Fire service strike

first_imgLast week, the union agreed to ballot members over the nextfew weeks in support of its 40 per cent pay increase claim. But Nick Raynsford,minister responsible for the fire service, has urged the union to co-operatewith the Government’s plans to address the pay demand through an independentreview of the fire service. “It [the independent review] is an alternativeto what would be an unnecessary and deeply damaging dispute that could putpeople’s lives at risk,” he said. Related posts:No related photos. Fire service strikeOn 17 Sep 2002 in Personnel Today Fire service employers and the Government have appealed tothe Fire Brigades Union to call off ballot action as the possibility of thefirst firefighters’ strike in 25 years looms. center_img Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. last_img read more

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Climate change drives poleward increases and equatorward declines in marine species

first_imgMarine environments have increased in temperature by an average of 1°C since preindustrial (1850) times [1]. Given that species ranges are closely allied to physiologicalthermal tolerances in marine organisms [2], it may therefore be expected that ocean warming would lead to abundance increases at poleward range edges, and abundance declines towards the equator [3]. Here we report a global analysis of abundance tends of 304 widely distributed marine species over the last century, across a range of taxonomic groups from phytoplankton to fish and marine mammals. Specifically, using a literature database we investigate the extent that the direction and strength of longterm species abundance changes depend on the sampled location within the latitudinal range of species. Our results show that abundance increases have been most prominent where sampling has taken place at the poleward edges of species ranges, while abundance declines have been most prominent where sampling has taken place at the equatorward edge of species ranges. These data provide evidence of omnipresent large-scale changes in abundance of marine species consistent with warming over the last century, and suggest that adaptation has not provided a buffer against the negative effects of warmer conditions at the equatorward extent of species ranges. On the basis of these results we suggest that projected sea temperature increases of up to 1.5°C over pre-industrial levels by 2050 [4] will continue to drive latitudinal abundance shifts in marine species, including those of importance for coastal livelihoods.last_img read more

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Australia: ANZAC Battle Tankers March as One

first_imgBack to overview,Home naval-today Australia: ANZAC Battle Tankers March as One View post tag: Anzac View post tag: A/S Australia: ANZAC Battle Tankers March as One View post tag: News by topic View post tag: March View post tag: Battle April 25, 2013 Training & Education View post tag: Defense View post tag: one View post tag: Naval Share this article Anzac Day is a day of national pride when we stop to remember those who forged our military history, and acknowledge those who continue the legacy. This year in true ANZAC spirit the Ships Company of HMAS Success welcomed eleven sailors from the Royal New Zealand Navy Replenishment Ship HMNZS Endeavour to march alongside them in Sydney.Over a three month period concluding 12 April 2013, eleven Royal Australian Naval personnel were seconded to Endeavour, including eight from Success. This unique opportunity allowed Success sailors to maintain at sea competency during an extended maintenance period for their unit, while augmenting Endeavour‘s crew during a busy time in their operational cycle – which included a visit back to Sydney in February.WO Steve Bradley, Command Warrant Officer HMNZS Endeavour, and Warrant Officer Deb Butterworth, Ships Warrant Officer, HMAS Success agreed that this activity was a great opportunity to showcase the close bond between the RAN and RNZN.WO Butterworth said, “our sailors marching together on such a significant occasion will make it clear to the public that the ANZAC spirit of cooperation and mateship is alive and well.WO Bradley agreed, saying “how valuable it is to foster the strong bonds of comradeship that have developed between sailors of both ships.”HMAS Success and HMNZS Endeavour provide an essential replenishment at sea capability to their respective fleets, making the recent attachment of RAN sailors to the RNZN an extremely valuable knowledge sharing exercise.Both ships are currently undergoing maintenance periods, with Success scheduled to return to sea later this year, ready for participation in the International Fleet Review.[mappress]Naval Today Staff, April 25, 2013; Image: Australian Navy View post tag: Defence View post tag: Tankers View post tag: Navylast_img read more

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CHris PARR TRIBUTE

first_imgWarburtons’ Chris Parr died suddenly on Monday, 18 September.Aged 57, he was technical director at Warburtons, and was respected throughout the baking and milling industries.He died after developing an infection following surgery. He had been suffering from an illness over the past few months, but was expected to return to work.The funeral took place on Tuesday, 26 September at the Manchester Crematorium. Any letters or donations c/o J Alcock & Sons, 0161 428 2097.Brett Warburton, executive director, Warburtons:Chris’ commitment to baking and his loyalty to Warburtons over his 27 years of service with us was remarkable and our family has always been and always will be deeply appreciative of his dedication and support.Chris was a unique character who will be deeply missed by friends, colleagues and the baking industry at home and abroad. We have been moved by the tributes that have been paid to him in this last week from all over the world. Our thoughts are with his family – Stuart, Gemma and Lynn.David Roberts, former chairman of the Federation of Bakers:It was with a sense of shock and deep sympathy that I heard of the death of Chris Parr. We got to know each other when he and I were on the Bread Advisory Panel at FMBRA, Chorleywood. This committee had the distinction of having the co-inventors of the Chorleywood Bread Process – Norman Chamberlain and Bill Collins as members.Chris brought his well developed understanding of cereal chemistry and the physics of bread-making technology to the deliberations of this committee. He was able to sense the point at which to discard the more esoteric and fanciful research projects, with a more realistic focus on issues that really mattered. It was obvious to me that Chris was going to become one of the most outstanding bread bakers of his generation. He had the unique ability to bring the immense complexity of wheat variety, flour milling and baking technology into a coherent and manageable combination. His extraordinary ability enabled bread to be produced throughout the country and he played a significant part in helping Warburtons to become the pre-eminent company it is today. Personally, he was always very approachable and conveyed both his enthusiasm and immense knowledge. He knew when to be dogmatic but it was tempered with a healthy scepticism, the hallmark of an absolute professional.David Marsh, Benier (UK):I was shocked at the news of Chris’ passing this week. I could never claim to be a close friend or business associate of Chris’s. But although our joint dealings were modest, he was someone for whom I had a profound respect for in terms of the breadth and depth of his knowledge regarding the science and processes of our industry.He was in a position to “push boundaries” and, together with his team at Warburtons, he pushed them and moved them. Plus he was a thoroughly nice chap. A “massive” hole will be left where once he sat.John Foster, managing director, Fosters Bakery, Barnsley:There are those who know bakery science and there are others who see it more as an art. Chris Parr was a master of baking technology, baking art and knew exactly where and how the two combined. He was probably the wisest baker I have known.My wife – then girlfriend – Elaine worked for Chris in the early 1980s at Warburton’s Bolton bakery and he was a great influence in encouraging us in our early baking careers, something he continued to do over the years, when we bumped into him at baking exhibitions and events.Behind huge brands there are huge people making it happen and you have to admire the great success of Warburtons, which is due in no small part to the bread being technically outstanding. Much of this has been due to or greatly influenced by the lovely man and the great baker Chris Parr.Trevor Oakley, friend and Warburtons’ colleague:I had the pleasure of working regularly with Chris for 30 years and my lasting memories of him will be his extensive knowledge of breadmaking – both practical and theoretical – and his unwavering passion for superior quality in everything we did.But for me, far more than his technical skills was his willingness to get stuck in and help with any challenges we faced – sometimes with things well outside his responsibility. But he did it cheerfully because he cared. He will be sorely missed.David Tomlinson, friend and former Warburtons colleague:Chris had the most incredible enthusiasm for baking the highest-quality products and was particularly passionate about spreading the gospel of the quality of plant bread for his beloved Warburtons. In later years, Chris worked with cereal chemists, farmers, millers and bakers all over the world to produce the most suitable flour for the finest plant bread. This will be his legacy to the baking business; his enthusiasm knew no bounds and his passion for baking will be remembered, particularly by colleagues and indeed the whole of our industry.Stan Cauvain and Linda Young, BakeTran:Bread-making was one of the passions in the life of Chris Parr and he was always willing to share that passion with others around the world. Debating the intricacies of bread technology was always a stimulating experience with Chris as he constantly strove to understand what controlled bread quality and how to exploit his knowledge of ingredients and processing to improve it. His constant questioning of what constituted ’good’ bread quality would often stimulate new ideas in others, which in turn would lead to new developments, benefiting not only Warburtons’ business, but often the baking industry as a whole.One was never offended by the outcome of a debate with Chris, because no matter how heated it became, one always recognised the passion he felt for his subject. That passion and stimulation will be missed by both of us and many others in the baking industry.Bob Beard, friend and colleague:A more loyal person to the baking industry and to Warburtons you will not find.I knew Chris for over 15 years, initially as a supplier and latterly as a work colleague. It was Chris’ passion for quality that was utterly infectious; his attention to detail, patience if you did not understand and willingness to challenge the status quo will always be remembered.He knew more about wheat, milling, ingredients and the technical baking process than anyone I have met. What’s more, he always wanted to share his knowledge, thoughts and feelings, especially if it improved bread quality.He was an expert and a friend and is sadly missed. n—-=== Chris Parr ===Died Monday 18 September, aged 57.In his youth, Chris played football to a high standard and always remained involved in the game as an enthusiastic and vocal Manchester United supporter!He attended Manchester Bakery School (Hollings College – now part of Manchester Metropolitan University) from 1966-69.Worked at Sharrocks Bakery in Bredbury, Stockport as a trainee manager, then joined British Arkady (now BakeMark) as a test baker.Chris quickly became an expert in the Chorleywood Breadmaking process and, along with colleagues, developed dough conditioners and other ingredients that were at the cutting-edge of technology. In the mid 1970s, he joined Warburtons, working directly for Derrick Warburton in advancing the technology of breadmaking processes and new product development.Latterly, Chris held the role of technical development director for Warburtons. He enjoyed many years of service with the family business.last_img read more

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Moon Taxi Teases Allman Brothers, Rocks The Music Farm With Naughty Professor [Setlist/Gallery]

first_imgLoad remaining images Moon Taxi and Naughty Professor have officially joined forces for a few dates this week, merging for the first time last night at The Music Farm in Columbia, SC. The New Orleans-based instrumental funk/jazz band opened up the night, performing a mix of songs from their 2016 release In The Flesh amongst a few new tunes. The up-and-comers just finished up a slew of dates collaborating with Jurassic 5 frontman Chali 2na (check that out) and opened up for Marco Benevento & Eric Krasno Band at the Pour House last weekend. If you haven’t yet, check out Naughty Professor and all the goodness they have to offer.Moon Taxi rocked the house with some of their greatest hits, “Red Hot Lights”, “Make Up Your Mind”, and of course, “All Day All Night.” The band surprised audience members with a tease of “Jessica” amidst a heavy “Savannah” jam, dedicating it to one of their friends in attendance, who found out the gender of their baby while listening to the Allman Brothers classic. The lights went pink to celebrate. They even welcomed NP’s trumpeter John Culbreth to the stage for an exciting collaboration. The band went acoustic for “River” and “The New Black” before heading into an extended jam, sandwiching “Mercury” into “Stress” back into “Mercury.” The evening closed with a raging cover of “Bulls On Parade.”Moon Taxi and Naughty Professor will meet again at the Minglewood Hall in Memphis, TN on 10/29 for a special “Halloween is Coming” performance. Tickets are on-sale here. For Moon Taxi’s full schedule, head to their website. And follow Naughty P’s tour right here.Photographer Ellison White was on the scene to capture the magic. Check out the full gallery below!Moon Taxi @ The Music Farm, Columbia, SC 10.27.16 Setlist:Year Zero, Change, Run Right Back, Make Your Mind Up → Savannah → Jessica (Allman Brothers Band), Southern Trance, Who’s To Say?, Watchtower, River*, The New Black*, Mercury→Stress→Mercury, Morocco → Red Hot Lights, All Day All Night, Bulls On Parade*Acousticlast_img read more

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Relix Live Music Conference To Offer Free Webcast

first_imgThe Relix Channel on YouTube will offer a free webcast of the Relix Live Music Conference, which is set to take over the Brooklyn Bowl on Tuesday, May 8th and Wednesday, May 9th. The stream will kick off at 9am ET on both days.As previously reported, this year’s conference will expand on last year’s inaugural gathering with more speakers and a second day of programming. Scheduled speakers include Rolling Stone’s David Fricke, The Bowery Presents’ Johnny Beach, YouTube’s Ted Kartzman, Atlantic Records’ Nick Harvey, Live for Live Music’s own Kunj Shah, and many more. Representatives from Live Nation, AEG Presents, Superfly, Red Light Management, Atlantic Records, Ben & Jerry’s, HeadCount, nugs.net and, of course, Relix will also be among the speakers.In related news, Voter registration and awareness non-profit HeadCount will present a very special, very silly Spelling Bee Brooklyn Bowl on Tuesday, May 8th following the first day of the Relix Live Music Conference. The “We Bee Spelling” show will feature Andy Frasco and the UN as the live house band, comedian judges Kyle Ayers and Ahri Findling, and host Alex Greer. The event will test the language arts chops of musicians and live music industry stalwarts like Vince Herman (Leftover Salmon), Hannah Gold (City Winery), Lee Anderson (Paradigm), Dan Berkowitz (CID Entertainment), Annabel Lukins (Cloud 9), Will Scott (CAA), Ted Kartzman (YouTube), Jay Curley (Ben & Jerry’s),  Aaron Stein (Freak’s List), and Kunj Shah (Live For Live Music).For more information on the Relix Live Music Conference, check out the event’s website. Tickets for the two-day gathering are still on sale.last_img read more

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A new program to shake up education

first_imgThe goal of her Harvard years, said Cheng, is to learn how to “sustain real reform over time.”“Part of the solution is in the model of this program,” said Cheng. “It’s going to take working in teams, forming alliances and coalitions of support that are nontraditional … to devise solutions.”Doctoral student Anthony Jewett, the child of two teenagers who was raised mostly by his grandmothers in a Florida housing project, came to the new program by way of Teach for America and a national nonprofit he founded to help students study abroad.American public education today is broken, said Jewett, and it can only be righted by “dogged commitment to nothing else than the well-being of kids.” He believes that fixing the nation’s public education system requires a multifaceted approach. He had plans in place to earn a doctorate in education, a master’s in public policy, and an M.B.A. Then he heard about the HGSE degree.“A tuition-free doctorate at Harvard among these three schools? I thought ‘no way.’ ”The students have been on campus since Aug. 23. Their orientation included an introduction to the library system, a narrative workshop with HKS lecturer in public policy Marshall Ganz, diversity exercises, and — above all — the chance to bond over their shared mission.“Already, there’s this sense that we are a single community,” said Robert B. Schwartz, a HGSE professor of practice who helped to develop the program, “that this is an adventure that we are all embarking on together.”Money said she looks forward to creating a synergy with the Harvard faculty and fellow students “to get to learn those executive skills, to get to learn those political skills, to get to learn how to work with nonprofits … and to tap into this talent pool to figure out how to make it work better. … Great ideas are going to be born from that. Who knows where it will take us.” The irony of her name was never lost on Tracy Money. Growing up in poverty, the Minnesota native collected and cashed in empty cans on weekends so she could afford to eat lunch during the week.Fortunately, she discovered early on that learning didn’t cost a thing.Money’s parents never attended college but valued education, she said, and “They wanted something different for us.”A bright student who loved to read, Money found school uninspiring and started skipping class in the second grade. Years later, with no plans for college, she took the SATs on a whim. She managed top scores that landed her in an honors program at Eastern Washington University.“It was the first time in my life that I loved school,” said Money, who chose to major in elementary education. “It felt like home.” Later, she said, “I kept coming back to education. I wanted to fix it.”Now she can. Money is one of 25 doctoral students in the new Doctor of Education Leadership (Ed.L.D.) program at the Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE).Money, who founded a small high school in 2007 in Kennewick, Wash., hopes to use her experience at Harvard to expand her model: a rigorous, integrated curriculum that incorporates students’ interests with personal, customized learning plans.Harvard’s newest doctoral program has an ambitious goal to radically transform the nation’s public education system. The three-year, practice-based doctoral program is tuition-free and aims to prepare graduates for senior leadership roles in school districts, government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and private companies.The program is multidisciplinary, involving faculty from HGSE, Harvard Business School (HBS), and the Harvard Kennedy School (HKS). It incorporates training in education, management, and leadership, as well as politics and policy.The first year centers on a core curriculum. In the second year, participants will customize their course work to fit their individual interests and leadership focus. In the third year, students will perform “residencies” with partnering organizations such as school districts and nonprofits. While there, they develop and implement initiatives aimed at educational reform.There were more than 1,000 applicants for the new degree program after it was announced in September last year. The large number caught organizers off guard. “We were hoping we would get 250 applications,” said Elizabeth A. City, the program’s executive director.Last spring, 56 finalists visited HGSE for an intensive day of interviews. City called the final cohort of 25 a diverse and impressive pool, bringing with them a wealth of leadership experience ranging from six to 26 years. The vast majority have prior graduate degrees, and more than half are students of color. The group includes principals and teachers, consultants, directors, and managers.The true value of education hit home for doctoral student Susan Cheng during her first job after college, when she learned that “education really is a civil rights issue.”She has a master’s degree from HKS, experience with a nonprofit in California, volunteered with Partners In Health in Rwanda, and worked under the direction of Michelle Rhee, the dynamic chancellor of the District of Columbia public schools system.Cheng, whose work included recruiting and hiring managers and directors for Rhee’s administration, said working for such a fearless change agent inspired her to apply to the Harvard program.“What I learned from her was to stand up for what’s right.”last_img read more

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Graduate English speech Jon Murad | Harvard Commencement 2013

first_imgGraduate Speaker Jon Murad speaks at the 362nd Harvard Commencement Ceremony at Tercentenary Theatre on May 30, 2013.Each spring, the Harvard Commencement Office holds a competition to select an undergraduate speaker, a graduate student speaker, and a Latin speaker. At Morning Exercises on May 30, the chosen three gave their addresses before an audience of tens of thousands gathered in Tercentenary Theatre.Read our story for more information on the speakers.last_img

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Life on the ice

first_img Event Horizon Telescope researchers reveal first-ever image of a black hole Study outlines new proposal for probing the primordial universe No matter how beautiful, winter isn’t for everyone. Dierickx, the postdoctoral fellow, originally accepted the post hoping she would get to winter over, but after two trips in the summer season she reconsidered.“I realized that to me the prospect of spending a whole year in that same tiny spot on the map is very forbidding in the sense that the South Pole is a complete arbitrary location,” she said. “There is nowhere to go from there. The idea of spending a whole year there is a huge opportunity cost for all the other things I could be living and experiencing elsewhere in the world. I think to me it would feel like a prison.”Going homeDierickx, who will travel to the Pole again this summer, wasn’t alone among the researchers the Gazette spoke with in feeling that the Pole’s warmer months are enough for them. By the end of this upcoming season, Dierickx is sure she’ll be ready to go home again.“There’s a pretty consistent trend that when you land there you’re bright-eyed and bushy-tailed and you’re happy and you’re ready to put in all this effort and work,” said Tyler St. Germaine, who has visited the station for two-month stays four times in as many years.“You’re full of energy and you’re full of optimism,” said St. Germaine, who will earn his Ph.D. in astrophysics at the end of the academic year. “But almost every time, by the time your six or eight weeks are up, your last week or two you’re like, ‘I’m ready to go home. I miss my family. I miss my internet. I miss my friends. I want to breathe air again. I want to experience the real world. I want to get out of this place.’”Luckily, the shock of returning is always a pleasant one, and comes with a new if temporary appreciation for some of the best features of modern life.“It’s like being an adult, but being born again,” Barkats said. “You discover all of the wonders of life that you’ve forgotten how awesome everything was. It’s raining! That’s fantastic. You’re seeing animals. You’re seeing babies. You’re going to a restaurant. You have this sudden choice among so many different foods that you can eat.“To me, that very first month that I was back in New Zealand, all of those little quirks that make life amazing just became very acute and I was super impressed by everything. I thought life was wonderful. But then you forget. It smooths out and the routine of life catches back onto you.”The team is currently preparing to deploy the newest telescope in the series called the BICEP Array this coming summer season.The research being conducted by the Kovac CMB Group and the United States Antarctic Program is funded by the National Science Foundation. ‘Seeing the unseeable’ Related Before the Big Bangcenter_img For the scientists who work at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station, life at the bottom of the planet is about battling the extreme.Temperatures never rise above freezing, and can plummet well past 100 degrees below Fahrenheit. Half the year is spent in nonstop sunlight, while the other half is constant night. The area is more than 800 miles from the Antarctic coast, sits atop two miles of vertical ice, and is so dry it’s classified as a desert — the biggest in the world. To top it off, it’s inhospitable to all forms of life and, during the nine-month winter season, the station is cut off from the rest of the world because the fuel that powers the only planes capable of making the trip would freeze into an unusable jelly.Then there’s the science itself.For researchers from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) that means working on a suite of complex microwave telescopes that search the sky for the earliest traces of the Big Bang. A typical week involves workdays in the double digits, six and sometimes seven days a week, because the deadline is tight. The station is only accessible during a three-month window.Taken together, the jarring environment and limited worktime make the South Pole among the most taxing and isolating work experiences a person can go through, according to seven current and former members of the CfA’s Kovac CMB (Cosmic Microwave Background) Group, which is led by Professor John Kovac and every year sends researchers to the Pole. It’s worth it, they say, because they get an experience relatively few people ever will.,The southernmost point of the planet is a 9,000-mile journey from Cambridge that can take more than a week. Over the station’s summer season (typically November to mid-February), the group members rotate in and out to work on the BICEP and Keck Array CMB Telescope Experiments. Some stay for a few weeks, others a few months, and a committed handful stay through the winter season (mid-February through October).Most people will never go. A ticket is at least $45,000, not including equipment, and the Amundsen-Scott station, one of three U.S. research facilities on the continent, is not usually open to tourists. The station’s researchers and support personnel are among the select few who regularly make the journey.The simple part of the journey is getting to Christchurch, New Zealand, where the U.S. Antarctic program is headquartered. From there, researchers board military planes to McMurdo Station, the U.S. logistical hub built on a bare volcanic rock at the foot of Antarctica. Then they wait. The Air Force isn’t afraid to delay or cancel any number of scheduled flights until there are ideal conditions to reach the Pole.When the all-clear is finally given, the nearly three-hour flight is breathtaking.,“It’s probably one of my favorite parts of the journey there,” said James Cornelison, a Ph.D. candidate in astrophysics in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences who is working with the Kovac CMB Group. He’s been down every year since 2016 and in November will leave again for a two-month stay.The plane, a ski-equipped Lockheed LC-130, soars above a featureless ice shelf, he said, then over the Transantarctic Mountains before rising up to the Antarctic Plateau, a sheet of ice more than 9,000 feet thick. It lands on a runway made of ice and snow.Samuel Harrison ’12, a former research scientist and mechanical engineer with the group who in the last five years has spent more than 15 months at the Pole, described it best: “As you’re crossing the Transantarctic Mountains, you look below you and there’s just these amazing glaciers where the ice is essentially flowing off the continent down through the mountain range out to the ocean. You just see the height difference between zero elevation and 10,000 feet of snow [and ice]. When you get up to the plateau the mountains basically disappear because the snow [and ice] is as high as the mountains.”,Initial shockResearchers get an environmental reality check as soon as they touch down.The cold hits them right away, freezing their nose hairs. The average temperature during the summer season is 18 degrees below Fahrenheit — which Boston reached just once, on the coldest day in its recorded history. The next thing most of the scientists notice is the brightness. The sun is on a 24-hour loop around the horizon, the sky is an intense blue, and the snow reflects all the light back up, blinding and disorienting them.“It’s like stepping off on a new planet,” said Denis Barkats, a senior scientist on the team. “All of your human environment bearings are off.”,Some feel dizzy, even sick, right away because of the elevation and because of how incredibly dry the air is. The Antarctic desert, where the Pole is located, is the largest, driest, and windiest desert on Earth.All that hits some researchers hard. Some take a snowmobile the roughly 100 meters from the runway to the squat, metallic-colored station, which is elevated above the ice, because they can’t make the walk on their own. Others aren’t affected, or at least not immediately. Eventually, it catches everyone, said Barkats, who’s spent more than 28 months at the Pole over eight trips.“Within a few hours you start feeling the effects of altitude,” he said. “Even if it’s not severe, you do feel it. You walk up some stairs and you feel dizzy or out of breath. And then again, within a few hours, you start feeling the effects of the dry atmosphere. Your mouth is dry. Your nose is dry. Then with the combination of the dry air and the high altitude, you drink a lot so you’re peeing all the time,” he said, laughing.,The station communityAfter arriving, the scientists get a chance to settle in. The station has a gym, greenhouse, movie room, music room, rock-climbing wall, and even a sauna, which make up for some of the isolation there, since internet access and the chance to speak with family and friends is limited to the two to four hours when communication satellites pass overhead.But they do have the community at the station.“I find the people aspect of my stay there to be very enriching and interesting,” said Marion Dierickx ’12, A.M. ’14., Ph.D. ’17, one of the CMB Group’s postdoctoral scholars.Amundsen-Scott Station, which is the third iteration of the original 1956 complex, houses about 150 people in the summer and 50 during the winter. Along with astronomers and astrophysicists, scientists travel there to study particle physics, solar energy, geology, glaciology, and climatology. There are also cooks, plumbers, doctors, internet technicians, electricians, and others who help keep the station running.,“I always joke that I live in Boston and it’s a city of 3 million people but I actually socialize more and meet more people when I’m at the South Pole.” — Marion Dierickx,“The people who end up at the South Pole are not just your average person,” Dierickx said. “They tend to be people who are maybe a little bit eccentric but definitely have a sense of adventure. People who’ve led interesting lives, who’ve had all sorts of unusual trajectories and experiences. The proportion of the station population who are outdoor adventurers and have traveled the world is extremely high, so you sit down with anybody over a meal and you’re talking about that time when they soloed across some crazy mountain range in Alaska or whatever — that’s just your normal dinner conversation at the South Pole.”Many of the researchers who spoke with the Gazette described the group as the most welcoming and tight-knit they’ve been a part of. “I always joke that I live in Boston and it’s a city of 3 million people but I actually socialize more and meet more people when I’m at the South Pole,” Dierickx said.People form bands, and pick-up basketball sides. They organize trivia nights. They celebrate birthdays and holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas. And the station is replete with its own traditions, carried on season after season.Some are ceremonial, like the unveiling of the new South Pole marker, a location that shifts about 20 meters every year because the station sits atop a moving ice shelf. The marker is designed by the previous year’s “winter-overs.”,One is horror: After the last plane takes off for nine months, the winter crew watches “The Thing” and “The Shining,” whose characters are also isolated from the world by winter conditions. There’s the “Race Around the World,” a three-lap, two-mile race around every line of longitude on the planet.And one is bizarre: baking in the station’s sauna at 200 degrees Fahrenheit and then running outside to touch the South Pole marker in a bathing suit. In the winter, when temperatures reach below 100 degrees, it becomes the “300 Club” in honor of the temperature range, and they do it in nothing but their boots.“The sensation is amazing,” Barkats said. “Your brain tells you, ‘You should be freezing,’ because you know it’s negative-100 degrees outside, and yet your body has accumulated enough heat that you actually feel quite comfortable for three to five minutes. I did it during my winter and it was so incredible, I repeated it immediately afterwards.”‘Space’ walksBesides that bit of fun, going out in the cold is serious business. All personnel are issued extreme cold weather gear by the National Science Foundation, which oversees the Antarctic program. The outfit includes a big red parka, overalls, goggles, three layers of gloves, heavy pants, large boots, and many more layers. It adds up to about 20 pounds of clothing and takes about 10 minutes to pull on. Many of the researchers say they feel like astronauts once they’re prepared for the outdoors.The gear is so effective that it does more than cancel out the cold. Some of the scientists admitted they felt too hot when they were outside. In fact, there were times they went without some of it.,“I actually felt colder during the winter in Boston a couple of times than I ever felt being outside there,” said Kate Alexander, A.M. ’14, Ph.D. ’18, who spent December 2015 at the Pole as a grad student.But the freedom to skip a layer only lasts for the summer, when the temperatures linger at about 20 degrees below zero. In winter, all gear is necessary and they must be absolutely rigorous putting it on. Any exposed skin can be frostbitten in less than five minutes.BICEP3, the current version of the BICEP telescope, and the Keck Array telescopes are about a kilometer away from Amundsen-Scott’s main living facility, in what’s called the Dark Sector laboratories. To get there, researchers follow an orange flag-line out in the frozen plains. It’s about a 15-minute walk each time they have to go back and forth, which is usually about four times a day.The landscape is stark and unchanging. Besides the main station and nearby research facilities, there is nothing but open sky and snow that squeaks like Styrofoam underfoot. The weather is fairly calm, but there is wind that is able to carry the snow — which behaves more like sand because of the extreme cold and dry — scattering dune formations across the empty expanse. “When you look out from the station, depending on the time of day, you could totally imagine that you are on the ocean.” — Samuel Harrison,“You have these little waves that are sculpted by the wind in the surface of the snow,” said Harrison, the mechanical engineer. “When you look out from the station, depending on the time of day, you could totally imagine that you are on the ocean.”Another casual summer sight are the solar displays formed as ice crystals in the air reflect the sunlight, creating arcs, halos, and spots around the sun.Go, go, goThe CfA researchers have only about three months to get to the Pole, make routine upgrades like yearly calibrations or swapping out broken or damaged pieces, complete major overhauls such as replacing entire telescopes, and leave. Any longer, and they are trapped.“It creates this urgent tempo,” said Cornelison, the grad student. “Every minute that you spend doing something recreational is a minute that you’re not spending accomplishing your job. Your standards for what a good work-life balance is change. It’s not abnormal to wake up at 5 or 6 in the morning and get some work done before breakfast and then work until lunch and then work from lunch until dinner and then after dinner you go back out to the telescopes and work. So every once in a while, you’ll find yourself working 14 to 16 hours and then you go back to the station, you sleep, you wake up, and you do it all over again.”The hustle only intensifies as mid-February approaches, but it also creates a sense of focus at the station since everyone is working under the same hard deadline. It’s also why the work is planned months ahead, before the group even leaves Cambridge.,The work is exacting. The telescopes are a complicated mix of electronics, optics, control systems, motors, and detectors inside a large cylinder placed on a moveable mount inside the observatory. The detectors in the telescopes must be kept at about a quarter of a degree above absolute zero, and they require a vacuum chamber that uses a cryogenic system to keep them super-cooled.With work that precise, things often go wrong. Parts sometimes don’t fit, or don’t work. Sometimes the scientists need equipment that’s back in Cambridge or in the labs of one of the institutions the Kovac CMB Group collaborates with, which include the California Institute of Technology, Stanford University, and University of Minnesota. When this happens, the team has to improvise with what’s on hand, often visiting the “graveyard” for spare parts and welding them pieces to force a fit. Other times they find a tool or material — even dental floss — that can be an effective substitute for whatever they need.It all begs the question of why the telescopes are there in the first place.The answer is as big as the Big Bang.The extremely dry environment at the South Pole limits contamination to the data collected by the telescopes, as water molecules absorb microwave energy. In addition, the site provides unobstructed views of a particular patch of space, since the sky above the Pole never sets, it only rotates.Together, these factors make the South Pole the ideal place to look for the tiny signals from primordial gravitational waves that were generated during inflation, fractions of a second after the universe began.,The winterAfter the last plane takes off, it leaves behind a skeleton crew of about 50 people.“You’re left there and you’re it. You’re the person to run it,” said Barkats, who wintered at the Pole from the end of 2005 to 2006, spending a total of 12 consecutive months there. “Your job is to avoid downtime.”Sometimes that’s easy.“These are really complicated instruments with a lot of moving parts and different subsystems, so things are always needing help, whether that’s servers running out of space or helium pressure needing to be topped off,” Harrison said. “It’s just like a car — things break down when they’re being used.”Harrison over-wintered in 2015, spending almost a year on the ice. It was the first time the BICEP3 telescope was deployed, so he kept busy trying to get it to work as designed.“I effectively lived alone out in the [Dark Sector] lab working all day, every day for nine months,” he said. “Depending on the state of the telescope I would often need to stay out there for multiple days.”,At other times, Harrison and Barkats said they got into a rhythm: communicating with friends and family at home when they could, planning the next week’s goal with colleagues back in Cambridge, taking walks, and participating in game nights with other winter-overs.Although Amundsen-Scott Station is completely self-sufficient, even growing its own vegetables in the greenhouse, the Pole’s true isolation hits in winter. If something were to happen, the crew is on their own; rescue is almost impossible because of the cold, the darkness, and the gale force that can come at any time. Yet there have been only three winter evacuations since the station was established. In 1999, a doctor who discovered she had breast cancer treated herself for almost six months, performing her own biopsy and administering her own chemotherapy until a rescue plane was cleared for takeoff.None of it is enough to keep people from the outdoors, which fills with stars and colors easy to get lost in after the sun goes down.,“Sunset at the South Pole is something that very few people have ever experienced,” said Harrison. “It is more of a process than a moment.” It happens over a matter of weeks, starting near the end of February and going to the end of March. Over that time, the sun gradually moves closer and closer to the horizon, skimming the edge and becoming distorted as the light bends through the atmosphere before it disappears.What’s left isn’t darkness. Small streaks of purple sliver out from the opposite horizon and slowly take over the entire sky. When that’s gone, stars come out in droves. “Incredible,” Harrison said. “Horizon to horizon, no light pollution, so clear that you can see individual gas clouds in the central regions of the galaxy with the naked eye.”Then come the auroras, which most often appear as swaying curtains of green light moving across the deep night sky. They can also be red, purple, or white.“They are mesmerizing rivers in the sky,” said Barkats. “They move and dance and bounce and change, sometimes slowly, sometimes fast. Sometimes I would walk from the station to the telescope, a 25-minute walk fully geared up, with my hood and goggles giving me this tunnel vision, when suddenly I would wonder why the snow was glowing green. How odd. Then I’d lift my head up and would see a firework of light and color in the sky. Although I’m a physicist and I fully understand the phenomena causing auroras, I still had shivers and felt a sense of awe and wonder.”Sunrise, Harrison and Barkats said, is a perfect reversal of sunset, and it signals they are soon to leave their adopted home.“By this point you have been in isolation for over seven months and there is tremendous anticipation,” Harrison said. “It’s like being an adult, but being born again. You discover all of the wonders of life that you’ve forgotten.” — Denis Barkats, on returning home Oceans away New NASA-funded program to study water worlds, environments to understand limits of life as part of the search for life on other planets The Daily Gazette Sign up for daily emails to get the latest Harvard news.last_img read more

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Likins describes role in investigation

first_imgWhen the University completes its investigation into the death of junior Declan Sullivan, it will turn over its findings to Peter Likins, who will conduct an independent review. Likins, 74, is the former president of Lehigh University and the University of Arizona and has a doctorate in engineering mechanics. He told The Observer his experience with tragedy while serving as a university president and his background in engineering prepared him for his role in the investigation. “I think my background as an engineer helps me look at the facts in situations like this,” he said. “[Engineers] want to know exactly what happened … That’s the way we’re disciplined.” Sullivan, a videographer for the football team, died on Oct. 27 after the hydraulic scissor lift from which he was filming football practice fell. Likins also dealt with tragedies during his 24 years as a university president. In 1986, Likins was the president of Lehigh when a female student, Jeanne Clery, was murdered in her dorm room. A federal law mandating that every university report the occurrences of crime on and near its campus was later named after Clery. He was also president of the University of Arizona when a student shot three professors to death in a classroom in 2002. “Those are two very dramatic examples, kind of book ends, 1986 and 2002, and a lot in between,” he said. “Because I have that kind of trauma in my own presidential experience, that helps me understand all the dimensions of what is going on now at Notre Dame.” Likins is not being paid to review the University’s findings. “[University President Fr. John Jenkins] called me and asked if I would help him, and as a fellow president I’m pleased to do that as best I can,” he said. Likins clarified that he does not have a team to assist him and is not conducting the investigation. Rather, he will assess the internal investigation conducted by the University. “I’m not going to conduct a parallel review,” he said. “If I have to say to them, ‘Gee, you ought to calculate blank, blank, blank,’ they will calculate [it].” While waiting for the University to complete its investigation, Likins remains in Tucson, Ariz., and stays updated through weekly communication with Jenkins. “I speak to the president roughly once a week just to serve in whatever role he seeks from me,” Likins said. That role sometimes includes answering questions, but Likins said he mainly serves as a sounding board for Jenkins. “That is one of the things that a president needs in a crisis such as this, is someone who understands the depth of his pain,” he said. “Someone he can talk to — not in a matter of reviewing the facts, that’s not the role that I play in my conversations with the president — but just hearing his account of what this experience has meant to him and to Notre Dame.” Likins said it is not clear if he will review the University’s findings before or after they are released to the public. “That has not been explicit in our conversations, but what is clear is they are trying to keep me informed and they have given me anything I asked for,” he said, but added, “None of it is to draw judgment. It’s too soon for that.” Although the University has not explicitly asked him to come to campus, Likins said he expects to come to South Bend at some point to respond to questions regarding his review of the investigation. “If [Jenkins] is going to put forth in an open and transparent way a review of this tragedy, part of that seems to me is to put me in the arena also so people can ask me questions,” he said. Likins said he had no previous affiliation with Notre Dame and has never visited the University. University spokesman Dennis Brown said University officials suggested several individuals as candidates to conduct an outside review of the investigation, including Likins. “As a highly regarded university administrator, engineer and leader in college sports, he has ideal credentials for this assignment,” Brown said. “We very much appreciate him accepting our request to take it on.” Likins was a member of the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics from 2004 until his retirement and served the NCAA as a member of the Presidents’ Commission. He later served as a member of the Executive Committee and chaired a presidential task force on the future of intercollegiate athletics, according to a press release. He earned his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Stanford University and his master’s degree in civil engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He also received a doctorate in engineering mechanics from Stanford.last_img read more

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