Indian Railways Want to Use Drones for Crowd Control

The Indian Government just concluded a trial phase of implementing drones as a tool for crowd control, infrastructural assessment, and more.

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India is one of the most populous countries in the world, second only to China, and is, therefore, more drawn toward crowd-management solutions in public places than most other nations. According to a governmental press release, Indian Railways, the country’s primary state-owned national railroad system, completed a trial last week in which camera-drones were deployed in three prioritized railroad areas across the country. The statement makes it clear the government is eager to test the potential efficacy of standardizing the implementation of unmanned aerial vehicles across the country’s railroad stations, particularly during festival seasons.

The government’s Press Information Bureau issued a statement on Monday, regarding its Ministry of Railways and these prospective new camera-drone implementations. The end-goal here is “to enhance safety and efficiency in train operations,” and that “it will help in various activities especially project monitoring and maintenance of tracks and other railway infrastructure.” In other words, the government has noticed how aerial monitoring via drone could boost the amount of functional data streamed to railroad-monitoring hubs, which would in turn help assess how one could do better at managing and regulating not only crowds, but the infrastructure itself.

The release makes it clear that the country’s festival seasons are a definite motivating factor in implementing these drones. Every year, millions of citizens migrate throughout the country using railroad infrastructure, and amassing useful data as to how to optimize this activity is certainly a rational and affordable response when considering drones as the tool to do so. After the comments on how camera-drones could help prevent the interlocking of trains, conflicting movements on tracks like junctions and crossings, it points toward the increase of passengers at certain points of the year.

The press release claims that this drone implementation “shall also be used to assess preparedness of Non-Interlocking (NI) works, crowd management during fairs and melas, to identify scrap and also for aerial survey of station yards.” It’s clear, here, that the government has noticed just how beneficial a tool the camera-equipped UAV can be. “It is going to be instrumental in providing real time inputs related to safety and maintenance of tracks and other railway infrastructure,” the statement adds.

West Central Railways was the first to utilize UAVs for such purposes. The three test-site divisions of the camera drones are located in Jabalpur, Bhopal, and Kota. The statement mentions plans to expand drone use to more lines and division, as well as “Important Bridge inspections and Monsoon [sic] preparedness.” It seems clear that this particular infrastructure in India could greatly benefit from deploying camera-drones throughout its most visited and busiest railroad spots. By collecting as much data as possible with, tech that is extraordinarily affordable these days, the list of possible solutions and approaches will grow, too.

 

 

Source: The Drive

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Global Water Purifier Market 2017 : Dynamics, Scope, Competition, Analysis, Value

The competitive framework study Global Water Purifier Market is an in-depth study that covers all the aspects of the industry. The research report delivers key insights verified by key industry participants. These include market-leading participants, key clients and consumers, and product types and applications.

As per the world economic growth, the Water Purifier market size is estimated from 8310 million $ in 2013 to 10550 million $ in 2016 .The Water Purifier Market is expected to exceed more than US$ 13140 million by 2021 at a CAGR of 8.28% in the given forecast period.

This Water Purifier Market report provides:
1) An overview of the global market for Global Water Purifier Market and related technologies.
2) Analyses of global market trends, with data from 2013, estimates for 2014 and 2016, and projections of CAGR through 2021.
3) Forecast horizon for geographical segments (regions) as well as sub-areas will expand at the most elevated rate.
4) Primary strategies for development, and the demand for new products and new applications.
5) Pricing Strategy, Brand Strategy, Target Clients.
6) Competitive landscaping of major market players.

 

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Singapore’s Economy Grows Faster Than Estimated

  • Growth was 3.5% in 2017, fastest pace in three years
  • Budget changes, monetary policy could test economy this year

Singapore’s economy finished 2017 on a solid footing, allowing more room for policy makers as they consider raising taxes and tightening monetary policy this year.

Growth was faster than economists predicted last quarter, resulting in the strongest full-year expansion in three years, according to preliminary figures released on Tuesday. The data also confirmed the recovery is broadening out, with services industries, such as finance and transport, among the main drivers of growth in the fourth quarter.

The solid data are giving credence to economist forecasts for higher taxes when the government releases its budget on Feb. 19, with one option being an increase in the goods and services tax. The Monetary Authority of Singapore may also shift to a tightening stance after opening the door to a possible move in its October policy meeting.

“Probably at some stage this year MAS will take the foot off the accelerator and shift from neutral to probably a more hawkish setting,” said Selena Ling, head of treasury research and strategy at Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp. in Singapore.

This year should be “a little bit more benign for growth but possibly more choppy for financial markets” given the potential domestic and global policy changes, including leadership transitions at major central banks, Ling said.

Singapore, among Asia’s most export-reliant economies, has benefited from a global trade recovery that’s boosted demand for its electronics goods. The government and the central bank forecast GDP growth of 1.5 to 3.5 percent this year.

A stabilizing labor market and recharged property market is setting up a “much more stable environment” in 2018, said Edward Lee, chief economist for Southeast Asia at Standard Chartered Plc in Singapore.

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The services sector, which accounts for about two-thirds of economy, grew 7.5 percent in the fourth quarter from the prior three months, while manufacturing contracted 11.5 percent and construction fell 3.6 percent.

“We hope to see continued improvement in services growth momentum,” said Irvin Seah, an economist at DBS Group Holdings Ltd., Singapore’s biggest lender. He expects some moderation this year with growth coming in at 3 percent.

OCBC economists see growth at the upper end of a 2-to-4 percent range in 2018, given that gains have begun broadening out. The labor market, which showed softness in the first half of last year, will also be a swing factor for growth, said Ling.

 

Source: Bloomberg

HMF invests to boost production capacity

Danish family-owned crane manufacturer HMF has invested heavily in automated production processes to meet increasing international demand.

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The company has invested in a brand-new production line for knucklebooms, where the optimized flow ensures that knucklebooms are ready-manufactured in one single workflow, before sending them directly into the fully automatic paint facility.

In connection with the new production line, HMF is also implementing a brand-new welding robot that uses leading technology with adaptive welding and a fully automatic conveyor system. A new drilling centre capable of handling very big items has also been added to the new production line for knuckle booms.

“In general, HMF experiences an increasing demand especially for larger cranes. Thereby the need for more jib extensions increases correspondingly as does the need for hydraulic pipes,” said HMF.

In response to this demand, the company has ordered a new fully automatic pipe bending machine for hydraulic pipes, which is to ensure the necessary capacity and delivery time. At the same time, the test capacity for large range cranes has been increased by 50%.

Concurrently with the increasing order intake, the number of employees has now exceeded 550 and in March HMF started using two newly refurbished office buildings. This made room among others for an extension of the R&D capacity with more than 25%.

The manufacturer is introducing a welding robot at the HMF Welding Academy as well, where the purpose is to train young metalworkers as well as upskilling their existing employees. Here HMF has also invested in analysis equipment for securing the quality of the weld seams.

“At the same time as we are investing heavily in new processes, facilities and staff, it goes without saying that we also optimize where we can. For example, we have gone through our entire range of sub-suppliers, and among others we have changed from yellow chromate to zinc-nickel treatment on sub-components to further enhance quality, just as we ensure capacity with our sub-suppliers – among others by Northern Europe’s most modern laser cutter,” said CEO Brian Stage.

 

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Source: Cranes Today Magazine

China Tests Country’s First Photovoltaic Highway – Reports

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China successfully tested its first photovoltaic highway, based on home-grown technology, in the country’s eastern Shandong province on Thursday, China Central Television (CCTV) said in a video report posted on its official social media account.

The 1-kilometer (0.62-mile) segment of solar-powered highway covers a surface area of 5,875 square meters (about 63,238 square feet), with three layers including translucent concrete on the top, photovoltaic panels in the middle, and insulation on the bottom, the broadcaster specified.

A mini-bus traveled at the speed of 100 kilometers (62 miles) per hour over the tested road, with the driver praising the braking distance of the new surface as almost identical to that of a traditional asphalt surface, according to the CCTV report.

 

The photovoltaic panel underneath the surface is capable of generating electricity and has the potential to charge pure electric vehicles (EVs) during transit in the future, when compatible charging technology is developed, Zhang Hongchao, a project designer and transportation engineering expert at China’s Tongji University, told the broadcaster.

The tested segment of highway has a peak power generating capacity of 817.2 kilowatts and is expected to generate 1 million kilowatt hours of electricity each year. The electricity generated will be connected to China’s national power grid.

France introduced the world’s first photovoltaic road fitted with solar panels in late 2016. CCTV stressed that the power-generating road tested on Thursday was developed based solely on home-grown technology.

Source: Sputnik International

US ECONOMY GREW AT SOLID 3.2 PERCENT RATE IN THIRD QUARTER

The U.S. economy grew at a solid 3.2 percent annual rate from July through September, slightly slower than previously estimated but still enough to give the country the best back-to-back quarterly growth rates in three years.

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The U.S. economy grew at a solid 3.2 percent annual rate from July through September, slightly slower than previously estimated but still enough to give the country the best back-to-back quarterly growth rates in three years.

The figure was revised down from last month’s estimate of 3.3 percent, the Commerce Department reported Thursday. The change reflected a bit less spending by consumers, which was offset somewhat by increased spending by state and local governments.

Still, the 3.2 percent growth followed a 3.1 percent gain in the second quarter, the first consecutive quarters that growth has topped 3 percent since 2014.

President Donald Trump has pointed to these gains as evidence his economic program is producing results. Many economists believe GDP growth this quarter could hit 3 percent or better.

Congress this week passed a major tax overhaul, giving Trump the biggest legislative achievement of his first year in office. Economists believe the proposal will boost growth temporarily in 2018 and possibly 2019. But then they forecast that the positive effects will fade, with slower growth going forward due to higher interest rates stemming from the bigger government deficits.

But at the moment, economists are optimistic about growth prospects. The Federal Reserve’s Atlanta regional bank is forecasting GDP growth could hit 3.3 percent this quarter. If GDP does top 3 percent, it would mark the first time that has occurred since three quarters in late 2004 and early 2005.

Trump has predicted the tax cuts will be “rocket fuel” for the economy and many economists are looking for a growth spurt next year.

“The economy is rock solid for now and with fiscal stimulus kicking in next month, the economy’s afterburners could put this economy’s rocketing growth rate into even higher orbit,” Chris Rupkey, chief financial analyst at MUFG Union Bank in New York, said in reaction to the new GDP report.

For all of 2017, the economy is expected to grow around 2.3 percent, a marked improvement from the slight 1.5 percent gain in GDP in 2016. For 2018, economists believe growth will be even better, helped by the boost from the Republican tax cuts and a stronger global economy.

Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics, is forecasting growth of 2.9 percent for 2018, reflecting tax cuts that he predicts will add 0.4 percentage point to GDP next year. He expects the tax cuts to add 0.2 percentage point to growth in 2019. But even with that boost, he sees GDP slowing to a 2.2 percent rate in 2019 before slowing to 1 percent growth in 2020 as the higher interest rates drag on growth.

This forecast is in line with other analysts who see only a temporary gain from the tax cuts. They are at odds with forecasts of the Trump administration that the tax cuts will spur significant momentum that will lift the economy to sustained annual GDP gains of 3 percent or better.

The report on third quarter growth was the government’s third and final look at the quarter. The economy showed resilience last quarter in the face of two hurricanes: Harvey, which hit Texas in late August, and Irma, which battered Florida in September.

The U.S. economy is benefiting from a pickup in global growth, a healthy job market, which supports consumer spending, and a drop in the value of the dollar against other major currencies, which makes U.S. products less expensive in foreign markets.

What you need to know:

  • Business investment in equipment shot up at a 10.8 percent rate, the best showing since the third quarter of 2014.
  • Consumer spending, which accounts for about 70 percent of U.S. economic output, grew at an annual pace of 2.2 percent, a slight 0.1 percentage point less than last month’s estimate.
  • Government spending and investment rose for the first time in three quarters, with spending by state and local governments revised to a small positive from a slight negative in the previous report.
  • Housing construction fell for a second quarter, but the drop was not as severe as previously reported.
  • The 1.5 percent annual GDP gain last year was the weakest performance in six years, since the economy contracted by 2.9 percent in 2009.
  • GDP growth has averaged around 2 percent in the current recovery, which is now in its ninth year and is the third longest in U.S. history.

 

Source: wlfi.com

FSG Series Double-Column Fixed Beam Grinder: Align with the Expert for Maximum Productivity

EASY TO SET-UP, PROGRAM AND OPERATE; EXCEEDS THE MOST RIGOROUS DEMANDS

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FSG-4080DC series double-column fixed beam grinder

Chevalier customers in a wide range of industries like what they see in the FSG-4080DC series double-column fixed beam grinders. They say the grinders are easy to set-up, program and operate and exceed the most rigorous demands for rigidity, accuracy and speed. All while providing an enormous grinding area.

“With the options in the market within our target group of machines, the Chevalier FSG series stood out as the choice product,” said Brian Young, general manager of Erie Precision Grinding in Pennsylvania. “It provides an easy to use interface, full CNC control system, total workpiece capacity and the rigidity and accuracy of the dual column design.” Young said his high expectations for the FSG Series has been meet.

“Now that we have completed a number of workpieces, I am truly impressed by its performance,” he added. “By meeting my expectations, it has exceeded what I thought was possible over such a large platform.  The operator interface, intuitive programming and speed are all working together to provide an exceptional piece of equipment capable of servicing our customers effectively and efficiently.

The user-friendly conversational programming features:

  • Smart-III CNC PC based control and Microsoft Win CE platform
  • Patented designed table stroke can be adjusted from screen
  • Conversational graphic program for grinding and dressing
  • Standard can cycles: step surface, slice and crisscross cycles
  • Switch between manual, semi-automatic, fully automatic or CNC
  • Automatic wheel dressing can be done while machining or at the end of a cycle
  • Simplified data transfer using Ethernet/intranet data saving and transfer, USB port and CF card port

For more information, contact: Chevalier Machinery Inc.

 

Source: MMSOnline

Christmas shopping is changing – but retailers must accept that pop-up stores are here to stay

At Christmas time, vacant shop spaces suddenly fill with new vendors selling decorations, small toys, gifts and calendars for the following year. Christmas markets seem to materialise out of thin air, and even online retailers set up shop on the high street. By the new year, these will all vanish without a trace. Yet for businesses, the pop-up store phenomenon is more than just a phase.

Pop-up retailing is a simple concept – it’s a retail store that exists for a limited period, measured in weeks, days, sometimes mere hours. They can take any form, from shops, bars and restaurants to cinemas and galleries. And they’re often used as part of strategies to promote brands and launch new products.

The origins of pop-up stores can be traced back to the periodic markets of the Middle Ages, and the salesmen who travelled from place to place, selling their wares. Indeed, since the first German Christmas markets appeared in the 14th century, sellers have used pop-up stores to meet seasonal demands, in cases where having a permanent premises may not make financial sense.

A new tradition

The main attraction of pop-up stores is their flexibility, which is become increasingly important in the rapidly changing world of retail. Businesses are under mounting pressure to evolve, to keep pace with changing customer expectations and behaviour.

As established high-street vendors are overtaken by online-only retailers in terms of market value, many find themselves with excess store space: one estimate says there are 50,000 surplus stores accross the UK.

These spaces present opportunities for pop-up shops, where different retailers can appear unexpectedly, create a buzz and disappear before people have a chance to get bored.

Maximum flexibility

The pop-up enables business to be more flexible in terms of location, financing and strategy. Being able to set up in different places allows retailers to take advantage of the growing amounts of vacant space in many shopping malls and town centres.

Short-term use of this space can benefit property owners by bringing in some rent, while providing opportunities for retailers – especially new business owners seeking to test out their business models.

Pop-up stores also allow retailers to go where their customers are; for example, by capitalising on gatherings of potential customers at events and festivals. Retailers can become “nomadic”, setting up stall in specially-designed marquees, repurposed shipping containers, and even inside other shops.

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The financial flexibility of pop-up stores mean that they can be a low-cost alternative for start-ups which want to test a business concept, without the commitment or expense of leasing a permanent premises. The high cost of commercial rent in major cities has also encouraged the emergence of the so-called “shop share”. Here, small retailers can rent a rail, table, shelf or stand in a more established shop.

Such initiatives have encouraged greater collaboration among retailers, and helped small and independent business to boost their brand. Successful business concepts can then develop from pop-up to stay-up. In this way, pop-up stores can offer strategic flexibility.

Online, in person

Well-established businesses can also benefit, using pop-up stores less as a means of driving sales, and more as a way to promote their brand, market new products, and connect face-to-face with the general public. This goes for online retailers too: eBay, for instance, established a pop-up shop in central London over Christmas, featuring their 200 best-selling items.

This gives online-only stores a chance to have more direct interaction with – and feedback from – consumers, as well as providing opportunities to link the brand to specific cultural, fashion or sporting events.

In the retail industry, the boundaries between pop-up and more traditional retailing are blurring. At Christmas time, retailers will take every opportunity to increase sales during this peak trading period – including through pop-up stores. While these snow-festooned stores may be gone come the new year, it seems that for retailers, the pop-up is for life – not just for Christmas.

 

Source: The Conversation

Roots sales climb 13 per cent

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Retailer Roots Corp. says sales were up 13 per cent in its latest quarter compared with a year ago as it released its first quarterly report since completing its initial public offering.

Sales totalled $89.7-million for what was the company’s third quarter, up from $79.4-million in the same quarter last year.

The increase was driven by comparable sales growth of 10.1 per cent and the opening of four net new corporate stores compared with a year ago.

Roots shares were up about 5 per cent at the start of trading in Toronto.

The retailer earned $5-million or 12 cents per share for the 13 weeks ended Oct. 28 compared with a profit of $5.9-million or 14 cents per share in the same period last year.

The drop came as selling, general and administrative expenses increased to $40.8-million compared with $32.3-million a year ago, boosted by costs to support higher sales, investments in the business and costs related to the initial public offering.

On an adjusted basis, Roots says it earned $9.5-million or 23 cents per share, up from $7.6-million or 18 cents per share a year ago. Analysts had expected a profit of 17 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters.

 

Source: The Globe and Mail

Bitcoin Climbs to $12,000 as Futures Move Closer to Reality

Bitcoin surpassed $12,000 for the first time amid speculation that the widespread use of futures will help lead to digital currencies being viewed as a legitimate asset class for mainstream investors.

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The largest cryptocurrency by market value has soared from less than $1,000 at the start of the year as optimism climbs for the distributed ledger technology known as blockchain that is at the heart of bitcoin. The price surge has been accompanied by a growing chorus of warnings that the speculative frenzy is an asset bubble poised to burst.

Cboe Global Markets Inc. has said it will start trading bitcoin futures on Dec. 10, while CME Group Inc.’s contracts are set to debut on Dec. 18. Nasdaq Inc. is planning to offer futures in 2018, according to a person familiar with the matter. Cantor Fitzgerald LP’s Cantor Exchange is creating a bitcoin derivative, and startup LedgerX already offers options.

 

Source: Bloomberg