Tuesday, October 7, 2008



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The University Consortium for Geographic Information Science (UCGIS) is a non-profit organization of universities and other research institutions dedicated to advancing our understanding of geographic processes and spatial relationships through improved theory, methods, technology, and data. UCGIS membership is open to all U.S. academic and research organizations that meet the membership criteria listed below. Member institutions will have the opportunity to participate in reviewing and setting national research priorities in GIS and related specialties.

Rutgers University GIS (RUGIS) is a member of The University Consortium for Geographic Information Science (UCGIS). Faculty with GIS interest at Rutgers have constituents in both the research and education communities. Five core faculty and other affiliated faculty are active in national and international organizations that provide forums for dissemination of research. Together the five core faculty are active members of a variety of organizations that include the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, the American Water Resources Association, the Ecological Society of America, the American Association of Geographers, The Transportation Research Board, and the American Planning Association. One core faculty member is currently on the Board of the Urban and Regional Information Systems Association and Feature Editor of the URISA Journal

Rutgers has been a leader in Geographic Information Systems research and education in New Jersey. The Grant F. Walton Center for Remote Sensing and Spacial Analysis was established in 1983 at Cook College. In 1989 the Center moved to new facilities as teaching and research activities were joined in a state-of-the- art setting. From its initiation the Center has supported itself with funded research, contract work and donations of the latest hardware and software.

Computer modeling of transportation and land use has always played a role in the research of the Computer Laboratory in the department of Urban Planning and Policy Development (Bloustein School of Planning). Since 1991 the focus of the Laboratory has progressively shifted toward urban GIS applications. In July of 1995 the Urban Planning lab was provided with a new building and greatly upgraded equipment.

The Faculty of the Grant F. Walton Center for Remote Sensing at Cook College and the Computer Laboratory at Bloustein School have been actively cooperating in research and teaching efforts since 1993. Recent software donations were jointly negotiated by the two departments and several cooperating research proposals are pending. Both departments offer a variety of undergraduate and graduate programs that emphasize the fundamental use of GIS and its many different applications.

Rutgers UCGIS Participants
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NJ GIS Related Sites
GIS Courses at Rutgers University
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USDAC Geoscope Prototype
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Related Servers
The Manual of Federal Geographic Data Products
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The National Geospatial Data Clearing House - Links by State
Arkansas' list of geo data
Metadata and WWW mapping home page


Has insignificant effects on the global or national environment
Has major effects on the local environment
Nearest dwelling
Greatest source of nuisance complaints
Operations % of nuisance complaints from odor
Swine 95
Broiler 75
Layer 66
Beef feedlots 50
Animal buildings and lots
Manure treatment and storage
Land application
Feed processing
Dead animal disposal
Difficult to define, quantify, and control
Odor composed of 331 compounds in manure
30 compounds most common in swine manure

Most objectionable compounds in manure
Odor threshold
___Class___ ___Compound___ ____Smell_____ ____ppm____ Substrate
Volatile fatty Butyric acid Rancid butter .001 Carbohydrate
Acids Isobutryic acid Rancid butter - Protein
Caproic acid - - Carbohydrate
Isocaproic acid - - Protein
Valeric acid Putred fecal - Carbohydrate
Isovaleric acid Stinky feet - Protein
Propionic acid Intense vinegar 20.0 Carbohydrate
Phenylpropionic acid - - Protein
Lauric acid - - Carbohydrate
Acetic acid Vinegar 1.0 Carbohydrate
Ammonia and Ammonia Acrid 46.8 Protein
Amines Amines
Putrescine Rotting flesh - Protein
Cadaverine Rotting flesh - Protein
Trimethyl amine - .00021 Protein
Trimethyl pyrazine - - Protein
Tetramethly pyrazine - - Protein
Indoles and Indole Intense fecal - Protein
Phenols Skatole Nauseating fecal - Protein
Phenol - .005 Protein
Ethyl phenol - - Protein
p-Cresol Major odor in swine manure .001 Protein

Measurement of odor
Gas measurement
Air samples are collected and analyzed for specific, individual gaseous compounds
Measured with:
Indicator tubes
Electronic sensors
Gas chromatograph/mass spectrometer
Accurate measure of individual gases
Allows for specific numeric standards
Useful for measuring gaseous compounds with specific health effects
Manure odor is not associated with any single compound

Odors are measured by a trained panel of humans
May be measured
On location
Field sniffer
In laboratory
Dynamic, triangular forced-air olfactometer
Characteristics to describe odor
Detection threshold
Volume of normal air needed to dilute odor sample to
the point where the difference is detected by 50% of the panel members
Recognition threshold
Volume of normal air needed to dilute an odor sample to the point that the panel can recognize the compound
Describes the strength of the odor relative to different concentrations of n-butanol
Amount of air needed to dilute air around a livestock unit to the point where the odor is not smelled

Hedonic tone
Measurement of the unpleasantness of an odor
Scale of measurement is 1 to 10
Character descriptors
A description of the smell
There is a direct correlation between odor and the sense of smell
Measures the complete mixture of gases
Olfactometry is subjective
Difficult to regulate

Health effects of odors
Within buildings
Toxicity of two compounds
Hydrogen sulfide
Concentrations, ppm Exposure ________Effects____________
20 - Decreased disease resistance
50 < 1 day Eye and throat irritation
Severe cough
100 6 weeks Impaired pulmonary function
<150 < 1 day Scarring of upper and lower airway
500 30 min Sore nose and throat
<1000 - Irritation of upper respiratory
>4000 - Severe damage to upper and
and lower respiratory tract
5000 < 30 min Death
Smells at 50 ppm

Hydrogen sulfide
Most dangerous of gases
Can be smelled at 1 ppm, but concentrations > 150 ppm inhibits smell
Makes H2S particularly dangerous
Requires monitoring equipment
Gas is heavier than air
Concentrates in pits and holding tanks
Dangerous when agitated
Acute toxicity
Concentration, ppm Exposure Human effects Swine effects
100 > 1 hr Eye and nose irritation None
200 1 hr Headache, dizziness -
375 4 hr - Pulmonary edema
500 30 min Nausea, excitement, -
>500 - Severe pulmonary edema -
1000 - Unconsiousness, Spasms, convulsions
death cyanosis, death

Chronic toxicity
Occurs at long-term exposure at 300 ppm
Asthma, bronchitis, sinusitis, hay fever, progressive loss of lung function, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

Effects of H2S on lungs are uniform throughout the respiratory tract
Particularly damaging to deep pulmonary structures, causing edema
Toxicity effects
Binds mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase
Blocks oxidative phosphorylation and ATP production
Causes build up of lactic acid in body
Neurophysiological abnormalities
Impaired balance
Impaired hearing
Impaired memory
Impaired mood
Impaired intellectual function
Workplace limit
10 ppm H2S

Community effects
Response to NH3, H2S, and VOCs
Runny nose
Sore throat
Burning eyes
Negative mood (Tension, depression, anger, fatigue, confusion)
Odor recommendations
Based on dilution ratio of clean air:air from livestock operation
Odor shall not exceed a 7:1 dilution at a residence in two periods/day for more than 7 days per year
Odor shall not exceed a 15:1 dilution at the property line for one period/day for more than 14 days per year
Factors affecting odor complaints
Frequency of problem
86% of farmers tolerate neighbor’s odor if problem occurs > 2 days/year
50% of farmers tolerate neighbor’s odor if problem occurs > 10 days/year
Intensity of problem
Duration of problem
Offensiveness of odor
Relations with neighbors (Time of residence, previous contact)
Odor plume (Direction, topography)

Origin of livestock odor
Odor compound
Large intestine Carbohydrates Protein
(Starch, cellulose) Volatile fatty acids
(Acetic, Propionic, Butyric acids;
may be absorbed or excreted)

H2S and mercaptans
(Passed as gas)
Other amines, phenols, and
indoles (Absorbed from LI &
excreted in urine)

Manure Carbohydrates
(Secondary Volatile fatty acids and alcohols Protein
fermentation Lactic acid
greater at: Butyric acid
Manure pH > 4.5;
High manure moisture; NH3, H2S, mercaptans, branched
High ambient temperatures) chain VFAs (Isobutyric, Isovaleric), CH4
Amines (Putrescine, Cadaverine),
Phenols (Phenol, p-Cresol),
Indoles (indole, Skatole)

Air Emissions increased with increased temperature, moisture, humidity, agitation,
dust, pH, wind, surface exposure

Livestock management to reduce odors
Reduce excessive protein feeding
Reducing protein swine diets from 18 to 14% reduced odor components by 40 to 86%
Balance essential amino acids to create ideal dietary protein with crystalline amino acids
Use multi-phase and split-gender feeding
Avoid safety margins in protein feeding
Use genetically lean pigs
Use growth promoters
Minimize feed waste
Supply only enough ruminally degraded protein to meet the NH3 needs of the rumen bacteria
Beyond the microbial NH3 needs, meet animal’s metabolizable protein needs with ruminally undegrade protein sources or crystalline amino acids
Use phase feeding of beef feedlot or dairy cows
Control feed wastes
Reduce sulfur in mineral supplements
Can reduce odor by 40%
Utilize salts other than sulfates or sulfides for trace minerals

Increase cellulose or other nonstarch polysaccharides in swine diets
Causes bacteria in large intestine to incorporate NH3 into microbial protein
Reduces NH3 by as much as 35%
Ingredients to add:
Soy hulls
Sugar beet pulp
Distillers grains
Mask odor with other odors
Garlic powder has been used for poultry
Feeding sarsaponin
Extracted from yucca plant
Inhibits urease
Feeding zeolites
Minerals that have cation exchange capacity
Binds odor compounds
Reduce dust from animals’ skin
Increase quality of dietary fat
Feed adequate zinc

Management of livestock facilities to manage manure odor
Frequent cleaning of wet manure and feed from facilities
Manure standing for more than 5 days will cause considerable offensive odor
Use bedded systems
Odor seems less offensive than liquid systems
Addition of organic matter from bedding reduces odor
Reduce dust within and outside buildings
Frequent cleaning
Spraying vegetable oils
Reduce NH3 and H2S by 30%
Spray once daily
Use a medium droplet size
Problem with oily facilities
Installation of wet scrubbers
Wetted pads 3 to 5’ in front of ventilation fans
Traps dust with some NH3, H2S, and NOx
Effectiveness on odors?
Use of chemical additives
Alum (K Al(SO4)) will reduce some NH3 emissions

Use Biofiltration
A system that uses aerobic bacteria to degrade gaseous odors from ventilated air
Aerobic bacteria
VOC & inorganic gases CO2 + H2O + Mineral salts +
Microbial biomass
Fiber mat serves as media
Shredded wood and compost (50:50)
Shredded wood and soil (50:50)
Straw and compost
Less effective during periods of high ventilation
Can be difficult to control vegetation and rodents

Use Biomass filters
Walls of corn stalks, corn cob or other materials placed immediately outside ventilation fans
Reduces dust by 52 – 83%
Reduces odor by 43 – 90%

Use windbreak walls
Walls placed 10 – 20 ft downwind from ventilation fans
Settle dust near barn
Disperses odor plume upward to increase dilution

Use natural windbreaks
Rows of trees or other vegetation
Trap dust
Aids in dispersion and dilution of odor
Provides a visual barrier

Management of manure storage to limit odor
Aerobic treatment
Liquid manure
Air is pumped into liquid manure
Should oxidize odor-causing chemicals
Difficult to mix enough O2 to be effective
Solid manure
Appropriate moisture (50%)
Adequate C:N ration (>20:1)
Aerobic conditions (Frequent mixing)
Temperature (130oF for 3 days)
Oxidizes odor and incorporates N-containing compounds into microbial protein
Reduces odor by 75% in 2 weeks

Management of anerobic lagoons
Complete anerobic digestion is effective at limiting odors

Odors can be controlled if:
Loading rate is slow and uniform enough to allow balance of bacteria producing VFAs or CH4
Allows development of purple sulfur-oxidizing bacteria
Metabolize VOCs
Reduce amines
A purple or pink color of lagoon is desirable

Factors affecting odors in lagoons
High loading rates
Excess animal numbers
Inadequate dilution water
Windy conditions
Disturbs surface
Timing of agitation and pumping for application
Should be done on clear, sunny days when warm air causes odors to rise and disperse
Early spring turnover
Odor problems increase as bacterial action begins to increase digesting nutrients that were incompletely metabolized over winter

Use covers over storage facilities
Covers over manure structures
Rigid covers
Concrete, wood, fiberglass, plastic
Materials must be noncorrosive
Flexible covers
Tarp over manure with a blower
Floating covers
Crust floating on top of manure
Artificial organic
Straw, chopped corn stalks, wood shavings
Polystyrene foam, air-filled clay balls, geotextile
Provides a barrier between liquid manure and the atmosphere
Provides aerobic media to all microbes to degrade odor compounds
Straw will only last from 2 weeks to 6 months

Anerobic digesters
Produce methane for biogas
Reduce odors by 70 – 80%
Microbial additives
Cultures added to degrade odor compounds
Oxidizers and pH control
Limited effectiveness
Masking agents
Volatile compounds that smell pleasant
Sprayed on or above manure
May separate from manure downwind
Absorbents and Adsorbents
Activated carbon, zeolite, bentonite, or sphagnum moss
Antimicrobial oils
Includes plant oils like thymol and carvacol
Inhibit microbial degradation of manure during anerobic storage, but degrade in aerobic conditions after application
Preserves nutrients and reduces odor emissions
Still in research

Natural windbreaks
Creates a visual barrier
Filters, disperses and dilutes odor
Separation of manure solids and liquid
Can be mechanical or gravity
Separates urea in urine from urease in feces
Reduces NH3
Reduces odor by 50%

Manure application management to control odors
Manure odor problems are directly proportional to the surface area for emissions
The area of manure application is the greatest source of manure odor
Factors affecting manure odor during application
Form of manure
Earthen basin > Below barn pit > Anerobic lagoon > Solid > Compost
Lagoon management
Lagoon should be large enough to leave a permanent pool to stabilize microbial population
Apply in June through fall
Odors reduced when microbes are most active
Dilute manure with water liberally
2 – 3 parts H2O : 1 part manure
Test for salt and NH3 concentration
Stop lagoon feeding 2 weeks before pumping
Allows bacteria the opportunity to degrade odor
Application method
Injection of manure into soil
Most effective at preventing odors
Surface application with incorporation
Must be done immediately after application

If surface applying liquid manure by irrigation make sure to:
Set sprayer for large droplets
Reduce droplet surface area
Adequately dilute manure with clean water
Monitor wind direction
Shut down if wind blows towards neighboring residences
Monitor wind spead
Shut down if wind speed exceeds 5 mph
Prevents dilution of odor

Consideration of neighbors as a method to control manure odor nuisance complaints
Siting of operation and fields for manure application
Major tool to limit odor nuisance complaints
Odors decreases exponentially with distance
Distances (Required to use the Master Matrix)
> Residences
>¼ mile from buildings
>750 ft from manure application-Surface applied
> Residential development
>1 mile from buildings
>750 ft from manure application-Surface applied
Don’t build uphill from residences
Prevailing winds
Don’t build so residences are downwind of the prevailing winds
Especially during the spring
Building orientation
Short side of livestock facility should be perpendicular to the neighbor’s residence

Timing of manure application
Tell neighbors when you plan to spread manure
Select days when wind is blowing away from neighbors
Avoid spreading manure on weekends, holidays, or on days when neighbors have a social event planned
Facility maintenance
Maintain buildings and grounds around facilities
Mow grass
Control weeds
Proper dead animal disposal
Avoid spilling manure on roads

Geographical Information Systems (GIS)

October 6, 2008

In my


I chronicled the Table of Elements todate.

The Table of Isotopes, circa 1998, have to be updated.

Every Radioisotopes used need NRC licence and some need State Licensing also.

By-product license?

One can use multielemental analysis methods such as Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy, X-ray Fluorescence, Neutron Activation Analysis, Proton Induced X-ray Emission and Proton Induced Gamma Emission, Direct Current Plasma, Inductively Coupled Plasma-Atomic Emission Spectroscopy,
Laser Microprobe Mass Analysis…

Much like a metal detector but more versatile-elemental analyzer such as Niton, Bruker AXS handheld,
are portable.

Aribex is X-ray radiograph.

Gas Chromatograph with Mass Spectroscopy features can analyze for Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons,
Liquified Petroleum Gas, Oil Shales,
Solvents such as benzene, toluene, xylene and other by products of the petroleum industry.

Neutron Probe are used in industrial radiography.

For stoichiometric physico-chemical characterization of both inorganic and organic compounds, there is X-ray Diffraction, X-ray Crystallography, and Raman Spectroscopy, etc.

Remote Sensing equipments are linked to satellites whether telecommunications and/or weather to factor in such data.

Nanosatellites, 50 of them, were sent out to outer space on the 50th anniversary of Sputnik, last year, October 4, 2007.
Can we make portable and affordable instrumentations and multipurpose kits that will measure as much as possible all needed measurements such as inorganics, elemental and organics, aerosols, saw dust, impurities, toxic, reactive, inflammable, and corrosive materials, radiotoxic, chemitoxic, biotoxic, teratogenic, etc. bacteriocidal, also nanotoxic, whether nanonuclear, nanofission, nanofusion, etc.?

Radiation monitors, detectors and alarms are plenty to choose from, including fiber optics, nuclear track etch, fission track etch, aerogels? Sensors.

Before all of these, we should get the proper Laser Flash Photolysis Systems to monitor for transients, free radicals, and radiolytic products that can cause the initial chromosome aberrations and chromatic breaks, and genetic and somatic damages to the DNA and RNA.

Question: what causes defective genes?
National Genome Research.

National Science Foundation(NSF)
Environmental Protection Agency(EPA)
Department of Energy(DOE)
Department of Agriculture(USDA)
Food and Drug Administration(FDA)
Public Health Service(PHS)
Department of Health and Human Services(DHHS)
Center for Disease Control and Prevention(CDC)
Consumer Product Safety Commission(CPSC)

Needed before marketing for each item: Material Safety Data Sheets(MSDS).

Researches needed:

Definite identification of Star Aggregates-Particle Size Determination-Dose Equivalent(Dose x Quality Factor)-
Linear Energy Transfer and Linear Energy Loss(possible applications for atomic, nuclear and radiation batteries and generators e.g. Radioisotope Thermal Generators and Stirling RTG-NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio)-electromagnetic field generated?

X-ray Crystallography and X-ray Diffraction

Baseline Studies-Pre-Construction




Global Warming

Dr. Lance Christensen, PhD in Chemistry, Laser Flash Photolysis System

Pesticides, Insecticides, and Fungicides

Rhone Poulenc now

Rhône-Poulenc was a French chemical and pharmaceutical company founded in 1928 through the merger of Société des Usines Chimiques du Rhône (Rhône Chemical Plant Company) and Établissements Poulenc Frères (Poulenc Brothers Company). In January 1999, Rhône-Poulenc merged with Hoechst AG to form Aventis. In 2004, Aventis went on to merge with Sanofi-Synthélabo forming Sanofi-Aventis, the third largest pharmaceutical company in the world.
The agricultural chemicals division of Rhône-Poulenc, known as Aventis CropScience after the merger with Hoechst, was sold to the German chemical and pharmaceutical company Bayer in 2002. In 1998, the chemicals division of Rhône-Poulenc was spun-off into a separate company named Rhodia.
Rhône-Poulenc originally funded the Rhône-Poulenc Prizes, now known as the Royal Society Prizes for Science Books.

Product Information Compliance System(PICS)

Organic Farming

XRF-X-ray Radiography tandem 2 in 1

Au before Hg, Ag before Cd

Monday, October 6, 2008

Homestore Products


Semiconductor Industries

President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's Speech during the 10th
Semiconductor and Electronics Industries in the Philippines, Inc.

Thank you.

Thank you, Secretary Favila.

Chairman Arthur Young, President Ernie Santiago, all the members and
officers of SEIPI, welcome once again to Malacanang!

Many of you may remember the last time we met as a group two years
ago. But between then and now, I've met some of your principals at
international fora and I get to see many of you individually during
the many company events that have taken place in the industry. And I
stay updated on your many successes as well as your concerns. For
after all, you have made, as our two speakers have said, tremendous
contributions to our economy. Thank you to the industry.

A special thanks to the 242 companies that form SEIPI, the moving
spirit that has made your sector among the most united and organized
of Philippine industries. I have heard about your GAINS program for
global competitiveness, advocacy, information, networking and
services, and that it is the most forward-looking industry strategy in
the country. Congratulations to you!

We saw a part of your work in the two presentations today and for the
ordinary Filipino, the Philippine economic landscape of the 21st
century would be unrecognizable without your industries. You have
every right to claim to be the "driver of the Philippine economy," as
Ernie said in the beginning of his speech, you produce two-thirds of
Philippine exports. Over a billion Philippine-made memory chips, power
devices, disk drives, digital signal processors, magnetic heads and
similar products are found in various electronic appliances all over
the world coming from you. Because of you, our country has an
18-percent share of the global electronics market since 2006. I thank
you also personally because during my presidency, you have earned 200
billion dollars for our country. Your exports have grown almost 50
percent -- from 22 billion dollars in 2001 to 31 billion dollars a
year. And I was looking at the growth rate of the world and of Asia,
your exports in the last seven years have grown faster than the rest
of Asia.

Your industries have been major job creators. You give direct
employment to almost half a million Filipinos. That is the same number
as our Department of Education, which is our largest single government

Your sector invested five billion dollars during my administration.
And the peak, the rise in investments, was with Texas Instruments
which, by itself, is pumping more than a billion dollars for a new
operation in Clark, not to mention its new activities in Baguio. So,
we thank Bing for bringing that investment over.

I've also had the fortune of presiding over the expansion of other
companies like SunPower, large expansion. So, I'm very grateful for that.

In 2001, I was telling Ernie, that in 2001 you had a negative growth
rate, didn't you? And Ernie remembers that 2001 had a minus-22 growth
rate. It was a negative 22 percent. At that time, that was right after
the 9/11, but even before 9/11, the global market was already slowing
down. In 2001, the main market for Philippine-made electronics and
semiconductor items was the United States. Then the U.S. market
suffered a drop in sales. That's why your growth rate was minus 22
percent, though I might say that at that time, I remember how I said,
"Naku! Kakaupo ko lang, magne-negative growth rate ang Pilipinas,"
because electronics is such a major part of our economy.

But we work to do other things to strengthen the domestic market,
release all the arrears of IRA to the local governments, work on the
housing industries, spend on agriculture, as a result of which the
Philippine economy still had a positive growth rate even if the
electronics industry had a negative growth rate. But in the meantime,
just as we were working on how to make the Philippine economy remain
with a positive growth rate, you were also working, you were looking
for other markets. And indeed, you found other markets. So that when
we met in 2006, China was already your main customer, taking in 26
percent of your exports. And today, with even more changes in the
global economic arena, you have shifted your focus again.

This year 2008, `cause most of your figures are 2007, Ernie confirmed
to me that about 22 percent of your products go to Europe, 15 percent
to Japan, 14 percent to the U.S., 13 percent to China, and the rest to
other Asian countries.

But Arthur was telling me that there is a lot of potential, as you've
shown us in the presentation, within our own region. And so, with such
dynamism, your industry -- though it had a negative growth rate for
the first six months of the year -- in June, it managed to grow 2.6
percent year-on-year, and maybe that means that the slump is over and
you're beginning to go back to your upswing.

We have been working tirelessly as we did in 2001, and now even more
to address challenges arising from the slowdown in the global economy
which this time is combined with the spike in oil and food prices. We
all know this is a global phenomenon. Your presentation shows how
aware you are, and you need to be aware, because you're so integrated
with the global economy of what's going on in the world.

The events in the U.S. and the slowdown in the global economy are
causing real difficulties for countries around the world. But we are
not insulated from them, but our economy is more resilient today than
ever before. And I would say more resilient than some other countries
in our region. In some other country, which is also an attractive area
for your investments otherwise, the overheating is so much that the
government has to cut down on infrastructure spending. We have not
reached the stage of overheating and we are not cutting down. In fact,
we are increasing infrastructure spending.

We're able to do this because of the economic and fiscal reforms that
we have implemented in recent years through the cooperation of
Congress. These have resulted in the strengthening of our
macroeconomic fundamentals as well as our banking system. So our
economy is strong enough to withstand the external financial turmoil.

We've been working hard on all fronts to manage inflationary
pressures, to provide a safety net to those hit hardest by these
global developments, and deliver the growth that will continue to
generate jobs and tax revenues that we need to fuel our investments in
our nation's future.

We've been working hard to make sure that food supplies remain stable
and to put food on the table for every Filipino in order to avoid
demands for a wage spiral and, therefore, keep you competitive. We
were discussing what we know when Arthur was making his presentation
about our... the cost being a small portion of the cost of goods sold
compared to other places. So overall, there is still a good amount of
competitiveness here and we contribute to that, among other things, by
trying to keep the cost of food low or affordable so that there will
be no demand for a wage spiral.

We've also been introducing measures to lift the burden of high fuel
prices off our people. So that there will be no big transportation
cost increase for the workers who go to work for the same reason to
avoid demands for a wage spiral.

On the same token, our Economic team, of which Peter is a member, in
coordination with the Bangko Sentral, of which Peter is our government
representative to the Monetary Board, our Economic team is closely
monitoring developments in the global financial markets. We're working
hard to further strengthen the domestic economy by accelerated
spending for infrastructure. As I have said, whereas other countries
around us may be pressured to reduce infrastructure spending, we're
accelerating infrastructure and agriculture, fast-tracking financial
reforms to further strengthen the banking system, improve our fiscal
health by better tax collection and also by legislative measures, and
encouraging investment by such measures as reducing regulatory
bottlenecks for strategic industries like the semiconductor and
electronics industry.

Texas Instruments, Bing was telling us, came to the Philippines and it
was not easy for us to make sure that they come to the Philippines.
There were other very attractive or prospective hosts, and we are all
vying and the key was the red tape. And we won over our other rival
possible destinations and Texas Instruments decided to do their new
plant here. The same thing with some other multi-hundred
million-dollar investments coming up soon. Peter, who is chairman of
our Anti-Red Tape Task Force, is working hard to make sure that old
bottlenecks are removed and I hope we will be seeing this new
investment soon.

We are addressing most of the concerns you presented in 2001, aside
from the concerns that are presented by individual prospective
investors. And I remember infrastructure was one of your biggest
concerns. And your companies were among the ones we thought of when we
pushed for big infrastructure projects across the nation. The SLEX,
the Alabang Viaduct, is now 83-percent complete -- should be finished
soon. But even now, with one lane already completed, it has eased the
flow of traffic from CALABARZON towards NAIA. The Batangas Port, which
was completed last year, last December, services some of your
companies. The SCTEX has been completed also for the convenience of
the factories located in the northern part of the Luzon Urban Beltway.

Now, I remember the last time we had a meeting, you saw all the
infrastructure coming up. So you were confident about that, so you
said the infrastructure we must work on now must be the power sector.
And on power costs, PEZA now offers reduced rates for its locators.
And hopefully, we will have the implementation of open access which
would hopefully bring power cost down some more and, probably, the
milestone for that will be the consummation of the Calaca investment
in the power sector, perhaps by November.

Earlier than that, we began the `time of use method' of computing
power rates along with the WESM, then MERALCO's Customer Choice
program and High Load Factor Discount for customers consuming at least
5 MW, and that's certainly you. Other provisions of the EPIRA,
particularly the condonation of the loans of electric cooperatives,
have been implemented. And let me point out that there are areas
around the country where the host municipalities and barangays give
discounts or subsidized the electric bills of their customers. So I
would reiterate my invitation that when you do your expansions, you
think of locating in these areas where the local government has the
royalties from the power sources that are in their areas and they used
these royalties to subsidize electric bills.

One example would be Palinpinon in the town of, is it Dauin or
Zamboanguito? Ah, no, in Valencia in Negros Oriental, and that's the
reason why we're making the airport better so that your airports... so
that your whole logistics will be acceptable to you. Another example
would be the geothermal areas in Leyte in Tongonan, in Ormoc and the
neighboring town of Kananga, I believe, because they also have a lot
of royalties. Some barangay residents don't even pay any electric bill
at all. And we have an airport in Ormoc or even in Tacloban that can
be suited to your requirements, as Texas Instruments has seen, we are
doing with La Union Airport for their Baguio operation. So these are
things that will help you to reduce your power costs. And we will
spend in the infrastructure that you need for your transport

And most recently, an ERC ruling lowered to eight percent the
recoverable systems loss of distribution utilities.

But together, let us look for more ways to reduce power costs,
especially for small and medium companies outside of PEZAs, some of
whom are your own suppliers and subcontractors.

On manpower, Ernie Santiago said I should announce to you, because not
all of you know, that we are promoting Engineering R&D activities in
the country at a significant scale. Three billion pesos is our budget
for that in order to modernize every aspect of the economic
underpinnings of the Philippines, including semiconductors and
electronics, to propel economic growth. Because we know that
modernization needs a critical mass of R&D-capable manpower that will
further attract technology-based investments like semiconductorsand
especially electronics. This three billion pesos that I'm talking
about started last year. It's an investment in Engineering Research
and Development Technology. As a part of this, as a big part of this
since last school year, seven universities led by the U.P. College of
Engineering have been offering scholarships for masters and doctoral
degree programs in all fields of Engineering, including what
specialized field you might want for your own industry.

But I must congratulate SEIPI because they're already a part of this
program spearheading linkages with U.P. and other reputable academic
institutions for specialized masteral and doctoral training for your

Government consults SEIPI on the steps that can strengthen your
industries, expand your markets, and increase your convincing power in
bringing in more investors to your sector. Ernie last appeared before
a Cabinet meeting only last month, so he can attest to how frequently
we consult SEIPI when we need to do our industrial planning.

A continuation of these efforts will help us weather the global storm
and make sure that we are able to achieve the economic rebound that we
are projecting for next year.

As I said, if you think of the fact that we will have flat growth this
year, remember you were minus-22 percent in 2001 and how you
recovered, and you will recover even more now because we can see the
investments that are under gestation. Texas Instruments will formally
open in January and with their market of three billion dollars a year,
we can expect that by yearend, we will have a very big increase in the
electronics exports not to mention those new industries that Peter is
nursing, or those new factories that Peter is nursing for them to
locate here in the Philippines.

So, against the gale force winds of the global economy, we remain
bullish on our country and your industry. We are optimistic about our
future, your future, and we're deeply committed to being a force for
the good of your industry which is good for our people. The
semiconductor and electronics industries and the government have a
strong synergy. You are an invaluable partner in Philippine growth.

So, from a grateful nation, Mabuhay at maraming salamat sa inyo!

Thank you.

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Sunday, October 5, 2008

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Melamine in Milk -- no good


Friday, October 3, 2008

Joy of Science and The Great Courses, Science and Mathematics

I borrowed the Joy of Science through the Plainsboro Public Library. Regan got a MS in Library Science from Rutgers.




Course Lecture Titles

1. The Nature of Science
2. The Scientific Method
3. The Ordered Universe
4. Celestial and Terrestrial Mechanics
5. Newton's Laws of Motion
6. Universal Gravitation
7. The Nature of Energy
8. The First Law of Thermodynamics
9. The Second Law of Thermodynamics
10. Entropy
11. Magnetism and Static Electricity
12. Electricity
13. Electromagnetism
14. The Electromagnetic Spectrum, Part I
15. The Electromagnetic Spectrum, Part II
16. Relativity
17. Atoms
18. The Bohr Atom
19. The Quantum World
20. The Periodic Table of the Elements
21. Introduction to Chemistry
22. The Chemistry of Carbon
23. States of Matter and Changes of State
24. Phase Transformations and Chemical Reactions
25. Properties of Materials
26. Semiconductors and Modern Microelectronics
27. Isotopes and Radioactivity
28. Nuclear Fission and Fusion Reactions
29. Astronomy
30. The Life Cycle of Stars
31. Edwin Hubble and the Discovery of Galaxies
32. The Big Bang
33. The Ultimate Structure of Matter
34. The Nebular Hypothesis
35. The Solar System
36. The Earth as a Planet
37. The Dynamic Earth
38. The Plate Tectonics Revolution
39. Earthquakes, Volcanoes, and Plate Motions Today
40. Earth Cycles—Water
41. The Atmospheric Cycle
42. The Rock Cycle
43. What Is Life?
44. Strategies of Life
45. Life's Molecular Building Blocks
46. Proteins
47. Cells—The Chemical Factories of Life
48. Gregor Mendel, Founder of Genetics
49. The Discovery of DNA
50. The Genetic Code
51. Reading the Genetic Code
52. Genetic Engineering
53. Cancer and Other Genetic Diseases
54. The Chemical Evolution of Life
55. Biological Evolution—A Unifying Theme of Biology
56. The Fact of Evolution—The Fossil Record
57. Charles Darwin and the Theory of Natural Selection
58. Ecosystems and the Law of Unintended Consequences
59. The Ozone Hole, Acid Rain, and the Greenhouse Effect
60. Science, the Endless Frontier

These are more advanced.






Next PAASE meeting is at Ateneo de Manila University in July 2009.

See you there.



Science and Mathematics Courses

Satisfaction with our courses scores 8.97 out of 10, a recent customer survey found. The score is high because we work closely with our customers and professors to create great courses.

Albert Einstein: Physicist, Philosopher, Humanitarian
Albert Einstein: Physicist, Philosopher, Humanitarian & Einstein's Relativity and the Quantum Revolution: Modern Physics for Non-Scientists, 2nd Edition (Set)
Biological Anthropology: An Evolutionary Perspective
Biology and Human Behavior: The Neurological Origins of Individuality, 2nd Edition
Biology: The Science of Life
Change and Motion: Calculus Made Clear, 2nd Edition
Chaos & Dark Matter, Dark Energy (Set)
Dark Matter, Dark Energy & Superstring Theory (Set)
Dark Matter, Dark Energy: The Dark Side of the Universe
Doctors: The History of Scientific Medicine Revealed Through Biography
Earth's Changing Climate
Einstein's Relativity and the Quantum Revolution: Modern Physics for Non-Scientists, 2nd Edition
Einstein's Relativity and the Quantum Revolution: Modern Physics for Non-Scientists, 2nd Edition & Particle Physics for Non-Physicists: A Tour of the Microcosmos (Set)
Explaining Social Deviance
Great Ideas of Classical Physics
Great Ideas of Psychology
Great Scientific Ideas That Changed the World
High School Level—Algebra I
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High School Level—Basic Math
High School Level—Chemistry
High School Level—Geometry
High School Level—How to Become a SuperStar Student
History of Science: 1700–1900
History of Science: Antiquity to 1700
How the Earth Works
Human Prehistory and the First Civilizations
Introduction to Number Theory
Joy of Mathematics
Joy of Science
Joy of Science & Einstein's Relativity and the Quantum Revolution (Set)
Joy of Thinking: The Beauty and Power of Classical Mathematical Ideas
Meaning from Data: Statistics Made Clear
My Favorite Universe
Nature of Earth: An Introduction to Geology
New Frontiers: Modern Perspectives on Our Solar System
New Frontiers: Modern Perspectives on Our Solar System & My Favorite Universe (Set)
Origins of Life
Particle Physics for Non-Physicists: A Tour of the Microcosmos
Philosophy of Science
Physics in Your Life
Queen of the Sciences: A History of Mathematics
Roots of Human Behavior
Science and Religion
Science in the 20th Century: A Social-Intellectual Survey
Science Wars: What Scientists Know and How They Know It
Sensation, Perception, and the Aging Process
Superstring Theory: The DNA of Reality
The Human Body: How We Fail, How We Heal
Theories of Human Development
Theory of Evolution: A History of Controversy
Understanding Genetics: DNA, Genes, and Their Real-World Applications
Understanding the Brain
Understanding the Human Body: An Introduction to Anatomy and Physiology
Understanding the Universe: An Introduction to Astronomy, 2nd Edition
What Are the Chances? Probability Made Clear
What Are the Chances? Probability Made Clear & Meaning from Data (Set)
Zero to Infinity: A History of Numbers

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Sunday, September 28, 2008

Compare Air Purifiers – Comparison of air purifier models


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Sunday September 28, 2008

Your Health: Poisonous Plastics? Chemical Compound Poses Significant Health Hazards
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Your Health: Poisonous Plastics? Chemical Compound Poses Significant Health Hazards

Rallie McAllister, M.D., M.P.H.
A chemical compound in plastic products may be hazardous to human health. A growing body of scientific evidence suggests that the chemical, known as Bisphenol A, is linked to an increased risk for metabolic disorders, cellular abnormalities and heart disease.

Bisphenol A (BPA) is used as a building block for the production of polycarbonate plastics found in a variety of household consumer products, including baby bottles, some food storage containers, and the linings of milk containers and food cans. The chemical is also present in some water pipes and dental sealants.

Although plastics may appear to be sturdy, scientists have known for many years that the chemical linkage between individual BPA molecules is unstable. This chemical instability is what allows BPA to leach into food and beverages that come in contact with the plastics.

About 2 billion pounds of BPA are produced annually in the United States, and human exposure to the substance is widespread. Scientists estimate that over 90 percent of Americans have measurable blood levels of the chemical compound.

Researchers at the University of Cincinnati recently reported that BPA is a risk factor for metabolic syndrome, a condition characterized by high blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar abnormalities, and excess abdominal fat. Approximately one in four Americans currently suffers from metabolic syndrome, according to the National Institutes of Health.

In laboratory studies, the University of Cincinnati scientists exposed freshly collected human fat tissue to BPA. The results of their research revealed that BPA suppresses adiponectin, a hormone that plays a key role in the regulation of insulin and blood sugar in the body.

Higher urine levels of BPA are associated with heart disease, type 2 diabetes and liver-enzyme abnormalities, according to the results of a study published in the Sept. 17 issue of Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). The release of the study coincides with a Food and Drug Administration hearing concerning the health risks of BPA.

Earlier this month, a report released by the National Toxicology Program indicated that the current level of exposure to BPA is a cause of concern regarding effects on developing brain and prostate tissues in unborn babies, infants and children. High concentrations of the chemical have been reported in the blood of some pregnant women in the United States.

Recent research reveals that BPA can alter the development of the reproductive tract of unborn females. Some experts fear that the chemical may negatively impact the future fertility of individuals who were exposed to the chemical even before birth.

In 2005, Yale researchers determined that low doses of BPA can impair brain function, leading to learning disabilities and age-related degenerative brain diseases. The results of a study performed by University of Cincinnati researchers demonstrated that BPA exerts negative effects on brain tissue, even when present in minute quantities.

BPA is a weak synthetic estrogen that mimics the actions of natural estrogens in the body. Although natural estrogen has many positive effects, it is known to trigger cancer of the breast and uterus in some individuals.

In April 2008, researchers at the California Pacific Medical Center Research Institute reported that exposure to BPA causes normal, non-cancerous human breast cells to express genes that are characteristic of aggressive breast cancer cells. Previous research suggested that BPA exposure may increase the growth of some prostate cancer cells, as well.

If you're concerned about the health risks associated with BPA, there are a few steps you can take to reduce your exposure, including avoiding microwaving food or beverages in polycarbonate plastic containers. Polycarbonate containers with BPA are usually stamped with "No. 7" on the bottom.

It's also a good idea to opt for containers made of glass, porcelain or stainless steel whenever possible, especially when preparing or serving hot foods or liquids. Only BPA-free baby bottles should be used to feed infants.

While the age and condition of plastic products is commonly believed to be a factor in BPA exposure, a University of Cincinnati study recently revealed that old polycarbonate plastic bottles release the same amount of BPA as new bottles. When exposed to boiling water, both old and new bottles released BPA as much as 55 times more rapidly than before they were exposed to the hot water.

Although much remains to be learned about the effects of BPA, it is becoming increasingly evident that even at very low levels, long-term exposure to this chemical may be hazardous to your health.


Rallie McAllister is a board-certified family physician, speaker and the author of several books, including "Healthy Lunchbox: The Working Mom's Guide to Keeping You and Your Kids Trim." Her website is www.rallieonhealth.com. To find out more about Rallie McAllister, M.D., and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.

Copyright 2008 Creators Syndicate Inc.
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Friday, September 26, 2008

NanotX USA 2008

To: All press
For Release: Immediate
Contact: Arthur Carstairs, Deputy Press Officer. (214) 513-9567

NANO-SAFETY and Risk Management to be Study of Expert Panel at Major Nanotechnology Conference

As the issue of safety in nanotechnology is pressing, top minds in the field will gather during International Nanotechnology Week to provide an accurate vision or risks. Latest information from the EPA, Europe, and industry to be incorporated.

Dallas, Texas, September 26, 2008 – A distinguished panel of nanotechnology experts will address the topics of nano-safety when they gather at the nanotxUSA Conference/Expo, October 2-3, at the Hyatt Regency Dallas convention hotel. The issue of safety in nanotechnology is being reported in a number of tightly focused areas. Specific applications or research directions will be evaluated with the concerns for their special niche. “The question that everyone is interested in is ‘what are the potential problems that may arise,’ and how can society be protected?,” said Dr. Walt Trybula, of Texas State University-San Marcos, who organized and will chair the panel. “This is a two hour session. The panelists will provide their perspective from the view of the European community, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and Industry.”

This extremely important topic is of interest to technologists, corporate executives, educators, and the general public. It will be open to all attendees of the conference.

The panelists will provide their vision of the risks, means of mitigating them, and the responsibilities implicit in working in nanotechnology. These presentations will be followed by one addressing Risk Management. This will then be followed by a question and answer session. There is a one hour networking session scheduled following the end of the panel, so discussions can continue after the official end of the program.

“The ‘take-away’ from this session is to develop an understanding of the potential risks,” said Trybula, “and to provide the means of mitigating them, finding efforts that can be taken to protect people and the environment, and a starting point of where to go to find assistance.”

The panelists include a roster of the best brains on the subject: Dr. Dianne Poster – NIST [leadership in nanotechnology]; Dr. Zvi Yaniv – Applied Nanotech, Inc. [implementation of a safety program in industry]; Catherine Crago – SemiconGroup [cultural issues with safety efforts]; Dr. Dominick Fazarro – Sam Houston State University [Educational efforts in NANO-SAFETY]; Dr. Robert Blaunstein – Nanotech Risk Management, LLC [risk management]; Chair Dr. Walt Trybula, is an IEEE Fellow, SPIE Fellow, and Director of the Nanomaterials Application Center at Texas State University-San Marcos.

“The issue of the impact from nanotechnology on people and the environment has been receiving increasing coverage in the press,” said Richard Mason, General Manager of nanotxUSA’08, “with the expansion of nanotechnology into our society we are constantly getting questioned about the safety of applying technology and that is why nanoxUSA has brought together these experts. The schedule is available at our website, www.nanotxUSA.com”

About nanotxUSA’08 Conference/Trade Expo with Global Partner nano tech Japan, highlights advances in nanoscience, explains how nanotechnology is being used today and how it will impact a broad range of industries tomorrow, including: electronics, energy, aerospace, defense, biomedicine, robotics, chemicals and more. nanotxUSA has established a reputation for delivering solid content, compelling panel discussions, early-stage investment opportunities and a world-class roster of presenters. The signature Nobel Laureate Legends cocktail hour, dedicated to the memory of Jack Kilby, Rick Smalley, and Alan MacDiarmid, continues this year in its fine networking tradition. www.nanotxUSA.com.

Highlights of nanotxUSA’08 at a GLANCE

Charismatic Leadership
· Dr. Tadashi Sasaki, Japanese Business Legend
Here on business relations tour

· Dr. Eric Drexler, keynoting
Internationally renowned nanotech business leader, Wired Magazine says “coined word nanotechnology”

· Stan Ovshinsky, keynoting
Time Magazine’s Hero of the Planet, and Japan’s American Hero

· Bill Kroll, keynoting
Matheson Tri-Gas, Tayio Nippon Sanso Corp., others

· Prof. Mauricio Terrones, keynoting
IPICyT (Mexico) Leader, National Laboratory for Nanoscience Research

· Dan Vilenski, Featured Business and Commercialization topics
Isreali Nanotechnology Initiative

More Speakers

· International Nanotechnology Week
100 Specialists to speak from world Nanotechnology hot spots. See lineup at website www.nanotxUSA.com

· Panels: Safety/Trends/Finance/Investing
NANO-SAFETY & Risk Management Panel, Investing in Nanotechnology Panel, Nanotechnology & Society Panel, Workforce Development Panel, Accelerating Nanotechnology Commercialization Panel

· Nanotech 101—An Overview of Nanotechnology for Non-techies
Taught by Austin Community College

Special Events

· Nobel Laureate Legends Cocktail Reception
Important networking opportunities first evening of event


· Breakthrough Technology Revealed by Leading Firms Many exhibitors have chosen nanotxUSA’08 to unveil dramatic developments

· New Product Demos
Long-time business alliances of complementary firms to be nurtured, established

· $200Million Texas Emerging Technology fund in action
Visit with the incubators making it happen and firms that are succeeding with the fund’s help, such as Optisense, in booth number 502.

· Numbers of Major Organizations and Associations
Providing big discounts on early registration conference passes. See at web site when you go to REGISTER

This is information you requested. Please help us circulate where possible. If you received this is error please accept our regrets. We sincerely believed you wished to receive our updates on this important event. To be removed, just return email and request.

Nobel Prize

The best source for Nobel Prize information

News from Nobelprize.org

September 26, 2008

Three weeks from now we'll know; the 2008 Nobel Laureates will have been chosen in all six disciplines. So now's the time to make your guesses, and then sit back and enjoy the thrill of the announcements with Nobelprize.org.

As ever, all announcements will be broadcast live on the website (except for Peace which is announced in Oslo and for which the video footage will be available after a short delay). Each one is scheduled for a different day, so put the timetable in your diary and watch whichever ones you can. At the exact moment each announcement occurs, Nobelprize.org will be posting background information on the new Nobel Laureates and their work, including the official documentation from the Nobel Prize-Awarding Institutions. Later that same day, we'll be posting Nobelprize.org's own 'speed read' summaries of each prize.

Every Nobel Prize will also be covered in interviews, both with representatives of the Prize-Awarding Institutions, exploring the motivations for the award, and with the new Laureates themselves, capturing their immediate thoughts upon hearing the news. We'll also be offering visitors the chance to quiz members of each Nobel Prize-Awarding Committee in the days following each announcement, so please watch the site for details.

Meanwhile our educational work continues, and this week we launched a brand new multimedia production on the evolution of stars. Brought to you with the sponsorship of Honeywell, Star Stories traces the history of research into how stars are formed and how they work, illustrated through the milestones of Nobel Prize-awarded work. Take a look!

Adam Smith

The Nobel Prizes have rewarded many advances that revealed the secrets behind the life and death of stars, from their conception in the earliest moments of time to the exotic and spectacular explosions that end their lives billions of years later. Our brand new multimedia production, Star Stories, takes you on a journey through the Universe, helping you discover how stars are born, how they shine, and what happens when their light goes out.
Explore Star Stories »

October 6th marks the start of the Nobel Prize announcements, with at least five prizes announced over the following week. Only Literature keeps us guessing, not committing to a date until the very last moment.
View the schedule »

If you use RSS feeds to keep you abreast of the news then add our feed to your list! Our RSS feed will reveal each Nobel Prize announcement as soon as it is made, and will also inform you when new content, such as summaries of the prizes and interviews with the newly announced Laureates, appears on Nobelprize.org. The feed includes headlines, summaries and links back to Nobelprize.org to access the full information.
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Six different Committees choose the recipients of the six different prizes. Find out who makes the decisions, and how they work, in Nobelprize.org's dedicated section on the prize awarders.
Go to the section »

Discover more about each award from our live video interviews with members of the Nobel Prize-Awarding Committees, recorded immediately after each announcement. Here, for instance, Professor Göran K. Hansson discusses last year's Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.
Watch the interview »

Each October we also record telephone interviews with the new Nobel Laureates, bringing them a little closer to our visitors. Listen to Doris Lessing, recipient of last year's Nobel Prize in Literature, discussing her writing in the wake of the announcement.
Listen to the interview »

How many of the 2007 Nobel Laureates can you remember? Award yourself a prize if you get them all.
Check the list »

For the eighth year in a row, the prize amount remains fixed at 10,000,000 Swedish Kronor (a little over US $1.5 million). But it hasn't always been so rewarding. See how the monetary value of the Nobel Prize has varied since its inception in 1901.
View the comparison »

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Thursday, September 25, 2008

RADON FLUX – some thoughts by Phil Jenkins

RADON FLUX – some thoughts by Phil Jenkins

I have seen a few references on the listserv to sealing something to a surface (e.g., a
granite countertop), such as a paper plate or bowl, and placing a radon-measuring device,
such as a liquid scintillation charcoal device, in the volume. This kind of measurement
might give an INDICATION that there is radon coming from the surface; however, the
value of the measurement likely has limited usefulness beyond showing that there is
some RADIUM (not uranium, although that might be there, too) in the material. The
measurement would be very difficult to interpret in terms of how much radium is in the
material or what the impact might, or might not, be of the radon coming from the surface.
The reasons for this hopefully will be made clear here.

What should be of interest is the value of the RADON FLUX coming from the surface,
so that is the topic I’m tackling here first. The radon flux can be used, along with a host
of other information (such as the volume of the room or house, the ventilation rate, etc.),
to model the effect that the material might have on the radon concentration in the room or
house. The radon flux can be measured in a variety of ways. Here I describe briefly a
method that was used years ago, and could still be useful today. I had a reference for this
at one time, but that was twenty or more years ago. (I thought there was a procedure in
HASL-300, but I haven’t been able to find it so far. There is within EPA Method 115
some description of measuring radon flux from uranium mill tailings that might be

Using Charcoal Canisters to Measure Radon Flux

The first use of charcoal canisters for measurement of radon that I can recall seeing was
for measuring the radon flux from a surface. The surface could be something like
concrete or soil or, now granite. The charcoal canister was sealed to the surface and left
in place for something like three days. The following assumptions are made: 1) all of the
radon leaving the surface area sealed by the canister is adsorbed by the charcoal in the
canister, 2) having a closed canister sealed to the surface does not affect the flux itself, 3)
there is no leakage of radon from around the seal and 4) the radon flux is constant with

The collected activity of radon as a function of time can be described by something like
the following (this is off the top of my head, folks, so don’t quote me, but I think it’s

Q(t) = F A [1 – exp(-λt)] / λ (1)

where Q(t) = activity of radon as a function of time captured from surface (pCi)
F = radon flux from surface (pCi m-2 s-1)
A = area of surface from which radon is collected (m2)
λ = decay constant of radon (s-1)
t = time (s)

(If you wish, you may substitute Bq for pCi in the above expression, but PLEASE bear in
mind that the conversion factor for pCi to Bq is NOT 37, that’s the conversion from pCi/l
to Bq/m3. The conversion from pCi to Bq is 0.037, in other words 1 pCi = 0.037 Bq, or
inversely 1 Bq = 27 pCi/l……just remember that a Bq is a lot MORE radon than a pCi,
not the other way around.)

Note that if radon did not decay, then the expression would merely be:

Q(t) = F A t (2)

and the radon activity would continue to increase in the canister linearly over time. But,
radon decays during the collection period, so in this case t is replaced by

[1 – exp(-λt)] / λ

which I like to call the Effective Sampling Time (EST, not to be confused with Eastern
Standard Time). Note that EST has the unit of time, just like t. The collected activity of
radon actually does increase rather linearly at first, but soon deviates from linearity,
tending toward a maximum value after several half-lives of radon. This maximum value
corresponds to a time when t is large enough that [1 – exp(-λt)] is essentially equal to
one, so the maximum collected activity of radon is

Qmax = F A / λ (3)

Also, note that one-half the maximum value will be reached after one half-life of radon,
¾ of the maximum will be reached after two half-lives, and so on.

Most charcoal labs should be able to analyze the canister and solve for the value of Q at
the end of the exposure period. This means correcting for decay to the END of the
exposure period, not the middle of the exposure period. I have always done that when
analyzing charcoal canisters, as I described in a publication back in 1991 (Jenkins, P.H.,
Equations for calculating radon concentration using charcoal canisters, Health Physics,
61, 131-136, 1991, if you’re interested, but in this article I believe that I showed a model
that I was using at that time to solve for the calibration factor, or effective sampling rate,
but about 15 years ago I switched to a much better model). With the method that I use,
the value of Q is always an intermediate step in the calculations. This requires, however,
that the counting efficiency be determined using a standard charcoal canister containing a
known quantity of 226Ra, so if the laboratory does not have such a standard it cannot
solve for Q.

So, if Q is measured, then Equation 1 can be solved for the value of F, the radon flux.
Again, knowing F, the effect on the radon concentration can be modeled if all the other
factors are known.

Big Louie

There are, of course, other ways to measure the radon flux. A different charcoal
technique uses what is called a Big Louie. This is a large charcoal container that has a
hole in it so it can “breathe” with changes in pressure. The same assumptions listed
above apply here except for the fact that the canister is not sealed from the ambient air.
An additional assumption is that radon is not lost through the hole in the canister. The
same equations shown above apply here. The advantage of the Big Louie is that it covers
a larger area of the surface.

Electret Ion Chambers for Measuring Radon Flux

A truly integrating device, such as an electret ion chamber, can also be used in the
volume that is sealed to the surface to measure the radon concentration in that volume. In
this case, the concentration as a function of time would merely be

C(t) = Q(t) / V (4)

where C(t) = concentration (pCi/l) as a function of time
Q = activity of radon (pCi) as a function of time, from Equation 1
V = volume (l)

This function can be integrated over time to find an expression for the average value of
C, as this is what should be measured by the electret ion chamber. So, if C and V are
known, Q can be calculated, and using Equation 1 F can also be calculated. This would
require that the gamma-ray exposure be measured accurately and taken into account.

Charcoal Devices Measuring Radon Concentration in Sealed Volume

So, what about using a charcoal device, like a liquid scintillation device, inside a volume
sealed to the surface? If one can assume that ALL of the radon that leaves the surface, in
the area confined by the bowl or whatever, is adsorbed by the charcoal device, then one
could use the approach described above to determine the radon flux, but not the normal
calculations that would be used to calculate radon concentration in air. Further, the
method described above assumes that the volume of the container sealed to the surface is
mostly occupied by charcoal and therefore it is reasonable to assume that all of the radon
is adsorbed in the charcoal. In a situation where the volume of charcoal is small
compared with the volume sealed to the surface, this assumption is likely not valid.
Therefore, the charcoal device likely comes into some state of equilibrium with the
surrounding air, just like it does in a room. However, charcoal devices that are used to
measure the radon concentration in a room are calibrated assuming that the radon
concentration remains relatively constant. In this case, the radon concentration is
constantly increasing. So, unless the charcoal device is calibrated for this type of
measurement, it will not give an accurate measure of the average concentration of radon
in the volume. Instead, it will likely produce a measurement that is larger than the
average (charcoal devices are not integrators, but are equilibrium devices). Such
measurements might be useful in a qualitative or relative sense in that one could say that
Surface A produced a measurement that was 10 times greater than Surface B, for
example. But such measurements would likely be questionable for determining the radon
flux quantitatively.

What does it mean?

Okay, so let’s assume that you have a good measurement of the radon flux, now what?
As mentioned above, IF you know a lot of other information you can model what the
effect of this flux might be on the radon concentration in the air. However, some nagging
questions might still remain. For example, how representative is that measurement of
radon flux for the entire surface of the material? Was the flux measured on a hot spot, or
were several measurements made over the entire area? Is it really valid to apply the
measured flux value to the entire surface of the material?

Let me relate a story from the early 1980’s. I was part of the “Radon Group” at DOE’s
Mound Facility. We were charged with trying to quantify the radon flux from the tops of
two concrete tanks containing a material with an extremely elevated concentration of
Ra. We sealed four-inch canisters to the concrete surface, but we also realized that in
some places there were obvious cracks in the concrete; our equivalent of “hot spots.” It
turned out that the radon flux that we measured varied by six orders of magnitude (a
factor of one million) from the lowest to highest measurements. Our conclusion was that
it was too heterogeneous to enable us to quantify the radon flux over the entire surface.
Now, I would be surprised if anyone found such a variation over the surface of a granite
countertop, but a variation of a factor of 10 or 100 might be possible. So, it is necessary
to characterize the radon flux over the entire surface of the material.

Bottom Line

Radon flux measurements may be interesting, and may play a vital role in research
projects, but the bottom line here, in situations where the material is already installed in a
dwelling….wouldn’t it just be easier and more appropriate to measure the concentration
of radon in the air, using the usual protocols, except for perhaps measuring in several
other rooms, including the room containing the material?

One more point: I’ve seen mention on the listserv measurements like 5.1 pCi/l in other
rooms and 5.7 pCi/l in the kitchen, therefore seeming to prove that the countertop
increased the radon concentration. BUT, please bear in mind that there are uncertainties
in ALL of our measurements. Unless you put an error bar around the number, it is
meaningless to compare one measurement with another. If one can truly say that these
measurements were something like 5.1 ± 0.1 pCi/l and 5.7 ± 0.1 pCi/l at the 2 sigma
confidence level, then okay, they are probably different. But, more realistically, what if
they are 5.1 ± 0.5 pCi/l and 5.7 ± 0.5 pCi/l at the 2 sigma level; now they are clearly NOT
different. We have to start taking into consideration the Minimum Detectable
Concentration and the Uncertainty in our measurements in order for them to be

Interactive Humanoid Robot to be the Answerman Information Desk during Nanotechnology Conference/Expo

To: All press
For Release: Immediate
Contact: Arthur Carstairs, Deputy Press Officer. (214) 513-9567

Interactive Humanoid Robot to be the Answerman Information Desk during Nanotechnology Conference/Expo

Directing visitors and answering questions will be the job for AToM, the latest robot with human-like qualities custom designed by advanced engineers for nanotxUSA’08 during International Nanotechnology Week

Dallas, Texas, September 24, 2008. In keeping with the theme of this year’s event, Accelerating Nanotechnology Commercialization, the duties of greeting visitors and answering questions will be performed by a robot named AToM - short for “Advanced Technology of Mankind.”

This interactive conversational robot display is built by KumoTek Robotics exclusively for the NanotxUSA’08 Conference/Expo October 2-3 at the Hyatt Regency Dallas convention hotel. He stands approximately 5 feet tall, weighs in at 45lbs and is powered by the world’s smallest transistors inside an Intel Atom processor. The processor packs a whopping 47 million transistors on a single chip, measuring less than 26mm, making it one of smallest and least power consuming processors to date.

AToM has an embedded camera, speakers, and microphone that allow him to detect, see and hear in real-time. A screen on his chest shows images seen through his eyes. Visitors will marvel as his vision and face tracking software keeps them in view. When asked questions about the event, he will give vocal answers. And personal questions bring many surprises.

Having few to no moving parts and a robust Artificial Intelligence package, KumoTek’s interactive robots represent the next generation of commercial entertainment for marketing, museums, theme parks and even shopping malls. Robots like AToM have proven their worth in museums around the U.S. and continue to grow in popularity as unique marketing tools across industries.

KumoTek’s core areas of business include designing bipedal robot kits for educational markets, interactive character robots for events and marketing, and service utility robots for disaster area recovery operations. KumoTek is a veteran owned small business located in Richardson, Texas.

Visit KumoTek’s website at (www.kumotek.com) to learn more.

About nanotxUSA’08 Conference/Trade Expo with Global Partner nano tech Japan, highlights advances in nanoscience, explains how nanotechnology is being used today and how it will impact a broad range of industries tomorrow, including: electronics, energy, aerospace, defense, biomedicine, robotics, chemicals and more. nanotxUSA has established a reputation for delivering solid content, compelling panel discussions, early-stage investment opportunities and a world-class roster of presenters. The signature Nobel Laureate Legends cocktail reception, dedicated to the memory of Jack Kilby, Rick Smalley, and Alan MacDiarmid, continues this year in its fine networking tradition. www.nanotxUSA.com.

Highlights of nanotxUSA’08 at a GLANCE

Charismatic Leadership
· Dr. Tadashi Sasaki, Japanese Business Legend
Here on business relations tour

· Dr. Eric Drexler, keynoting
Internationally renowned nanotech business leader, Wired Magazine says “coined word nanotechnology”

· Stan Ovshinsky, keynoting
Time Magazine’s Hero of the Planet, and Japan’s American Hero

· Bill Kroll, keynoting
Matheson Tri-Gas, Tayio Nippon Sanso Corp., others

· Prof. Mauricio Terrones, keynoting
IPICyT (Mexico) Leader, National Laboratory for Nanoscience Research

· Dan Vilenski, Featured Business and Commercialization topics
Isreali Nanotechnology Initiative

More Speakers

· International Nanotechnology Week
100 Specialists to speak from world Nanotechnology hot spots. See lineup at website www.nanotxUSA.com

· Panels: Safety/Trends/Finance/Investing
NANO-SAFETY & Risk Management Panel, Investing in Nanotechnology Panel, Nanotechnology & Society Panel, Workforce Development Panel, Accelerating Nanotechnology Commercialization Panel

· Nanotech 101—An Overview of Nanotechnology for Non-techies
Taught by Austin Community College

Special Events

· Nobel Laureate Legends Cocktail Reception
Important networking opportunities first evening of event


· AToM, Interactive Robot
Advanced robotic technology in greeting visitors and answering questions

· Breakthrough Technology Revealed by Leading Firms Many exhibitors have chosen nanotxUSA’08 to unveil dramatic developments

· New Product Demos
Long-time business alliances of complementary firms to be nurtured, established

· $200Million Texas Emerging Technology fund in action
Visit with the incubators making it happen and firms that are succeeding with the fund’s help, such as Optisense, in booth number 502.

· Numbers of Major Organizations and Associations
Providing big discounts on early registration conference passes. See at web site when you go to REGISTER

This is information you requested. Please help us circulate where possible. If you received this is error please accept our regrets. We sincerely believed you wished to receive our updates on this important event. To be removed, just return email and request.



Lean Tools for Maintenance and Reliability Oct. 6-8, 2008

Don't miss Lean Tools for Maintenance and Reliability, October 6-8 in Chicago - a must-attend conference for any professional responsible for the reliability and health of a plant's mechanical assets. Manufacturing pros from more than 18 States have already registered to hear experts, share ideas, and take home great ideas to boost bottom line performance at their plants.

You'll be in good company networking and learning with peers from these industry leaders, and more:

Asten Johnson
Plastipak Packaging
Intek Plastics

Trinity Rail
Jasper Engines & Trans.
General Motors
Baxter Healthcare
Sloan Valve

Some titles of registered attendees:
Plant Manager, Plant Engineering Manager, Operations Coordinator, Reliability and Lean Program Manager, Maintenance Manager, Sr. Director of Engineering, Asset Availability Leader, Lean Leader, Global Materials Manager, Vice President, Preventative Maintenance Manager, and more...

The conference provides a focused forum for detailed discussions with speakers, fellow attendees and sponsors. Group breakfasts, breaks, lunches and receptions facilitate interaction with all program participants. Here's what just 2 past attendees had to say:

"Seeing the successes and struggles other companies have experienced not only consoles but motivates me in my efforts to lead our execution of lean principles"

"I believe the networking opportunities and the information that was presented could increase our output by 15 to 20% and decrease downtime by 8 to 10%"

There's still time for you to register. But the clock is ticking for you to benefit from this one-time gathering of these experts, peers and industry friends. Visit Lean2008.com or call 1-800-597-5460 to register or for complete program details.

© 2008 Noria Corporation, 1328 E. 43rd Ct., Tulsa, OK 74105


For your free copy of " The Little Green Book" visit


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CPSC: Pottery Barn Kids Recalls Children's Metal Water Bottles Due to Choking Hazard
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.

Name of Product: Children's Metal Water Bottles

Units: About 20,000

Manufacturer: Pottery Barn Kids, of San Francisco, Calif.

Hazard: The sip top on the water bottles can pull off, posing a choking hazard to young children.

Incidents/Injuries: None reported.

Description: The metal water bottles are about 9 inches tall and have a black rubber pull up sip top. The following water bottles are included in this recall. The style number and "Pottery Barn Kids" are printed on a white sticker on the bottom of the water bottle.

Color: Style Number
Lavender: 5795141
Pink: 5795166
Pink: 9121591
Navy: 5795158
Navy: 9211583
Green: 5795133

Sold at: Pottery Barn Kids' stores nationwide, Pottery Barn Kids' catalog, and online at www.potterybarnkids.com from January 2007 through August 2008 for about $10.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should take the recalled water bottles away from children immediately and return them to any Pottery Barn Kids' store for a full refund. If purchased through the catalog or online, contact Pottery Barn Kids to receive a full refund.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Pottery Barn Kids toll-free at (877) 800-9720 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, or visit the firm's Web site at www.potterybarnkids.com

To see this recall on CPSC's web site, including pictures of the recalled product, please go to: http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml08/08399.html

This news arrived on: 09/19/2008
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