Uruguayan Soldiers Strive for Excellence in Rescue Operations

first_imgBy Dialogo March 15, 2013 “Saving a life is priceless,” Miguel Correa from the Uruguayan Military says with a smile while waiting in an inflatable raft to be “saved” by a partner, who will descend from a helicopter during a rescue simulation in Salinas, 40 km east of Montevideo. Correa, a Soldier with the Uruguayan Air Force (FAU), is one of the 12 rescuers from the “Rescue Training and Operations Section,” 5th Air Squadron (Helicopters), created in 2000. “But the reward comes when you save a person and feel that pride inside yourself; then you return home to your family. I don’t need anything else in exchange, not even ‘Thank you for rescuing me,’” he states during the simulation performed on the Río de la Plata. Despite FAU’s limited infrastructure, a dozen rescuers passionate for their jobs, struggle everyday to improve their performance and welcome an invitation to participate in U.S. training exercises. “It’s not that we are extra courageous, we just love what we do,” Sergeant Richard Vázquez, member of the rescue team for five years, tells AFP. Six of its members are specialized in “PARASAR”, the use of parachutes during rescues. Currently, two team members are part of the Uruguayan contingent at the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO). The rescue team’s participation in peace missions and the level of preparedness demonstrated in search and rescue training with the U.S. Air Force facilitated their invitation to “Angel Thunder” training exercise in the United States next April, where they will work along with militaries from Brazil, Canada, Chile and Colombia, among other countries. “We have trained jointly with the United States, and although they have better helicopters and equipment, our capabilities and techniques are similar. They come and then they leave surprised, because they did not imagine that Uruguay had a team like ours,” Lieutenant Fabricio Ruiz says, second in command for the team. The equipment gap was evidenced in one of the most memorable experiences for Ruiz, when, years ago, he rescued a six-month old baby who had been isolated by a flood with his parents in a house in south eastern Uruguay. They had to change a harness in a moment to rescue the child. The sewing machine in the group’s “office” is a sign of the craftsmanship of the work the rescuers do, which allows them to modify or repair their working tools. “In case of an emergency, we go and do what we have to do; we don’t think of the risks we are running. If there is any technical difficulty, we overcome it with our partnership, supporting each other at all times,” he states. “Anyway, I think that for the sort of rescues we have in Uruguay, we have what it takes; we are fine,” Correa says.last_img read more

Peruvian Navy and MARFORSOUTH Plan Operations

first_imgBy Julieta Pelcastre/Diálogo September 09, 2018 A delegation of officers from the Peruvian Navy worked along officers of U.S. Marine Corps Forces, South (MARFORSOUTH) to set mid-term goals and objectives for cooperation between both institutions. The meeting took place at U.S. Southern Command’s (SOUTHCOM) headquarters in Florida, during the sixth Marine Corps Staff Talks of early June. “The main purpose of the conference was to expand the planning framework set in previous regional marine conferences to enable management, development, execution, and follow-up of cooperation initiatives for the next five years,” Captain Daniel Valencia Jáuregui, chief of staff of the Peruvian Marine Corps, told Diálogo. “The initiatives were designed to increase interoperability in missions and tasks of our organizations.” MARFORSOUTH’s strategic vision for Latin America and the Caribbean rests in multinational cooperation in hemispheric security. Its goal is to create a regional multinational amphibious force for crisis response or humanitarian aid, with the Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force as a main support. The task force is trained and equipped to conduct assigned operations in Latin America. Commitments reached Increasing amphibious capacity and integrating Peruvian naval resources to carry out multinational amphibious exercises were among the agreements reached during the event. “The goal is to conduct the multinational amphibious exercise UNITAS in Peru in 2021, leading and planning a humanitarian aid scenario,” Capt. Valencia said. “Starting in 2022, we want to conduct real operations as part of a multinational force, with an amphibious task force involving surface, marine, air-naval, and logistics means.” Military representatives also agreed to strengthen capabilities to carry out exercises against unconventional threats. The goal is to develop a doctrine for mechanized or motorized maneuvers in urban areas against irregular threats, shifting scenarios, lax or hostile environments, and plan the execution of civil-military, information, and intelligence operations. “Transnational threats [such as narcotrafficking and terrorism] are no longer an individual state problem, but a global problem,” Peruvian Marine Corps Commander Eduardo Díaz, a special forces troop, told Diálogo. “We have to share information and make multinational combined efforts to counter these threats.” The delegations agreed that training and instructional exchanges in the next few years will focus on integrating planning, command and control, and logistics processes, and emphasize on amphibious operations with ships, aircraft, and marines. In the medium term, they plan to form a multinational amphibious task force. Amphibious task force The operational concept for a multinational amphibious task force is to serve as the backbone of an amphibious detachment. It should consist entirely of naval contingents whose elements will have expeditionary capacity and power to organize a mission against the threat faced. “The common interest in creating a multinational force helps direct the efforts of the Peruvian Navy toward its own amphibious task force with expeditionary capacity to be part of the multinational force,” Capt. Valencia said. “It’s a multipurpose, flexible, and mobile amphibious task force, capable of immediately deploying naval and air [resources] to project naval power ashore for crisis response or humanitarian aid.” Strategic capabilities and missions “Peru and the United States strengthen capabilities and integration by assessing operational procedures and protocols for ships, aircraft, and interactions among amphibious forces, and increase Peruvian officers exchanges in expeditionary units of the U.S. Marine Corps and academically in war colleges,” Capt. Valencia said. “The [U.S.] military academic level is high; instructors are very experienced,” Cmdr. Díaz added. “Events such as the Marine Corps Staff Talks contribute to mutual understanding for navies of both countries. Training and academic exchanges must be put into practice in real operations in the Peruvian Apurímac, Ene, and Mantaro Rivers Valley,” Capt. Valencia concluded.last_img read more

Adris Grupa has officially become the new owner of the Marjan Hotel in Split

first_imgThe Commercial Court in Split issued a final decision awarding the ownership of the Adris Group over the hotel on the West Coast. Previously, the hotel was owned by Željko Kerum, ie his company Adriatic, which ended in bankruptcy four years ago due to non-payment of salaries to workers, and Adris was the company’s largest creditor. The Rovinj-based company made a bid of HRK 324 million, which is approximately three quarters of the hotel’s estimated value. Although several foreign funds expressed interest, Adris Grupa was ultimately the only bidder. After many years of fighting over the takeover through a pre-bankruptcy settlement, Hotel Marjan in Split passed into the hands of the Adris Group. Split, meanwhile, is recording high growth rates in tourism, so the intention of the Adris Group is to offer a high-category hotel, reports Vecernji list. “We look forward to a new challenge. Split is a strategic destination in the development plans of the tourist part of the Adris Group and in this way we will approach the realization of the Marjan project”, Said the management of Adris Group, and already in the spring they emphasized that their plans are to turn Hotel Marjan into a hotel of the highest category that will match the quality of the newly opened Grand Hotel Park in Rovinj.center_img Source / photo: Večernji list; Pixabaylast_img read more

Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate moves into late-stage trial

Trial volunteers will receive two injections about 28 days apart, with volunteers randomly assigned to receive either two 100 microgram injections of mRNA-1273 or two shots of a saline placebo. The study is blinded, so the investigators and the participants will not know who is assigned to which group.Results of a small early-stage study published earlier this month showed volunteers who got two doses of Moderna’s vaccine had high levels of virus-killing antibodies that exceeded the average levels seen in people who had recovered from COVID-19.Moderna said it remains on track to deliver about 500 million doses a year, and possibly up to 1 billion doses a year, beginning 2021.Brokerage BMO Capital Markets said a US supply deal with Moderna for its vaccine candidate is inevitable, adding that there likely will be deals with other governments as well. More than 150 coronavirus vaccine candidates are in various stages of development, with 23 prospects in human trials across the globe and Moderna’s candidate among the farthest along in development.”Having a safe and effective vaccine distributed by the end of 2020 is a stretch goal, but it’s the right goal for the American people,” National Institutes of Health Director Francis Collins said in a release from the NIH announcing the start of the study.The large late-stage trial is designed to evaluate the safety of Moderna’s mRNA-1273 and determine if the vaccine can prevent symptomatic COVID-19 after two doses.The study also seeks to answer if the vaccine can prevent death caused by COVID-19 and if just one dose can prevent symptomatic COVID-19. Topics : Moderna Inc said on Monday it had started a late-stage trial to test the effectiveness of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate, the first such study under the Trump administration’s program to speed development of measures against the novel coronavirus.News of the study, which will test the response to the vaccine in 30,000 adults who do not have the respiratory illness, pushed shares in Cambridge, Massachusetts-based Moderna up more than 8% before the bell.The federal government is supporting Moderna’s vaccine project with its Operation Warp Speed program. Moderna has received nearly $1 billion from the US government, which has chosen it as one of the first to enter large-scale human trials. read more

On ‘Jobs That Pay’ Tour, Governor Wolf Visits Cook MyoSite

first_img SHARE Email Facebook Twitter July 31, 2017 On ‘Jobs That Pay’ Tour, Governor Wolf Visits Cook MyoSitecenter_img Economy,  Jobs That Pay,  Press Release Pittsburgh, PA – Governor Tom Wolf today toured Cook MyoSite, a leader in regenerative medicine formed in 2002 from research conducted at the University of Pittsburgh to expand the company’s world of cellular technologies. Through pioneering efforts, research involving the use of adult skeletal muscle-derived cells for tissue augmentation is being developed into a treatment option for patients with a variety of muscle-related disorders.“The work Cook MyoSite is doing in Pittsburgh is fascinating, groundbreaking, and a tremendous example of jobs that pay,” Governor Wolf said. “The company’s work in biomedical engineering is changing lives, and we are proud to support Cook MyoSite’s growth here in Pennsylvania. Born out of research from the University of Pittsburgh, this company is an example of why investing in education is good for business and our economy.”Cook MyoSite recently expanded operations by renovating a 62,000-square-foot building adjacent to its original facility in O’Hara Township, Allegheny County. Along with the bricks-and-mortar expansion, Cook MyoSite added 64 new jobs, bringing its complement to more than 130.For the expansion and job creation project, Cook was offered a funding proposal in 2015 from the Governor’s Action Team that included a $100,000 Pennsylvania First Program grant and $28,800 in WEDnet PA grant funding.The new facility, when completed, will be a manufacturing location for global distribution of a biopharmaceutical product that uses a patient’s own muscle cells to create a specialized treatment for numerous disease states.“Local economic incentives are one of several keys to attracting biotechnology business interest and talent in the region, and we appreciate the support of the governor’s office as we continue to expand our operations in Pittsburgh and reach our goal of delivering important medical treatments to patients,” Cook MyoSite VP of Product Development, Ron Jankowski said.While at Cook MyoSite, Governor Wolf toured the lab facilities, experiencing the company’s work first-hand by observing tissue samples under a microscope, and later sitting down with company employees to learn more about regenerative medicine and the FDA-approval process.Cook MyoSite is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Cook Group Incorporated, which was founded in 1963 in Bloomington, Indiana. Cook primarily manufactures medical devices and markets over 16,000 products across 13 hospital service lines in 135 countries.last_img read more

​Norway mulls unlisted infrastructure mandate for oil fund

first_imgThe Norwegian government may allow the Government Pension Fund Global to invest in unlisted real assets, with a move into infrastructure under consideration.The country’s Ministry of Finance has asked the fund’s NOK6trn (€699bn) Strategy Council, chaired by the London Business School’s Elroy Dimson, to assess whether it should adjust the current 5% cap on real estate.Minister of finance Siv Jensen said: “Developing the fund’s investment strategy through better diversification will help to ensure continued robust, long-term management of the fund.”Even if the Strategy Council decides to recommend that Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM) be allowed to invest in infrastructure, it is unlikely to commit to any projects in the immediate future. In a statement, the ministry said its final decision would be presented to Parliament by the spring of 2016.However, it said that, if exposure to unlisted infrastructure was permitted, it would also allow the fund to grow its exposure to the unlisted renewable energy sector and infrastructure projects in emerging markets.So far, the fund’s renewable energy mandate has focused on technology facilitating energy saving, rather than solar or wind power, according to NBIM chief executive Yngve Slyngstad.The ministry added in a statement: “As with all other investments by the fund, such investments will have to be evaluated on the basis of expected returns and risk.”NBIM is currently restricted to investing in listed renewable energy options and is barred from any unlisted investments.In a strategy document covering 2014-16, NBIM said earlier this year that it was hoping to establish an infrastructure portfolio.The Government Pension Fund Global’s asset allocation allows for 60% exposure to equities and 35% exposure to bonds, with the remainder in property.According to its most recent quarterly report, the fund had 61.4% of assets in equities, 37.3% in fixed income and just 1.3% in property.To date, the fund struggled to deploy capital into the property mandate but has pledged that, for the three years to 2017, it will invest 1% of the fund’s assets in real estate.last_img read more

They just hosed out the mud and fish

first_imgNot a bad view to wake up to each dayDESIGNED to withstand a 1974-style flood, this West End waterfront home passed with flying colours when the Brisbane River broke its banks in 2011.Retired Bicycle Queensland CEO Ben Wilson and his wife Shelley purchased 105 Ryan St just six months before the floods, which inundated many homes in the River City.When the floods of 2011 hit, the owners of 105 Ryan St, West End, just hosed out the mud and the fish and got on with their day“The house had no damage whatsoever,” Mr Wilson said. “Water came in to the yard, into the plunge pool and into the concrete downstairs entertainment area.“But we just hosed it out once the water receded, removed four fish and three crabs, but there was no repairs needed whatsoever.”The lower floor allows for the whole area to be hosed outMr Wilson said the house was designed by a local doctor who had no intention of living in the property but wanted to build a self-sustaining, eco home.He said they had planned to renovate an older house nearby when they discovered the contemporary home, which was built using materials recycled from the previous house on the site.“It’s a wonderful family home. It’s modern but built using some recycled materials … so it has a sense of warmth and belonging.” Mr Wilson, the now-retired former CEO of Bicycle Queensland said.“Also the river is a massive tranquil parkland teeming with bird life and recreation opportunities.”More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus17 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market17 hours agoDesigned by architect Conrad Gargett Ridde, the three-level, four bedroom home sits on a 683sq m lot and boasts spacious and airy living zones, a gallery with natural light and a sunlit courtyard.Upstairs the finishes are high-endThere is polished concrete and reclaimed timber flooring throughout, solar panels and grid-connected electricity, a 71,000L rainwater storage and grey water recycling system, an entertainment deck and plunge pool.And the kitchen is spacious and functionalIt is also within easy reach of the West End markets, South Bank, art galleries, parks and cafes, and close to the ferry, City Glider bus and bikeway.Mr Wilson said they have moved in to a smaller house about 300m away, with their children now adults.“It’s the best inner city suburb by far. West End has it all – a great school community plus interesting people and exciting eateries,” he said.Ray White New Farm principal Matt Lancashire says there has been strong early interest in the home which will be auctioned on-site on August 18.“What a house and what a location? West End has long been known for its vibrant community and amazing lifestyle,” Mr Lancashire said.“ I have to applaud the architects of this house for its innovative and sustainable design features, it’s truly special and very rare.”last_img read more

Report: Indonesia Delays New Shipping Rules

first_imgThe Indonesian government has reportedly decided to postpone indefinitely the implementation of its new law which would limit maritime transportation of goods such as coal and crude palm oil, Reuters informed citing an official of Indonesian Coordinating Economic Ministry.The new regulations were announced in October 2017 and were supposed to enter into force in April this year.Based on the decree, commodities, coal, crude palm oil, rice and goods for government procurement, would only be transported for import or export by national maritime transport companies.The move was directed toward bolstering the Indonesian-flagged fleet as the majority of the country’s exports of coal and crude palm oil are carried out by foreign-flagged vessels.However, the decision seems to have caused a stir among buyers overseas as well as coal and palm oil exporters in Indonesia, with several contracts now said to be pending finalization.According to Elen Setiadi, chief of trade and industry at the Coordinating Economic Ministry, cited by Reuters, once the vessel requirements are met and the service providers agree on the new rules they will become mandatory.The measure was faced with severe criticism from shipowners across the international community as protectionist and in violation of free trade principles.European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ECSA) said that the new law is “a clear measure of protectionism and will impact seriously European shipping companies that have longstanding access to this market.”World Maritime News Stafflast_img read more

Grey Matters Programme Delivers Six Technology Innovations Startups

first_imgElevator and Scottish Enterprise initiative that aims to bring together entrepreneurial senior oil and gas professionals to transform the sector with radical technological innovations, has led to the creation of six new scalable businesses.Four months ago, 20 aspiring entrepreneurs joined the second ‘Grey Matters’ programme and by sharing their experience and knowledge, and by collaborating and forming teams, six fledgling new businesses have been founded.Grey Matters aims to drive the future of energy in Scotland, by bringing together entrepreneurial and experienced oil and gas executives, who have been made redundant, and supporting them to work together to create a high-growth business.Each of the innovations and technology proposed (or being developed) by Windstorm, Evadne Immersive, C-NumeriC, Resolute, MarineJoule and Sentinel Subsea has the potential to transform the global energy sector.Windstorm, founded by John Mailey, is looking to harness the affordability and accessibility of wind to create a 20MW turbine. Seven Windstorm turbines would be able to produce 100% of Aberdeen’s annual energy consumption and have the advantage of being a third of the height of the 8.4MW turbines being installed in the 19km2 European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre off the Aberdeen coast.Windstorm are expecting prototype testing to take place in early 2019, with a proven commercial operation ready by Q4 2020.Training costs account for approximately 1% of an organisation’s turnover, with 70% of that being spent on travel and accommodation. In a bid to eliminate this unnecessary expenditure, Evadne Immersive is looking to “gamify” the traditional training schemes used by organisations.By adapting a proven training method – that has saved department store chain Bloomingdale’s more than £2.2m a year – for use in the energy sector, “gamification” can boost information retention upwards of 90%.The technology under development by Evadne Immersive will provide the industry with a practical, commercially viable and affordable alternative to traditional training solutions.C-NumeriC has a vision to dramatically change the over 40-year old conventional approach taken to section milling when plugging and abandoning (P&A) subsea wells. The current, labour-intensive, procedure fails on four out of every seven operations and about 75% of service quality issues are due to human error. C-NumeriC propose a fully automated section milling system that can provide real-time information and save up to £500,000 on each P&A well.Gbade Adetona, founder of C-NumeriC and formerly of Schlumberger, said: “Our technology isn’t about reinventing the wheel. It’s about making it drive better. UK P&A operations cost savings are expected to be worth £950m over seven years by applying our solution. We’ll be aiming for a 100% success rate on all projects at the first attempt.”P&A is also a focus of Resolute, founded by Iain Lees, Alessia Diodoro, Emma Lees and Rosa Ceberio. Cement is a key part of well construction, but figures show that it is a major factor in 34% of UK and 18% of Norwegian wells having at least one integrity issue.By 2025, almost 2,500 wells are expected to be decommissioned in the North Sea and according to Resolute, the sole use of cement is not fit for purpose. Resolute propose applying its microscopic, granular material to better enable cements and resins to do their function as barriers. When combined with other selected materials, the solution can expand up to 400x its original size and can also be injected into the reservoir, providing a deeper and more secure block.By working with OGIC and RGU, Resolute has simulated, tested and proven its solution and are now advancing to field trials. Once successful, Resolute will be able to reinstate the integrity and prolong the life of wells, before making P&A more cost effective and robust.Sentinel Subsea is developing technology that minimises the cost of management and monitoring of P&A wells, whilst demonstrating proactive environmental stewardship. To address the growing concern amongst UK, European and Scandinavian regulators that abandoned wells could leak, Sentinel Subsea propose injecting capped wells with a specialised substance and installing an anchored sensor, individually coded to each well, on the sea bed. If a leak of the substance and associated hydrocarbons is detected by the sensor, it will eject from its anchor, rise to the surface and be detected.Neil Gordon, founder of Sentinel Subsea, said: “Within five minutes of a sensor breaching the surface, we will be able to inform operators of a leaking well. Currently, if a plugged and abandoned well is leaking, it can take days, weeks or months for it to be reported. If the hydrocarbons never reach the surface to be seen, the chances are that the leak might never be identified. Using Sentinel Subsea technology provides peace of mind and just makes sense.”Current wave power technology is prohibitively expensive and embryonic but MarineJoule are looking to disrupt the renewable market by developing a scalable, entirely self-sufficient marine plant that’s capable of decommissioning itself. By applying force to constrain natural movement, the MarineJoule generation plant will be able harness the power potential of waves at significantly lower cost compared to existing technology and other renewable energy generators, such as wind turbines, using a much greater uptime than wind and solar with less of a footprint.The scalable nature of the technology will allow for varied power generation and be capable of operating, under all conditions, without the need for dedicated support ships or personnel. The patent pending marine plant is currently undergoing testing and validation with RGU before progressing to prototyping.John Harris, Grey Matters programme lead, said: “When we pulled 20 strangers together 16 weeks ago, we could never have imagined the level of success that has been delivered from our second Grey Matters programme. When they started, each of the participants signed a “Founder’s Charter” that ensured that they would support each other, take constructive criticism on-board and work to their best.“Now, three months later, six new businesses that each have the potential to change the energy sector, at home and abroad, have been launched, patents are or have been secured and developments to prototyping and field trials are progressing at an accelerated rate.”Bob Keiller, chairman of Scottish Enterprise, said: “After a challenging time for Scotland’s oil and gas sector, today’s announcement is not only great news for the wider energy sector but also a strong reminder of the world-renowned skills and expertise we’ve built up over the last 50 years. Since the downturn, Scottish Enterprise has worked closely with its partners to address the changing demands of the industry and build an ecosystem to encourage entrepreneurs and companies to innovate. Grey Matters is one example of the work behind this initiative, which has been instrumental in retaining the skills and experience within Scotland, as well as further supporting the creation of high growth companies. It is great to begin to see the rewards of this investment and I wish all six start-ups a long and successful future.”last_img read more

Coudray’s murder suspect charged.

first_img Sharing is caring! NewsRegional Coudray’s murder suspect charged. by: – July 2, 2012 Share Tweet 71 Views   no discussionscenter_img Share Share Michelle Coudray-Greaves, who was estranged from her Jamaican husband, retuned to Jamaica at the end of May after a brief visit home with her mother.PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad and Tobago, Monday, July 2, 2012 – A 46-year-old taxi driver from Westmoreland in Jamaica has reportedly been charged with last month’s shocking kidnapping and slaying of Trinidadian Michelle Coudray-Greaves in the northern Jamaican city of Montego Bay.According to media reports, Jamaican police charged Taylor late Saturday (June 30) after having him in custody for the past three weeks and he is due to appear before a Resident Magistrate’s Court in Montego Bay this week.The 39-year-old Coudray-Greaves was the eldest daughter of Marlene Coudray, the recently appointed minister of gender, youth and child development.Minister Coudray reportedly told the Trinidad Express that she was “happy” that someone was arrested and charged.She said she knew what was happening because she kept in contact with the police in Jamaica.“I am satisfied with the investigation. They (Jamaican police) have been helpful since the time I arrived in Jamaica and I asked them to explore all areas.”However, she is also reported to have said that she believes another person was involved in her daughter’s murder.Coudray-Greaves, who was estranged from her Jamaican husband, retuned to Jamaica at the end of May after a brief visit home with her mother, the former Mayor of San Fernando and her three children, who were living in Trinidad. The former Spanish teacher at a high school in Montego Bay was reported missing on June 8.Her burned body was discovered in a cane field on June 11 and an autopsy found she was killed by blows from a blunt object. Although previously thought to be part of the crime cover-up, it was revealed that her body had accidentally been burned by plantation workers clearing the field.Taylor of Lindos Hill, Withorn in Westmoreland, became a suspect after Coudray-Greaves was reportedly seen getting into a taxi near her apartment in Montego Bay before she went missing. The suspect was said to have been known to Coudray-Greaves for a year.Caribbean 360 Newslast_img read more