Hot News: Fusion Researchers Recommend ITER Design Tweaks

first_imgScientific advisers to the ITER fusion reactor project have recommended several key changes to its design that could increase technical risks—but also smooth the path to producing excess energy. The recommendations, made last week by ITER’s Science and Technology Advisory Committee (STAC), will have to be approved by the full ITER council in November. But if approved, as expected, “the chance of surprises later is reduced,” says Alberto Loarte, head of ITER’s confinement and modeling section. “The risk will pay off.”ITER, being built in France by an international collaboration, aims to show that nuclear fusion, the reaction that powers the sun, can be controlled on earth to produce energy. But reaching that goal involves heating hydrogen gas to more than 150 million°C so that hydrogen nuclei slam together with enough force to fuse. To do this, researchers are building a huge doughnut-shaped container called a tokamak to confine the ionized gas—or plasma—using enormously strong magnetic fields. ITER’s goal is to coax the plasma to produce 500 megawatts (MW) of heat, 10 times the 50 MW of power required to heat the plasma; this multiplying effect is known as a gain of 10.The most significant change decided at the STAC meeting concerns a structure at the base of the tokamak vessel called the divertor. Its main function is to remove the helium that is the “exhaust” gas of the fusion reaction. The divertor is the only part of the vessel where the superhot plasma actually touches a solid surface, so it has to be able to absorb huge quantities of heat, as much as 10 MW per square meter of surface.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)Existing plans call for making ITER’s first divertor with an outer layer of carbon. This is the safe option: Carbon is well proven in tokamak interiors; it can easily withstand the temperatures; and if any is blasted off into the plasma, it doesn’t affect the performance very much. The problem with carbon, however, is that it happily reacts with hydrogen, binding atoms into its structure. This wouldn’t be a problem during the early phases of ITER operation when researchers plan to use simple hydrogen or helium in the machine to get the hang of how it works. But a carbon coating could be a huge problem in later phases, when researchers plan to switch to real fusion fuel—a more reactive mixture of the hydrogen isotopes deuterium and tritium. Tritium is radioactive and so needs to be carefully controlled and accounted for. Nuclear regulators would never accept a divertor material that absorbs tritium and so makes it impossible to locate.To address that problem, planners had proposed running ITER for several years with the carbon-coated divertor, and then switching to one made of tungsten. Tungsten has the highest melting point of any metal: 3422°C. That should be fine for withstanding the heat produced during normal, steady ITER operations. But any unexpected bursts of heat could potentially melt the divertor, and tungsten—unlike carbon—instantly poisons the plasma, bringing fusion to a halt. So ITER’s operators would have to run the reactor much more carefully with a tungsten divertor, not pushing it to limits where the plasma might become unstable.Despite this drawback of tungsten, STAC has recommended that ITER be built with a tungsten divertor from the start. “It was not an easy decision,” says STAC Chair Joaquín Sánchez, head of Spain’s National Fusion Laboratory in Madrid. The decision was made after years of research at other tokamak laboratories, in particular the Joint European Torus (JET) at Culham in the United Kingdom, which is the closest machine to ITER in size and design. Several years ago, JET researchers refitted the reactor with a tungsten divertor and beryllium lining (as ITER will have). After a year of testing, they confirmed that this “ITER-like wall” worked well enough not to cause problems for ITER.Although some fusion researchers think that it would be safer to start ITER with a well understood carbon divertor, allowing them to push the reactor to extremes in search of high performance, starting with tungsten has advantages, too. Changing divertors is a complex process that would take many months. In addition, once operation with deuterium-tritium fuel has started, the interior of the vessel becomes radioactive (or “activated”), making it much harder to modify internal components. “If we start with tungsten, we save the cost of the change,” Sánchez says. “We know tungsten will be more difficult, but we will start learning earlier in the nonactivated phase and if there is a problem we can send people inside to fix it.”The other design changes concern two separate magnetic coils to be inserted inside the reactor vessel to fine-tune control of the plasma. ITER’s main plasma-confining magnets are outside the vessel and act as something of a blunt instrument. About 5 years ago, researchers highlighted the fact that operators would have difficulty keeping the vertical position of the plasma steady, and so proposed some extra magnetic coils on the inside.In addition to those for vertical stability, researchers proposed installing a second set of internal coils to combat a troubling phenomenon in superhot fusion plasma called edge-localized modes, or ELMs. ELMs occur when energy builds up in the plasma during fusion and then bursts out of the edge unpredictably, potentially damaging the lining or the divertor. The second set of coils deploys a magnetic field to roughen up the surface of the plasma so that it leaks energy at a constant rate rather than in erratic bursts.Anything inside the vessel is subjected to extreme heat, radioactivity, and magnetic forces, so researchers had to persuade STAC that these two sets of coils could be made resilient enough to survive. “There was some reluctance in STAC and the ITER Organization because of the technical issues of installation,” Loarte says. Experiments at other labs around the world reassured them. “The results obtained were very positive,” he says.STAC also took a hard look at the delivery schedule of components for ITER. The original plan called for everything—heating systems, instruments, ELM mitigation—to be in place when ITER is completed in 2020. But delays have meant that some items will be arriving later. “We needed to redo the schedule with a logic consistent with [achieving deuterium-tritium operation] faster. It was not consistent before and that led to criticism,” Loarte says. “Now we have to do the organizational part, which is not simple.”last_img read more

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Yellowstone grizzly bears now dine on dandelions instead of trash

first_imgBarred from the dumps where they once chowed on trash, the grizzly bears (Ursus arctos) of Yellowstone National Park and surrounding areas have substantially cleaned up their diets over the past few decades, a new study shows. Hundreds of field observations of the bears feeding and analyses of grizzly scat reveal that the animals’ garbage consumption peaked in the early 1970s, as the number of visitors to the park increased, but declined to practically zero when trashcans were converted to a bear-proof design and municipal dumps in and around the park were shut down, researchers report in the current issue of Ursus. From 1968 to 1971, 36% of grizzly poop contained trash, but studies of scat collected from 2011 to 2013 have found little to none. Today, grasses, ants, and flowering plants such as dandelions dominate the grizzly diet, followed by berries, trout, and mammals such as elk, bison, and gophers. (Despite the bears’ fierce reputation, only seven people have been killed in the 143-year history of the national park.) The 266-item list of foods documented in the new study—including moths, algae, and even dirt—illustrates the bear’s ability to adapt to rapid changes in the abundance of their favorite foods, the researchers say.last_img read more

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Why More Indian Students Will Choose The UK For Post-graduate Programmes

first_imgUp until a decade ago, the United Kingdom was the preferred international destination for pursuing higher education for thousands of Indian students. However, with the UK government introducing strict student immigration laws in 2011, Indian students turned to newer and more welcoming shores such as Canada, Australia, and other EU countries.Read it at India Today Related Itemslast_img

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Traditional techniques stare at extinction

first_imgKeeping a close eye on the earthen pot, Manglem P. is heedful of the last drop that may plop through the hole at its bottom any second. As soon as it does, he springs forth towards a frame set on a throne under a canopy. And nimbly prods to one end a pierced Kang seed, eight of them dangling from a thread taut between a wooden female idol and a male one. Then, at his gesture, a player standing next to him strikes a drum once with a whack, signalling the passage of an hour. But now, the timekeeping method practised by Manipuri rulers for centuries, Tanyeishang, requiring a priest and a drummer to man three devices round the clock, has given way to a much simpler, convenient and economical alternative — the mechanical clock.Patronised by kingsPatronised by the rulers of Manipurs and practised in palaces for centuries, the demanding method is now confined to the Meitei New Year celebration in April. And the setting of its devices — an earthen vessel, two pots, a frame and a drum — has become a place of worship in Imphal East district. On the occasion of International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples on Friday, villagers from across States, including Manipur, demonstrated the workings of such traditional technologies, staring at extinction due to mechanisation and low demand, at installations at the Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sangrahalaya here.“Tribals and villagers are not only close to nature, they still negotiate their lives using these elementary technologies. They have survived using these for hundreds of years. But gradually, these are getting wiped out from the collective societal base,” Sarit K. Chaudhuri, director of the museum. At another installation, Sakuntala boils saline water extracted from a tree trunk for three-four hours, scoops out salty froth and spatters it over a cloth to let it dry. “Many back in Manipur have given up this method of making salt. A 100 gm of it sells for ₹20 and 1 kg of packed iodised salt sells for the same amount. Therefore, people buy it only on rare occasions like marriages and rituals,” she said.last_img read more

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Tim Paine not satisfied despite thrilling draw in Dubai Test: ‘We’re here to win’

first_imgAustralia managed to forced a draw in the first Test against Pakistan in Dubai as fans back home showered them with plenty of praise. Australia skipper Tim Paine though is in no mood to celebrate the draw despite the low expectations from fans.After steering his side to safety through 139.5 overs of fourth-innings resistance in Dubai, Paine noted his team starting to spill out of the viewing area in celebration and immediately put a lid on it.Paine said he was mindful of Michael Vaughan’s words in an Ashes documentary released last year, when the former England captain recalled watching the Australians celebrate an escape at Old Trafford in the 2005 series.Vaughan said he never thought he would “see an Australian team celebrate a draw” and from then on felt England had the mental upper hand in a series they would go on to win.READ – Ready for whatever Pakistan throw at us in Abu Dhabi: Mitchell Starc”Michael Vaughan said after one of the Tests that he felt as an opposition captain that they had them when he saw them celebrating a draw,” Paine told reporters on Monday, on the eve of the second and final Test in Abu Dhabi.READ – Justin Langer praises ‘chemistry’ between Aaron Finch and Usman Khawaja”I’ve seen that myself before.”I think we were clearly pretty excited by what we’ve been able to achieve because it doesn’t happen too much but you’ve got to keep a bit of perspective on it and realise that we had been outplayed particularly over the first few days.advertisementREAD – I was very nervous: Tim Paine after Australia hold Pakistan for thrilling draw”While it was great we did fight back, a draw is a draw and we’re here to win.”The draw was still enough to keep Australia in with a chance of winning their first series in Asia since the 2011 tour of Sri Lanka.READ – Australian team tries too hard to be aggressive sometimes, feels James AndersonPaine said Australia needed to be mentally prepared for another five-day slog against Sarfraz Ahmed’s team in the Middle Eastern heat.”(We) touched on it last week that not many people gave us a chance over here, which is a great opportunity for us to prove people wrong and a great thing to keep driving us,” he said.”We’re trying to get better every day, and if we manage to play our best next week maybe that is possible.Read – Pizza and The Inbetweeners discussions kept Paine, Lyon going in Dubai Test”But we’ve got to turn up for a really tough match, it’s going to last five days and we’ve got to be on for all of those five days and every session.”(With inputs from Reuters)last_img read more

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Meet The Elite

first_imgIn the lead up to the 2015 Elite Eight Series, we catch up with each of the teams to see how their preparations are going in the lead up to the series.In the first edition of ‘Meet The Elite’, we hear from the New South Wales Country Mavericks’ Terry Deegan – http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=14-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33601849 In the second edition, we catch up with Queensland Country Outlaws’ Laura Waldie –  http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=14-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33612073In the third edition, we hear from the Queensland Stingrays’ Michael Singh – http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=0-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33625628In the fourth edition, we hear from the New South Wales Rebels’ Patricia Michaelopoulos – http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=0-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33639069In the fifth edition, we hear from the Queensland Chiefs’ Jemma Mi Mi – http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=0-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33655976In the sixth edition, we hear from the New South Wales Country Mavericks’ Rachel Beck –  http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=14-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33669659In the seventh edition, we catch up with New South Wales Scorpions’ Steph Maiolo –  http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=14-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33693634In the eighth edition, we hear from the New South Wales Mets’ Trent Touma – http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=14-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33707036In the ninth edition, we hear from the Alliance’s Rebecca Beath – http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=14-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33723768 In the 10th edition, we catch up with the Queensland Stingrays’ Ashleigh Kearney – http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=14-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33736653 In the 11th edition, we hear from the New South Wales Mets’ Kristin Boss – http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=14-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33743229 In the 12th edition, we hear from the Queensland Country Outlaws’ Trevor Moran – http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=14-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33749910 In the 13th edition, we catch up with the Alliance’s Ben Hughes – http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=14-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33749910In the 14th edition of ‘Meet The Elite’, we hear from the Queensland Chiefs’ Sebe Rey – http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=14-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33769938In the 15th edition, we catch up with New South Wales Scorpions’ Daniel Barton –  http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=14-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33773338In the 16th edition, we hear from the New South Wales Mets’ Madalitso Masache – http://www.foxsportspulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?client=14-907-0-0-0&sID=9248&&news_task=DETAIL&articleID=33776717 To view the ‘Meet the Elite’ series, please visit the National Touch League website – www.ntl.mytouchfooty.com.Stay tuned to www.touchfootball.com.au and www.ntl.mytouchfooty.com in the lead up to the event to hear from each of the Elite Eight teams and their preparations for the series which starts on Wednesday, 11 March in Coffs Harbour.You can keep up-to-date with all of the latest news and information from the 2015 National Touch League in the following ways:Websiteswww.ntl.mytouchfooty.comwww.touchfootball.com.auSocial MediaFacebook – www.facebook.com/touchfootballaustraliaTwitter – www.twitter.com/touchfootyaus (be sure to use the hashtag #NTL2015)Instagram – www.instagram.com/touchfootballaustraliaYouTube – www.youtube.com/touchfootballausRelated LinksMeet The Elitelast_img read more

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Its going to be honest Jessie Reyez discusses inspiration music ahead of

first_img— This interview has been edited and condensed.By: David Friend – The Canadian Press But that doesn’t mean Reyez isn’t craving recognition. Reyez: That’s definitely my goal… but I’m still a rookie. That’s why I’m trying to do this for the long haul. I’m trying to think of the 10-year plan and the calibre of music I need to make. I’ve been lucky enough to work with a lot of dope musicians. Any time I’m in a (recording) session, I try to walk in like a sponge and take notes, learn and try to get better. Reyez: It was a real story of something that happened to me, so it didn’t really hit me until after (the song was finished). I didn’t even think (of the impact it could have) until me and the producer were done and he was like, “This is crazy.” It messed me up more when we were in meetings and we’d play it. You’d see visceral reactions. You would see some girls just go tense and their eyes tear up because they see themselves in that situation and they went through it. “The last thing I want to do is get too happy,” the fiery 27-year-old musician said of her four nominations — a tally matched only by rockers Arcade Fire this year. VANCOUVER — Jessie Reyez is a leading contender heading into this weekend’s Junos, but the breakout singer says she’s not letting the awards buzz go to her head. The Toronto-raised performer with Colombian roots says she’s excited about her Juno nods and what lies ahead this year. She’s in the running for best R&B/soul recording, best music video, breakthrough artist of the year and the Juno Fan Choice award. Login/Register With: Advertisement Reyez will also perform her single “Figures” on Sunday’s Junos broadcast airing live on CBC. Other nominated acts slated to play include fellow Toronto newcomer Daniel Caesar, Diana Krall, Arkells and Lights. The show at Vancouver’s Rogers Arena will be hosted by pop crooner Michael Buble. The telecast caps off a weekend of accolades for Canadian music, starting at the Juno Awards gala dinner on Saturday where most trophies are handed out. The event will be streamed on the CBC Music website. CP: You have a reputation for laying your emotions bare on the stage, sometimes even bringing yourself to tears when you sing. How do you consistently deliver these raw performances? Reyez: The stories in the songs come from my real life. And it’s kind of like, ah man, at the risk of sounding cheesy, it’s kind of like a wound, like a cut. People want to get over things, so (they) move forward and don’t think about it, but when you make a song, it’s there forever. If you go back to it, and get lost in it, it’s like digging your finger into that cut. I wouldn’t be human if I didn’t cringe when I put my finger in a cut. Facebook CP: You’ve mentioned previously that one of your aspirations is having a shelf of Grammys. That’s pretty ambitious out of the gate. Advertisementcenter_img CP: You’ve been secretive about the status of your debut full-length album, saying you’re a perfectionist and it’ll see the light of day “when God wants.” What’s the hold-up? CP: One trait that stands out about your personality is this determined trajectory you’ve set yourself on. What’s your mantra? CP: You’re coming off a steady run of tour dates but this Junos performance is among your first on a big-time awards show. What’s going through your mind as you prepare? Reyez: A lot of people don’t know me, and for a lot of people this will be their first time hearing me. So it’s going to be me trying to make that moment as potent as possible. Not a lot of embellishments. It’s going to be honest. It’s going to be me. CP: Some of your fellow Toronto hip hop artists have shunned big awards shows like the Grammys and Junos in recent years under the belief they don’t give the music genre its due. (Drake and the performers on his OVO Sound label chose not to submit their work to the Junos for consideration this year and the rapper has famously shunned the Grammys.) Why have you decided to set your sights on these trophies? Reyez: I know (there’s talk) about how a lot people of colour don’t get recognized, a lot of hip hop music doesn’t get recognized. For me, I try to always look at the positive. If I get to hold that (Grammy) one day, I can say, “OK, dope. This little chick that was born in… Toronto, this little Colombiana woman of colour, a minority female, did it.” I want to be able to say that so my two little nieces can feel like they can do anything. LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Reyez: “You only lose when you quit.” It’s crazy, eh? All those cliches you hear in school and kind of brush off —because they seem to lose potency — are the keys to life. I wish more kids knew that. Reyez: I want it to be great. I want it to be something that I’m proud of in 10 years. I want it to be something that, if I’m lucky enough to have kids they’ll be like, “Yo, remember when mom made this?” You know what I mean? I want there to be pride in it, my parents to be proud of it. I want accolades. Reyez spoke to The Canadian Press about making her first impression on Junos viewers, and why she’s still chasing awards, even if Canada’s biggest hip hop acts refuse to submit their work for consideration to some awards shows. “I feel like it’s dangerous to get complacent and celebrate too much… You can’t get comfortable.” CP: The song “Gatekeeper,” from your debut EP “Kiddo” released early last year, felt especially potent in the wake of the #MeToo movement. It’s a vivid retelling of your experience with a powerful music industry player who tried to pressure you into sex with promises of fame. What’s it like seeing that song take on greater significance amid conversations about sexual misconduct in the entertainment industry? Advertisement Twitterlast_img read more

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Over 443 Pilgrims Killed in Stampede in Mina Near Mecca

Rabat – At least 443 pilgrims died and 719 others injured in a stampede of pilgrims in Mina, near Mecca, announced the Saudi civil defense said.Thousands of rescue personnel are participating in the operations to help the injured. KSA’s civil defense said on their twitter that the number of deaths has risen to 453 and 719 injured.?????? ??? ???????? ??? 719 ???????? ??? 453 ???? ????.— ?????? ?????? (@KSA_998) September 24, 2015“Rescue operations are still underway, while the number of deaths has risen to 310 of different nationalities,” Saudi civil defense said in a tweet. ?? ???? ????? ????? ?????? ?????? ??? ????? ??? ??????? ??? 310 ???? ?? ?????? ??????.— ?????? ?????? (@KSA_998) September 24, 2015Nearly two million pilgrims are in Saudi Arabia for this year’s annual hajj pilgrimage which starts Tuesday.Graphic Video of the stampede in Mina read more

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Temple REIT snaps up Acclaim Hotel Calgary Airport expansion underway

WINNIPEG — Temple Real Estate Investment Trust says it is buying the Acclaim Hotel Calgary Airport for about $42-million.The existing four-storey, full-service hotel, which opened in 2009, consists of 123 guest rooms. However, Temple says an expansion already underway will add an additional 102, bringing the total room count to 225.Temple said Tuesday that the expanded hotel will offer a variety of amenities, including 6,500 square feet of banquet and meeting space, two roof-top outdoor whirlpools, a leased restaurant and lounge and leased salon and sundry shop among other things.The expansion of the hotel is expected to be completed and operational by summer 2013 and the acquisition is scheduled to close on the later of Oct. 1, 2013, or 60 days after completion of the expansion.The acquisition will be financed with a first mortgage loan of $27-million and the balance in cash. read more

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UN agency reaches deal to build 400 homes for Palestinians in the

Under the accord, the Authority will provide two tracts of land for the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) to start its re-housing project for the homeless.UNRWA Commissioner-General Peter Hansen reached a deal after meeting with Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat in Ramallah. The scheme will be funded by the United Arab Emirates’ Red Crescent Society.Last month UNRWA launched an appeal for $15.8 million for Rafah after Israeli military raids there left thousands of people homeless. About $6.3 million has been pledged so far.More than 15,000 people have become homeless in Rafah since the start of the latest intifada in September 2000. UNRWA has been building new shelters to re-house many people, but the recent rate of destruction in the Israeli raids has meant it has been unable to keep up with demand. read more

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