of professionals from coast to coast.Those pioneering professionals began building their own projects from coast to coast, and from north to south, in all U.S. climate zones save for Florida. Because PHIUS had a good deal of practical experience building its own projects, because it provided training and certification (at the time under the auspices of the German Passivhaus Institut), PHIUS was quite naturally closely involved with nearly all of these projects.And that’s when we — PHIUS and CPHCs and builders across the United States — began collectively to learn the limitations of the European Passivhaus metric in varied climate zones outside of Central Europe. Some buildings were overinsulated and overglazedTo be sure, the concept of a single, relatively easily understood, internationally applicable energy metric for heating and cooling was (and is) enormously attractive. And in Central Europe the metrics have been well verified and tested. RELATED ARTICLES Redefining PassivhausAn Inside Look at the New PHIUS StandardNew Passive House Rules Take EffectA New Passivhaus Standard for North AmericaPossible Relaxation of Passivhaus Standard Stirs Debate A Petition Strives to Defend a Certain Definition of ‘Passive House’ A Proposed Passivhaus Amendment for New EnglandPHIUS PHloggingBuilding Science Corp. and PHIUS to CollaborateA Passivhaus Conference in GermanyA Post-Passivhaus Paradigm for Energy-Efficient Design Joseph Lstiburek Surprises Passive House Conference Attendees Developing new passive house standards for North AmericaIn 2011, the PHIUS Technical Committee, a volunteer body based on modified consensus and comprised of international building science experts and North American passive house practitioners, embarked on the plan to identify a methodology to generate new passive standards for all climate zones. The tech committee has identified four foundational principles that the standard should follow:1. Being biased towards conservation by constraining the envelope design through definition of annual heating and cooling demands and peak loads per climate that must be met using passive measures first. The climate-specific annual demand thresholds should pay back the investment and peak load thresholds should assure comfort.2. Meeting a total primary energy maximum per person for all energy uses in a building. This is essentially the equivalent to a carbon limit, responding very directly to the amount of carbon savings that need to be achieved in the building sector to stabilize the climate.3. An airtightness requirement assuring building envelope durability, verified by climate and measured in air leakage per square foot of envelope area.4. Cost-effectiveness using national average costs for materials and energy.The sweet spot or characteristic energy use intensity (EUI) is then defined as the optimum design between demand and supply, or more specifically, between conservation and generation. In California, PV beats passive houseBut this project was another example of an overarching conclusion: the original German standard and tool were inadequate when applied in climates other than the cool, moderate, heating-dominated baseline climate. Results did not support the one-size-fits-all standard concept.In cold climates, unreasonably high investment costs led people to abandon the concept, and uptake in northern cold climates remains to this day insignificant. In warmer climates like coastal California, a European passive house is easily beaten by a house with a photovoltaic system, because the standard does not go far enough and does not harvest enough through conservation to make it a financial slam dunk.Standards are tools that help us to quantify, measure against and meet certain goals we have agreed upon. It’s only logical that they need to be updated and refined as economics, materials and other conditions change and as we learn more. It is an evolutionary process.Standards should evolve, informed by feedback loops, or they become a hindrance, not a help. We can’t blindly trust: we need to verify and validate to assure that our models remain applicable. Lower PV prices have changed the conversationIn a sustainable world we must look at zero energy as our goal. We are no longer only trying to justify the cost-effectiveness of a certain level of stand-alone conservation, we are trying to justify the optimal combination of both, conservation and generation, to reach zero energy.The energy supply would be expected to come from renewable sources; for buildings this would most likely come from photovoltaic (PV) systems. The cost for these systems has come down dramatically over the past few years. This changes the conversation significantly. Figuring that zero is our goal, the cost of PV has a significant impact on where the optimum lies. Now zero has indeed realistically become our new target; positive energy is next. That alone is reason to redo the calculations and refine the standards.In 2013 we pitched the idea of refining the standard depending on climate and cost to Building Science Corporation in Westford, Massachusetts. They liked the idea and submitted a research proposal with PHIUS as an industry partner under their DOE Building America contract to define passive standards by climate zone according to U.S. cost data. The calculations are being done using the energy modeling tool WUFI Passive (developed by the Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics, Owens Corning, and PHIUS) and the energy and cost optimizer BEopt (developed by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory). Solutions that weren’t cost-effectiveOverinsulation and overglazing both resulted in overspending beyond cost effectiveness, seriously challenging the claim that 15 kWh/m²•year is somewhat magically the cost optimum/sweet spot between demand and supply everywhere in the world. (See many earlier articles by Martin Holladay questioning the 16-inch-thick subslab insulation of early Passivhaus projects and the discussions that followed.)Conversely, in warmer and milder climates (a prime example being California), the target of 15 kWh/m²•year is actually too high, allowing projects to leave significant cost-effective energy savings on the table. In extreme hot and humid climates like Florida, we learned that energy targets for cooling were simply unattainable.It appeared that the European standard had simply mirrored the heating demand of 15 kWh/m²•year for cooling without verifying it in hot climates. In practice, insulation does not yield the dramatic return in energy savings in cooling-dominated climates as it does in heating climates; in fact too much insulation can increase the cooling load. European internal load assumptions don’t work for North AmericaIn reviewing base assumptions for the model, the tech committee also decided that the internal loads currently assumed in the European model are far from realistic. While the committee agreed that the defaults for internal loads should be stringent compared to the current national average use of miscellaneous electrical loads, they also acknowledged that the current European defaults are only one-seventh of the actual current internal load average in the United States. This leads to a significant mismatch of what is assumed and what happens in reality.Corrected higher initial internal loads in turn impact heating and cooling demand criteria on an annual basis, and have an impact on where those demand criteria need to be defined when setting standards.As of this writing, the standard adaptation test plan is almost complete and the parameters and the methodology for the study have been decided. As the project progresses, the dynamic modeling side of WUFI Passive will be used to verify hygrothermal wall assembly performance by climate and to assure that the comfort criteria by zone are maintained when annual heating or cooling demands are slightly increased or reduced.Preliminary results are looking very promising. PHIUS is already accepting projects under a pilot certification program.As the work has moved forward, questions have arisen as to how granular these new standards should be. The final format is still an open question. Originally, a zone-based standard model was envisioned, but it is also possible that the study will result in the development of an equation that accurately calculates the respective heating, cooling demand and peak loads by location.The new climate specific standards findings are scheduled to be presented for the first time during the Ninth Annual North American Passive House Conference in San Francisco, September 12-13, 2014. A one-hundred-year payback period is unrealisticThe effort is running calculations for all climates for a typical single-family home, with carefully chosen and defined design constraints and energy baseline features, first in BEopt. All baseline decisions were carefully conceived and evaluated by the PHIUS tech committee. In the process, it became clear that the European case for cost effectiveness of the 15 kWh/m²•year standard is based on a 100-year lifecycle period for a single-family end townhouse.The tech committee found this to be an unrealistic value for a North American economic feasibility assessment of conservation measures. One hundred years might be accurate in an ultimately sustainable energy economy, but we are not there yet. The measures need to be cost-effective in the old economy as we are transitioning to the new. Consequently, the tech committee opted to use 30 years instead of 100.The committee also settled on using a detached, average size single-family home — the predominant housing type in North America. The detached home is also arguably a worst-case scenario to use as a benchmark; any other building type, larger or attached, will perform better. Katrin Klingenberg is the co-founder and executive director of the Passive House Institute U.S. (PHIUS). She has spoken and published on passive building topics nationally and internationally, holds a masters degree in architecture, and is a licensed architect in Germany.last_img read more

first_imgThe crisis within the ruling Naga People’s Front (NPF) government in Nagaland has further deepened with Chief Minister Shurhozelie Liezietsu sacking 10 of his parliamentary secretaries following a demand for his removal, an official said on July 9, 2017.The development comes as former Chief Minister T.R. Zeliang on July 8, 2017 wrote to Governor P.B. Acharya and staked claim to form a new government. He claimed he has the support of 33 NPF legislators and seven Independent legislators. In the wake of the demand for his removal, Mr. Liezietsu, who is also the NPF chief, terminated four NPF legislators and six Independent legislators, as parliamentary secretaries.The Nagaland government issued notifications terminating the appointment of Mr. Zeliang as Advisor (Finance) and Mr. Nuklotoshi as Advisor to Chief Minister.Apart from sacking the legislators, the NPF Disciplinary Action Committee which met on July 8, 2017 also suspended 10 legislators as primary and active members of the party.Those suspended include Home Minister Yanthungo Patton, Power Minister Kipili Sangtam, National Highway and Political Affairs Minister G. Kaito Aye, Forest and Environment Minister Imkong L. Imchen, besides, Shetoyi, Nuklutoshi, Deo Nukhu, Naiba Konyak, Benjongliba and Mr. Zeliang. Mr. Zeliang along with 41 legislators are camping at Borgos resort in Kaziranga National Park in Assam to discuss the transition of power. “All 41 of us are intact and we are waiting only for Governor Acharya to invite Zeliang to form the government,” Forest and Environment Minister Imkong L. Imchen told IANS.“We don’t care about (suspension from the party) it because those people who have signed the suspension order do not have the grassroots support,” Mr. Imchen said, while refusing to divulge further.Governor Acharya is in Maharashtra and he is expected to return to Nagaland in a few days.The fresh political instability has come at a time when Mr. Liezietsu is gearing up for the July 29 byelection from the Northern Angami-I assembly constituency. Mr. Liezietsu has however voiced confidence that the crisis within the NPF would be resolved at the earliest.Mr. Liezietsu was sworn in as Chief Minister on February 22, 2017 after Mr. Zeliang’s resignation following a violent protest by tribal groups who were opposed to his move to hold civic polls with 33% reservation for women.The Chief Minister said that he was deeply pained by the recent disturbing developments affecting the normal functioning of the government.“The current issue is within the NPF party and will be resolved at the earliest to bring about normalcy in the state. The mandate of the people will be respected and the present crisis will be resolved in the larger interest of the people of the state,” Mr. Liezietsu stated.Noting that the NPF-led government will complete its full term, the beleaguered Chief Minister appealed to the people of the state to remain calm.In his letter to the Governor, Mr. Zeliang said “The legislators also urged the present Chief Minister Shurhozelie Liezietsu, who is a non-legislator, to resign and pave way for me (Mr. Zeliang) to take over as the Chief Minister.”Claiming support of 34 (including himself) out of the 47 NPF legislators, he also told Mr. Acharya that seven Independent legislators have also affirmed their support in his favour.The legislators wanted him to continue as leader of NPF legislature party and also authorised him to stake claim to form a new NPF-led Democratic Alliance of Nagaland government.In the truncated 59-member Assembly, the ruling Democratic Alliance of Nagaland coalition government comprises 47 NPF legislators, four BJP and eight Independents. The NPF MLAs include the 10 suspended legislators.Interestingly, Mr. Zeliang has even warmed up to his once bitter rival Neiphiu Rio, a three-time Nagaland Chief Minister. Mr. Rio, the lone Lok Sabha member from Nagaland, was suspended a couple of years back for “anti-party activities”, particularly against Mr. Zeliang.last_img read more

first_imgPercepio has announced a major update of Tracealyzer, its tool for visual software tracing of RTOS-based embedded systems and IoT devices. Tracealyzer version 4 has been redesigned from the bottom up, spanning from much faster data processing to a fresh modern user interface with live visualization. It also sports a host of new features aimed at empowering embedded developers and enabling them to get their products to market faster with fewer bugs.New features are:Unlimited tracing – Monitor your application over long test runs, spanning hours, days or even weeks, and see analysis results, such as task execution times, immediately. Find interesting spots in the new trace preview and drill down into the details using the full power of Tracealyzer.Advanced live visualization – View the trace live while recording. Pause individual views to zoom in and inspect details while recording continues in the background. This way you can spot issues in the trace directly as they occur.Tracealyzer 4 provides better support for tracing Internet-of-Things devices and other connected applications with new awareness of network and I/O events. This allows for visualizing communication data rates over time, as well as the runtime interactions between tasks and communication interfaces like TCP sockets.Adapt Tracealyzer to your specific use case and see what really matters to you. Tracealyzer 4 allows you to define custom intervals that highlight and report the time between selected software events. Moreover, with user-defined state machines you can visualize any state information in the trace, from software state variables or logged hardware states, either as state transition graphs or shown on a time line, much like in a logic analyzer.Tracealyzer version 4 will be on display in Percepio’s booth at Embedded World in Nuremberg next week. It will then be generally available in early March for Keil RTX5, FreeRTOS and Amazon FreeRTOS. Support for other RTOSs will be added during the first half of 2018.In the UK, Tracealyzer is available from high reliability and safety-critical tools specialist, Phaedrus Systems.Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInMoreRedditTumblrPinterestWhatsAppSkypePocketTelegram Tags: Tools & Software Continue Reading Previous Red Pitaya: ‘Swiss Army PenKnife for engineers’ company to exhibit at embedded worldNext Microsemi: third-party IP offerings for PolarFire FPGAs at embedded worldlast_img read more

first_imgVANCOUVER — A rare encounter with several juvenile bluntnose sixgill sharks in waters off Vancouver implies the population may be larger than previously thought, says a marine biologist.Chris Harvey-Clark of Dalhousie University was part of a team of researchers who used a small submarine to explore the waters about a kilometre off the coast and about 100 metres below the surface.He said they were surprised to see three juvenile sixgills, in part because the population was thought to have been reduced significantly by an experimental fishery that operated in the 1990s.“Over all the years I’ve been doing this, since the 1970s, I’ve only seen maybe two or three juveniles. I think that’s what made the experience off downtown Vancouver so amazing,” he said in an interview.“In thousands of dives I’ve done, I’ve only seen two or three juvenile sixgills. And all of a sudden, bang, in a very short period of time, you see three. To me, that was the dramatic moment that this sub dive led to.”Harvey-Clark, who is also a veterinarian, wrote about the September 2017 discovery in a paper published last month in Sea Technology.He said it’s also unusual to see juvenile sixgills, which are about one to two metres long, because the cannibalistic nature of sharks means that the younger, smaller animals are often forced to hide in deeper waters.“Juveniles of this species are rarely found at that size. It’s a highly cannibalistic species. If a big one finds a little one, they just eat it,” Harvey-Clark said.“These juveniles, almost neonatal sharks, are probably using depth as a way to segregate from other adults of their species who would eat them if they could find them.”The slow-growing, but long-lived species of shark is typically found in waters up to 2,000 metres deep and grows to five or six metres.The researchers put out bait of oily fish but the sharks also appeared to be very attracted to the metal parts of the sub. Because they’re a deep-sea shark, they detect prey based on microvolt amounts of current the bottom fish are putting out, he explained.He said it was also interesting to see that there was a lot of food for sixgills at a depth of only 100 metres.“There was lots of dogfish, lots of ratfish, tons and tons of squid species that we don’t really see much of in shallow water in that part of Vancouver,” he said.“The whole thing was illuminating about the whole life that goes on beneath the surface right off a densely populated city centre. People swimming off the beaches of Vancouver would never imagine the sharks out there.”But he doesn’t think swimmers should be too nervous about the creatures taking a bite out of them.“You don’t want to ever say that about something that gets this big. These sharks get to be a huge size. They eat everything. They have a giant mouth and saw teeth,” he added.“But there have been many, many diver encounters with this species and nobody’s ever really had an aggressive encounter with a sixgill.”He said they’re a slow-moving, relatively sedentary bottom-feeding species, and their favourite food is stuff that’s already dead.“If you want to see a sixgill really get active, some salmon offal on the bottom … That’s really what they’re after.”Laura Kane, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

first_imgAPTN National NewsAboriginal students and teachers from around the world are in North Western Ontario this week.Looking for ways to improve the education system for Indigenous students across the globeAPTN’s Wayne Rivers reports.last_img