19 June 2008Volkswagen South Africa, along with catalytic converter and exhaust systems manufacturer Eberspacher SA, have been awarded a R12-billion contract to supply the Volkswagen Group with diesel particulate filters for the next five years.“It is a coup for the South African automotive component manufacturing industry,” Volkswagen SA managing director David Powels said in a statement this week, adding that the deal was one of the biggest export contracts for a single part ever awarded to the company.A diesel particulate filter is a device designed to remove diesel particulate matter or soot from the exhaust gas of a diesel engine. The component forms part of the latest common rail engines manufactured by the Volkswagen Group.Volkswagen SA and Eberspacher SA, who will share the production volume, are to invest approximately R55-million in tooling and equipment to manufacture the parts. In addition, the investment in the national supplier base – 80% of whom are based within the Nelson Mandela Bay region (greater Port Elizabeth) – will be approximately R26-million.The new contract will secure more than 100 jobs in the region, with intensive training of operators and quality personnel to ensure that strict international standards on diesel particulate filters are met.The training will include processes involved, particulate filter handling and inspection criteria, quality requirements, important part characteristics, world-class manufacturing, tool change skills, effective problem solving and team work.“The skills transfer opportunities from this contract are significant,” Powels pointed out.At the forefrontAccording to the statement, Volkswagen SA and Eberspacher SA are at the forefront of diesel particulate filter manufacture, having secured access to the most modern manufacturing method, known as calibrated stuffing, which encompasses new laser measuring and sizing technologies.“This is the benchmark in the Volkswagen Group and will benefit the South African catalytic converter industry as a whole,” said Powels, adding that production would commence in November this year.The parts will be shipped to the Volkswagen Group’s Kassel plant in Germany, where they will be completed and sent to various user plants in the group’s global network.“The decision to award the contract to Volkswagen SA proves emphatically that South Africa can be globally competitive in terms of pricing and technology, even when measured against the best global players in the diesel particulate filter industry,” said Volkswagen SA purchasing division head Karlheinz Hell.Benchmark for the futureEberspacher SA managing director Henry Eksteen said the project was unique in its approach of co-operation and utilisation of manufacturing capabilities of two companies.“This type of parallel project, we believe, will become the benchmark for the future, where an original equipment manufacturer can join forces with a specific technology partner to optimise processes and, thereby, be able to gain access to global business for their region and country,” he said.Eksteen added that the diesel particulate filter technology was a rapidly advancing field of expertise, and with global emissions standards becoming more stringent, the company would strive to remain a provider of innovative exhaust gas treatment solutions through their global research and development teams.“We are very proud to be involved in this joint program with Volkswagen SA and look forward to further enhancing our presence with global platforms such as this one,” he said.SAinfo reporter Would you like to use this article in your publicationor on your website?See: Using SAinfo material
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Two conferences designed for small-farm owners will be held in Wilmington and Massillon, Ohio in March. Ohio State University Extension’s Small Farm Program is hosting the Opening Doors to Success and Living Your Small Farm Dream conferences to help small-farm owners get the maximum potential out of their businesses.“Across Ohio, there is an increasing number of residents who are purchasing small acreages,” said Tony Nye, an OSU Extension educator who coordinates the Small Farm Program. “Conferences such as these help provide landowners necessary information to help grow their small farm business.”The two conferences, each with a trade show, are designed to help participants learn tips, techniques and methods for diversifying their operations to improve economic growth and development on their farms, Nye said.Researchers and educators with OSU Extension and the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, as well as industry experts, will conduct the conference sessions.The Opening Doors to Success conference is March 10-11 at Wilmington College, 1870 Quaker Way in Wilmington. The March 10 session is from 1-5:30 p.m. with a workshop on Poultry Production, held at the Wilmington College Academic Farm, 1590 Fife Ave., in Wilmington; and a workshop on Beekeeping for the Beginner, held at the Wilmington College Kelly Center on College Street in Wilmington.The March 11 session is from 7:45 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. at the Center for Science and Agriculture, 340 College Street, in Wilmington. Topics for the day will include applying chemicals, greenhouse production, livestock, field crops, finances, and farm and land access.Registration for the Opening Doors to Success conference is $20 for Friday, $60 for Saturday only, or $70 for Friday and Saturday. Register at go.osu.edu/BpkQ by March 3. Students are offered a discounted rate.The Living the Small Farm Dream conference is March 25 at the R.G. Drage Career Technical Center, 2800 Richville Drive Southwest, in Massillon, from 8 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. The event will include 27 workshop sessions on topics including disease prevention, aquaculture, land management, finances, solar energy, pond management and using urban land for garden markets.Registration for the Living the Small Farm Dream conference is $60, or $30 for students. Register at agnr.osu.edu/small-farm-programs by March 17.For more information about either conference, contact Nye at 937-382-0901 or email@example.com.The conferences are an outgrowth of the Ohio New and Small Farm College, an eight-week program created by OSU Extension that offers an introduction to the business of small farming for those who are new to the industry. The program offers information on budgeting, business planning and developing a farm structure, among other issues.Additionally, on March 24 from 9 a.m. to 3:45 p.m., also at the R.G. Drage center, a Women in Agriculture conference will take place. Participants can register for this and the Living the Small Farm Dream conference at a reduced rate if attending both. For more information, visit regonline.com/womeninageast. The registration deadline for the Women in Agriculture Conference is March 10.
Bryan Roth: Co-Founder of GroundspeakBy Bryan Roth,We hear your concerns, and thank you for your feedback. Now we are asking you to give Challenges a chance. You don’t necessarily have to participate, but give us some time to improve the feature set. Here’s why.For many years, the geocaching community has been clamoring for the return of Virtual geocaches. There were a lot of issues with the implementation of Virtuals that prevented us from bringing them back in their original form. When we set out to find a way to bring Virtuals back that would appeal to the community, we determined that the basic idea behind Virtual Caches was “go somewhere, do something.”This is what Geocaching Challenges are all about. Over 99% of Challenges will be location-based Challenges created by the community. You might be Challenged to take a picture of yourself walking across the Abbey Road crosswalk or tasked to take a picture from the top of the Empire State Building. These are fun, outdoor adventures that can happen even in locations that do not support physical caches.If a Challenge is not specifically location-based, or does not require a photo (for a photo Challenge) or an action (for an Action Challenge), please flag it or vote it down. When flagging, think of yourself as a reviewer. You wouldn’t deny a cache just because it sounds boring (though, in this case, you could vote it down), but you would deny it if it were inappropriate or did not meet the guidelines. We think the instances of locationless Challenges being submitted by the community will decrease as people come to better understand what Challenges are. We are working now to improve the educational materials within the Challenges section of Geocaching.com so that it is clear what is acceptable for a Challenge and what is not.Worldwide Challenges are the one exception to the location-based rule. These are Challenges created by Groundspeak that are meant to bring the community together by letting us all experience the same adventure. If everyone participated, we could have well over five million geocachers hiking their local trails one day or biking to work the next day. We will generally be creating one Worldwide Challenge per day, although we may add a few in the early days to get everyone started. These will almost always be outdoor adventures. We started with one that was not necessarily an outdoors Challenge (Kiss a Frog) because we thought it would be fun. But, we realize that such a Challenge is not in keeping with our mission of getting you outside. So, we have archived the Challenge effective today. We will soon be adding functionality to allow you to remove ‘Acceptance’ and ‘Completion’ logs you’ve entered, if you choose to do so.If you think an individual Challenge is bad, you are welcome to vote it down. All users have the ability to sort by the highest rated Challenges (simply click on the column header ‘Rating’ in the search results), so voting a Challenge down will send it further down the list.We will be updating the mobile applications, adding functionality to the API so that other developers can incorporate Challenges into their applications and services, and working to improve the website functionality on an ongoing basis. In the interim, we ask that you to allow us some time to innovate.We believe that, if people use the Challenges system as it was meant to be used and populate it with Challenges they think others would enjoy, Challenges will add more to geocaching than Virtuals ever did. Share with your Friends:More SharePrint RelatedIntroducing Virtual Rewards!August 24, 2017In “Community”Inside Geocaching HQ Transcript (Episode 24) Virtual Rewards 2.0May 15, 2019In “Podcast”Introducing Virtual Rewards 2.0!May 14, 2019In “News”
Little public debateDayna Baird Payne, a lobbyist representing both the American Wind Energy Association and Iberdrola, said, legislators didn’t discuss the new setback requirements with either the wind industry or the Ohio Power Siting Board.The Ohio Senate, the report adds, spent about 10 minutes discussing the changes before approving the bill at the end of May.State Senator Mike Skindell pointed out that oil or gas wells needed only a 100- or 200-foot setback from nearby houses. “I’m dumfounded,” he said.But State Sen. Bill Seitz said turbines are noisy, and that Ohio was still “very friendly” to wind farms despite the tighter rules.In a press release, Wind Energy Association CEO Tom Kiernan said the governor had “walked away from his commitment to renewable energy,” and had succeeded in creating an unfriendly business environment in the state. He said the move would force clean energy developers to move to neighboring states.According to the Wind Energy Association, Ohio currently has 432 MW of installed wind capacity, ranking it 26th in the country. There are 32 wind projects online with a total of 246 turbines. Less than 1% of the state’s electricity is generated by wind. Just a few weeks after rolling back renewable energy standards, Ohio lawmakers have approved a bill increasing required setbacks for wind turbines.New commercial wind farms will now have to meet a setback of 1,125 feet from the tip of a turbine’s blades to the nearest property line, Midwest Energy News reported. Previously, the Ohio Power siting Board had measured the setback to the outer wall of the nearest occupied house. Otherwise, the property line setbacks were about 550 feet, the report said.The change isn’t sitting well with wind farm developers.Eric Thumma, director of policy and regulatory affairs for Iberdrola Renewables, the U.S. arm of the Spanish energy conglomerate, said the law would probably scuttle two projects that have not yet received permits. One of them, he said, would see a drop in the number of turbines from 50 to seven; and the other from 75 to three.Iberdrola has roughly 10 projects under permit but not yet constructed. Those will be allowed to proceed, providing no permit amendments are required, Midwest Energy News said.In effect, Thumma said, the legislation “basically zones new wind projects out of Ohio.”
Eleven personnel of the CRPF and the State police were injured in an IED blast triggered by Naxals in Jharkhand’s Seraikela Kharsawan district in the early hours of Tuesday, officials said.The blast took place around 5 a.m. when a joint team of the CRPF’s special jungle warfare unit, Commando Battalion for Resolute Action (CoBRA), and the State police was carrying out an operation in the forests of Kuchai area in the district, they said.According to officials, the improvised explosive device (IED) is suspected to have been buried under the dirt track. The injured troops, eight of the CoBRA and rest belonging to the State police, have been airlifted to Ranchi, they said.The joint team was being led by the 209th battalion of the CoBRA of the CRPF deployed in the State for anti-Naxal operations, officials said.