Month: August 2019


first_imgMercedes Hyper concept cutaway showing major components. Toyota Prius With only a marginal savings on gasoline and a much higher initial cost, hybrid builders are relying on two main factors to sell: the “green” image and the “new” technology. Any marketer will tell you that “new” and “green” are good for any sales. To offset perceived reliability problems, makers are offering strong guarantees: The Honda Insight has an eight-year/80,000-mile warranty on most of the power train, including batteries, and a three-year/36,000-mile warranty on the rest of the car. The Toyota Prius has an eight-year/100,000-mile warranty on the battery and hybrid systems and a three-year/36,000-mile warranty on everything else. The motors and batteries in these cars do not require maintenance over the life of the vehicle. The engine doesn’t need any more maintenance than in any other car. Because hybrids have regenerative braking, brake pads may even last longer than those in normal cars. But what’s a smart car buyer to do? Are the savings in gas worth the extra headaches and higher cost? Maybe, it depends on how you drive. If you drive mostly in the city, you may save enough to warrant the extra cost. Remember the gas motor turns on to charge the batteries if you use the electric motor all the time which offsets some of the advantage. Heavy long-distance commuters and lead footers will see fewer savings. Then, there is always the environment – always worth thinking about. A hybrid cuts emissions by 25% to 35% over even the most fuel efficient gas powered models.The tax incentive in the U.S. is another powerful motive – it can reduce your cost up to $3,400 depending on the cost of the vehicle. Better act fast, however, to get the model you want: the tax break only applies to the first 60,000 vehicles produced yearly by each manufacturer. Toyota’s Prius, for example, will quickly reach that number of sales before year-end.Experts think in the end, hybrids are probably a transition technology. Hydrogen or methane fuel cell powered cars are probably the cars of the future. As for the environment, there are many ways to reduce emissions – using public transport, car pooling, riding a bicycle and even walking. Even just buying a smaller, fuel efficient car makes a big difference. So, think about what you are really trying to accomplish before buying a hybrid – don’t just throw your hard earned dollars at new technology for its own sake because it may be fashionably “green”.By Philip Dunn, Copyright 2006 PhysOrg.com If you listen to the makers, hybrid cars are the best invention since sliced bread. While there are many reasons to buy a hybrid car, including a new tax incentive for US owners, it helps to have a good understanding of how they work. This article explores the myths, benefits and drawbacks of owning one of these new “green” vehicles. Honda Insight First off: What is a hybrid car? Basically, it’s a normal, fuel efficient car that has two motors – an electric motor and a gasoline powered motor. It also has a special system to capture braking energy to store in an onboard battery.Why a hybrid? Why not a straight gas or electric powered car? After all, one of the basic rules of science is the more complex the system – two motors instead on one – the more often it will break down. This is the main reason many boat owners prefer one motor instead of the “double trouble” of two – despite the obvious safety advantages. This is a hard question and, in the minds of some experts, not fully answered.• Join PhysOrg.com on Facebook!• Follow PhysOrg.com on Twitter!The reason for two motors is in the strengths and weaknesses of both types. Specifically, electric motors use no energy during idle – they turn off – and use less than gas motors at low speeds. Gas motors do better at high speeds and can deliver more power for a given motor weight. That means during rush hour stop and go driving, the electric motor works great and, as an added benefit, does not produce any exhaust thus reducing smog levels. At higher speeds – above 40 mph – the gas motor kicks in and gives that peppy feel so many car owners look for when driving on the highway.Another benefit of having the gas motor is it charges the batteries while it’s running. Many an electric car owner has been stranded just out extension cord range of an outlet. Hybrid owners can forget about this annoyance; the gas motors starts automatically when the battery gets low and proceeds to charge the battery – a hybrid never needs to be plugged into an outlet. Of course, if you forget to fill the tank…. Still, you can carry a gas can a half mile while a tow truck is necessary in a straight electric car. All of these systems must work together, adding complexity. While cars and, just as importantly, the computers that control them, have become more reliable, they still suffer from failures. So owners of hybrids can expect more time in the shop and larger repair bills.Hybrids are the most gasoline efficient of all cars – they typically get 48 to 60 mpg (claimed). Not bad, but only about 20% to 35% better than a fuel efficient gasoline powered vehicle – like the Honda Civic, for example, that gets 36 mpg. But, when comparing prices – hybrids cost from $19,000 to $25,000 and gas saver cars cost $14,000 to $17,000 – the justification to buy becomes less clear.Indeed, the difference in average annual fuel bills – $405 for a Honda Insight versus $635 for a Honda Civic – means you may never recoup the added initial cost of a hybrid. Over a ten year period owning a hybrid will save you only $2,300 – less than the cost difference for comparably equipped cars.Much of the fuel efficiency comes from improvements in aero dynamics, weight reduction and, the biggest change: a smaller, less powerful gas engine. In fact, any car will get substantially better mileage just by reducing the engine size. The main reason this is not done has to do customer demand – they want the extra power and zippiness. Divers find that real mileage from hybrids is actually about 10% less than claimed. When consulting manufactures web pages for mileage tips, they list the same ones that would give better fuel economy from any car: drive slow, no jack rabbit starts, etc…But hybrid cars offer more than just great fuel economy, they offer many green advantages as well. Even a small increase in fuel economy makes a large difference in emissions over the life of the car. Also, in large cities were pollution is at its worst, they make an even larger difference since they produce very little emissions during low speed city driving and the inevitable traffic jams.While the US has just started producing hybrids, the Japanese are the recognized leaders. Honda and Toyota are the two largest producers with the Insight and Prius. US car makers are well behind. In fact, during recent introduction of a new hybrid by GM – the Mercury Mariner, they admitted they had to license over 20 separate technologies from the Japanese. US car makers still specialize in SUVs and trucks – Ford has even introduced a hybrid version of its popular Escape SUV. Industry analysts say US hybrids are just token models – not a serious attempt to get into the market. The reason for hybrid introduction has to do with Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) regulations. Current standards mandate that average mileage of the fleet of cars sold by an automaker should be 27.5 mpg. This means that if an automaker sells one hybrid car that gets 60 mpg, it can then sell four less efficient cars – like SUVs and trucks – that only get 20 mpg.center_img Explore further Citation: Hybrid Cars — Pros and Cons (2006, January 19) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2006-01-hybrid-cars-pros-cons.html All this new technology comes at a price: a hybrid car is complex and expensive. It has two motors and all the ancillary systems to manage them plus a heavy battery and a regeneration system used to produce electricity during breaking. Under pressure, plane industry vows cleaner flight—someday 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.last_img read more


first_imgEllipsoid plot of (N5)6(H3O)3(NH4)4Cl at the 50% probability level. The occupancies of H3O+ (O1), H3O+ (O2), Clˉ, N5ˉ, and NH4+ are 1/12, 1/24, 1/24, 1/4, and 1/6, respectively. Credit: (c) Science (2017). DOI: 10.1126/science.aah3840 The pentazole and its anion have a sordid history, at least for molecules. Pentazole was thought to be isolated as an arylpentazole in 1915, but was disproven several years later. Then, in the 1950s, a group of researchers managed to identify pentazole as an intermediate for another reaction. Later researchers became interested in combining N5+ and N5- as a possible alternative to hydrazine as rocket fuel.Many attempts have been made to isolate the pentazole anion by cleaving the carbon-nitrogen bond in an arylpentazole. However, these have proven unsuccessful because of the difficulties in selectively cleaving the carbon-nitrogen bond. The addition of electron donating groups at the ortho and para positions of the arene helped with selective cleavage. In the current study, Zhang et al. were able to selectively cleave the carbon-nitrogen bond of 3,5-dimethyl-4-hydroxyphenylpentazole and stabilize the resulting pentazole anion using ferrous bisglycinate, Fe(Gly)2. The anion was isolated as part of a salt, (N5)6(H3O)3(NH4)4Cl (19% yield). The Fe(Gly)2 stabilizer also served as a mediator for m-chloroperbenzoic acid.The molecular conformation of the salt ions was determined using single-crystal x-ray diffraction analysis where the five nitrogen atoms in cylco-N5- are co-planar and aromatic. The structure was confirmed using 1H and 15N NMR as well as infrared and Raman spectroscopy.Additional studies showed that the salt is remarkably thermally stable up to 117oC, which is attributed to the salt’s hydrogen bonding arrangement. All of the ions in the salt apparently play a role in stabilizing the pentazole anion. When Zhang et al. removed Cl- or when they removed NH4+, cyclo-N5- decomposed.This research allows for the isolation and characterization of an elusive aromatic azole molecule, one that has been out of reach for chemists for many years, and according to the authors this ends the search for this elusive molecule. New inorganic aromatic ion Explore further (Phys.org)—The pentazole molecule and its anion, cyclo-N5- has proven elusive to researchers for almost a century. The pentazole anion is highly unstable and cannot be made in bulk. Researchers from Nanjing University of Science and Technology and the University of Science and Technology Liaoning have devised a synthesis of a salt containing the pentazole anion that is stable up to 117oC. Their report appears in Science. Journal information: Sciencecenter_img Citation: Researchers characterize pentazolate anion as part of a stable salt (2017, February 15) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2017-02-characterize-pentazolate-anion-stable-salt.html © 2017 Phys.org More information: Chong Zhang et al. Synthesis and characterization of the pentazolate anion-Nˉ in (N)(HO)(NH)Cl, Science (2017). DOI: 10.1126/science.aah3840AbstractPentazole (HN5), an unstable molecular ring comprising five nitrogen atoms, has been of great interest to researchers for the better part of a century. We report the synthesis and characterization of the pentazolate anion stabilized in a (N5)6(H3O)3(NH4)4Cl salt. The anion was generated by direct cleavage of the C–N bond in a multisubstituted arylpentazole using m-chloroperbenzoic acid and ferrous bisglycinate. The structure was confirmed by single-crystal x-ray diffraction analysis, which highlighted stabilization of the cyclo-N5ˉ ring by chloride, ammonium, and hydronium. Thermal analysis indicated the stability of the salt below 117°C on the basis of thermogravimetry-measured onset decomposition temperature. 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.last_img read more


center_img Journal information: Nature Photonics More information: Kengo Nozaki et al. Femtofarad optoelectronic integration demonstrating energy-saving signal conversion and nonlinear functions, Nature Photonics (2019). DOI: 10.1038/s41566-019-0397-3 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. A team of researchers at NTT Corporation has developed a way to use light-based computer hardware that allows it to to compete with silicon. In their paper published in the journal Nature Photonics, the group describes their research, the devices they created and how well they worked.last_img read more


first_imgCelebrating Indo-Mexican ties, the Indian Council of Cultural Relations (ICCR) hosted a lively evening with Mexican artistes enthralling the Capital with their music. Called My Beloved Mexico, the event had Adriana Landeros on vocals, Antonia Lopez on the guitar and Ernesto Anaya on the violin performing to a packed audience at FICCI auditorium on Tuesday evening.The evening was a dedication to the popular music Mexico has to offer – from the Cielito Lindo to the eternal favourite La Bamba. The performance also gave the audience a chance to experience the magic of Veracruz, Oaxaca and Jalisco – artistes who are very popular in Mexico but not famous abroad yet. Aside from the traditional songs, the evening also celebrated songwriters like Jose Alfredo Jimenez, Agustin Lara and Armando Manzanero. The event ended on a high note with the audience thoroughly enjoying the Mexican sounds that the auditorium echoed with. It was heartening to see the Capital enjoy the international performances as much as they enjoy local musicians.last_img read more


first_imgKolkata: Minister of State for Women and Child Welfare Shashi Panja held a meeting with the borough chairmen of Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC), to ensure that the beneficiaries of Rupashree scheme get their financial assistance without any hassle.The distribution of forms for Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s dream project Rupashree has begun from April 1. Under the scheme, the state government will be providing a one-time financial assistance of Rs 25,000 to the family of a girl at the time of her marriage. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flights”The forms will be available from the borough offices of KMC. It will be the job of the boroughs to conduct an enquiry of the genuineness of the application and then send it to our headquarters. The application form will bear the signatures of two KMC officers from the borough and five persons living in the neighbourhood of the beneficiary,” Panja said.If everything is found to be alright, the money will get transferred to the bank account of the applicant, five days ahead of her marriage. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killed”We are taking all possible measures to ensure that no one avails this benefit through forgery,” she added.The entire scheme in the city will be monitored by the borough chairmen in their respective jurisdictional areas. Mayor Sovan Chatterjee and some of his Member Mayor-in-Councils were present in the meeting at KMC conference hall.It may be mentioned that the state government has allocated Rs 1,500 crore for the project and around 6 lakh families will get the benefits of the scheme. Forms have been made available at offices of Block Development Officers (BDO), Sub-Divisional Officers (SDOs) and local civic bodies.As per the scheme, a woman above 18 years in age can apply for the same, once the date of her marriage is finalised. The income of the family should not exceed more than Rs 1.5 lakh per annum for availing the benefit of the scheme. The concerned officials will go through the documents furnished along with the application form. Applicants will need to provide documents including photocopies of their birth certificate, invitation card of marriage or other relevant document, an identification card and details of their bank accounts.last_img read more


first_imgThe Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences (ILBS), a deemed to be University, has been designated as the first WHO Collaborating Centre (WHOCC) on liver diseases. It will also be collaborating on viral hepatitis.WHO collaborating centres are institutions such as research institutes, parts of universities or academies, which are designated by the Director-General of WHO to carry out activities in support of the organisation’s programmes.As a result of the collaboration, ILBS would be able to work directly with WHO and collaborate with the world agency in developing strategies and protocols for prevention, diagnosis and management of viral hepatitis and liver diseases. The centre would also help to train and develop skilled manpower and human resource at a global scale. S K Sarin, Director of Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences, said that ILBS viral hepatitis and liver diseases are amongst the greatest killers in the world. Asia houses over 75 per cent of all such cases of hepatitis B and C and liver cancer and India has close to 60 million such patients. The institute claims that they have done 177 liver transplants till date, the largest in any government hospital in India.last_img read more


first_imgIndia might have 10 lakh active companies but 600-odd firms alone account for more than half of the total authorised capital of Rs 44.31 lakh crore, according to official data.The total authorised capital of 10.17 lakh active companies touched Rs 44.31 lakh crore at the end of February this year. Generally, firms that are regular in making their statutory filings with the Corporate Affairs Ministry are considered as active.Latest data from the Ministry shows that out of the total active companies, just 604 entities have an authorised capital of over Rs 1,000 crore each. These 600-odd companies together have an authorised capital of Rs 26.3 lakh crore, accounting for nearly 60 per cent of the total authorised capital of all active entities. Out of the total active companies, more than 3.46 lakh entities have an authorised capital of up to Rs 1 lakh. As many as 6.68 lakh companies have authorised capital of less than or equal to Rs 10 lakh each. Also Read – I-T issues 17-point checklist to trace unaccounted DeMO cashEven though there are 14.52 lakh registered companies in the country, only 10.17 lakh are active. Most number of firms are in business services. All firms are required to be registered under the Companies Act, which is implemented by the Ministry. Last month alone, 6,138 companies were registered with collective authorised capital of Rs 4,037 crore. In terms of states, Maharashtra has the highest number of active companies at 2.15 lakh, followed by Delhi (1.97 lakh) and West Bengal (1.37 lakh) as on February 28. Also Read – Lanka launches ambitious tourism programme to woo Indian touristsJanuary-March PE investments grow by 20% to $2.65 billionPrivate equity (PE) firms have invested about $2,646 million spread across 124 deals during the quarter ended March 2015, clocking a growth of 20 per cent over the corresponding period last year, says a report.According to early data from Venture Intelligence, a research service focused on private company financials, transactions and their valuations, the investment in the said quarter registered a year-on-year jump, but declined on a quarter-on-quarter basis. The figure is 20 per cent higher than the same period last year when $2,212 million were invested across 132 transactions, but 36 per cent lower than the immediate previous quarter, which saw $4,120 million pumped in through 112 deals.There were six PE investments worth $100 million or more during the first quarter of 2015 as compared to four in the year-ago period. The largest investment was IFC’s $260 million commitment to microfinancier-turned-bank licence holder Bandhan Financial Services.last_img read more


first_imgKolkata: Sunderban Cooperative Milk and Livestock Producers’ Limited (SCMLPL), an initiative of State Animal Resources Development department, offering packaged milk and a plethora of milk products under the brand name Sundarini Naturals is going for massive product diversification.The move was prompted soon after National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) awarded Sundarini for its superior quality of dairy products at a function held in Gujarat on the occasion of World Milk Day on June 1. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeIt may be mentioned that Sundarini, a brainchild of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, was rolled out to empower the women of the Sunderbans in the year of 2015. It started with packaged milk and now its products include ghee, honey, rice, sona moong dal, eggs and paneer.”Our natural products have been selected as model for the entire Eastern India. So, we are going for diversification of our products in a big way. We will introduce Rosogolla, Gulam Jamun and Kaju Barfi. Aromatic rice varieties like Harinakhuri, Govindabhog, Kalabhaat and Radhatilak will also be introduced. The farmers are already successfully cultivating these rice varieties. The trail run for the sweets in the district has begun,” a senior official of SCMLPL said. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedThe Cooperative scores over others for its organic method adopted in every step right from milk collection, transportation to its diary plant and manufacturing of milk products.There is no use of chemicals and the cows are not injected with antibiotics. They are fed corn, sargam, Ajola and Barshim grass.Even these are produced in an organic manner. Milk is never poured into plastic containers. It is stored in steel containers so that the quality is not compromised. Afterwards, these milk cans are sent to the cooperative’s dairy plant in Joynagar, where other products are made. “We have already applied for the organic certification of milk and milk products in the central ministry of Commerce & Industry and are hopeful of getting it soon,” the official added.The cooperative presently has 3,500 all-women members and 65 co-operative societies, spanning across 65 villages at seven blocks in and around the Sunderbans. The women are directly reaping the benefits of this scheme as the government is directly depositing the money in the accounts of these women by selling their products directly to the customers through cooperatives.Products of Sundarini are available at Haringhata Meat outlets based in Kolkata, SBI staff co-operative store on Strand Road, Samabayikas in the city and has recently been introduced at the Sufal Bangla outlets in Salt Lake, Nalban, Tollygunge and New Alipore.last_img read more


first_imgIt may appear counterintuitive but including a little bit of sweets in your meal could help you stop gaining unhealthy weight, new research suggests.Eating sweet foods causes the brain to form a memory of a meal and this memory can help you better control eating habits, the researchers explained.Neurons in the dorsal hippocampus, the part of the brain that is critical for episodic memory, are activated by consuming sweets, the study said.Episodic memory is the memory of autobiographical events experienced at a particular time and place. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’“We think that episodic memory can be used to control eating behaviour,” said one of the researchers Marise Parent, professor at Georgia State University in the US. Studies have found that increased snacking is correlated positively with obesity, and obese individuals snack more frequently than people who aren’t obese. To understand energy regulation and the causes of obesity, scientists must consider how the brain controls meal onset and frequency, Parent said.In the current study, a meal consisting of a sweetened solution, either sucrose or saccharin, significantly increased the expression of synaptic plasticity in dorsal hippocampal neurons in rats.Synaptic plasticity is a process that is necessary for making memories. The findings were published online in the journal Hippocampus.last_img read more