China tests 500 kilometers per hour train

first_img( — China tested a 500 kilometers per hour (311 mph) train over the weekend. Government officials call the record-breaking speedster a “useful reference” for China’s current high speed railway operations. The test train’s speed, according to a Monday report in China Daily, exceeds the world speed record of 300 kilometers per hour held by the Beijing Shanghai High Speed Railway. China’s latest high-speed train has a maximum tractive power of 22,800 kilowatts, compared with the 9,600 kilowatts for China Railways High-Speed (CRH) trains in service on the Beijing-Shanghai High Speed line. China denies safety lax on high-speed rail link Explore further © 2011 The train tested over the weekend is made of plastic materials reinforced with carbon fiber.The design concept is inspired by China’s ancient swords. The train’s designer and manufacturer is Sifang Locomotive, a subsidiary of China’s largest rail-vehicle maker, CSR Corp Ltd., based in Qingdao in eastern Shandong province. Last year, Technology Review carried details of the WuGuang line trains, variants of Japan’s Shinkansen and Germany’s InterCity Express high-speed trains. That line clocked impressive speeds. A rail expert at the New Jersey Institute of Technology in Newark at the time noted that high-speed rail technology implemented in China was not entirely different from the world’s TGV, ICE, and Shinkansen systems. What was notable about China’s high-speed lines was that the system was designed from the ground up for very high-speed operation over hundreds of kilometers. China has the largest network of bullet-train track in the world. The push for a massive buildout began in 2006 and continues, with the help of government stimulus funds. Miles of line are planned to the tune of billions to accommodate a future vision of over 16,000 kilometers of dedicated high-speed rail lines connecting all of China’s major cities by 2020. China’s engineering triumphs, however, have been hindered by troubles, highly publicized in the world press. The Chinese Railways Ministry Chief, Liu Zhijun, in charge of the construction of the high-speed railway massive network, was arrested for corruption. Then came reports that corruption had sacrificed safety concerns in a haste to roll out the high-speed rails. There were stories of substandard materials used to cut costs. The New York Times reported that the concrete bases for the tracks were made with insufficient hardening agents. The tracks could possibly warp, according to the report. Safety concerns, however, seem to be top of mind in the government after the July incident where 40 people died when two bullet trains crashed into each other in Zhejiang province.Officials felt it necessary to lower operating speeds on its bullet trains whereas trains with top speeds of 350 kh would be lowered to 300 kilometers peer hour, and trains designed for 250 would instead run at 200 kilometers per hour.Similarly, Chinese officials in the latest announcement are careful to point out that future Chinese trains will not necessarily run at such high speeds as that demonstrated in the newly tested superfast train. The CSR chair Zhao Xiaogang told the Beijing Morning News that “We aim to ensure the safety of train operations.” Citation: China tests 500 kilometers per hour train (2011, December 27) retrieved 18 August 2019 from This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Early stress in starlings found to lead to faster aging

center_img ( —A combined team of researchers from Newcastle University and the University of Glasgow, both in the U.K. has found that stress in young starlings can lead to shortened telomeres—which prior research has suggested leads to faster aging and development and behavioral problems later on in life. In their paper published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B, the team describes how they stressed young starlings and then tested them to see what it might have done to them. More information: Developmental telomere attrition predicts impulsive decision making in adult starlings, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: rspb.royalsocietypublishing.or … .1098/rspb.2014.2140Press release Prior research has found that telomeres—the caps on the ends of chromosomes—become shorter each time cells divide. Scientists have also found that it’s this shortening that causes aging in humans and other animals—and aging related illnesses such as diabetes, artery disease, some cancers and premature death. Other research has shown that shortening of telomeres doesn’t happen at the same pace in every species or even in the same species, which explains why some animals seem to age faster or slower than others of their kind. In this new effort, the researchers found that the process can be speeded up by stress—at least in young starlings.The researchers removed starling chicks from their nests and placed them in other nests, some with more hatchlings, others with less. Living with more hatchlings has been found to be more stressful for chicks as they have to compete more hardily for scarce resources from the mother. In testing the chicks 14 months later, the researchers found that those that had been placed in the more stressful nests had shorter telomeres. They also tested them for impulsiveness using delayed feeding techniques. Those raised in the more stressful nest, turned out to be more impulsive—they tended to go for immediate small meal rewards rather than wait a little longer for a much bigger reward.The team suggests their findings may be transferable to humans, as telomere length in people has been linked to both aging and impulsiveness as well. They believe that it’s likely that stress while young (due to a harsh or unpredictable home environment) can lead to premature aging and impulsiveness as a young adult, and likely age related illnesses later on in life. Journal information: Proceedings of the Royal Society Blast_img read more

A way to minimize unexpected base edits to cellular RNA

first_imgA team of researchers with the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT has found evidence showing that using base editors can lead to unexpected RNA cellular edits. In their paper published in the journal Science Advances, the group describes their study of the CRISPR type of adenine base editor (ABE), and what they found. ABEs convert one DNA base pair into another, allowing for the repair of mutations in some cell types without generating undesired editing effects. It is believed that ABEs also have the potential to correct almost half of all known genetic abnormalities that lead to medical disorders. The science underlying ABEs has become increasingly important to the medical community. Unfortunately, some very recent studies have found indications that ABEs might also be engaging in unexpected editing. This past March, a team found that the cytosine base editor 3 induced single-nucleotide variants at a higher-than-normal rate. And last month, another team discovered that cytosine base editors and ABEs result in off-target editing in RNA. In this new effort, the researchers sought to further test for off-target edits when using ABEs and to find a solution if it was confirmed.In their work, the researchers analyzed the newest version ABE called ABEmax in a way that included all cellular RNA transcripts in a human cell line—and they did it with more sensitive tools than others had used. They report that they did find low levels of undesired edits in RNA samples. To get around the problem, the team developed new variant ABEs (based on inactivated wild-type Escherichia coli) that retained their ability to make the desired base edits but caused less RNA editing. They further report that the new variants were created in a way that decoupled the RNA and DNA editing process, which minimized off-target editing in both DNA and RNA. The researchers conclude by noting that because of low levels of RNA editing and the short half-life of RNA, the degree of interference in future endeavors will likely depend on the specific applications in which they are used. They recommend that researchers seeking to minimize RNA editing use the new variant they created—they have called it ABEmaxQW. © 2019 Science X Network Explore further CRISPR base editors can induce wide-ranging off-target RNA edits More information: Holly A. Rees et al. Analysis and minimization of cellular RNA editing by DNA adenine base editors, Science Advances (2019). DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aax5717center_img A hairpin loop from a pre-mRNA. Highlighted are the nucleobases (green) and the ribose-phosphate backbone (blue). Note that this is a single strand of RNA that folds back upon itself. Credit: Vossman/ Wikipedia Journal information: Science Advances Citation: A way to minimize unexpected base edits to cellular RNA (2019, May 9) retrieved 18 August 2019 from This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Just sing me the Blues

first_imgRudy Wallang, guitarist, and Tipriti Kharbangar (Tips), vocalist, form  the band. While they flirted with Delhi for a concert, we got a chance to get  candid with them. Read on.Tell us about yourselves. How did you guys come together/start off?Inspired by the roots and groove sounds of the Blues, Blues-rock, Soul, Rock n Roll, Funk and R and B, Soulmate was formed in Shillong, in October 2002 when we  decided to form a band dedicated to playing the Blues and spreading awareness about this important genre of music. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’What was the first big break for you guys?No big breaks really. We’ve been playing and singing our songs for a long time. Playing all the different venues India has to offer. Opening for Carlos Santana was a dream come true for us as was meeting Buddy Guy, sharing  stages with John Mayall, Gary Clarke Jr, Robert Randolph and all the beautiful Blues musicians that we have met.How would you define your musical philosophy?We  play what we feel and feel what we play. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixIn our country, how easy (or difficult) is it to make a mark in the music scene? What do you think about the main issues are?It is never easy to be able to make a mark in the music scene in India. We have to keep things fresh because we have realized that people always expect something new and different every time. One has to be creative without giving in to pressures and by this we mean for a Blues band to survive in India for the last 11 years. We must be doing something right. Tell us a bit about your music, what do you think  defines you guys?We  play what we feel and feel what we play. That’s what we said. We are people who believe in the simple things in life. We live our songs and our songs define us.What/Who inspires you?Mother Nature, Love, Sadness, Life, Beauty, Anger. We are also inspired by the people we meet and listen to.Tell us about your best tracks.All our songs are special. Every song of ours pertains to a certain moment in our lives. Hard to say which is the best but we have a few favorites like The Price, Moving On, Love You, Cup Of Tea, Stay Away, St.Valentine’s Day Blues, Set Me Free, Im A Woman, Tell Me, to name a few.What songs top your playlist right now?Tips: Mine is on shuffle, so whatever happens to be in the moment Rudy: I don’t really listen to music. I’m either playing guitar or rehearsing or touring. So when I have time off, I listen to birds singing in the morning. What suggestions/advice would you have for newbies in music?Work hard, practice hard and play like its going to be your last gig ever. There are no shortcuts. Be humble,respectful and dedicated to your art.last_img read more

State Heritage Commission approached to include Jalsaghar location

first_imgKolkata: Academicians, historians and film lovers have approached the West Bengal Heritage Commission to include Nimtita Rajbari in Murshidabad where film Jalsaghar, one of Satyajit Roy’s award-winning iconic films was shot.A letter containing the signatures of more than 100 people has been submitted to the state Heritage Commission requesting it to enlist the building and save it from destruction.The Nimtita Rajbari was set up over 150 years ago and is situated on the banks of River Bhagirathi where massive erosion is taking place. Many structures situated close to the house have already been washed away. The locals said unless steps are not taken now, the building will have a similar fate. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsThe Rajbari, a classic example of British architecture, is in shambles. A major portion of the roof has collapsed and the dancing floor on the first floor is in real bad shape. Bushes and trees have grown all over the house. A senior architect who visited the house a few years ago said the building has tilted towards the river. To repair the roof, a lot of money will be required.But the state Heritage Commission does not have money to repair and restore the huge structure. “The building has enormous historical value and should be preserved,” said a member of the state Heritage Commission. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedLocals said throughout the year, students of film studies from all over the country and abroad come to the place to have a look at the house where scenes from the famous film were shot. “We take them around and they take photographs. Many foreigners, who are fans of Satyajit Ray come to see the building,” said Sudip Basu, a local resident.Satyajit Ray’s famous film Jalsaghar was shot in this building. Based on a story by Tarashankar Bandyopadhyay, the cast included Chabi Biswas, Padma Devi, Tulsi Lahiri, Gangapada Basu among others. The music was done by Ustad Vilayat Khan while two of India’s greatest vocalists — Ustad Waheed Khan and Begam Akhtar — lent their voices to two immortal songs in the film.last_img read more

UKs RollsRoyce axes more jobs

first_imgBritish engine maker Rolls-Royce will axe another 400 jobs at its marine division, it said on Monday, as slumping oil prices weighs on demand for vessels. Rolls announced in a statement that it will reduce its number of employees by 400 by the end of next year, on top of 600 job cuts already unveiled in May.”After many years of strong performance through to 2013, led by good growth in the oil and gas sector, our order book and profitability have been adversely impacted by the sharp and subsequently prolonged drop in the price of oil,” said Mikael Makinen, President of Marine at Rolls-Royce. “Reducing our workforce is never an easy decision, but the continued weak oil price, and the need to become more competitive, means it is necessary, if we are to build a strong base from which we can successfully grow this business in the future.”  Also Read – Punjab & Sind Bank cuts MCLR by up to 20 basis pointsThe latest cutbacks are forecast to generate full-year savings of $61 million. The group’s marine division, which employs about 5,800 people in 34 countries, supplies technology and services to customers operating merchant, naval and offshore vessels. In morning deals, Rolls-Royce shares rallied 2.84 percent to 724.50 pence on London’s FTSE 100 index, which was 1.83 percent higher at 6,242.35 points.last_img read more

After more than 2 yrs work for power grid to begin at

first_imgKolkata: The work of the power sub-station at Bhangar will resume after two-and-a-half-years on Tuesday with the “final minutes” being signed on Saturday.The “final minutes” was signed by representatives of the Jomi, Jibika, Poribesh O Bastutantra Rakshya Committee, Power Grid Corporation of India, West Bengal State Electricity Distribution Company Limited, the top brass of the district police and the District Magistrate. At the same time, a decision has also been taken to set up a standing sub-committee to ensure implementation of the work following the “final minutes”. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeIt may be mentioned that most of the issues were settled in the previous meetings. But the final decision on the compensation for setting up of the towers and stringing of overhead cables was taken in the meeting on Saturday that was attended by more than 70 persons including 50 representatives of the committee. It has been finalised that a package of Rs 12 crore will be allotted for the local area development and to carry out various skill development programmes for the residents of the area. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedAt the same time, a compensation of Rs 2 to Rs 4 lakh will be given to the person on whose land a tower will be constructed. Moreover, Rs 2 per square feet will be given for the land above which the overhead wires will be passing. It may be mentioned that nine out of the 13 towers have already been set up. The representatives of the committee have also agreed to extend all support to carry out the work for completion of the power sub-station project. According to sources, the standing sub-committee will be headed by an Additional District Magistrate-rank officer. In case of any issues that may arise while carrying out the work for completion of the project, the matter will be discussed among members of the standing sub-committee to find out a solution. Representatives of the Jomi, Jibika, Poribesh O Bastutantra Rakshya Committee will also be there in the standing sub-committee. Steps would also be taken so that the project gets completed at the earliest. The ultimate meeting before the signing of the agreement was held on Tuesday in which there was a detailed discussion in this connection and the district administration had agreed upon to bring about certain changes in the design of the project. A decision was also taken to alter the height of the towers to lay overhead wires.last_img read more

People will face no difficulty in reaching the pandals assures Kolkata Police

first_imgKolkata: Rajeev Kumar, Commissioner of Kolkata Police, has assured that traffic flowduring Durga Puja this time will be as normal as previous years, despite the incident of Majerhat Bridge caving in. He sought cooperation of people in ensuring the same.Kumar was speaking at the coordination meeting organised ahead of the Durga Puja at Netaji Indoor Stadium.It may be mentioned that Kolkata Police had to bring in several diversions in movement of traffic in South Kolkata due to the Majerhat Bridge incident. At the same time, the state government along with the police is trying to find a way to ease the movement of traffic. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeWith only around a month left for Durga Puja, the police are also trying to ensure normal flow of traffic as early as possible.Kumar said: “Everyone has to work together. On behalf of Kolkata Police and Kolkata Traffic Police, I can assure you all that pandal hoppers will be able to reach their destinations without facing problems like all the previous years.”There are several famous Durga Pujas in South Kolkata and lakhs of people visit the pandals. Majerhat Bridge was an important connection between people of the city and the pandals of Behala. But pandal hoppers have heaved a sigh of relief with the assurance of the Commissioner of Police. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedAt the same time, Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC), the Public Works Department (PWD) and Urban Development and Municipal Affairs department have taken up a series of initiatives to improve the condition of roads in the port area.The initiative has been taken up as most vehicles are now passing through those roads in the absence of Majerhat Bridge.Initiative has also been taken up to ensure a proper drainage system for Sonadighi. The Public Works Department (PWD) will also strengthen and widen Taratala Road and Hyde Road.Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority (KMDA) will be carrying out the temporary repairing of Transport Depot Road as and when required. At the same time, a portion of the road stretching from the railway tracks to Hyde Road will be widened and strengthened.last_img read more


first_imgThe Pushkar Fair (Pushkar Camel Fair) or Pushkar Mela, as it is locally known as, is an annual five day camel and livestock fair held in the town of Pushkar between the months of October and November. It is one of the world’s largest camel fairs. Apart from the buying and selling of livestock, it has become an important tourist attraction. Competitions such as the matka phod, ‘longest moustache’ and ‘bridal competition’ are the main draws for this fair which attract thousands of tourists. In recent years, the fair has also included an exhibition cricket match between the local Pushkar Club and a team of foreign tourists. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfPushkar is one of the oldest cities in India. Located to the northwest of Ajmer, the tranquil city of Pushkar is a favoured destination for thousands of tourists and devotees flocking to Rajasthan. Situated at a height of 510 metres, Pushkar is surrounded by hillocks on three sides. The ‘Nag Pahar’, literally meaning Snake Mountain forms a natural border between Ajmer and Pushkar. Known as ‘the rose garden of Rajasthan’, the essence of the famous Pushkar rose is exported all over the world. Along with an interesting mythological history, a legacy of timeless architectural heritage makes Pushkar a fascinating city. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveAccording to legends, Lord Brahma, believed to be the creator of the Universe dropped a lotus to the ground leading to the immediate creation of a lake. He then decided to name the place after the flower, and thus the name, Pushkar. The city of Pushkar is home to the only temple dedicated to Lord Brahma in the whole world. Hindus consider a journey to Pushkar to be the ultimate pilgrimage that must be undertaken to attain salvation.PUSHKAR LAKEAccording to Hindu scriptures, the sacred Pushkar Lake is described as ‘Tirtha Raj’, the king of all pilgrimage sites. No pilgrimage is considered to be complete without a dip in the holy Pushkar Lake. Semi-circular in shape and about 8-10 metres deep, Pushkar Lake is surrounded by 52 bathing ghats and over 400 temples and is truly a magnificent sight to behold. BRAHMA TEMPLENestled in the picturesque Pushkar valley beyond the Nangaparvat and Anasagar Lake, the Brahma temple holds a special place in the hearts of Indians. It is the only temple in the world dedicated to Lord Brahma. Built with marble and decorated with silver coins, this temple can be identified by its red spire and the image of a swan (considered sacred to Lord Brahma). The chaturmukhi (four faced) idol of Lord Brahma is housed in the inner sanctum. A marble statue of the sun god stands sentinel at the temple. Interestingly, while all the gods are shown bare footed, Surya is shown wearing ancient warrior’s boots.GURUDWARA SINGH SABHAGurudwara Singh Sabha, situated in the eastern part of Pushkar, was built in the beginning of the 19th century to commemorate the visits of the first and the tenth gurus- Guru Nanak Dev and Guru Govind Singhji.VARAHA TEMPLEVaraha temple is the largest and the most ancient temple of Pushkar. Constructed by the 12th century ruler, King Anaji Chauhan, this temple is dedicated to the third incarnation of Lord Vishnu as a wild boar. Legend has it that Varaha rescued the earth from depth of the primeval water, where it was dragged down by a demon (Hirnayaksh). It is one of the most visited temples in Pushkar.SAVITRI TEMPLEDedicated to Lord Brahma’s first wife, Goddess Savitri, this temple is situated on a hillock right behind the Brahma temple. While climbing the long series of steps leading to the temple, one can catch a panoramic view of the lake, surrounding temples and sand dunes. The presence of the only Brahma Temple in Pushkar is the outcome of Savitri’s curse to Brahma for marrying another Goddess, Gayatri, while starting his yagna in Pushkar.RANGJI TEMPLEThe gracious and conspicuous Rangji Temple is another popular shrine that witnesses thousands of pilgrims and tourists every year. The temple is dedicated to Lord Rangji, believed to be an incarnation of Lord Vishnu. The influence of South Indian style, Rajput style and Mughal style in the temple’s architecture is highly noticeable. The high-rising ‘Gopuram’, prevalent mainly in the temples present in South India is another feature of the temple that attracts visitors.PAP MOCHINI TEMPLEPresided by the deity Ekadashi Mata, the Pap Mochini temple is believed to provide respite to followers from their cardinal sins. Located in the northern section of Pushkar, the temple is like a pearl in the crown of Pushkar. Having a great spiritual importance as well as boasting a splendid architecture, the Pap Mochini temple is one of the most popular temples in Rajasthan.SRI PANCHKUND SHIVA TEMPLESri Panchkund Shiva Temple is said to have been built by the five Pandavas. Located on the eastern edge of the town, this temple is around 2-3 kilometres from the lake.ATMATESHWAR TEMPLEThis beautiful 12th century temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and has an underground component. The intricate Hemadpanti architectural style carvings give this temple a magnificent appearance. Thousands of devotees flock here to pay their respects during the auspicious time of Shivaratri, when Lord Shiva is ritually respected.MAN MAHALThe Man Mahal is one of the greatest palaces of Pushkar. Built as a guest house of Raja Man Singh I, this palace is one of the most attractive spots to visit in Pushkar. It was built to serve as a royal guest house for Raja Man Singh I. The Rajasthani architecture from the royal era that adorns the palace makes it a visual treat. It has now been converted into a heritage hotel, called the RTDC Hotel Sarovar, and allows tourists to not only enjoy the beauty of the palace but also the breathtaking view of the lakes and temples around the lake.HOW TO REACH HERESanganer Airport in Jaipur is the nearest, at a distance of 146 kilometres.Pushkar is well connected to the national highways of Rajasthan. Regular buses ply from Pushkar to the major cities of Jaipur, Jodhpur and Ajmer from the Ajmer bus stand.Pushkar Terminus Railway station which is operational since 2012, is connected to Ajmer railway station located at a distance of 11 kilometres.last_img read more