Friends of a disabled Kurdish asylumseeker have s

first_imgFriends of a disabled Kurdish asylum-seeker have spoken of the institutionalised discrimination that they believe led to his murder at the hands of a racist neighbour.Kamil Ahmad wanted nothing more than a safe place that he could call home, after seeking asylum in the UK.He came to England from Iraq in 2011, where he had been bullied and abused as a child and tortured in an Iraqi prison after refusing to serve in the army in the late 1980s, during the Iran-Iraq war.But he was refused asylum when he came to the UK, despite his high support needs.After being left destitute, he was given a room in a hostel run by the charity Bristol Hospitality Network (BHN), which is funded by the local community.But his mental health support needs became so severe that the charity told Bristol City Council that he needed more support than it could provide.Rachael Bee, manager of BHN, said: “Most people who are destitute asylum-seekers have no right to any public support at all.“But those who have significant additional needs do, so you need to prove significant additional needs, so social services had to assess him and see if he met their criteria for support.”The charity eventually persuaded the council to move him to supported living accommodation run by the charity Milestones Trust in Wells Road, in the Knowle area of Bristol.Bee said: “It was for the best really that he moved to more appropriate accommodation. It is just really upsetting that they were not able to protect him.“He was within a mental health supported accommodation unit so one would expect issues around mental health to be understood by the staff and managed and for him to be able to be safe. That was our expectation when he moved on.”She said it was “totally devastating” when they heard what happened to him at Wells Road.Ahmad’s friend and interpreter, Adil Jaifar, told Disability News Service (DNS): “His needs were really basic. He never exaggerated.“What he needed was a safe place, a clean, tiny place. Safety really, that’s what he wanted.”He loved his room, but was tormented by the continual harassment, racist abuse and even violence he suffered at the hands of another resident of the house in Wells Road, Jeffrey Barry.The abuse started soon after he moved in. They argued, and Barry went to his room and beat him up.Jaifar said: “He mentioned this problem on a weekly basis. He was really scared, troubled by it.“The problems with this man, it really troubled him and he was scared and he was worried.”Ahmad was so scared that he bought himself a small paper knife to defend himself, and told staff in Wells Road that that was what he had done.“He told people in the house that he was scared that one night this man would come to attack him… and he was right,” said Jaifar. “He was scared that this man would beat him up or come to kill him.”Ahmad was first assaulted by Barry in October and December 2013, soon after moving to Wells Road.Jaifar says that over the next three years Ahmad would repeatedly tell local police how Barry was threatening him, and how he would wait by the front door for him to return so he could shout racist abuse at him.Jaifar said: “He said once: ‘He is a big man and I am a tiny man, he can hurt me.’“On a weekly basis he was talking about this. It became too much. He wasn’t exaggerating, he was just so frightened about it.”Avon and Somerset police has told DNS that Ahmad lodged just four criminal complaints about Barry over the three years that he lived in Wells Road.But Jaifar, who is Kurdish himself and has supported refugees in the UK for more than 25 years, said that Ahmad said he reported many threats to the police.He said: “For a while (in 2016) he used to go nearly every week. Police officers went to see him regularly, maybe twice a month at least.“Always he trusted the police. Anytime he had a problem, he said, ‘I am going to the police.’”But despite the repeated complaints about Barry, no action was taken.On 5 April 2016, Ahmad reported to police that Barry had blocked his path and searched him, although he was not hurt.It is unclear exactly what happened with the complaint, although a police spokesman told DNS yesterday (Wednesday) that there had been a “misunderstanding” over whether Ahmad wanted to take the matter any further.At one stage, a local police officer arranged to visit Ahmad and Jaifar in Wells Road, but failed to turn up to the appointment.As a result of the “misunderstanding”, officers involved were given “words of advice”, said the spokesman, and the police “again made contact with Mr Ahmad who at that stage confirmed he did not want to pursue a criminal complaint”.But Jaifar insists that Ahmad wanted charges to be brought.He said: “Kamil was categorical and he said, ‘I don’t want any warning anymore because this man will not change.“’I want to bring the matter to a court. It’s useless to speak or warn Jeff anymore.’”Meanwhile, Bristol City Council’s social services department was attempting to have Ahmad evicted from his home, by arguing that his needs were not high enough to qualify for support.Ahmad was told: “You have a community, they can support you. We cannot carry on supporting you because you don’t need our support.”But Jaifar said that there were psychiatric reports that proved his need for mental health support, and that his friend was seeing a counsellor on a weekly basis.He said: “I told them, ‘Why don’t you just say, ‘We cannot support you because you are an asylum-seeker?’’”If they had succeeded in evicting him, he would have been left destitute and street homeless.Jaifar found his friend a solicitor from Avon and Somerset Law Centre, who lodged an appeal against the eviction.The eviction had been due to take place on 7 July, the day Ahmad was stabbed to death in his room by Jeffrey Barry, but because of the appeal against the eviction his stay in Wells Road had been extended temporarily.Ahmad had returned to his room on 6 July after spending the evening with his cousin. He insisted to his cousin that he would be safe in Wells Road.He knew that Barry had recently been detained in a psychiatric hospital after being sectioned under the Mental Health Act, following displays of disturbing behaviour which included threatening to kill him, and others.But the Mental Health Tribunal had ordered that Barry should be released, and he had returned to Wells Road after a heavy night’s drinking.The court heard that Barry had stopped taking the medication that was controlling his aggression, which the tribunal had been unaware of.Ahmad had no idea that he had been released, and neither did the police, while Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust had apparently failed to put in place a plan to support and monitor Barry after his release, even though the decision to release him had been taken several days earlier.In the early hours of 7 July, Barry knocked on Ahmad’s door. He entered the room and the door closed behind him. Three-quarters of an hour later, CCTV footage shows him leaving the room covered in blood.An hour before he entered Ahmad’s room, Barry had phoned a mental health helpline to say that he was not in control of his actions and wanted to punch someone.The police were told about the call, but only a few minutes before Barry phoned 999 to confess to murdering Ahmad.The next day, Jaifar received a phone call telling him that his friend had been murdered.Minutes after hanging up the phone, still in shock, he received another call, this time from social services, saying they had reconsidered the decision to evict Kamil Ahmad.Jaifar said he “felt it was a strange coincidence that I immediately received a phone call from the social services”.Barry, 56, was convicted of murder this week, following a trial at Bristol Crown Court. He had denied murder but admitted manslaughter by diminished responsibility. He will be sentenced next month.Bristol Safeguarding Adults Board has commissioned a safeguarding adults review, while the city council has promised to “respond to any issues raised by the review”.A council spokeswoman said in a statement: “Unfortunately we cannot completely remove risk to the most vulnerable members of our society, but we are committed to protecting them whilst helping maintain their independence and we are continually improving practices wherever necessary to help prevent tragic incidents like this from happening.“We do not wait for recommendations from reviews to make changes to help us do all we can to keep people safe.”The council has refused to answer questions about the case.Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust said it had “reviewed and strengthened our ways of working with other service providers, including the police, to improve our sharing of clinical and additional relevant information”, but also refused to answer any questions.Milestones Trust, the charity which runs the supported living accommodation where Kamil Ahmad and Barry lived, said it was carrying out an internal review, and also refused to answer any questions.Adil Jaifar remembers Kamil Ahmad as a funny, quiet and generous man.All he needed was “safety and comfort”, he said. “He was a very proud man. Very funny and extremely generous.”Rachael Bee, from BHN, said: “He was such a lovely man, he really was. Very generous and sweet.“Quite small, he wasn’t very big or tall. He was just a very sweet, gentle, middle-aged man. He was making a life, and then it was cut short.”She said that most asylum-seekers whose appeals are exhausted are not returned to their country of origin but are forced instead into destitution in the UK.“I think the government believes that they will be able to encourage people to leave voluntarily by that method, but that doesn’t normally happen because those that are still here are normally from countries like Kamil was, where the routes to return don’t exist properly,” she said.“He wasn’t in a position to return, he couldn’t have gone back to Iraq, so he was forced into destitution for as long as it took him to make a fresh claim for asylum.”His mental health condition made that even more difficult for him, she said.Rebecca Yeo worked with Ahmad on a UK Disabled People’s Council project to create a series of murals that showed the experiences of different groups of disabled people, one of which focused on disabled asylum-seekers and was installed in a subway in the centre of Bristol.He joined Yeo as part of a small group that visited parliament to present the murals project to peers and MPs in 2013.Kamil can be seen in a short film about the mural, and at the opening of the Bristol mural he said: “[In Iraq] people smashed my head by stones, they laughed at me.“In this country they don’t hit you… but they do mentally.“Is it the human right if somebody is a disabled person to be treated in this way?”The mural shows Ahmad with his head in his hands (pictured). But he also drew a picture for the murals project that showed himself being stabbed, which was what he believed the Home Office was doing to him.In a eulogy written for Bristol Disability Equality Forum’s newsletter last year, after Ahmad’s death, Rebecca Yeo and Adil Jaifar said: “Kamil had a strong sense of justice, objected to any wrongdoings, and highly valued every individual’s need for respect and dignity.  “He was well-known in his own community for his soft speaking manner and his witty sense of humour.”Yeo said this week: “Like so many asylum-seekers, his application had been refused.”She said his mental health conditions – post-traumatic stress disorder and obsessive compulsive disorder –  made it difficult for him to provide the necessary details from his past experience.“The suffering he had been through was not enough to persuade the Home Office that he deserved sanctuary.“Being disabled and an asylum-seeker and having your application refused are not just labels. As Kamil put it: ‘Everywhere is closed for me.’“Kamil was failed in getting the support he needed. He was threatened with street homelessness. He had years of being abused and didn’t get the help he needed.“The police didn’t take him seriously and social services tried to evict him rather than giving him the support he needed.”Jaifar believes there are stark and worrying similarities with the case of Bijan Ebrahimi, another disabled refugee who was brutally murdered after repeatedly asking the authorities to protect him.Ebrahimi had made 73 phone calls reporting crimes such as racial abuse, criminal damage and death threats, but police failed to record a crime on at least 40 of those occasions.The street where Ebrahimi lived – before he was beaten to death by Lee James, who then set his body on fire – is just a mile or so from the house where Kamil Ahmad was stabbed to death and then mutilated, again after repeatedly asking the authorities for protection and support.The council has told DNS that it recognises “cosmetic similarities” with the death of Bijan Ebrahimi, but a spokeswoman said that it was “vital in terms of challenging and improving our processes that all of the issues are carefully, methodically and independently examined”, and so she said the council would not be able to comment in depth until the reviews into the two deaths were completed.Kamil’s brother, Kamaran Ahmad Ali, who lives in Derby, said he wanted to know why Kamil had not been protected, and why he had been failed by mental health services and the police.He told DNS: “That should not happen. They should have protected him. They should have looked after him.“When they sectioned him, he threatened to kill [Kamil] and they didn’t do anything about it.“I want to get to the bottom of it and find out why it happened and how it happened.”Jaifar said: “In Bijan’s case, he raised the alarm several times and he wasn’t listened to until this terrible thing happened, and the same with Kamil. It’s the same.“In the world we are living in, many people suffer in the hands of incompetent people who are in very important places in society.”Asylum-seekers are treated with “total disrespect”, he said. “You are vulnerable and you don’t have any power.“The majority of asylum-seekers, they are viewed as criminals.“If the system treats you as a criminal, what can you expect from the rest of society, and that is what is happening.“I am working with thousands of destitute asylum-seekers. They have a lot to give, humanly and professionally, and it is all wasted [because they are not allowed to work] and so they live in stress and depression.”last_img read more

Distillations Big discussions at little Sycamore

first_imgSomehow we moved on from job talk to discussing psychology and institutionalization, and the way in which many mental health issues actually manifest differently across different cultures. It was around then that Taylor revealed that he actually had a different perspective than us on a lot of the things we’d been talking about, but hadn’t said anything because he hadn’t wanted to ruin our evening, and so we probably shouldn’t have this conversation now.Alaric and I looked at each other, and blinked. “Wait,” she said, “do we seem like people who aren’t used to someone disagreeing with us?”How long has he been sitting there thinking, “they’re wrong! They’re wrong!” and not saying anything, I wondered. And what is he afraid is going to happen?“We’ve had lots of arguments,” Alaric said, indicating me. “Happens all the time.”“There was knock-down drag-out about Michel Foucault, while we were playing Halo,” I said, remembering a more innocent past.“That’s right!” she said. “Although, I don’t feel nearly as strongly about him now.” She looked back at Taylor. “And he and I are still friends,” she said. “You see?”“Okay,” Taylor said, “okay. So … I have a different reference point than you, and I’m going to start it by saying: The first question is suicide.” He looked at me. “I suspect you get the reference.”Albert Camus put a lot of work into his philosophy. And also his hair.I did. It’s to Camus, who wrote in The Myth of Sisyphus that “There is only one really serious philosophical question, and that is suicide.” Taylor went on to explain that he’s an absurdist, and that none of the other thinkers or ideas we’d been referencing that night really work for him, because only existentialism makes any sense, and of the existentialists Camus was the only one who said that life is meaningless, but you can create meaning within yourself. So Camus was the only thinker that mattered here, because he gives you a reason to go on.Alaric and I stared at each other as I stammered. “What … what are you talking about? That’s what almost all of the existentialists said! That … that was their whole project!”“No, it wasn’t,” he said. “Really it was just Camus.”“Okay, this is weird,” Alaric said to me, just before I pulled out my phone to look for citations. “Every time we go out now, we’ve get into some kind of argument about existentialism with strangers.”And, goddamn it, she’s right. This is at least the third time in a row. An image flashed through my head of us as one of those couples that goes around to bars on a constant prowl for a threesome, only we just want somebody to argue about existentialism with. What the hell kind of dynamic is that?Which way is the bar, again?“I think we need another round,” Alaric said, and walked back out to the front bar. The Sycamore was packed and the bar is small, leaving a constant crush of people around it, so she was gone an uncomfortably long time, leaving me and Taylor to engage in a pointless argument over basic facts about people who essentially said you have to create your own reality anyway. By the time she made it back with more beer and wine, Taylor was either silently evaluating the error of his ways — having had the revelatory and life-changing realization that he had not understood existentialism at all, and that what he thought was a profound moment of enlightenment was in fact just a basic premise that everybody knew — or I had beaten him into intellectual submission. It could go either way; it’s hard to tell. With our new drinks in hand, we talked about cooking instead. I was mostly silent as Taylor and Alaric got into a heated debate over crockpots and the appropriate ways to cook large slabs of meat. Taylor was dismissive of a recipe Alaric’s mother used to make, and by the time we finished our drinks, said goodbye, and went to settle up, she was steaming like the meat in a broiler.“What got into him?” she asked me outside as we walked towards BART. “He didn’t used to be so dismissive. Everything about that was kind of rude.” She’s never gotten that angry about existentialism.“Maybe he’s having a market correction,” I suggested. “Psychologically speaking. A lot of us are grabbing on to whatever can stabilize us, and maybe we accidentally bumped into that. Made it feel unsteady.”“True. It was one of those conversations,” she said, thinking, “that seemed like it was about something else.”“Or maybe somebody who is a security consultant is always going to feel somewhat insecure?”We’ll probably never know. People are a mystery, building up whole worlds of secret meanings and hidden connections, while you stare, and drink, and argue about cooking and philosophy, never seeing what’s really going on. But you do it together.Read more from Benjamin Wachs. Subscribe to Mission Local’s daily newsletter I was sitting with Alaric in the back patio of the Sycamore, which has been her regular spot for at least five years. Walking in with me, she narrated a complete description of its ups and downs.“Don’t sit in the front room unless it’s not crowded, because the acoustics are weird and so it sounds weird, go to the back patio instead. Avoid the bottomless-mimosa brunch on the weekends, because it’s just way too crowded. In fact, you usually shouldn’t even try the weekends. This is a great weeknight and afternoon bar. It’s just a beer and wine bar, and it’s just, you know, beer and wine, but that’s the point. The food is really good. The french fries are killer. Do you know Paul? You know Paul, right? He did that mural back there, he comes in every few months and adds something.”I do know Paul. And I know the Sycamore, which over the years has indeed become a hotspot for artist and bar industry types, almost a byword at times: This is their space. I don’t come here often enough because I’m a cocktail guy, but it still means I don’t come here enough.Alaric ordered a malbec, I ordered a Fin du Monde, and we bumped into “Taylor” on the way to the patio. Taylor used to be Alaric’s friend, and they hadn’t seen each other in a while. “Wow, you’re back in town?” he asked Alaric. “I thought you were exploring the strange outer reaches of the country!”“No,” she said. “That stopped, like, two years ago.”“Oh!” he said. “Okay. So, you’re back to living on the boat in Oakland?”“No,” she said. “The boat sank.”“It … what?”“Sank.”“Oh … ”“I’m living on land now. I’m a bartender.”“Well … You still have a dog, right?”“Yeah, still have the dog … hey, why don’t you join us in the back when you’re ready? We can catch up then.”So there we were in the back — squeezing into one of the fully occupied picnic tables there. Alaric had lamb sliders, I had a pulled pork sandwich, and Taylor joined us. It turned out he’s a computer security consultant, and he likes being one, but all his favorite companies to work for on the West coast are hiring people in-house now, so he’s thinking of getting a full-time gig. “Besides,” he said, “there’s a market correction coming and when it does … all the capital is going to dry up.” Email Addresslast_img read more

ALTHOUGH some of them might not know it this is p

first_imgALTHOUGH some of them might not know it, this is probably the biggest match some of the Saints players will have played in. Representing your country’s good but to the majority of Saints people present in the healthy crowd this means more, and what a way for the lads to repay them with a come from behind 30-26 win, writes Graham Henthorne, Team Manager.Rocked by the withdrawal of influential hooker Aaron Smith during the warm-up the Saints were forced into a five player reshuffle with Josh Houghton coming onto the bench.The opening ten minutes were just as you would expect a local derby to be. Both sets of forwards testing each other out, with some big hits from Phil Atherton, Joe McLoughlin and Chris Worrall rattling the teeth of their opponents.Replacement hooker Lewis Fairhurst showed the sort of determination required to win these games as he saved a certain try with a fabulous one on one tackle over the line.Unfortunately a series of repeat sets gave the visitors momentum and they took the lead with a try by the posts.The Saints should have levelled minutes later as Captain Lewis Hatton knocked on with the line at his mercy.However, this was rectified on the next set as Danny Richardson opened the Saints account finishing off a spectacular Saints try. A kick on the last saw the Saints winger Kieron Herbert pick the ball up on his own five metre line. He weaved in and out of the fractured defensive line over 60 metres eventually veering inside towards the supporting Richardson. But, as easy as it would have been, he didn’t rush the pass but sent a great ball to his scrum half allowing him to outpace the cover over the final 35 metres.The Saints then took the lead as Ricky Bailey scored the first of his brace. Three short side plays had dragged the cover over and from the play the ball quick hands from Morgan Knowles and Hatton put Bailey clear.The Saints failed to show the killer instinct necessary and allowed the visitors to retake the lead with two tries in the final five minutes to go in 10 – 16 down.As disappointing as the end to the half had been the coaching staff addressed the issues, the players took them on board and then went out and put them into action.The visitors knocked on from the first play of the second period and Lewis Hatton made them pay rounding the cover to score out wide.After the visitors had knocked on over the line, Hatton edged the Saints ahead with his second, again crucially unconverted.The game was rapidly becoming a see-saw affair as the Saints put the kick off out on the full compounding the error with poor tackling to allow the visitors to retake the lead.But two tries in as many glorious minutes gave the Saints a stranglehold that they didn’t relinquish.Bailey again showed his pace to finish in the corner after quick short passing from Richardson and Knowles had put him free.It was Richardson’s great kick that led to Dave Eccleston scoring the winning try. The kick held up in the wind and a great chase from Eccleston meant he met the ball before the full back. He hacked on taking the ball on the bounce and diving over for the try.After missing two easier kicks, Fairhurst converted both from the touchline to put the Saints two scores ahead.Just as well as there was just time for a tired defence to be punctured once more but the whistle blew giving the Saints the spoils.This was as good a performance as the U16s have produced this season under the biggest amount of situational pressure they have been under this season.Not all have been mentioned but all played their part in sending home some very happy spectators to have a very happy weekend in the sun.Match Summary:St Helens:Tries: Ricky Bailey 2, David Eccleston, Danny Richardson, Lewis Hatton 2.Goals: Lewis Fairhurst 3.Wigan:Tries: Isaac Noi, Alex Gaskell, Brad Burgess, Jordan Hill, Macaulay Davies.Goals: Tom Dempsey 3.Half Time: 10-16Full Time: 30-26Teams:Saints:1. Ricky Bailey; 5. Joey Brady, 4. Jake Spedding, 3. David Eccleston, 2. Kieron Herbert; 13. Morgan Knowles, 6. Danny Richardson; 8. Phil Atherton, 9. Lewis Fairhurst, 17. Joe McLoughlin, 11. Liam Cooper, 12. Lewis Hatton, 10. Chris Worrall.Subs: 9. Josh Houghton, 14. Jonah Cunningham, 15. Ryan Lynch, 16. Jake Campbell, 18. Josh Jenkins, 19. Ben Morris, 21. Bobby Williams.Wigan:1. Jack Higginson; 5. Brad Burgess, 3. Tom Dempsey, 4. Alex Gaskell, 2. Isaac Noi; 6. Ryan Houghton, 7. Mark Roper; 8. Jack Rush, 9. Jordan Hill, 10. Max Dudley, 11. Macaulay Davies, 12. Jake Moore, 13. Kyle Shelford.Subs: 14. Patrick Casey, 15. Jordan Jones, 16. Adam Thompson, 17. Luke Randall, 18. Callum Field, 19. Lewis Heckford, 20. Lewis Fox.last_img read more

The boys were hurting a lot after getting bundled

first_img“The boys were hurting a lot after getting bundled out of the Challenge Cup and all the credit goes to them for putting in a performance like that today,” he said. “I got here on Thursday and worked with them on Friday so I can’t clam too much for the performance. I could tell they wanted to perform and I am pleased for them.“I have been watching the games across in Australia and I could see they were frustrated. The staff have been doing it tough like the players so my job was to take the pressure off them, make them relax and enjoy it. They performed well.“They are a good bunch of guys who want success and they were hurting. I just wanted them to let go of it and enjoy it again. They had to work hard for it and showed some great defence at times too.“I was really pleased for them.”He continued: “They have been guilty of trying too hard which happens when you lose a few games. Last week was a big knock out game and I thought they really tried too hard and when you do that it gets harder.“I wanted them to realise that and take the pressure from them. They were ready to perform today.“That said, it is only two points and we are a fair way off the leading pack. We have to keep performing.”Saints are next in action when they host Wigan on Thursday May 25. Tickets are now on sale from the Ticket Office at the Totally Wicked Stadium, by calling 01744 455 052 or online here.last_img read more

The squad begins their tour on Monday16 Joseph S

first_imgThe squad begins their tour on Monday.16. Joseph Sharratt – Second Row from Chorley PanthersPrevious Number 16s: 2004 – Jonathan Platt (Orrell St James) 2006 – Daniel Leach (Blackbrook) 2009 – Josh Jones (Chorley Panthers & Blackbrook) 2011 – Greg Richards (Barrow Island) 2013 – Ross McCauley (Bold Miners) 2015 – Elliott Jenkins (Thatto Heath Crusaders)17.  Joshua Simm – Second Row/Centre from Thatto Heath CrusadersHe is sponsored by St Helens Players Association, Horizon Group and EDS Claims Ltd.Previous Number 17s: 2004 – Nick Reddyoff (Higginshaw) 2006 – Owen Livesey (Blackbrook) 2009 – Ben Karalius (West Bank Bears) 2011 – Tom Roughley (Pilkington Recs) 2013 – Joe McLoughlin (Blackbrook) 2015 – Matthew Kilgannon18. Ben Sims – Second Row from Leigh Miners RangersHe is sponsored by Hilltop, SG Window Systems, ACSA Satellite and Aerial Engineers.Previous Number 18s: 2004 – Dave Roughley (Thatto Heath Crusaders) 2006 – Jonny Lomax (Orrell St James) 2009 – Aaron Lloyd (Haydock Warriors & Blackbrook) 2011 – Andre Savelio (Latchford Albion) 2013 – Ben Morris (Blackbrook) 2015 – Matthew Lees (Rochdale Mayfield)last_img read more

Van jumps curve hits four parked cars on Carolina Beach Road

first_img It came to a rest on top of one car and was leaking fluids that is why fire had to come on scene.No word on the driver or their condition an ambulance was on scene and left shortly before WWAY arrived. WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office was first on scene to a crash along Carolina Beach Road at South Carolina Avenue.Police say the van was traveling northbound and came into the southbound lane then jumped the curve hitting four parked cars.- Advertisement – last_img read more

New Hanover County 4H to host alumni meet and greet

first_imgNew Hanover County, NC – New Hanover County 4-H is hosting a 4-H Alumni & Friends “Meet & Greet” this month to bring alumni together from all over the state.This event will help unite people who believe strongly in promoting and supporting the 4-H program. All 4-H alumni and supporters are welcome to attend.- Advertisement – “This meet and greet event will kick off our initiative to build a network of 4-H alumni who live in New Hanover County,” said New Hanover County 4-H Agent Scott Enroughty. “These alumni and supporters will help serve as a catalyst to build and foster relationships among New Hanover County residents and support the development programs of 4-H.”The event is happening on Sunday, April 28 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the New Hanover County Arboretum.This drop-in event begins at 2 p.m. and will feature a showcase of 4-H projects and information about the New Hanover County 4-H program. Beginning at 3 p.m., local officials and NC State Extension leaders will share remarks and information about the importance of 4-H. Click here to RSVP online.last_img read more

Update Watch Government welcomes EC report forecasting a more moderate economic growth

first_img <a href=’http://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/ck.php?n=ab2c8853&amp;cb={random}’ target=’_blank’><img src=’https://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=97&amp;cb={random}&amp;n=ab2c8853&amp;ct0={clickurl_enc}’ border=’0′ alt=” /></a> The European Commission (EC) said that Malta’s economic growth is expected to start slowing down. In its report the EC explained that inflation is expected to rise whilst the surplus is expected to trend downward. The report also concluded that that Malta will go through a more moderate economic growth rate.Malta’s surplus to start decreasing – European CommissionIn the Malta report, the EC said that the country’s economy exceeded forecasts for 2018. It also discusses how economic growth increased during the second half of the same calendar year following record private consumption rates that increased by 7.3% compared to the same period in the previous year (2017).The EC report also concluded that notwithstanding the reduction of real-term investments during 2018, investments in 2019 are expected to increase once again with further investment in 2020. As an example the EC mentioned non-residential construction projects that are aimed for the health, transport and tourism sectors.‘Maltese economy in surplus for the third year running’ – Scicluna“The government surplus rises to €128M” – NSOUnemployment is expected to stay under 4%European CommissionThe report also observed that Maltese activity rates are within the European median and are expected to decrease with the moderation of economic growth. However, unemployment rates are expected to remain under 4%. The report shows that the influx of foreign workers has helped to keep wages stable and such are expected to increase by 1.2% in 2020.The Spring economic forecasts also indicate that the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is expected to be 5.5% in 2019 and fall to 4.8% in 2020.‘A confirmation that our economy will see the most growth in the EU’In a press release the government said that the EC report is confirming once again that the Maltese economy will the one registering most growth in the EU.Prime Minister Joseph Muscat stated that this report illustrates that what is being done together is providing successful results for Malta. He added that the government will keep on taking the necessary decisions to maintain economic growth, and that wellbeing reaches everybody.“Surplus to be shared with population” – PM“Completely different from the 2013 version” – PL From its end, Partit Laburista (PL) said that this economic growth pattern contrasted greatly the report that the same EC had issued on Malta in 2013. In a press release, the Pl said that the 2013 report was titled Malta: Subdued investment holds back growth. This was pointed out by Parliamentary Secretary Silvio Schembri, EP PL candidate James Grech and Cospicua mayor Alison Zerafa. Schembri pointed out how the 2013 report did not mention anything on private consumption and investment which have meanwhile increased at the rates of 7% and 10% respectively.WhatsApp SharePrintlast_img read more

US State Department Worries Mobile Money Could be Vulnerable to Money Laundering

first_imgAdvertisement The United States Department of State has expressed worry that Africa’s prolific mobile financial platforms – Mobile Money could be exploited and used by money launderers across the world.Mobile money providers like M-Pesa, MTN Mobile Money among others have revolutionized the banking sector in many ways, boosting financial inclusion across the African content and created steep competition for the conventional Banks.The introduction of cross border money transfers, mobile loan and savings services among others have helped extend banking services to even the traditional people who could not afford opening up a bank account. – Advertisement – In Uganda, MTN mobile money users can now send Money to MTN Rwanda users, M-Pesa users in Kenya and can equally receive.Currently, M-Pesa users can receive or send money internationally following partnerships struck between Mobile Money service providers.The US State Department says diaspora remittances to Kenya totaled $1.55 billion in 2015 and $862 million between January and September 2016. It points to the 159,000 mobile-money agents in Kenya, mostly working on the dominant M-Pesa system as well as the over 10 million accounts on M-Shwari, Safaricom’s online banking service.“These services remain vulnerable to money laundering activities,” the report states.This is backed up by Kenya’s standing as “a transit point for international drug traffickers and trade-based money laundering.”Safaricom maintains that it works with the Central Bank of Kenya and other regulators to review the systems and regulations in place to ensure they meet the “highest global standards.”The company is subject to the Proceeds of Crime and Money Laundering Act, 2012 and regularly files reports with the country’s Financial Reporting Centre.Besides monitoring all transactions to detect and report suspicious activity, the telco says its partners are equally required to undertake due diligence on remitters in line with their respective countries’ anti-money laundering regulations.[related-posts]The US State Department however points out that tracking and investigating suspicious transactions within mobile payment or banking systems remain difficult despite the checks already in place.“For example, criminals could potentially use illicit funds to purchase mobile credits at amounts below reporting thresholds.”Since the launch of M-Pesa in Mar. 2007, there has been a proliferation of mobile money services across the world by different operators. M-Pesa currently operates across 10 countries.Last year, $33.5 billion was transacted through M-Pesa up from $28.2 billion in 2015. The scale of such transactions and M-Pesa’s deep entrenchment in the economy has authorities worried of potential consequences if the system collapsed. Despite such concerns, enormous growth potential continues to attract more players including the recently launched PesaLink.Credit:Quartzlast_img read more

STARTERS ORDERS Wednesday

first_img[dropcap]W[/dropcap]elcome to Starters Orders. Our daily midday update from the trading room at Star Sports with our key market movers for the day across all sports.Wednesday 7 OctoberRACING2.10 LudlowDuke Street 4/6 > 4/92.45 LudlowSamtu 6/4 > 11/103.15 LudlowAzure Fly 11/2 > 7/2 King Masisni 7/1 > 9/2 Dreamsoftheatre (notably weak)4.45 NottinghamGreen Light 7/2 > 9/45.35 LudlowYes I Did 9/4 > 7/46.25 KemptonChester Street 2/1 > evens6.55 KemptonImpressive Day 7/2 > 9/4LIVE FOOTBALLNational League19:45 BT Sport 1 / BT Sport 1 HD11/5 Aldershot Town 13/10 Forest Green Rovers 12/5 DRAW(All prices subject to fluctuation) What’s your view?CALL STAR SPORTS ON 08000 521 321last_img read more

STAR PREVIEW Newcastle v Man City

first_img[dropcap]D[/dropcap]esperate times for the Toon Army and a desperate time for them to be facing a reinvigorated Man City who have been bouyed by Champions League success and an impressive 3-0 win over Chelsea in the league.Man City thumped Newcastle 6-1 at the Etihad and it could well be another tennis score tonight in the ‘second set’.Newcastle have much more at stake though it’s still not mathematically impossible for Man City to be crowned champions.A win for Newcastle would lift them level with Norwich in what has become an ‘any two of three’ scenario for the final relegation places.Villa are already down and it’s now take your pick from Norwich, Sunderland and Newcastle.Newcastle’s manager Rafael Benitez is hoping (optimistally) that Man City might have their mind on bigger targets. He said: “I think they have an eye on the Champions League and hopefully we can take advantage. In the back of your head you are thinking about a semi-final or a final and if you are going to get an injury. They are professionals and they will try to win but in the back of their mind they won’t want to miss a game through injury.”Newcastle will be without captain Fabricio Coloccini who remains sidelined by a calf injury.To make matters worse for Newcastle, Man City are re-united with both captain Vincent Kompany and forward Raheem Sterling who are both ready to return from injuries.Newcastle United v Man CityPremier League19:45 Sky Sports 1 / Sky Sports 1 HDHEAD TO HEAD RECORD(Maximum 10 matches)Oct 2015 PREMIER Man City 6 – 1 NewcastleFeb 2015 PREMIER Man City 5 – 0 NewcastleOct 2014 CAPITAL ONE CUP Man City 0 – 2 NewcastleAug 2014 PREMIER Newcastle 0 – 2 Man CityJan 2014 PREMIER Newcastle 0 – 2 Man CityOct 2013 CAPITAL ONE CUP Newcastle 0 – 2 Man CityAug 2013 PREMIER Man City 4 – 0 NewcastleMar 2013 PREMIER Man City 4 – 0 NewcastleDec 2012 PREMIER Newcastle 1 – 3 Man CityMay 2012 PREMIER Newcastle 0 – 2 Man CityMan City / Man City can be backed at around 5/4 on the Star Sports HT/FT market and I can see no other option.RECOMMENDED BETS (scale of 1-100 points)BACK MAN CITY / MAN CITY 12 points at 5/4 with Star SportsMonday: -12.00 pointsWhat’s your view? CALL STAR SPORTS 08000 521 321last_img read more

SIMON NOTT Bath on Wednesday

first_imgSIMON NOTT: It was a glorious night and up at Bath Star Sports had a Silvestre De Sousa special on offer, four of his mounts to be placed paying 6/1 so I thought I’d come up and blog it’s progress. That quartet didn’t kick off until the 7.10 running until the seventh and last at 9.10.Business in the opener looked pretty quiet but then word came that a rails firm had laid a monkey each-way Mambo Spirit. You’d have to think that was a fair bet to lay given the horse is 13 years old. And so it proved, the money stayed with the bookie, the veteran was unplaced behind 7/1 winner number seven Lucky Clover. You’d have to assume he’d had a one-horse book of epic proportions though given the business.The next couple of races went well for the on-course books, 7/1 Union Rose was a handy result beating 5/4 jolly Trick Of The Light in the Brakes Handicap Stakes then 6/1 Innoko was another cracking winner in modest books in the Bluefin Insurance Handicap Stakes. The latter was the first leg of our place accumulator, Hope Is High was the selection and went of the 6/4 favourite. Silvestre De Sousa looked to have stolen the race on the jolly when he went clear turning for home then only just held on for third, but that counted in a dead eight race.Between races I tried to get some video interviews with some bookies for the new ‘Simon Nott Meets The Ring’ series CLICK HERE and noticed Peter O’Toole has now got a lightboard. That may not seem very unusual but he’s stood firm against them for 11 years. He had to concede in the end, he wants to be careful though, those bungees didn’t look all that secure.The second leg of the special was in the next race, reduced from 9 to 7 runners. During betting I was stood behind the Pickwick-Bevan joint when, incidentally both Ian and Paul were too shy to talk for a video, when Ian called ‘One and a quarter each way’. Paul smiled a smile of a man who has just taken a bet of £125 each-way in a seven horse race, then morphed into the scowl of a man who finds out that he meant £1.25. Nasty.SDS was on Mark Johnston’s Bicolour which was sent off at 9/4 for the heat. There had been a tip from a good source flying around for Eugenic backed from 6/1 into 9/2. Those backers did their money when 8/1 shot Henryhudsonbridge proved a head too good at the line. The winner had been backed from 14/1 but it wouldn’t have bothered the books too much as both short ones Eben Dubai and more importantly for Star Sports Bicolour were out of the frame.The SDS place special only lasted two races, someone somewhere near Hove was smiling a contented smile, their work was done.As was mine, Star Sports are betting at Ascot on Saturday, see you there.Come Racing! Simon Nott.Simon Nott is author of Skint Mob!: Tales from the Betting RingCLICK HERE FOR MORE DETAILSlast_img read more

£25 FREE BET Man U v Bournemouth

first_img£25 FREE BET IFMAN U WIN BY 4 OR MORETo celebrate the launch of our brand new betting site starsports.bet we are giving all NEW CUSTOMERS a £25 FREE BET if MAN U WIN BY 4 OR MORE.You simply need to open an account and place a bet at evens or above, of at least £10, on any market at starsports.bet between 9am on Sunday 30 December and 4.30pm on Sunday 30 December. TERMS AND CONDITIONS(1) This promotion is for new account holders only. To qualify, you must open a new account at starsports.bet anytime from 9am on Sunday 30 December to 4.30pm (GMT) on Sunday 30 December.(2) In addition, you must place at least one bet online with starsports.bet before 4.30pm (GMT) on Sunday 30 December. The bet must be for a stake of £10 (or more), on a selection at evens or above, on any market as displayed on the starsports.bet web site.(3) The bonus promotional offer of £25 will be paid as a Free Bet if MAN U WIN BY 4 OR MORE (Man U v Bournemouth 4.30pm). The Free Bet will be valid for a period of 7 days from the point of issue and must be used within this period otherwise will expire.(4) If, for any reason, the event(s) do not take place or are declared void for betting purposes this offer will also be voided.(5) The bonus Free Bet, if successful, will be credited within 48 hours, direct to your online account.(6) Free Bets may not be used in conjunction with any other current promotion.(7) Star Sports reserve the right to withdraw or refuse any Free Bet promotion at any point.(8) Free Bet stakes are not returned with winnings.(9) Free Bet awards cannot be exchanged for cash.(10) Free Bet awards can be used online, tablet or mobile only.(11) The Free Bet must be used within the timeframe specified on the promotion details and may not be either part used or carried forward.(12) This promotion can only be used once per person and per account. Only one bonus can be awarded per person, household, shared computer or shared IP address. In the event of a customer opening more that one account to claim multiple offers we reserve the right to suspend/close duplicate accounts and void any bets placed.(13) Usual Star Sports Betting Rules and Terms and Conditions apply, these can be viewed at starsports.bet.(14) If you have any further questions about this promotion you can contact our customer service team cs@www.starsportsbet.co.uklast_img read more

Genetic evidence clears Ben Franklin

first_img“It’s widely known that Franklin introduced tallow trees to the U.S. in the late 1700s,” said Rice University biologist Evan Siemann, co-author the new study in this month’s American Journal of Botany. “Franklin was living in London, and he had tallow seeds shipped to associates in Georgia.”What Franklin couldn’t have known at the time was that tallow trees would overachieve in the New World. Today, the trees are classified as an invasive species. Like Asian carp in the Great Lakes and kudzu vines in the eastern U.S., the trees are spreading so fast that they’re destroying native habitats and causing economic damage.Each tallow tree can produce up to a half million seeds per year. That fertility is one reason Franklin and others were interested in them; each seed is covered by a waxy, white tallow that can be processed to make soap, candles and edible oil.Siemann, professor and chair of ecology and evolutionary biology at Rice, has spent more than 10 years compiling evidence on the differences between U.S. and Chinese tallow trees. For example, the insects that help keep tallow trees in check in Asia do not live in the U.S., and Siemann and his colleagues have found that the U.S. trees invest far less energy in producing chemicals that ward off insects. They’ve also found that U.S. trees grow about 30 percent faster than their Chinese kin.“This raises some interesting scientific questions,” Siemann said. “Are tallow trees in the U.S. undergoing evolutionary selection? Did those original plants brought from China have the traits to be successful or did they change after they arrived? Does it matter where they came from in China, or would any tallow tree do just as well in the U.S.?”In 2005, Siemann set out to gather genetic evidence that could help answer such questions. With funding from the National Science Foundation and the Department of Agriculture, he and study co-authors William Rogers, now at Texas A&M University, and Saara DeWalt, now at Clemson University, collected and froze leaves from more than 1,000 tallow trees at 51 sites in the U.S. and a dozen sites in China. The researchers conducted hundreds of genetic scans on the leaves, and they spent more than two years analyzing and correlating the results.There were a few surprises. First, the tallow trees that are running amok in most of the U.S. aren’t from the batch that Franklin imported. The descendants of Franklin’s trees are confined to a few thousand square miles of coastal plain in northern Georgia and southern South Carolina. All other U.S. tallow trees the team sampled were descended from seeds brought to the U.S. by federal biologists around 1905.“The genetic picture for Franklin’s trees is muddled; we may never know where they originated,” Siemann said. “But the genetic evidence for the other population — the one that’s problematic in the Gulf Coast — clearly points to it being descended from eastern China, probably in the area around Shanghai.”In controlled tests in China, the researchers found the U.S. trees even grew and spread faster than their Chinese forebears, despite the lack of chemical defenses to ward off insects.“They suffered twice the damage from insects that the natives did, but they grew so much faster that they still retained a competitive edge,” Siemann said.“In some ways, this raises even more questions, but it clearly shows that if you are going to explore control methods for an invasive species, you to need to use appropriate genetic material to make certain your tests are valid.”Siemann said that with many new species of plants and animals still being introduced from foreign environments into the U.S. each year, it is vitally important for scientists to better understand the circumstances that cause introduced species to cross the line and become dangerous invasive pests.###VIDEO is available at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7wRrEo2mcd4 AddThis ShareDavid Ruth713-348-6327druth@rice.edu Jade Boyd713-348-6778jadeboyd@rice.eduGenetic evidence clears Ben FranklinInvasive tree afflicting Gulf Coast was not brought to US by Ben FranklinThe DNA evidence is in, and Ben Franklin didn’t do it.Genetic tests on more than 1,000 Chinese tallow trees from the United States and China show the famed U.S. statesman did not import the tallow trees that are overrunning thousands of acres of U.S. coastal prairie from Florida to East Texas.last_img read more

New shortcut to solar cells

first_imghttp://news.rice.edu/files/2015/05/0511_SOLAR-3-web.jpgAn electron microscope image from earlier research shows the nanoscale spikes that make up the surface of black silicon used in solar cells. (Credit: Barron Group/Rice University)Located on a 300-acre forested campus in Houston, Rice University is consistently ranked among the nation’s top 20 universities by U.S. News & World Report. Rice has highly respected schools of Architecture, Business, Continuing Studies, Engineering, Humanities, Music, Natural Sciences and Social Sciences and is home to the Baker Institute for Public Policy. With 3,888 undergraduates and 2,610 graduate students, Rice’s undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio is 6-to-1. Its residential college system builds close-knit communities and lifelong friendships, just one reason why Rice is ranked among some of the top schools for best quality of life by the Princeton Review and for best value among private universities by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance. To read “What they’re saying about Rice,” go to http://tinyurl.com/AboutRiceU. http://news.rice.edu/files/2015/05/0511_SOLAR-2-WEB.jpgGold electrodes also serve as catalysts in a process developed at Rice University to create black silicon for solar cells. Black silicon reflects little light and allows more to reach the active elements of solar cells to be turned into electricity. (Credit: Barron Group/Rice University) http://news.rice.edu/files/2015/05/0511_SOLAR-1-WEB.jpgAn electron microscope image shows fine, light-absorbing pores and spikes created in minutes on the surface of a silicon wafer for solar cells. Gold electrodes do double duty in the black silicon process developed by scientists at Rice University by serving as a catalyst to etch the surface in minutes. (Credit: Barron Group/Rice University) If you do not wish to receive news releases from Rice University, reply to this email and write “unsubscribe” in the subject line.  Office of News and Media Relations – MS 300, Rice University, 6100 Main St., Houston, TX 77005center_img ShareEditor’s note: Links to images for download appear at the end of this release.David Ruth713-348-6327david@rice.eduMike Williams713-348-6728mikewilliams@rice.eduNew shortcut to solar cellsRice University discovery employs electrodes as catalysts to make black silicon HOUSTON – (May 13, 2015) – Rice University scientists have found a way to simplify the manufacture of solar cells by using the top electrode as the catalyst that turns plain silicon into valuable black silicon.The Rice lab of chemist Andrew Barron disclosed the research in the American Chemical Society journal ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces.Black silicon is silicon with a highly textured surface of nanoscale spikes or pores that are smaller than the wavelength of light. The texture allows the efficient collection of light from any angle, at any time of day. Barron and his team have been fine-tuning the creation of black silicon for some time, but an advance in the manufacturing technique should push it closer to commercialization, he said.Barron noted the new work led by Rice postdoctoral researcher Yen-Tien Lu has two major attractions. “One, removing steps from the process is always good,” he said. “Two, this is the first time in which metallization is a catalyst for a reaction that occurs several millimeters away.”Barron said the metal layer used as a top electrode is usually applied last in solar cell manufacturing. The new method known as contact-assisted chemical etching applies the set of thin gold lines that serve as the electrode earlier in the process, which also eliminates the need to remove used catalyst particles.The researchers discovered that etching in a chemical bath takes place a set distance from the lines. That distance, Barron said, appears to be connected to the silicon’s semiconducting properties.“Yen-Tien was doing the reaction with gold top contacts, adding silver or gold catalyst and getting these beautiful pictures,” he said. “And I said, ‘OK, fine. Now let’s do it without the catalysts.’ Suddenly, we got black silicon — but it was etching only a certain distance away from the contact. And no matter what we did, there was always that distance.“It told us the electrochemical reaction is occurring at the metal contact and at the silicon that’s a certain distance away,” Barron said. “The distance is dependent upon the charge-carrying capacity, the conductivity, of the silicon. At some point, the conductivity isn’t sufficient for the charge to carry any further.”Barron said an extremely thin layer of gold atop titanium, which bonds well with both gold and silicon, should be an effective electrode that also serves for catalysis. “The trick is to etch the valleys deep enough to eliminate the reflection of sunlight while not going so deep that you cause a short circuit in the cell,” he said.He said the electrode’s ability to act as a catalyst suggests other electronic manufacturing processes may benefit from a bit of shuffling.“Metal contacts are normally put down last,” Barron said. “It begs the question for a lot of processes of whether to put the contact down earlier and use it to do the chemistry for the rest of the process.”The research was supported by the Robert A. Welch Foundation, the Welsh Government Sêr Cymru Programme and Natcore Technology.Barron is the Charles W. Duncan Jr.-Welch Professor of Chemistry and a professor of materials science and nanoengineering at Rice and the Sêr Cymru Chair of Low Carbon Energy and Environment at Swansea University.-30-Read the abstract at http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/acsami.5b01008Follow Rice News and Media Relations via Twitter @RiceUNewsRelated Materials:Barron Research Group: http://barron.rice.edu/Barron.htmlWiess School of Natural Sciences: http://naturalsciences.rice.eduImages for download: AddThislast_img read more

Nanotubes line up to form films

first_imgShare3Editor’s note: Links to a video and images for download appear at the end of this release.David Ruth713-348-6327david@rice.eduMike Williams713-348-6728mikewilliams@rice.eduNanotubes line up to form filmsRice University researchers discover way to make highly aligned, wafer-scale films HOUSTON – (April 4, 2016) – A simple filtration process helped Rice University researchers create flexible, wafer-scale films of highly aligned and closely packed carbon nanotubes.Scientists at Rice, with support from Los Alamos National Laboratory, have made inch-wide films of densely packed, chirality-enriched single-walled carbon nanotubes through a process revealed today in Nature Nanotechnology.In the right solution of nanotubes and under the right conditions, the tubes assemble themselves by the millions into long rows that are aligned better than once thought possible, the researchers reported.The thin films offer possibilities for making flexible electronic and photonic (light-manipulating) devices, said Rice physicist Junichiro Kono, whose lab led the study. Think of a bendable computer chip, rather than a brittle silicon one, and the potential becomes clear, he said.“Once we have centimeter-sized crystals consisting of single-chirality nanotubes, that’s it,” Kono said. “That’s the holy grail for this field. For the last 20 years, people have been looking for this.”The Rice lab is closing in, he said, but the films reported in the current paper are “chirality-enriched” rather than single-chirality. A carbon nanotube is a cylinder of graphene, with its atoms arranged in hexagons. How the hexagons are turned sets the tube’s chirality, and that determines its electronic properties. Some are semiconducting like silicon, and others are metallic conductors.A film of perfectly aligned, single-chirality nanotubes would have specific electronic properties. Controlling the chirality would allow for tunable films, Kono said, but nanotubes grow in batches of random types.For now, the Rice researchers use a simple process developed at the National Institute of Standards and Technology to separate nanotubes by chirality. While not perfect, it was good enough to let the researchers make enriched films with nanotubes of different types and diameters and then make terahertz polarizers and electronic transistors.The Rice lab discovered the filtration technique in late 2013 when graduate students and lead authors Xiaowei He and Weilu Gao inadvertently added a bit too much water to a nanotube-surfactant suspension before feeding it through a filter assisted by vacuum. (Surfactants keep nanotubes in a solution from clumping.)The film that formed on the paper filter bore further investigation. “Weilu checked the film with a scanning electron microscope and saw something strange,” He said. Rather than drop randomly onto the paper like pickup sticks, the nanotubes – millions of them – had come together in tight, aligned rows.“That first picture gave us a clue we might have something totally different,” He said. A year and more than 100 films later, the students and their colleagues had refined their technique to make nanotube wafers up to an inch wide (limited only by the size of their equipment) and of any thickness, from a few to hundreds of nanometers.Further experiments revealed that each element mattered: the type of filter paper, the vacuum pressure and the concentration of nanotubes and surfactant. Nanotubes of any chirality and diameter worked, but each required adjustments to the other elements to optimize the alignment.The films can be separated from the paper and washed and dried for use, the researchers said.They suspect multiwalled carbon nanotubes and non-carbon nanotubes like boron nitride would work as well.Co-author Wade Adams, a senior faculty fellow at Rice who specializes in polymer science, said the discovery is a step forward in a long quest for aligned structures.“They formed what is called a monodomain in liquid crystal technology, in which all the rigid molecules line up in the same direction,” Adams said. “It’s astonishing. (The late Rice Nobel laureate) Rick Smalley and I worked very hard for years to make a single crystal of nanotubes, but these students have actually done it in a way neither of us ever imagined.”Why do the nanotubes line up? Kono said the team is still investigating the mechanics of nucleation — that is, how the first few nanotubes on the paper come together. “We think the nanotubes fall randomly at first, but they can still slide around on the paper,” he said. “Van der Waals force brings them together, and they naturally seek their lowest-energy state, which is in alignment.” Because the nanotubes vary in length, the researchers suspect the overhangs force other tubes to line up as they join the array.The researchers found their completed films could be patterned with standard lithography techniques. That’s yet another plus for manufacturers, said Kono, who started hearing buzz about the discovery months before the paper’s release.“I gave an invited talk about our work at a carbon nanotube conference, and many people are already trying to reproduce our results,” he said. “I got so much enthusiastic response right after my talk. Everybody asked for the recipe.”Co-authors are Rice graduate students Qi Zhang, Sidong Lei and John Robinson and postdoctoral researcher Bo Li; Lijuan Xie of Zhejiang University, who has a complimentary appointment at Rice; Rice alumnus Erik Haroz and Stephen Doorn of Los Alamos National Laboratory; Robert Vajtai, a faculty research fellow at Rice; Pulickel Ajayan, chair of Rice’s Department of Materials Science and NanoEngineering, the Benjamin M. and Mary Greenwood Anderson Professor in Engineering and a professor of chemistry; and the late Robert Hauge, distinguished faculty fellow in chemistry and in materials science and nanoengineering at Rice. Adams is a senior faculty fellow in materials science and nanoengineering. Kono is a Rice professor of electrical and computer engineering, of physics and astronomy and of materials science and nanoengineering.The Department of Energy and the Robert A. Welch Foundation supported the research.-30-Read the abstract at http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nnano.2016.44 Follow Rice News and Media Relations via Twitter @RiceUNewsVideo: http://news.rice.edu/files/2016/02/0215.WAFERS-2-WEB-rsxmia.jpgRice University graduate student Xiaowei He checks a vacuum pump used to make highly aligned films of carbon nanotubes. (Credit: Jeff Fitlow/Rice University) http://news.rice.edu/files/2016/02/0215.WAFERS-5-WEB-1h85g1o.jpgA scanning electron microscope image shows highly aligned and closely packed carbon nanotubes gathered into a film by researchers at Rice University. (Credit: Kono Lab/Rice University) http://news.rice.edu/files/2016/02/0215.WAFERS-1-WEB-12rami0.jpgRice University graduate students Xiaowei He, left, and Weilu Gao, center, and Professor Junichiro Kono show a film of highly aligned carbon nanotubes made in Kono’s lab. (Credit: Jeff Fitlow/Rice University)center_img https://youtu.be/ZvoPkU-IiRkRelated Materials:Junichiro Kono Laboratory: http://kono.blogs.rice.eduRice Department of Materials Science and NanoEngineering: https://msne.rice.eduImages for download: FacebookTwitterPrintEmailAddThis http://news.rice.edu/files/2016/02/0215.WAFERS-3-WEB-va54hm.jpgRice University researchers have discovered a simple method to make films of highly aligned carbon nanotubes. The films can be separated from their backgrounds and show potential for use in electronic and photonic applications. (Credit: Jeff Fitlow/Rice University)Located on a 300-acre forested campus in Houston, Rice University is consistently ranked among the nation’s top 20 universities by U.S. News & World Report. Rice has highly respected schools of Architecture, Business, Continuing Studies, Engineering, Humanities, Music, Natural Sciences and Social Sciences and is home to the Baker Institute for Public Policy. With 3,910 undergraduates and 2,809 graduate students, Rice’s undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio is 6-to-1. Its residential college system builds close-knit communities and lifelong friendships, just one reason why Rice is ranked No. 1 for best quality of life and for lots of race/class interaction by the Princeton Review. Rice is also rated as a best value among private universities by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance. To read “What they’re saying about Rice,” go to http://tinyurl.com/AboutRiceUniversity.last_img read more

The Tech Giant Investment in Renewable Energy – Chicago News

first_img regions: Chicago Let’s explore some of the most interesting stories that have emerged from Chicago business schools this week.The New Boom – Mendoza Business MagazineThe Notre Dame University Mendoza College of Business recently discussed why tech behemoths like Google and Amazon have begun to invest heavily in renewable energy technologies—and why this largely U.S. phenomenon is about to go global.The Mendoza Business Magazine article notes that the reason underlying this new trend is due to the fact that clean energy became cheap energy.“Once the favorable trajectory of renewable energy economics became apparent, it didn’t take long for some of the world’s largest companies to act. Google and Apple signed trailblazing renewable energy deals in 2012.”It’s likely that these deals helped generate a domino effect where American and Mexican companies “signed deals for just over 10 gigawatts of renewable energy capacity between 2012 and 2017.” According to the International Energy Agency, “renewables accounted for nearly two-thirds of new power capacity installed globally in 2016.”The International Renewable Energy Agency reports that the cost of “generating power from onshore wind turbines and solar photovoltaic panels fell by 25 percent and 73 percent, respectively, since 2010, and predicted that all renewable energy technologies would be economically competitive by 2020.”According to the school, “The market is ready to ramp up outside the United States, too, in part because U.S.-based multinationals are now looking to buy clean energy overseas.”You can read the full piece here.Sarah Siderius Gets the Job Done at Google – UIC BusinessThe Liautaud Graduate School of Business recently profiled current MBA student Sarah Siderius (’19) whose educational experience at UIC laid the groundwork for her stint as a contractor with Google.org, the philanthropic arm of the tech powerhouse.Siderius explains how her LinkedIn profile helped her land the position. “As a part of my previous role, I helped my employer establish their philanthropic program. Having this experience on my resume caught this recruiter’s eye, which ultimately led to this amazing opportunity.”Siderius most recently played an integral role in the Google.org Impact Challenge, Illinois, which awards “$1 million in grants to Illinois nonprofits who are creating economic opportunity in the state.”She explained that she “enjoyed the fact that she was not only able to work for such an amazing company, but that she was able to give back through her work.”Find out more about Siderius and her new role here.How the Coffee Industry Is Building a Sustainable Supply Chain in an Unstable Region – Kellogg InsightsThe Northwestern University Kellogg School of Business recently profiled the political and ethical hurdles associated with the newfound excitement surrounding the “quality of Robusta and Arabica” grown in the Democratic Republic of Congo right now. According to the article, “Harvesting, washing, and transporting Congolese coffee beans from the area is fraught with peril, from the dozens of militia groups operating in the east of the country to decades of political instability.”Assistant Professor of Managerial Sciences and Decisions Sciences Ameet Morjaria, whose research focuses on the East African coffee supply chain, explains, “Development dollars have arrived at the shores of the eastern Congo. For those top dollars to have a lasting impact is not straightforward: farmers are poor, lack support, and struggle to get access to finance.”“Their trees are old, badly maintained, and low-yielding. On top of that, investors worry about the expense and logistics of getting produce out of the country at volume. And lastly there are issues of insecurity and poor governance.”Morjaria spoke to two experts on the Congolese coffee industry: SHIFT Social Impact Solutions founder Sara Mason and DRC Producer Group Development Platform Head Angel Mario Martinez Garcia.Mason explains why it’s essential for companies to continue working in DRC.“We really hope that in a few years, with positive support from the government, there might be a chance to transform the sector into an agricultural growth opportunity that will fully realize its potential.”She adds that the actual growers are often vulnerable to exploitation due to extreme poverty, lack of education, and limited ability to communicate with the outside world. “Helping to support strong, transparent producer organizations was one of the drivers for creating the SHIFT DRC Producer Group Development Platform.”Martinez Garcia says, “A quick fix is never going to work in the Congo. And sometimes it’s a challenge to find someone who’s able to provide resources and time and energy for people to work there in the long run.”“It is really important to continue supporting producers, to continue increasing skills and knowledge. Because they are the ones, even after we end any activity or any project we have there—in a year or 10 years or 20 years—who will still be there working and living and discussing any future of the coffee sector in the Congo.”You can read more from Northwestern Kellogg here. Last Updated Sep 20, 2018 by Jonathan PfefferFacebookTwitterLinkedinemail About the AuthorJonathan PfefferJonathan Pfeffer joined the Clear Admit and MetroMBA teams in 2015 after spending several years as an arts/culture writer, editor, and radio producer. In addition to his role as contributing writer at MetroMBA and contributing editor at Clear Admit, he is co-founder and lead producer of the Clear Admit MBA Admissions Podcast. He holds a BA in Film/Video, Ethnomusicology, and Media Studies from Oberlin College.View more posts by Jonathan Pfeffer center_img The Tech Giant Investment in Renewable Energy – Chicago News RelatedBooth Research Analyzes Renewable EnergyNew research via University of Chicago Booth School of Business Professor John R. Birge and German researchers, Ingmar Ritzenhofen and Professor Stefan Spinler of the WHU-Otto Beisheim School of Management, have comprehensively analyzed the various schemes to support renewable energy generation and find ways to reduce carbon emissions as well…November 10, 2014In “Featured Region”Getting Paid: Highest MBA Salaries in ChicagoLike most parts of the country, the U.S. heartland is undergoing a massive shift on all fronts, becoming more urbane, diverse, and open to outsiders than seemingly ever before. Many communities are becoming increasingly diverse, attracting international residents at an unprecedented rate. Young, urban professional-types who once flocked to the…August 25, 2017In “Featured Home”Top Chicago Startups: Midwest Businesses BoomLast year’s Chicago Startup Report, an annual breakdown of funding for various entrepreneurial ventures in the Chicago Metro by Built In Chicago, explained that the Windy City just had it’s best year yet for start up funding. According to the Report, Chicago startup companies brought in $1.7 billion in funding, much…August 10, 2016In “Featured Region”last_img read more

New Poll Puts Clinton up 3 Points Over Trump

first_img 2016 race Share  LINKEDINPINTERESTREDDITTUMBLRSTUMBLEUPON   Hillary Clinton is leading Donald Trump by about 3 points nationally, according to a New York Times/CBS News poll—the previous version of the poll had Clinton up by 9 points over her counterpart.The poll found that 45 percent of likely voters support Clinton and 42 percent support Trump, with the difference being within the margin of the poll’s sampling error. At least 22 million have already cast their ballots early before the Nov. 8 Election Day.Libertarian nominee Gary Johnson had 5 percent while the Green Party nominee Jill Stein got 4 percent, the poll found.A third of respondents to the NYT/CBS poll said that FBI director James Comey’s revelation about the investigation into further evidence regarding Clinton’s email server scandal made them feel less likely to cast a vote for her. About 40 percent noted the same of Trump’s history of lewd comments towards women.About 52 percent of Trump supporters asked in the poll said they’re enthusiastic about voting for the GOP nominee, while 47 percent of Clinton supporters had a similar response. Related CoverageThe Odds of Donald Trump Becoming ‘Mr. Brexit’The poll was conducted from Oct. 28 to Nov. 1—after news broke over the FBI’s review of evidence of the Clinton email scandal. About 1,333 registered voters were reached in the poll by telephone. The margin of error is plus-or-minus 3 points.A Los Angeles Times poll released on Nov. 2 put Trump 4 points ahead of Clinton. The poll, which was conducted on Nov. 1, found the Republican nominee got 47.8 percent of respondents’ support, while Clinton got 42.4 percent of the support.And in a Washington Post/ABC News poll released on on Nov. 1, Trump is dead even with Clinton. Between Oct. 24 and Nov. 2, the RealClearPolitics average shows Clinton at 47 percent and Trump at 45.3 percent. New Poll Puts Clinton up 3 Points Over Trump By Jack Phillips November 3, 2016 Updated: November 3, 2016center_img Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton speaks during a campaign rally at UA Local 525 Plumbers and Pipefitters Union hall in Las Vegas, Nevada on Nov. 2, 2016. The U.S. presidential general election is Nov. 8. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images) Share this article Show Discussionlast_img read more

Video Donald Trump Rushed Off Stage by Secret Service in Reno Nevada

first_img2016 race Video: Donald Trump Rushed Off Stage by Secret Service in Reno, Nevada By Jack Phillips November 5, 2016 Updated: November 5, 2016  LINKEDINPINTERESTREDDITTUMBLRSTUMBLEUPON   Trump thanks the secret service as he returns to the stage after being rushed off in Nevada https://t.co/xeNxna6aa6 pic.twitter.com/qV7HLVBAo6— CBS News (@CBSNews) November 6, 2016 Sharecenter_img Share this article Donald Trump was just rushed off the stage in Reno, Nevada, on Nov. 5.Several Secret Service agents rushed up to Trump and took him of the stage as he was speaking in front of a crowd.Trump appeared back on the stage shortly after that, thanking the agents, and later thanking supporters who tried to help. In video footage, military personnel appeared among the crowd, possibly escorting an attacker out of the venue. “Nobody said it will be easy for us, but we will never be stopped,” he said after returning to the stage. “I want to thank the Secret Service. They don’t get enough credit … they’re amazing people.”Unconfirmed reports have said that the protester may have had a gun, despite the tight security. ABC reported there was a scuffle in the crowd before Trump was escorted off the stage. A man was taken from the room. Show Discussionlast_img read more

Britain to Mark Queen Elizabeth IIs Record 65year Reign

first_img LONDON—Queen Elizabeth II is poised for another historic milestone, an unprecedented 65 years on the throne.But Buckingham Palace says Britain’s longest-serving monarch plans to spend Monday’s ceremonies far from the spotlight in somber contemplation of her late father.Official commemorations of Elizabeth’s Sapphire Jubilee are expected to feature ceremonial cannon fusillades at a central London park and at the riverside Tower of London as well as a procession of military horses pulling World War I-era artillery pieces.But the 90-year-old monarch is staying 110 miles (175 kilometers) to the north at her Sandringham House estate in Norfolk, where her father, George VI, died of lung cancer at age 56 on Feb. 6, 1952, after a 15-year reign.Elizabeth surpassed Queen Victoria as Britain’s longest-serving monarch in 2015. Share this article Show Discussion  LINKEDINPINTERESTREDDITTUMBLRSTUMBLEUPON   Britain to Mark Queen Elizabeth II’s Record 65-year Reign By The Associated Press February 5, 2017 Updated: February 5, 2017center_img Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II stops to receive flowers from 3-year old Jessica Atfield, after the queen and her husband Duke of Edinburgh, attended a church service at St Peter and St Paul church in West Newton, England on Feb. 5, 2017. (Gareth Fuller/PA via AP) Share US last_img read more