1 Torino forward Andrea Belotti assessed by stats experts WhoScored.com Football statistics experts WhoScored.com take a look at the £86 million Manchester City target currently leading the Serie A scoring chartsIn the pursuit of the Capocannoniere, many would have tipped the usual suspects to secure the individual accolade in Serie A. Gonzalo Higuain, who scored 36 league goals for Napoli last season, had been tipped to better that return following his switch to Juventus in the summer, while new teammate and compatriot Paulo Dybala would have been in with a good chance of landing the award. In Rome, Edin Dzeko has been scoring for fun, while Mauro Icardi is in the form of his career for Inter Milan.Yet, the man leading the scoring charts in Serie A plies his trade for Torino.Andrea Belotti has scored more goals (22) than any other player in Italy’s top tier this term. Only Edinson Cavani (27) and Lionel Messi (23) have scored more goals than Belotti in Europe’s top five leagues this season, to reaffirm a statistically calculated WhoScored.com strength of ‘finishing’.Only Dzeko (7.75) has gained a better rating than the young striker (7.73) in Serie A this term with the frontman unsurprisingly earning countless admirers across the continent.A number of Europe’s top teams have understandably registered an interest in Belotti, who at the time of writing has a £86 million (€100m) release clause in his contract, which he signed in December. “If I had the chance to do it all over again today, I’d make the clause €150m,” Torino owner Urbano Cairo recently told Sky Italia. While Torino would be understandably keen to retain their key man’s services, a failure to secure a European finish would undeniably speed up his exit from the Stadio Olimpico Grande Torino.Despite a host of clubs tracking Belotti, Torino are not expected to sell unless any team triggers his release clause, reducing potential destinations to a handful who can match the huge asking price. Manchester City are thought to be readying a big money move for the foward at the end of the season, with Pep Guardiola’s side more than able to pay the required fee for the 23-year-old.Sergio Aguero, despite his recent good form, is still being linked with a move away from Manchester City, and with the club set to miss out on Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, it’s thought they have instead made Belotti their number one striking target.It’s for good reason too. Belotti has been in stunning goalscoring form for a Torino side that creates just 10.7 chances per league game, making him one of the most clinical finishers around. Indeed, of the 49 players to score 10 or more goals in Europe’s top five leagues this season, he boasts the fourth best conversion rate (27.5%).Yet it’s not just his goalscoring exploits that has seen the list of admirers grow, but the manner with which he has scored his goals.Any striker has a preference to the way they hit the back of the net, but not Belotti. He may have scored more headed goals (8) than any other player in Europe’s top five leagues this season, but he’s also scored nine with his right foot and five with his left, while 21 of his 22 goals have been netted in the opposition penalty area.While that latter statistic could see Belotti labeled as nothing more than a goal poacher, he often looks to bring others into play and create for teammates. He’s averaging more key passes per game (1.7) than any other Torino player and while he has just three assists to his name, that figure would undeniably rise with a team as ruthless as City.With Guardiola also demanding his attackers pressure defenders, Belotti would be more than capable of carrying out the Spaniard’s wishes, with an average of 1 tackle per game a respectable return for the striker.Belotti won’t come cheap, with Torino unwilling to drop their asking price below his £86 million release clause, but the prolific Italian is the ideal striker to fire City back to the Premier League’s summit.For more stats on Andrea Belotti, click here to view his WhoScored.com player page
As mentioned, for those who have questions or are looking for updates on Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure, be sure to ask a Team Member while visiting the park. Share This!Starting with 10 hour long waits, Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Islands of Adventure has certainly been popular since opening just a little less than a week ago. Adding to that extreme popularity, there have also been some lengthy down times, due to both weather issues, as well as other maintenance issues that are certainly frustrating for Guests. While the park has been working to accommodate its Guests who want to ride Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure, it has been doing so beyond regular park hours.Universal Orlando Resort has actually released a statement indicating that due to the sophistication of the attraction and because of some of these other issues, their team needs to take some time in the mornings to care for the ride’s daily maintenance, as well as technical support. To make sure their team has the time to complete the work that is needed, the attraction will now be opening sometime at midday for the next couple of weeks.The full update can be read here:
1 December 2010Pretoria Metal Pressings (PMP), a division of South Africa’s Denel Group, has won a R93-million order for ammunition components from Global Combat Systems Munitions, a unit of BAE Systems in the United Kingdom.Pretoria-based PMP began manufacturing brass cups and discs for BAE Systems in 2001, and has since supplied more than 2.4-billion components in more than 350 weekly shipments. Brass cups and discs are the basic components from which small and medium caliber ammunition is manufactured.“This latest follow-on order is for the deliveries in 2011. In addition to ensuring the retention of skills and jobs at PMP’s Brass plant, this export contract also increases PMP’s foreign exchange earnings”, said PMP chief executive Carel Wolhuter.Successful partnershipPMP’s successful partnership with BAE Systems is a fruit of the UK company’s activities in fulfilling its Industrial Participation offset obligation tied to South Africa’s purchase of Hawk and Gripen aircraft for the SA Air Force.The South African-manufactured brass components are shipped weekly to Global Combat Systems Munitions at Radway Green, England in 40- to 60-ton batches.Global Combat Systems munitions procurement director Mark McIntyre said: “PMP has proven to be a reliable and strategic supplier in a business where on-time deliveries and the highest quality of manufacturing standards are absolutely critical.Jobs-saving deal“BAE Systems is also excited that its offset partnership activities with the Denel Group and others have been a catalyst for positive change and development in South Africa’s defence industry”.Denel Group CEO Talib Sadik congratulated PMP and BAE Systems on finalising this follow-up contract.He said that it was a further milestone in ensuring stable financial performance by PMP, and ensured the retention of close to 200 jobs at PMP’s Brass Plant.Sapa
25 January 2011Creating jobs in South Africa, while at the same time striving for decent work, will be the key focus of the Labour Department’s policies in the years ahead, says Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant.“We have to ensure that our policies do not have negative consequences for employment,” Oliphant said at the annual labour policy conference in Pretoria on Monday. “Some may want to argue that our priority should be decent work. I would, however, caution against getting into an either-or debate.“What we ultimately want are jobs that are decent,” the minister said. “We know that the International Labour Organisation defines work as being productive jobs for women and men in conditions of freedom, equity, security and human dignity.”She said it was critical that the social partners at the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac) engaged seriously and vigorously with the proposed amendments to South Africa’s labour law.“I am sure we would all want the amendments to be passed into law as soon as possible so that the legal reforms can begin to change labour relations and the operation of the labour market for the better,” she said.Through the proposed changes, Oliphant said the department wanted to strengthen the powers of the country’s labour inspectorate. This would see non-compliance with the law being criminalised and penalties being increased for violation of the Basic Conditions of Employment Act and the Employment Equity Act.“The Labour Relations Act is also being amended to strengthen the enforcement of arbitration awards issued by the Commission for Conciliation Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) as well as Bargaining and Statutory Councils.”She said it was only through co-operation, rather than competition, that South Africa’s labour market could be changed for the better.Oliphant said the strategic objectives of the department over the next five years included:Contributing to employment creation.Promoting equity in the labour market.Protecting vulnerable workers.Strengthening social protection.Promoting sound labour relations.Strengthening the capacity of labour market institutions.Strengthening the institutional capacity of the department.Source: BuaNews
23 March 2015South Africa faces New Zealand in an ICC Cricket World Cup semi-final at Eden Park in Auckland on Tuesday. And the opportunity to play in his first World Cup means “everything” to middle-order batsman David Miller.The 25-year-old says the pressure moments that come with playing in a World Cup event are a privilege and an experience that every cricketer works towards.“It’s the first World Cup for me and it’s a dream come true,” Miller said in Auckland on Sunday. “To be in a semi-final, that’s another notch on the belt. I’m really excited for what is coming on Tuesday, it’s going to be a great game ahead. New Zealand are playing really well, we are playing really well, so it will be a good contest.” WATCH: South Africans across the country and the world will be supporting our boys for the semifinals. Watch Jean, Ernie Els, Bryan Habana and others get behind our boys. #ProteaFire “There is obviously a lot of pressure,” Miller said. “A lot of things going on in your head but it’s actually a privilege to be in [a pressured] position. The guys have worked really hard in their careers, all the highs and lows come down to a moment like this.”New Zealand are unbeaten in the tournament, and as one of the host nations, enter the match as the favourites.Miller says it will come down to whoever can absorb the most pressure during the key moments, particularly against a side that has been dominant with both bat and ball.“We have had a game plan over the past two years that we have been sticking to,” he explained. “It’s about everyone coming through at the right times when the team needs them. Pakistan wasn’t a great result but the consistency we have had as a team over the last while has been phenomenal. For us taking that confidence of what’s happened in the past in to Tuesday’s game will be vital. And obviously assessing the situation on the day.”The Eden Park field dimensions bring a unique factor towards preparation for the match, and will need a change in approach from the batsmen, particularly with the short straight boundaries.This tour is Mmiller’s first visit to New Zealand. “It’s good to have already played a game [at Eden Park] to get a feel of the ground. The dimensions of the field are really straight and short, long on the square boundaries, so it’s something to get used to.”The Castle Lager Proteas face New Zealand at Eden Park at 3am on Tuesday. Catch the match live on SuperSport 2, SABC 3 & 2000FM. Build up starts at 2am, play starts at 3amWORLD CUP MATCHESGroup matches15 February, 3am: South Africa beat Zimbabwe.22 February, 5.30am: India beat South Africa.27 February, 5.30am: South beat West Indies.3 March, 5.30am: South Africa beat Ireland.7 March, 3am: Pakistan beat South Africa.12 March, 3am: South Africa beat United Arab Emirates.Quater-finals18 March, 5.30am: South Africa beat Sri Lanka, Sydney Cricket Ground19 March, 5.30am: India beat Bangladesh, Melbourne Cricket Ground20 March, 5.30am: Australia beat Pakistan, Adelaide Oval21 March, 3am: New Zealand beat West Indies, Westpac Stadium, WellingtonSemifinals24 March, 3am: South Africa v New Zealand, Eden Park, Auckland26 March, 5.30am: India v Australia, Sydney Cricket GroundFinal29 March, 5.30am: Melbourne Cricket GroundSource: Cricket South Africa and ICC
ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Posted on October 8, 2010November 13, 2014Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)The following is part of a series of project updates from Future Generations. MHTF is supporting their project, Using Pregnancy Histories to Help Mothers, based in Peru. More information on MHTF supported projects can be found here. All photos courtesy of Laura Altobelli.Written by: Future GenerationsWe have our office and staff quarters up and running in the rural town of Urcos, about one hour south of the city of Cusco. Being home to one of the seven wonders of the world, Macchu Pichu, the city of Cusco has a multi-million dollar tourist industry but, paradoxically, in its rural areas among the highest rates of maternal and perinatal mortality in the country. One understands this when visiting our 28 project communities, divided into 62 sectors and annexes, which require a one, two or more-hour drive (or two to six-hour walk on foot) on rutty dirt roads through the Andes, there and back from the major towns of Urcos or Quiquijana on the main paved road through the river valley. Public transportation runs only on Sundays from communities. Not surprising that mothers are tempted to give birth at home or to delay seeking care for a sick newborn or infant when faced with that long walk.We selected the “highland communities” for our intervention since that is where the need is, where women and families tend to live in scattered homesteads with limited and pyramidal social organization. We have been pleased at the very positive response from community leaders and husbands to the idea that Women Leaders will be trained to teach women in their community.Community health promoters who have received training in the past have mostly been men. One told us, “How good that women will be trained: they are shy and need to be more active.” One woman, not so shy, who was chosen by other women in her community to receive training from the project as a Women Leader told everyone, “Now it will be a rule that every time we meet to pick up food [from a government food distribution program for children] I will make you stay to get a talk on health.” In another community, the men joked that they will be fine while the selected Women Leaders are away at training since they cook better than the women. At that, everyone laughed heartily.Share this:
With the NCAA Tournament finishing up its third round games yesterday, we figured we’d give you another kind of bracket to debate until the Sweet 16 gets started. The ‘Round of 64’ matchups in our 64 Most Annoying Fan Bases bracket have been completed, and there were a few surprises – at least to us. You can check out the opening round contests for the #BBN region here, the #FSUTwitter region here, the #WeAre region here, and the #PAWWWL region here.We’ve condensed the ‘Round of 32’ games into this one post, so make sure to vote on all 16 matchups below. Who will eventually be crowned the most annoying fan base in all of college sports?The 64 Most Annoying Fan Bases Bracket Vote On The #BBN Region Below1. Kentucky Basketball Fans vs. 8. Ohio State Football FansKentucky Basketball Fans received 68% of the vote against College Basketball Fans Who Only Care About The NCAA Tournament. Ohio State Football Fans crushed Coach Cal Haters, gaining 73% of the vote in their contest. Was OSU seeded too low? We’ll find out when they take on #BBN. More Annoying: Kentucky Basketball Fans or Ohio State Football Fans?4. Indiana Basketball Fans vs. 5. Auburn Football FansAuburn Football Fans just edged Oregon Football Fans, 55%-45%. Indiana Basketball Fans were voted more annoying than Wichita State Basketball Fans, 65%-35%. This could be one of the closest matchups of the entire round. More Annoying: Auburn Football Fans or Indiana Basketball Fans?2. UConn Women’s Basketball Fans vs. 10. People Who Talk About Their NCAA Bracket PicksUConn Women’s Basketball Fans took down Syracuse Lacrosse Fans, 71%-29%. People Who Talk About Their NCAA Bracket Picks actually scored the first upset of the tournament, taking down Louisville Basketball Fans, 59%-41%. It’ll be interesting to see which group people find more intolerable here. More Annoying: People Who Talk About Their NCAA Bracket Picks vs. UConn Women’s Basketball Fans3. S-E-C Chanters vs. 6. Drake Apologists A particularly strong early round matchup here. S-E-C Chanters demolished Boise State Football Fans, 76%-24%. Drake Apologists crushed NC State Basketball Fans, 69%-31%. Good luck picking this one. More Annoying: Drake Apologists or S-E-C Chanters?Vote On The #FSUTwitter Region Below1. Duke Basketball Fans vs. 9. Kansas Basketball FansDuke Basketball Fans beat out Arizona Basketball Fans, 85%-15% in the opening round, proving their worthiness. Kansas Basketball Fans, on the other hand, just eked out Oklahoma Football Fans, 51%-49%. Who marches on to the Sweet 16? More Annoying: Duke Basketball Fans or Kansas Basketball Fans?4. Fans Who Tweet At Recruits vs. 5. West Virginia Football FansFans Who Tweet At Recruits put a whooping on Ole Miss Football Fans, winning 80%-20%. West Virginia Football Fans beat out Conference Realignment Rumormongers, 52%-48%. The Twitter hacks are going to be tough to take down. More Annoying: West Virginia Football Fans or Fans Who Tweet At Recruits?2. Florida State Football Fans vs. 7. North Carolina Basketball FansIt’s an all-ACC matchup in this one. Florida State Football Fans defeated Baylor Football Fans, 79%-21%. North Carolina Basketball Fans cruised against Michigan State Basketball Fans, 72%-28%. We’ll see if they can stop #FSUTwitter’s run to the Final Four. More Annoying: North Carolina Basketball Fans or Florida State Football Fans?3. USC Football Fans vs. 11. NCAA ApologistsUSC Football Fans had a strong showing, gathering 83% of the vote against Rutgers Football Fans. Meanwhile, in a true upset, NCAA Apologists took down Florida Football Fans, 52%-48%. The Trojans fan base is a heavy favorite here. More Annoying: NCAA Apologists or USC Football Fans?Vote On The #WeAre Region Below1. Notre Dame Football Fans vs. 9. Maryland Basketball FansNotre Dame Football Fans may be the most annoying group in the country when it’s all said and done. Irish supporters scored 86% of the vote against BYU Basketball Fans in the first round. Maryland Basketball Fans scored an upset, taking down Iowa Football Fans 55%-45%. More Annoying: Notre Dame Football Fans or Maryland Basketball Fans?4. Miami Football Fans vs. 5. Michigan Football FansMiami Football Fans were voted more annoying than Nebraska Football Fans, 60%-40%. Michigan Football Fans, perhaps underseeded, crushed UCLA Basketball Fans, 77%-23%. This one should be tight. More Annoying: Michigan Football Fans or Miami Football Fans?2. Penn State Football Fans vs. 7. Texas Football FansTwo fan bases of traditional powerhouses that had no trouble in the first round. PSU Football Fans took down Arizona State Basketball Fans, 80%-20%. Texas Football Fans were almost as dominant, knocking off Virginia Tech Football Fans, 73%-27%. More Annoying: Texas Football Fans or Penn State Football Fans?3. UConn Men’s Basketball Fans vs. 6. Texas A&M Football FansIn a matchup of former Big East rivals, UConn Men’s Basketball Fans were voted way more annoying than Villanova Basketball Fans, 82%-18%. Texas A&M Football Fans had no problem with Dick Vitale Haters, pulling in 61% of the vote. More Annoying: Texas A&M Football Fans or UConn Basketball Fans?Vote On The #PAWWWL Region Below1. Alabama Football Fans vs. 8. South Carolina Football FansAlabama Football Fans, a strong 1-seed, crushed Kenny Chesney Apologists in the first round, 82%-18%. South Carolina Fans were voted more annoying than that of their rival, Clemson, 60%-40%. We’ll be surprised if the Tide don’t roll on here. More Annoying: Alabama Football Fans or South Carolina Football Fans?4. Georgia Football Fans vs. 5. Syracuse Basketball FansEasily one of the hardest matchups to call in this round. Georgia Football Fans were voted more annoying that SEC Network Conspiracy Theorists, 53%-47%. Syracuse Basketball Fans, one of the best-traveling college basketball groups in the country, took down Gonzaga Basketball Fans, 73%-27%. This one is a toss-up. More Annoying: Syracuse Basketball Fans or Georgia Football Fans?2. Big East Nostalgists vs. 10. Tennessee Football FansBig East Nostalgists, who probably watch that 30 For 30 on repeat, cruised to victory over Georgetown Basketball Fans, 68%-32%. Tennessee Football Fans, on the other hand, scored an interesting upset over West Virginia Basketball Fans, 64%-36%. Are Vols supporters underseeded here? More Annoying: Tennessee Football Fans or Big East Nostalgists?3. Paul Finebaum Callers vs. 6. LSU Football FansSome of these people may actually fit into both categories, but regardless, it should be close. Paul Finebaum Callers, who more-than-deserve a category of their own, beat out Johns Hopkins Lacrosse Fans, 77%-23%. LSU Football Fans had no trouble with Pitt Basketball Fans, triumphing 80%-20%. Good luck picking this one. More Annoying: LSU Football Fans or Paul Finebaum Callers?Check Out The Entire First Round’s Matchups Here >>>
Source:https://www.en.uni-muenchen.de/ Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Oct 25 2018Spending long periods in space not only leads to muscle atrophy and reductions in bone density, it also has lasting effects on the brain. However, little is known about how different tissues of the brain react to exposure to microgravity, and it remains unclear whether and to what extent the neuroanatomical changes so far observed persist following return to normal gravity. In cooperation with Russian colleagues and with neuroscientists based at the University of Antwerp led by Floris L. Wuyts, LMU neurologist Professor Peter zu Eulenburg has completed the first long-term study in Russian cosmonauts. In this study, which appears in the New England Journal of Medicine, they show that differential changes in the three main tissue volumes of the brain remain detectable for at least half a year after the end of their last mission.The study was carried out on ten cosmonauts, each of whom had spent an average of 189 days on board the International Space Station (ISS). The authors used magnetic resonance tomography (MRT) to image the brains of the subjects both before and shortly after the conclusion of their long-term missions. In addition, seven members of the cohort were re-examined seven months after their return from space. “This is actually the first study in which it has been possible to objectively quantify changes in brain structures following a space mission also including an extended follow-up period,” zu Eulenburg points out.The MRT scans performed in the days after the return to Earth revealed that the volume of the grey matter (the part of the cerebral cortex that mainly consists of the cell bodies of the neurons) was reduced compared to the baseline measurement before launch. In the follow-up scans done 7 months later, this effect was partly reversed, but nevertheless still detectable. In contrast, the volume of the cerebrospinal fluid, which fills the inner and outer cavities of the brain, increased within the cortex during long-term exposure to microgravity. Moreover, this process was also observable in the outside spaces that cover the brain after the return to Earth, while the cerebrospinal fluid spaces within returned to near normal size. The white matter tissue volume (those parts of the brain that are primarily made up of nerve fibers) appeared to be unchanged upon investigation immediately after landing. However, the subsequent examination 6 months later showed a widespread reduction in volume relative to both earlier measurements. In this case, the researchers postulate that over the course of a longer stint in space, the volume of the white matter may slowly be replaced by an influx of cerebrospinal fluid. Upon return to Earth, this process is then gradually reversed, which then results in a relative reduction of white matter volume.Related StoriesAn active brain and body associated with reduced risk of dementiaResearchers measure EEG-based brain responses for non-speech and speech sounds in childrenRush University Medical Center offers new FDA-approved treatment for brain aneurysms”Taken together, our results point to prolonged changes in the pattern of cerebrospinal fluid circulation over a period of at least seven months following the return to Earth,” says zu Eulenburg. “However, whether or not the extensive alterations shown in the grey and the white matter lead to any changes in cognition remains unclear at present,” he adds. So far the only clinical indication for detrimental effects is a reduction in visual acuity that was demonstrated in several long-term space travelers. These changes may very well be attributable to the increased pressure exerted by the cerebrospinal fluid on the retina and the optic nerve. The governing cause for the widespread structural changes in the brain following long spaceflights might lie in minimal pressure changes within the body’s various water columns under conditions of microgravity that have a cumulative effect over time. According to the authors, to minimize the risks associated with long-term missions and to characterize any clinical significance of their structural findings, further studies using a wider range of diagnostic methods are deemed essential.
Technology will not just help us communicate better and give us bolder and brighter screens. It is promising to end urban congestion, treat cancer and depression, and help us live fitter and more productive lives.As tech industry players large and small converge for the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show, an overriding theme is that gizmos, artificial intelligence, cloud computing, and super-fast internet connections hold answers to many if not all ills—the new religion.One of the world’s largest trade shows, CES is drawing an expected 170,000 people and 40,000 exhibitors from dozens of countries showing wares in robotics, digital health, artificial intelligence, sports and more.New cars being shown, CES participants are being told, will help the environment and reduce congestion by making transportation “smarter” with autonomy and machine learning.People are called on to envision a world without struggles to find parking or petrol stations, instead summon self-driving cars as desired to be taxied to destinations at any time of the day.Inside cars, the range of online offerings could be worshipped while machines tend to the tedium of traffic, which would be smoother since vehicles would wirelessly “talk” to one another to optimize travel efficiency.A new “intuitive and intelligent” car from Chinese startup Byton aims to tackle the billions of hours lost to traffic congestion around the world each year. Those times lost “could be used for things which are so much more fulfilling,” Henrik Wenders, vice president of Byton, said Sunday at one of the first media events at the show.Digital doctoringRobin Raskin, who heads the CES segment called Living in Digital Times, said the advances in health and medicine in recent years has been breathtaking.”There are new technologies to assess cancer and find out how a particular drug might respond,” she said.Startups and major firms are using new apps and technologies to tackle diabetes and depression.One startup on Sunday unveiled eye-tracking technology to help assess autism, concussions, Parkinsons disease and other ailments. Explore further Tech faithful gather to worship at mecca of innovation Citation: Tech a new religion at consumer gadget extravaganza (2018, January 9) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-01-tech-religion-consumer-gadget-extravaganza.html © 2018 AFP RightEye co-founder and chief executive Adam Gross heralded the technology as “a game-changer” for the health care and sports industries due to its unprecedented ability to quickly and accurately generate “amazing insights” about health, vision and performance.In collaboration with doctors or trainers, the information could be used to guide therapies or exercise routines.”The potential for this technology to change people’s lives around the world is incredible and really exciting,” Gross said.Technology will automate and augment the treatment of disease in the years ahead, forecast Consumer Technology Association research manager Lesley Rohrbaugh.”You can talk with a health care provider through an app, and get remote monitoring,” Rohrbaugh said while discussing consumer electronics industry trends at CES.”You can visit your doctor without actually physically visiting them.”Virtual reality is also being incorporated into therapy, being used to treat traumas, phobias and even dementia due to aging, according to Rohrbaugh.Cities smarten upAnd as the majority of the world’s population takes to living in urban areas, technology is powering “smart cities” where sensors, cameras, cloud computing and more work like house elves to manage recycling, trash disposal, traffic, pollution, road repairs and other needs.”Smart cities are where society and technology come together,” Rohrbaugh said.In the US smart cities focus on traffic, while in Europe the focuses tend to be on the environment and energy use, according to the research manager.Inside homes, devices can make sure our water and air are clean, and we are sleeping well.Technology is also being turned to keep us safe as we use technology.Biometrics such as fingerprint, iris or face recognition is being built into smartphones, computers, padlocks as security features.Meanwhile, robots are being designed to patrol oceans for fish poachers and watch after us, especially as we succumb to age. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Tech is the new religion, offering hope of salvation in a troubled world as industry leaders converge in Las Vegas this week.
The pilot facility consists of a container with a storage bin and energy center, as well as of a frame that houses the drying and torrefaction reactors, the attachment for extracting solids and the condensers. Credit: Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft Industrial facilities are generally located far away from extensive forest regions. Because wood requires efforts to transport, it sees only limited use as a raw material in industry. In the EU-funded SteamBio project, researchers from the Fraunhofer Institute for Interfacial Engineering and Biotechnology IGB have teamed up with various partners to change all that, developing a special steam drying technique that could significantly cut transportation costs. Another bonus is that the technique yields valuable feedstock for the chemical industry. The technique is already in use at a pilot facility in Spain. From June 11-15, visitors to the ACHEMA trade fair in Frankfurt am Main will be able to see a model of the facility for themselves (Hall 9.2, Booth D66). Explore further Citation: Making efficient use of biomass (2018, June 4) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-06-efficient-biomass.html Using wood on an industrial scale offers a great opportunity to replace crude oil and natural gas. The challenge is coming up with innovative ways to treat biomass so as to allow for sustainable products and production processes.Normally, forestry waste, weak wood and other inferior wood is ground into wood chips, which are an important feedstock for the wood processing industry. They are also used as fuel in thermal power plants and woodchip heating systems. However, the high moisture content of fresh wood chips presents two problems: it is a lot of weight to transport, and it is difficult to store the damp cargo. If it is not protected from rain, the material quickly rots.Making wood chips suitable for transportationAs part of the EU-funded SteamBio project, researchers from the Fraunhofer Institute for Interfacial Engineering and Biotechnology IGB, together with ten other project partners from four European countries, developed a new technique to adapt wood chips for transportation and storage. “Instead of transporting the biomass as wood chips,” explains Siegfried Egner, department head at Fraunhofer IGB and coordinator of the SteamBio project, “we torrefy it: we heat the biomass in a steam atmosphere without oxygen. The biomass has three main components – cellulose, lignin and hemicellulose – and this process eliminates the hemicellulose completely.” This significantly reduces the weight of the material, improves its specific calorific value and allows us to grind easily the material into a highly reactive powder.The torrefied biomass is water repellent and has significantly improved combustion properties, since it is composed purely of hydrogen and carbon. It can be transported in open bulk containers, since rain beads off the surface without penetrating the interior. What is more, the torrefied biomass is significantly lighter than the untreated material, which significantly reduces transportation costs. Replacing coal with biomassThe torrefied wood chips can easily be crushed between two fingers. They can either be compressed into pellets or ground into powder. Since it has a greater surface area, the biomass powder possesses greater reactivity in material uses than larger chunks. In energy applications, it can also be mixed with coal dust and fed into the firing system of coal-fired power plants. It is even possible to replace the coal entirely with biomass while keeping the same combustion system. Producing chemicals sustainablyThe volatile substances produced in the torrefaction process are valuable. They can be processed to obtain chemicals that serve as feedstock for a wide range of industry products. Until now, these platform chemicals have been obtained from crude oil or natural gas; now, torrefaction offers a sustainable way to produce them. “In the case of many biomass materials, the platform chemicals generate so much profit that they finance the entire torrefaction process,” says Dr. Antoine Dalibard, group manager at Fraunhofer IGB.Steam drying at over 200 degreesBut what exactly happens during the heat treatment process? “Torrefaction in itself is not a new technique,” explains Bruno Scherer, project engineer at Fraunhofer IGB. “In the SteamBio project, we use the steam drying technology that was developed at the IGB and that we adapted for this process to work at temperatures between 200 and 250 degrees Celsius.” What is special about the technique is that the moisture contained in the biomass and the vaporous products of torrefaction are systematically retained in the process chamber and themselves become the process medium. “In other words, we work with superheated steam,” says Scherer.The high temperatures dry out the biomass and result in organic compounds with low boiling points becoming volatile. While cellulose and lignin remain in a solid state, the volatile substances pass into the gas phase. Researchers use special condensers to capture these gaseous substances and selectively cool them, thus recovering them as liquids.A pilot facility has been built up, installed and operated at project partner Heckmann Metall- und Maschinenbau GmbH, where it runs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Beech wood is used as the biomass. The facility has been then moved to Spain in January 2018 to continue the operation. Here, project partners torrefy pine, oak and beech wood, as well as vineyard prunings and waste from olive oil production. Researchers from Fraunhofer IGB will be at the ACHEMA 2018 trade fair in Frankfurt am Main to showcase a model pilot facility as well as dried and torrefied samples; find them at the joint Fraunhofer booth in Hall 9.2, Booth D66. Provided by Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. The project partner in Spain is investigating the torrefaction of various lignocellulosic substrates, including pruning (left untreated, right torrefied). Credit: Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft Torrefaction an alternative to pulverised coal combustion