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Chidambaram case being handled in a depressing manner, says Mamata

first_imgWest Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday said that a legal matter pertaining to former Union Finance Minister P. Chidambaram was being handled in a very sad and depressing manner. “Chidambaram is a senior politician, ex-Finance Minister and former Home Minister of this country. The way in which the matter is being handled is very depressing, sad and also bad,” she said. The CBI on Wednesday took Mr. Chidambaram into custody in connection with a case relating to INX Media.Referring to the different institutions in the country, including the judiciary, the Trinamool Congress chairperson said that democracy was in a shambles.“I will not comment on judiciary. But the media is completely sold out to the Bharatiya Janata Party. Whatever the BJP is saying, that is being propagated. The television channels have become panels of the BJP,” she said.Congress leader in the Lok Sabha Adhir Rajnan Chowdhury dubbed the arrest as an act of “political vendetta”. “His criticism has been sharp and direct to which the government had no answer and that is the reason why he has been arrested,” he said.last_img read more

9 Exciting Jobs with the Fastest Growing Pay

first_imgAttorneyYoY Growth: 3.4%Median Base Pay: $99,270Companies Hiring: Artemis Health, Geico, Keller Foundations, Farser Watson & Croutch, GLG, Ford Motor Company, Wix, Broadcast Music, SunTrust & more.Where Hiring: Atlanta, GA; Houston, TX; Pittsburg, PA; Nashville, TN; San Francisco, CA; Redwood, WA; Portsmouth, NH & more.See Open Jobs Financial AdvisorYoY Growth: 4.4%Median Base Pay: $54,906Companies Hiring: Edward Jones, Premiere Onboard, Morgan Stanley, Chase, Vanguard, Bank of America, AXA, Mutual of Omaha, Mercer Advisors, AIG & more.Where Hiring: Saint Louis, MO; Redding, GA; Los Angeles, CA; Boulder, CO; Chicago, IL; Raleigh, NC; Las Vegas, NV & more.See Open Jobs Medical TechnologistYoY Growth: 3.9%Median Base Pay: $54,582Companies Hiring: UPMC, Northwest Community Healthcare, Pinnacle Health, Texas Health, US Department of Veterans Affairs, Soliant Health, Sunbelt Staffing & more.Where Hiring: York, PA; Arlington Heights, IL; Durham, NC; Houston, TX; Boston, MA; Mustang, OK; Portland, OR; Bowie, MD & more.See Open Jobs Field EngineerYoY Growth: 3.0%Median Base Pay: $71,805Companies Hiring: Lockheed Martin, Keane Group, TechUSA, AECOM, Kelley Construction, PCL Construction, Raytheon, GE Healthcare & more.Where Hiring: Jackson, MS; McLean, VA; Columbia, MD; Dallas, TX; Osseo, MN; Houston, TX; Lexington, SC; Chicago, IL & more.See Open Jobs Looking for a new gig and not willing to take a pay cut? You’re in luck. There are a handful of jobs that boast solid median base pay as well as a strong track record of pay growth.Glassdoor’s Local Pay Reports show that there are now a wide variety of positions that have been seeing big increases in pay from year to year (and even month to month). Below are a few positions with rapidly growing salaries — apply to these hot jobs now to reap the full benefit!Delivery Driver YoY Growth: 5.4%Median Base Pay: $43,771Companies Hiring: Bridgetstone Americas, The Home Depot, CVS Health, UPS, Culligan, Zoe’s Kitchen, Sysco, Imperial Beverage, Domino’s, Uncommon, Abby’s Legendary Pizza, Amazon, Donatos & more.Where Hiring: Charlotte, NC; Atlanta, GA; Columbia, SC; San Francisco, CA; Glenwood Springs, CO; Arlington, TX; Mobile, AL; Seattle, WA; Hattiesburg, MS; Eugene, OR & more.See Open Jobs Network EngineerYoY Growth: 3.6%Median Base Pay: $71,103Companies Hiring: Apple, Microsoft, Paylocity, Airbnb, Epic Systems Corporation, Zillow Group, Eateam, CSRA, Leapfrog Services & more.Where Hiring: Santa Clara, CA; Redmond, WA; York, PA; Swepsonville, NC; Dayton, OH; Edison, NJ; Fort Braff, NC 7 more.See Open Jobs Bank TellerYoY Growth: 4.1%Median Base Pay: $29,398Companies Hiring: Tri Counties Bank, Vertex Community Bank, AllStaff, Wells Fargo, Chase, First International, EVB, Comerica, Workway & more.Where Hiring: Chandler, AZ; Manchester, MO; Killeen, TX; Three Rivers, MI; Boardman, OR; Austin, TX; Freemont, CA; Chicago, IL & more.See Open Jobs Web DeveloperYoY Growth: 3.2%Median Base Pay: $65,013Companies Hiring: Butterfly Network, ServiceTitan, Whataburger, Sonatype, GrubHub, Skyward, VitaminT, Asana, Amazon, TD Bank, Dropbox & more.Where Hiring: Boston, MA; Organe, CA; New York, NY; Dallas, TX; Herndon, VA; Salt Lake City, UT; Denver, Co; San Mateo,CA & more.See Open Jobs Truck DriverYoY Growth: 4.4%Median Base Pay: $53,932Companies Hiring: Herc Rentals, Sunoco, WESCO International, The Granite Group, Unilever, Safeway, Helena Chemical Company, Keystone Foods, ProDrivers & more.Where Hiring: Dayton, NJ; Memphis, TN; Fairmount, IL; Sacramento, CA; Richmond, VA; Sanford, FL; Post Falls, ID; Cincinnati, OH & more.See Open Jobslast_img read more

Southampton close to deal for Bury teen Will Ferry

first_imgBury’s highly-rated 15-year-old midfielder Will Ferry is on his way to Southampton.The Mirror says the teenager was snapped by the Shakers as a seven-year-old, working his way through the various youth sides at Gigg Lane.He made his Under-18 debut when he was part of the Under-15 squad and trained with the first-team last season, before making the bench against Charlton in February.Ferry is also a Republic of Ireland Under-18 international and will now link up with the successful Saints academy.last_img read more

Shortcut blog reading

first_imgI read a lot of blogs, and if it weren’t for Google Reader, it would be labor-intensive. But I also wanted to call your attention to two other time-savers, if you like reading blogs from our sector:1.) A blog roundup from the Chronicle of Philanthropy — Give and Take. It’s been around a few weeks now, and it provides a nice sampling from dozens of blogs. Check out the blogroll on the right of the page–I discovered some new blogs on there.2.) The Nonprofit Blog Exchange — news and links for nonprofit blogs, with a lot of good stuff on technology and nonprofits.last_img read more

Dreamforce Conclusion: Marketing in the Google Era

first_imgKatya’s note: My colleague Jono, who guest-starred here at the blog earlier this year when I was on a tropical island, is at Salesforce’s Dreamforce meeting out in San Fran. He’s sharing reports hot from the center of relationship management nirvana. Network for Good has been working with Salesforce.com to adapt its database tools to nonprofits. Here’s what he’s heard today. By Jono SmithOne of the highlights of Dreamforce’s Marketing Track was a session called Marketing in the Google Era. In the spirit of Robin Hood Marketing, here are 6 ways to apply these corporate marketing principles to your nonprofit.1.    Optimize Your Web Properties2.    Get Started With Search Marketing3.    Make Your Message Relevant4.    Define Your Goals5.    Measure Everything6.    Engage Your CommunityThat concludes my Dreamforce updates. You can visit the Salesforce Marketing Blog for more details on Dreamforce.last_img read more

The small business/nonprofit connection

first_imgA couple of months ago, Erick Brownstein of Ideablob.com wrote me with an interesting question: Are the challenges of how to start, run and develop small nonprofits different than those of the small business owner? He thinks not. Here’s what he said:Just as the vast majority of small businesses in the US are really ‘micro’ businesses with less than five employees, nearly 80% of the approximately 1.5 million US nonprofits have less than $100k in assets and/or revenues. Oftentimes, it’s one person running the show and these individuals are seeking support for issues ranging from health insurance to marketing to technology. Regarding what’s necessary for success, there are far more similarities than differences between the small nonprofit and the small business.Advanta Bank recently launched Ideablob.com, an online community where people from diverse industries with different interests can help each other grow and develop their ideas…with a $10,000 monthly prize for the idea that the community votes as the best.Originally conceived as a place for small business owners and entrepreneurs, the site has been attracting significant participation from small nonprofits. But what’s in it for them? Vying for the monthly prize offers a fun and engaging way to get feedback from supporters as well as other ideablob community members. In addition to the chance to win the money, these finalists (with Advanta’s support) have generated significant publicity for themselves. Several of the finalists have been nonprofits and last month’s second $10k ‘best idea’ winner was Marci Bossow Schankweiler, president and founder of Crossing the Finish Line (CFL), a PA-based small nonprofit that provides excursions for young adult cancer patients and their families. “If a company can do something that is good for its customers, that in turn is good for the company.” For Advanta, this is an experiment in the new landscape of social media where clearly defined business models aren’t yet established. For those who run small nonprofits and small businesses, Ideablob is an experiment in exploring the value of openly sharing new ideas with a wide range of people and their varied perspectives and an interesting tool for promotion and engagement.I think this is quite wise marketing on the part of Advanta, and I’m intrigued by what Erick says. When I was writing Robin Hood Marketing, I often turned for inspiration to marketing writers who catered to small businesses. Like Duct Tape Marketing. I think Erick is right that we — small business and nonprofits — have a lot to learn from each other. Here’s some evidence: someone posting an idea and the responses they got. And apparently nonprofits have some good ideas: 7 of 8 of this month’s finalists are nonprofits. Try it out.last_img read more

My Feet Are off the Ground

first_img ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Posted on April 4, 2011June 20, 2017By: Hellen Kotlolo, Young Champion of Maternal HealthClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)This blog post was contributed by Hellen Kotlolo, one of the fifteen Young Champions of Maternal Health chosen by Ashoka and the Maternal Health Task Force at EngenderHealth. She will be blogging about her experience every month, and you can learn more about her, the other Young Champions, and the program here.I was told a story by Tyler Perry, an African-American actor, director, and writer. He tells a story about a homeless woman who approaches him and as he was searching for a dime in his pockets to give her instead she asked for shoes. He was overcome by emotions and took the woman into the wardrobe studio and asked his wardrobe people to give her shoes her size. As she put the shoes on she started crying, praising God and thanking Jesus, and saying, ‘My feet are off the ground! My feet are off the ground!’ Everyone started crying and so was he. He went after the woman and asked her why she was homeless, she said she had AIDS and she was rejected by her family waiting to get into a shelter. He took her into a neighborhood hotel and asked one of his assistants to check on her and make sure she had enough clothes and food. After one month they lost touch but he never forgot her.Some time later while shooting for a movie a woman walked up to him. It was the homeless woman. She told him she had a house now and was doing well. She said the little help he had given her had changed her life. For him it was her faith that moved him.Often on my journey through India there are challenges and I feel like my feet are off the ground yet my eyes are filled with tears and often times I feel like I cannot go on anymore. I read this story and I think about this woman’s faith and praise. I also think about the many women in South Africa who are HIV-positive and living with AIDS who also need a little bit of help. I question myself sometimes if I have everything it takes or the strength to go on, there is definitely unfairness and hardships in the world. We meet people, some who break us and others who build us. We have to be careful not to fall into negativity. Sometimes when I do question myself, the answer is always yes; Yes I do have the strength and everything it takes to go on.I have spent the month of February, also the month of love, working and thinking about my future project, Lerato –care. Lerato means love in Tswana, my mother tongue. Each day writing the proposal while receiving help and guardianship from Minal Singh and my mentor and Ashoka Fellow Indu Capoor. I know Africa needs me as much as I need it. I am special, important and valued. I have to be ok, to feel the love and care before I can extend it to others.Since February I’ve made it about me first and my project – putting all my ideas and dreams on paper instead of just talking about them.CHETNA hosted European Parliamentarians on a study tour of India. I was fortunate to be a part of the study tour as we also traveled to Udaipur visiting other organisations working on maternal health, women’s rights and HIV/AIDS. It was wonderful experience learning about how HIV/AIDS is managed in many Indian states. Interacting with the many of the parliamentarians I was reminded of my love for politics. When I was young I used to tell my mother, I am going to be a politician one day and save the world.Just like the story Tyler Perry told, many women and children also need just a little help. I still feel very passionate about saving the world and helping women and children worldwide. Below is a photo of a village meeting in Udaipur where women are given health education on nutrition and about their health using health cards. I am learning each day and realising that all the women need is love and care. I was inspired by the many NGOs and health care workers in this area are extending their hands to help. We visited three organisations, one of them a midwifery-based service delivery centre and a Community Care Centre that provides counselling for HIV-positive adults.Each day is a learning process. In February I learned from politicians, like Britta Thompson, Veronique Mathie, and Nobert Neuser. Yet for us all the most important lessons also come from the heart of where the problems usually are: women, their children, and their families.And we need to embrace all the women, so that when their feet are off the ground, they can have the strength to keep going on.Share this:last_img read more

How to thrive, not just survive, as a freelancer

first_imgThis is a post from a member of the Freelancers Union community. If you’re interested in sharing your expertise, your story, or some advice you think will help a fellow freelancer out, feel free to send your blog post to us here.Working for yourself is an exciting, fulfilling, and (at times) terrifying experience. Many of us have previously spent time working for someone else, which can make the transition to solo work daunting. Here’s what I’ve discovered so far to help me survive, and thrive, while running my consulting business.Keep a precise scheduleWhen you aren’t accountable to a time clock or a standard 9-to-5 day, it is easy to get sloppy with your time. To be as productive as possible, I plan my week on Sundays. I write a weekly to do list, and then block out my Google calendar.My typical schedule cuts the day in half. I work on personal things from 7 am to noon, and my professional life starts from after lunch and ends around 7pm to 10 pm. I write a daily to-do list, and use a timer to keep track of my time.I work from home most days, unless I’m traveling. I schedule appointments in the city all on one day to maximize my time.I also try to schedule my calls for the week on one day, back to back.Manage stressWhen I used to work for other people, my tension derived from toxic colleagues, dysfunctional workplaces, and containing my feelings until I left work.Now I feel the stress of having too much to do and knowing that I’m the only one to do the work.To combat this, I work out every day, and I incorporate meditation and deep breathing exercises into my daily practice. Try it!Don’t work 24/7It’s important to take mental and physical breaks to avoid burn out. I take a Sabbath from Friday night to Sunday at noon every week — which allows me to reconnect with family and friends, have fun, and give myself a break so I’m fresh for the coming work week.Travel smartSeveral things can make hitting the road for work easier. I’ve enrolled in TSA Pre-Check, created a travel packing list, and joined the loyalty programs of my favorite airline, hotel chain, and car rental companies so that I rack up points each time I travel. I keep a to-go kit packed with beauty samples and my favorite masks, and I’m always thinking of new ways to make my experience more enjoyable.Be authenticThe most important and challenging part of self-employment is accepting yourself fully. I’ve removed myself from toxic environments, and the only critical voice left is inside my head.I practice radical self-acceptance because I must depend on my brain and my body to do the work to support myself. Being an entrepreneur has built my confidence with each client I get and project I complete. I am forced to love myself because that’s the only way to survive.Clients pay for YOU; all of your expertise and your experience. Show up in a way that you never have before while being your true, best self.Margot Note is an archivist and records manager. In her consulting practice, she helps individuals and organizations harness their history, suggesting ways to use collections to connect with people. Read more at margotnote.com.last_img read more

NWC Improves Water Supply in Stony Hill, Collects More Money

first_imgThe National Water Commission (NWC) is reporting that at the end of November its monthly billing for areas in Stony Hill, St. Andrew, reflected a 56 per cent increase, due to improvements in the water supply to six communities there. This has been facilitated through improvement in the Stony Hill distribution network, under the Category A1 works of the Jamaica Water Supply Improvement Project (JWSIP), which is at an advanced stage of completion. The communities include Stony Hill; Sherbourne/Kingswood; Golden Spring; Diamond Road; Wireless Station Road; and Mannings Hill Road. According to the NWC, non-revenue water in Stony Hill was reduced from 70 per cent to 60 per cent. “What this means for the NWC is that 2,350 households are currently receiving 24 hours of reliable water supply. This is a commendable achievement,” Minister of Water, Land, Environment and Climate Change, Hon. Robert Pickersgill  said, as he addressed the official signing of the contract for  the Category B phase of the JWSIP, at the Ministry’s New Kingston offices on December  20. Additionally, the project allowed for 760 new customers in informal settlements to be added to the NWC database. This resulted in an additional $683,000 in revenue, also in November. The Category B component will begin next month and is scheduled for completion in two years. The scope of works include: replacement of the second segment of the Rio Cobre pipeline between Content District and Ferry with 14,000 metres of ductile iron pipes; and supply and install 20,000 electronic water meters for domestic service, and 3,000 for commercial customers. Also to be undertaken are: the development of ground water sources to produce three million gallons of water per day; refurbishment of the Bogue water treatment plant in Ocho Rios; upgrading of the water supply system which serves Linstead and Ewarton; upgrading of the Norwood water supply system in St. James; and refurbishing of the Great River water treatment plant, also in St. James, as well as the treatment plant in Martha Brae, Trelawny. The US$68.85 million project is being financed by the Bank of Nova Scotia, National Commercial Bank, and First Caribbean International Bank/CIBC, with the works contracted to Vinci Construction Grand Projects, which has partnered with the Government on a number of other projects. Under Category A of the project, several other initiatives, in addition to the Stony Hill distribution network, have been successfully completed. These include: replacement of the first segment of the Rio Cobre pipeline in the Bog Walk Gorge; rehabilitation of the 18-million gallons per day Constant Spring water treatment plant, and the Seaview water treatment plant was restored. Additionally, 70,000 water meters were installed in the parishes of Kingston and St. Andrew, St. Ann, Clarendon, St. Mary and St. Catherine, while water supply systems were constructed for Kitson Town and other adjoining areas in St. Catherine.last_img read more

Stolt-Nielsen Squeezes Higher Profit out of Falling Revenue

first_imgzoom Oslo-listed Stolt-Nielsen Limited reported USD 42.5 million net profit for the second quarter ended May 31, 2015, a 36% increase compared to USD 31.2 million net profit the company had recorded in the second quarter of 2014, driven largely by the company’s tanker segment – Stolt Tankers.Stolt Tankers brought the company USD 30.4 million net profit in 2Q 2015, compared to USD 8.5 million recorded in 2Q 2014. The improved profit is attributed to lower bunker fuel prices, an improved spot market and the favourable impact of the stronger US dollar.Stolt Nielsen recorded higher profit margins for the second quarter and the first six months of 2015 despite a dip in revenue.The company’s revenue for the quarter ended March 31 was USD 500.7 million, compared with USD 543.4 million revenue in the second quarter of 2014.Net profit attributable to shareholders for the first six months of 2015 was USD 81.2 million, with revenue of USD 988.4 million, compared with USD 49.4 million net profit and revenue of USD 1,060.1 million in the first half of 2014.Stolthaven Terminals reported an operating profit of USD 14.3 million, up from USD 11.8 million recorded in 2Q 2014, but down from USD 15.6 million reported in 1Q 2015, mainly reflecting increased maintenance costs at Stolthaven Houston.Stolt Tank Containers reported an operating profit of USD 18.6 million, up from USD 18 million in 2Q 2014, due to increased shipments and the positive impact of the stronger US dollar.Stolt Sea Farm reported an operating profit of USD 5.2 million, compared with an identical operating loss in 2Q 2014.“While Stolt Tankers may continue to see near-term benefits from the factors driving the recent improvements, the longer-term outlook remains challenging,” said Niels G. Stolt-Nielsen, Chief Executive Officer of Stolt-Nielsen Limited.”We see little evidence of strengthening volumes in the parcel tanker market, which is essential if we are to see a sustained turnaround, especially considering the substantial number of newbuildings scheduled to enter the chemical tanker market in 2016 and 2017. Similarly, chemical volumes appear to be slipping in tank container markets compared with a year ago, but Stolt Tank Containers has thus far managed to sustain its margins.”last_img read more

Navios Partners to Expand Fleet with Capesize Bulker

first_imgzoom Greek shipowner and operator Navios Maritime Partners has continued its shopping spree as the company signed an agreement to purchase a Capesize bulk carrier.Featuring 178,132 dwt, the vessel was bought from Italy-s shipping firm Rizzo Bottiglieri for a price of USD 27.5 million, according to data provided by VesselsValue.The ship in question is reportedly the 2010-built Cavaliere Grazia Bottiglieri, which is expected to join its new owner during the third quarter of 2017. Following this acquisition, the company will control a fleet of 34 vessels.Navios Partners said that the Capesize is expected to generate some USD 3.7 million of annual EBITDA based on current rate environment, assuming operating expenses approximating current operating costs and 360 revenue days.The company will finance the acquisition with cash on its balance sheet and bank debt on terms consistent with its existing credit facilities.Just last week, the Greek owner reached an agreement to acquire the entire container fleet consisting of fourteen ships from Rickmers Maritime for about USD 113 million.“We anticipate acquiring five 4,250 TEU vessels on May 15, 2017. These vessels are employed on charters that have staggered expirations in 2018 and early 2019 at a net daily charter rate of USD 26,850,” Angeliki Frangou, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Navios Partners, said.The average age of the fleet, which consists of eleven 4,250 TEU containerships and three 3,450 TEU vessels, is 9.5 years.last_img read more

UCL Ronaldo nets hat trick to send Juventus into quarters City slay

first_imgTurin (Italy): Cristiano Ronaldo made a mockery of Atletico Madrid’s vaunted defense, and then mocked its coach as well. Ronaldo scored a hat trick against the normally resilient Spanish side to send Juventus into the Champions League quarterfinals with a 3-0 win as the Bianconeri fought back from a two-goal first-leg defeat. The former Real Madrid player outjumped Atletico’s defenders to score a header in each half and then converted a late penalty for his first hat trick since joining Juventus in the summer and just when they needed it most. Also Read – Dhoni, Paes spotted playing football together He celebrated at the final whistle by mimicking the obscene gesture Atletico coach Diego Simeone made after the Spanish side’s second goal in the first leg having the final say against a rival he so often defeated as a Real Madrid player. Simeone was fined 20,000 euros ( 22,500) by UEFA for improper conduct and it remains to be seen whether Ronaldo will face a similar punishment. It was Ronaldo’s eighth hat trick in the Champions League, moving him level with Barcelona’s Lionel Messi and demonstrating why Juventus paid Real Madrid 112 million euros (then 131.5 million) for the Portugal star who has dominated the competition in recent years. Also Read – Andy Murray to make Grand Slam return at Australian Open It was the first time Juventus came back from a two-goal defeat in the first leg. “Maybe that’s why Juventus signed me,” Ronaldo said. “To help it do things that it had never done before. This result is a great push for the future, we’re strong and we showed it.” The 34-year-old Ronaldo has won the Champions League five times, including in four of the last five seasons. Without him, Madrid was eliminated by Ajax last week. However, Ronaldo had only scored one goal in the competition for Juventus until Tuesday. “It would have been strange if Ronaldo’s Champions League season ended with only one goal,” Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri said. “Juventus signed him for nights like this and tonight he made the difference.” For Atletico, it was more heartache in the competition in the year the final is being held in its Wanda Metropolitano Stadium and more pain caused by Ronaldo. While at Madrid, Ronaldo helped beat Atletico in two Champions League finals. He has also now scored 25 goals against Atletico in his career. “He’s the best in the world,” Simeone said. “We suffered, as happened to them in the first leg. They’re through and that’s right. They deserved it … Maybe I didn’t manage to transmit to my players what we needed.” Juventus thought it had taken the lead less than three minutes into the game but VAR confirmed that Ronaldo had fouled Atletico goalkeeper Jan Oblak before Giorgio Chiellini fired in the rebound. Italy forward Federico Bernardeschi was handed a start instead of Paulo Dybala for Juventus, and he responded by putting in a cross from the left for Ronaldo to head in at the far post in the 27th minute. Bernardeschi also had several chances to extend Juve’s lead notably with an audacious overhead kick in the 35th minute which flew narrowly over. Ronaldo went close again shortly before halftime when he again outjumped everyone but headed Leonardo Spinazzola’s cross wide of the right post. Ronaldo did get the second goal three minutes after the break. Joao Cancelo put in a cross from the right and although Oblak clawed Ronaldo’s header out from under his crossbar, goal-line technology confirmed the ball had crossed the line. Juventus went all out attack and got the decisive third goal four minutes from time. Bernardeschi was nudged over in the penalty area and Ronaldo converted the resulting spot kick to send the home fans wild. In another fixture, Manchester City humiliated Schalke 7-0 to win the Champions League knockout stage tie 10-2 on aggregate and claim a berth in the quarterfinals. Sergio “Kun” Agüero had a brace for the hosts at Manchester’s Etihad Stadium late on Tuesday. Already leading 3-2 after the first leg in Gelsenkirchen, City dominated from the start of the contest and virtually all of the action was in front of visiting goalkeeper Ralf Fährmann. Schalke coach Dominico Tedesco fielded an attack-oriented side, but they struggled to find any gaps in the City defence and left themselves vulnerable. City threatened in the 13th minute, when Kyle Walker’s deep pass found Raheem Sterling, who advanced toward the goal and left the ball for Agüero, whose strike hit the post. Twenty minutes later, City’s Bernardo Silva went down in the area after being brushed by defender Jeffrey Bruma and referee Clement Turpin pointed to the spot. Though the penalty looked soft, Turpin felt no need to consult VAR and Agüero coolly converted in the 35th minute to give City a two-goal overall lead. The Argentine international needed just three minutes to get his second of the night, taking a pass from Sterling and slipping the ball under Fährmann. With Schalke forced to press forward, City’s Oleksandr Zinchenko got the ball to a wide-open Leroy Sane and the German scored against his former club to make it 3-0 on the night and a daunting 6-2 overall in the 42nd minute. City, despite the more-than-comfortable lead, did not let up in the second half and scored twice in the opening 10 minutes after the re-start. The first, by Sane, was disallowed for an offside. Sterling’s goal in the 56th minute looked set to suffer the same fate until VAR confirmed that all of the attacking players were onside. Even as City slowed the pace, the nightmare continued for Schalke. Bernardo Silva scored from inside the box in the 71st minute, seven minutes before Phil Foden made it 6-0 (9-2) with a great assist from Sane. Gabriel Jesus delivered the final blow with six minutes left. City, the Premier League holders, are headed to the Champions League quarterfinals for the second consecutive year.last_img read more

Bird flu UN agency urges Nigeria to increase control measures to prevent

22 February 2007The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has urged Nigeria to increase control measures on poultry farms, including targeted vaccination, and in markets to prevent the spread of bird flu and reduce the risk of further human cases in Africa’s most populous country and its spread to neighbouring countries. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has urged Nigeria to increase control measures on poultry farms, including targeted vaccination, and in markets to prevent the spread of bird flu and reduce the risk of further human cases in Africa’s most populous country and its spread to neighbouring countries. In a statement issued after a mission to Nigeria, FAO said the virus is still circulating in poultry flocks with outbreaks reported in at least 10 states over the past few months. The virus probably spread along major trade routes, placing neighbouring countries at risk from birds moved informally across borders and increased surveillance could ensure that countries detect an incursion of disease without delay, it added. “The first confirmed case of H5N1 infection in humans in Nigeria shows that there is a continuing danger of human exposure to the virus from high-risk practices, such as handling sick or dead chickens, and especially from unsafe slaughtering of poultry at home or in markets,” FAO Chief Veterinary Officer Joseph Domenech said. Nigeria is so far the only sub-Saharan country to have reported a human bird flu fatality, its first and only case so far. The only other sub-Saharan country affected is Djibouti on the opposite, eastern side of the continent, with one non-fatal case, but Egypt to the north has so far suffered 22 cases, 13 of them fatal. Poultry are brought to markets in Lagos, Nigeria’s biggest city with about 9 million inhabitants, from all over the country, including from states that have suffered H5N1 outbreaks. It is therefore not surprising that people buying chickens and slaughtering them at home may be exposed to infection. Even where poultry are slaughtered in markets, hygiene conditions are very poor. FAO is increasing technical support to the country with expert advice, supplies and equipment to help bring the disease under control, and has launched an active disease surveillance programme funded by the European Union. Consumption of poultry is safe if it does not come from outbreak areas and is properly cooked. Slaughtering or preparation should be undertaken with basic hygiene measures such as washing hands, knives and surfaces. Farmers should introduce strict procedures to prevent the disease from entering their farms including disinfection of all materials coming onto their property. Contact between poultry and wild birds should be prevented. New poultry for rearing should come only from sources that are guaranteed to be free from avian influenza. Some 300,000 poultry in Nigeria have died due to H5N1 and another 400,000 have been culled as part of control measures. There have so far been 274 confirmed human cases worldwide, 167 of them fatal, the vast majority in South-East Asia. UN health officials have been on constant alert to detect any mutation that could make the disease more easily transmissible in humans and in a worst case scenario lead to a deadly pandemic. Nearly all human cases so far have been traced to contact with infected birds. The so-called Spanish flu pandemic of 1918-1920 is estimated to have killed from 20 million to 40 million people worldwide. read more

UNbacked initiative enables Somalis to harvest food from local farmers

“This initiative shows that Somali farmers are not helpless. With minimal assistance including agricultural inputs, tools, technical skills in storage, grading and marketing, they can make a great difference,” said Luca Alinovi, outgoing representative in Somalia for the UN Food and Agricultural Organization’s (FAO), one of the two UN agencies backing the project.UN World Food Programme (WFP) Country Representative Stefano Porretti described the initiative “as a significant achievement for the participating farmers” and a milestone for WFP’s operations in Somalia. “Strengthening livelihoods and increasing resiliency is an integral part of WFP’s strategy in Somalia,” Mr. Porretti added. “WFP will continue to support small-scale farmers in Somalia by empowering them to produce and sell more food, so as to become competitive players in local markets.”The initiative is backed by funding from the Government of Austria which allowed the UN to buy 200 metric tons of high-quality maize from the farmers, for redistribution in other parts of the country. For the past 12 years, experts from FAO and WFP, supported by the EU, have worked with communities to increase the quality of their production to meet international standards. Farmers were also trained to limit losses by keeping the grain free of contamination and pests, and how to handle, store and manage grain in warehouses.Despite these advances, Somali farmers only meet 40 per cent of the country’s domestic cereal demand. According to the latest figures from the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), an estimated 857,000 people inside Somalia are currently “in crisis and emergency conditions” in terms of food insecurity.Somalia has been torn asunder by factional fighting since 1991 but has recently made progress towards stability. In 2011, Al-Shabaab insurgents retreated from Mogadishu and last year, new Government institutions emerged, as the country ended a transitional phase toward setting up a permanent, democratically-elected Government. Parts of the country have now stabilized, allowing the UN to try to scale up the food initiative. read more

Ahead of World Malaria Day UN officials urge continued investment in fight

At an event held at UN Headquarters in New York today and bringing together senior Organization officials, diplomatic leaders and development experts, the United Nations-supported Roll Back Malaria Partnership confirmed that 64 out of 97 countries are now on track to meet the malaria-specific Millennium Development Goal (MDG) aimed at reversing malaria incidence by 2015. “Together, we have already made huge strides in our efforts to combat this preventable and treatable disease,” Sam Kutesa, President of the UN General Assembly, told those gathered. “Nevertheless, there is still more work to be done to achieve a world free of malaria,” he continued. “To reach our goals, we must have continued investments and sustained political commitments for malaria control and elimination.”According to the latest report by the World Health Organization (WHO), malaria mortality rates have decreased by 47 per cent worldwide and 54 per cent in Africa alone since 2000. Since 2001, it is estimated that more than 4 million malaria-related deaths have been averted, approximately 97 per cent of which have been children under five. The event – which comes ahead of this year’s commemoration of World Malaria Day, marked on 25 April – also spotlighted the $100 billion price tag required to eliminate the mosquito-borne disease by 2030. To that point, the Roll Back Malaria Partnership noted that despite its high cost, the investment nevertheless carried “a significant return”: a potential 12 million lives saved, nearly 3 billion cases averted globally and a global gain of $270 billion if the disease is eradicated in sub-Saharan Africa alone. “A new generation now has the chance to grow up and contribute to their societies thanks to the work carried out by the malaria community,” Jan Eliasson, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations said in his remarks to the event. “Fighting malaria is indeed one of the most cost-effective public health investments of our time. We cannot afford to stop investing now.” read more

Stephen Curry Doesnt Have His Shot Back

Thursday night, the record-setting Golden State Warriors avoided playoff elimination, taking Game 5 of the Western Conference finals from the Oklahoma City Thunder. Reigning MVP Steph Curry had 31 points on 9-of-20 shooting, but questions remain about whether, after suffering a knee injury early in the playoffs, this is the same Curry who laid waste to the league throughout the season and if he can finish digging the Warriors out of a 3-1 series hole.Curry has shot 35 percent from three in eight games since first being injured, far below his regular-season average of 45 percent. Here’s a breakdown of his 3-point shooting relative to the quality of shots (as divined by the NBA’s player-tracking data) he’s taken throughout the season: Compared with his regular-season showing, post-injury Curry has maintained a high volume of shots with comparable shot quality: He’s taken 10.6 3-point attempts per game with average expected value per shot of .97 points, versus. 11.2 and .98 during the regular season.Relative to expectation, however, Curry has been mortal. He isn’t shooting “badly” by NBA standards, but he has been awful by his own. Curry averaged a flabbergasting .38 points above expectation per 3-point attempt in the regular season, but he’s averaged just .08 points per shot above expectation post-injury. Previously, his worst eight-game stretch was .09 and came from Dec. 11 to Jan. 2.The average 3-pointer taken by a Curry teammate this year had an expected value of 1.1 points, and the Warriors shot .09 better than expectation on them. In other words, since returning from injury, Curry has been chucking like his MVP self but has been connecting like any old Warrior.On the one hand, it is probably good news for the Warriors that Curry appears to be getting his usual looks at his usual frequency since his return. On the other hand, any evidence that Curry isn’t really himself is bad news, because the Warriors are in desperate need of some flabbergasting performances if they hope to repeat. read more

Super head with alcohol problem killed himself amid fears he would lose

A “super head” with an alcohol problem killed himself amid fears he would be suspended from his job, an inquest has heard.Gary Vyse – considered a leading light in his role running six academies as chief executive of The Williamson Trust in Medway, Kent, and head of the Hundred Hoo Academy – took his own life.An inquest heard the 37-year-old headteacher, who was found hanged at his home on February 12, had suffered problems at work, with his relationship and also “heavy drinking”.Mr Vyse had previously told a doctor he was “drinking a bottle of wine a night, was feeling low and was self-harming”, the coroner was told.At a resumed inquest, assistant coroner Katrina Hepburn heard was discovered dead by his friend, Michaela Bartlett, at his home in Rochester, Kent.Detective Sergeant Debra Cummings told the coroner on the day of his death, Mr Vyse sent “messages of an emotional nature” to Ms Bartlett, who was described in the inquest as Mr Vyse’s girlfriend – but this was disputed by a family member at the inquest. Then on November 9 2017, he told the doctor he was “feeling much better”. Dr Murphy last had contact with Mr Vyse on November 2017 when Mr Vyse wanted to rebook an appointment.The cause of death was given as suspension. A toxicologist report showed Mr Vyse had 247 milligrams per 100 millilitres of blood in his system – which is three times the legal drink-drive limit.Ms Hepburn told the inquest in Maidstone, Kent: “In December 2017 Mr Vyse stayed with his parents for a period of time and references having problems with work, relationship problems and also heavy drinking.” Hundred of Hoo SA Credit:Google Street View She ruled a conclusion of suicide and gave condolences to the family. Mr Vyse hit the headlines in 2016 when he criticised parents for allowing pupils at the Hundred of Hoo Academy to wear fake tan, heavy lipstick and foundation.The headteacher told parents and pupils “school is not a fashion parade”. He said the ‘world wanted him to fail’ and he was worried about being a ‘burden’Det Sgt Debra Cummings At a later appointment on October 26 2017, Mr Vyse told Dr Murphy he was drinking a bottle of wine a night, was feeling low, was self-harming but would not consider suicide because of his two young children. He also told her he feared he was about to be suspended from work and was due to meet bosses at the Trust over a possible disciplinary matter, the inquest heard.No suicide note was found, but three packets of a drug used to treat depression, were discovered. The coroner asked the officer about the “tone” of the messages Mr Vyse sent Ms Bartlett before his death.Det Sgt Cummings said: “The overriding tone was that Mr Vyse was feeling fairly depressed, some of the messages were not clear, but they were emotional. In one he said the ‘world wanted him to fail’ and he was worried about being a ‘burden’.”He also made comments saying “what will be will be” and “I will love you with my last breath”, she said, adding: “They gave the impression he was saying goodbye.”The coroner read out a report from Mr Vyse’s GP, Dr Murphy, who confirmed he had been prescribed medication for depression.His first contact with him was in 2016 when Mr Vyse told his GP he was “stressed at work, not sleeping and wanted to go on anti-depressants”. She told the hearing: “One of the messages stated he was feeling anxious and sad, was not enjoying his job and felt people wanted him to fail.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

Mine Planning Software

first_imgIT played its role in the fantastic rescue last month in Chile (http://www.im-mining.com/2010/10/14/san-jose-rescue-proceedingsuccessfully-first-miners-out/). The collapse in the San José mine occurred on August 5 and on August 11 Maptek received a call from the team that was working on the rescue, asking for help on the drilling control and 3D display to map the drill holes. Maptek immediately sent one of its Mine Engineers, Alvaro Quezada, to the site to help. Following this, Estibaliz Echabarría from the Maptek I-Site team travelled to the site to conduct surveys of the region.This data was taken into Maptek Vulcan 3D software to create an accurate topographic model and 3D representation of the complex underground workings to understand where the 33 miners were trapped. Alvaro then helped to design the direction and orientation of the drill hole which targeted the tunnel, named the Esperanza (Hope) drill hole.  Maptek Geologist, Sandra Jara, working the shift on August 22, witnessed the first contact with the miners when she heard the men tapping on the drill as it entered the chamber where they were trapped. She immediately telephoned Maptek South American Vice-President Marcelo Arancibia and exclaimed “Marcelo, there is life down there!”Sandra then helped to design and control the orientation of the next two drill holes that also successfully made contact with the 33 miners. This final drill hole was the one used for the Plan B access shaft that was used to rescue the men.  Maptek said: “This team work, between staff from companies such as BHP Escondida, Codelco, Collahuasi, Geoatacama, Geotec and Maptek, was carried out discreetly and efficiently, with the sole focus on achieving the amazing outcome. Maptek is grateful to Walter Veliz (BHP Escondida), Felipe Mattews (Geoatacama), Nicolas Cruz (BHP Escondida), Oscar Castro (Codelco), and Andre Sougarret (Codelco) for their assistance and guidance.  Maptek is honoured to participate and to be able to use our skills and technology to help with the rescue.”Turning to more mundane consideration of software, one finds it is not in fact mundane as real time is now for resource planning, according to HighGrade.  Mining information technology (IT) companies are optimistic for continuing high-level investment in technology by mining companies despite a slowdown in some parts of the market over the past 18 months.  Business leaders have told HighGrade growth in emerging markets, and the increasing emphasis on ‘connectivity’ from the pit to the port, are among the key drivers of a potential ‘Golden Age’ for mining IT investment.One such very recent example is Micromine winning a contract from Cayeli Bakir Isletmeleri, a subsidiary of Inmet Mining, to supply and install its mine production control solution, PITRAM, at Cayeli mine in Turkey. This will “increase operational efficiencies at Cayeli by capturing data in real-time and improving the site’s reporting capabilities,” Micromine says.  The first stage of implementation is expected to be complete by late December 2010.  Micromine’s mine production management and control system, PITRAM, manages and coordinates all functions within a mine site; mine development, production, equipment and maintenance. It tracks and reconciles the delivery and quality of the ore. It provides production and activity reports in real time, allowing key personnel to view and monitor the location and status of all equipment and personnel.Cayeli Mine Manager, Phil Jay, comments that “After considering various mining solutions, PITRAM was selected due to its proven record of introducing operational improvements and increased efficiencies within underground mine sites. I have used PITRAM at three other operations and am confident that the solution will deliver positive results at Cayeli”.Micromine UK Manager, James Hogg, comments that “PITRAM users can visualise and manage all mine site operations as they occur. Micromine’s Shift Planner Module will allow Cayeli to implement a production plan within a real-time environment, and use shortinterval control methods to manage daily activities.“Cayeli’s material movements will be closely tracked using the Grade Control Module which enables real-time management of stockpiles.  The reports available from Grade Control provide valuable Key Performance Indicators which can be used to assess the outcomes from production related Business Process Improvement initiatives. Through PITRAM, Cayeli will be able to identify areas of constraint and where greater efficiencies could occur. Most importantly, management will have increased control over its operation,” Hogg concludes.In May, Mincom introduced Ellipse 8, which it describes as “the industry’s most modern and complete Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) solution set. Mincom Ellipse 8 provides a fully integrated and mobile-enabled suite of business-critical applications that improves return on assets and workforce productivity, while also addressing the challenges inherent in remote and geographically dispersed operations that distinguish asset-heavy industries from corporate-office environments.“Mincom Ellipse 8 is the culmination of extensive and detailed input from our customers, as well as three decades of deep industry and domain expertise,” said Greg Clark, CEO of Mincom. “Mincom now delivers the power of its best-in-class EAM and mobile workforce management solutions to assetintensive businesses that have adopted ERP solutions from Oracle or SAP. Equally significant, Ellipse 8 incorporates best practices from PAS 55, the emerging best-practices framework for asset management, and supports businesses around the world as they embrace this approach.”Because Mincom Ellipse 8 includes mobile workforce management applications for inspections, asset surveying, field-process automation and mobile work planning, customers can use Mincom Ellipse 8 to ensure workers with the right skills will be at the right location, with the right information needed to complete a job.“No other EAM solution provides a fully integrated mobile workforce management solution based on an enterprise-scalable mobile platform, with both planned and realtime capabilities for scheduling and dispatching workers,” said Clark.Representing the new enterprise standard for asset-intensive organizations worldwide, Mincom Ellipse 8 is comprised of three fundamental components: Ellipse 8 applications for asset-intensive EAM and ERP; the new Mincom Integration Platform, an enterprise integration platform that delivers out-of-the-box integration to leading ERP solutions and an enterprise-scalable mobile application platform; and Mincom Enterprise Reporting & Analytics, an open and integrated solution delivering advanced analytics and intelligent reporting.Ellipse 8 also introduces two new paradigms for asset management:Risk and criticality: The ability to plan, monitor and change asset strategies, and manage assets in terms of both risk and criticality by providing a framework for the structured prioritization of work and maintenance, improving asset availability and ultimately service delivery to customers.Geospatial perspective: Enables location-based asset management with out-of-thebox GIS such as ESRI, GE Smallworld, Intergraph and MapInfo.Advanced Work Planning – Ellipse 8 now delivers true workforce optimisation, including management of third-party contractors. Its new work-planning capabilities employ GIS, and both long- and short-term planning and scheduling of work and asset maintenance, to deliver a closed-loop process for work management.Ellipse 8 offers asset-intensive businesses total asset visibility, including the location and status of an asset, as well as visibility of critical parts associated with that asset, and the optimisation of parts inventory to the asset strategy. In addition, it ensures financial fidelity of an asset, enabling businesses to understand the true cost and capital investment of an asset at any point in its lifecycle.Commented Ralph Rio, Research Director of enterprise software, ARC Advisory Group, Ellipse 8 “represents a substantial step forward in four key areas: technology, functionality, ease of use, and open architecture. The software is deployed in pure Java on Linux and can be run in a cloud model. And with configuration down to the fields displayed in a particular screen, the software can be customised to match a customer’s workflow and business processes. The open standards enable collaboration with other applications and people across an enterprise – a key theme in ARC’s strategic advice to its clients.”In 2010 a new and substantial player in the arena emerged in the form of CAE, a listed company headquartered in Canada. CAE is a world leader in providing simulation and modelling technologies and integrated training solutions for the civil aviation industry and defense forces around the globe. With annual revenues exceeding C$1.6 billion, the company employs more than 7,000 people in 20 countries. As part of its growth strategy, CAE is making targeted investments of up to C$274 million, with participation of the Quebec government, over seven years in the areas of mining, energy and healthcare. As the first step in this initiative, CAE recently acquired the Datamine Group in order to form a high quality nucleus around which it aims to build a very substantial force in the mining market.  This new force will be branded as CAE Mining.CAE’s modelling, simulation and training expertise (along with a targeted investment strategy) will be combined with Datamine’s orebody modelling, mine planning and optimisation expertise to offer turnkey solutions to plan, manage, operate and optimise mining operations.In recent months, CAE Mining has reacted to considerable market demand for data fusion, collaboration hubs and improved governance of technical processes. As a result, the company has a number of MineTrust projects in implementation phase with major  mining houses. They are also in advanced discussions with a number of clients for design of operational control centres, something CAE has substantial experience in through the defense and civil emergency response industries as well as several recent projects in the mining sector.An investment already bearing fruit in CAE Mining is the establishment of an executive consulting group. This group is focused on bottom line improvements in mining operations and strategic planning. All consultants have Masters and/or PHD qualifications coupled with at least 15 years of industry experience. This group works closely with its clients to identify and implement practical solutions to improve financial performance in mining and processing operations. They also provide a client centric feedback loop for CAE Mining’s technology investment strategy, ensuring the company’s products align with industry requirements into the future.Latest InSiteIn August Gemcom Software International unveiled the latest release of its award-winning InSiteTM mine production management solution. This gives operations the tools and real-time data needed to improve production management from the mine to final product. It allows operations to link production data, costs, and planned versus actual production.  The result should be greater efficiency, lower costs, and the ability to continuously improve performance of all processes, activities, and equipment.“The mining industry has increased its emphasis to improving bottom-line results by maximising the value of their production assets and by reacting with greater agility to changes in commodity prices and the economy. InSite provides them with the tools and data needed to achieve these goals,” said Allen Vaughn, Executive Vice President of Gemcom’s Enterprise Business Unit. “Every operation is unique, with different deposits, equipment, staff, and mine and plant configurations. We work closely with our clients to understand their mining value chain to deliver a solution that is matched to their needs. Today, InSite is used throughout the world, supporting these diverse commodities.”Key InSite benefits include:■ Management of production from the mine, trucking, plant, stockpiling, processing, to final product■ Identifying production and equipment problems that may otherwise remain hidden■ Monitoring of equipment performance to eliminate bottlenecks and control costs■ Improved alignment between planned and actual production■ A higher degree of confidence in production numbers and compliance of systems through auditing, traceability, and data integrity■ Providing the catalyst for continuous improvement by empowering Plan-Do-Check-Act decision making.“Managing day-to-day operations requires tracking mass and grade throughout the operation and comparing this with planned production. It also necessitates equipment and operational issues to be readily identifiable so they can be dealt with quickly,” said Charlie Forrest, Product Manager. “Our InSite solution enables this by providing mining operations with powerful real-time alerts and analysis of all aspects of their operation, including stockpiles, equipment performance, operational systems, and material balance. The result is planned and actual production can be reconciled more effectively and the operation continuously improved.”Detecting early-stage performance deterioration in systems and processes on a real-time basis is critical to minimising downtime and avoiding failures along the critical path. Equipment failures can lead to significant downtime and delays. InSite provides the data required to anticipate these issues and enable follow up action to keep production on track.Establishing a clear and accurate view of what is happening at an operation begins with having a high degree of confidence in production data. InSite enables this through real-time integration of operational data and validation of material movements, activities, and surveys. This is further enhanced with a  robust calculation engine that enables mass and grade changes to propagate to material movements and stockpiles, ensuring the most accurate view at all times. With mass and grade data that is fully auditable and traceable, data integrity and system compliance is assured.Centerra Gold’s Boroo mine, located in Mongolia, employs InSite as a sustainable solution that enables it to better leverage the data produced at the mining operation. “InSite manages our mine production from the pit, trucking, plant, stockpiling and heap leaching, all the way to final product. The ability to manage and analyse our stockpiles and equipment utilisation from crushed t/h to SAG mill utilisation provides timely, consolidated, and audited information to decision makers. InSite has improved our processes, taking them from days to hours,” said Alex Petermann, Chief Mining Engineer, Boroo Gold.In other InSite news, in June, Gemcom and Sandvik Mining and Construction (SMC) agreed to collaborate to develop a system and interface for monitoring underground mobile mining equipment. The two companies are teaming on an innovative equipment performance and production tracking solution that will further improve consolidation and validation of information from mine operational systems.  “InSite features innovative technology that monitors in near real time equipment, events, and tracks production, which enables timely operational decision making. This industryleading technology, when combined with Sandvik’s sophisticated OptimineTM capabilities, will allow mining companies to follow up on their production, equipment, and personnel performance metrics in a simple and effective manner. Ultimately, they will be better able to manage and utilise their capital expenditures, and be able to back up business decisions with hard data,” says Rauno Pitkänen, Manager of Projects, Systems and New Offering, SMC.Most recently the company has released Gemcom MineSchedTM 7.0, the latest version of its next generation scheduling software for surface and underground mines of all types and sizes. MineSched provides mining companies with the capabilities they need to develop economic, easy-to-mine schedules to maximise productivity and profits.  It integrates underground development and production scheduling to enable better overall schedules to be created. It makes this possible through unified workflows for development and production scheduling, providing a consistent and intuitive user experience.Another key addition in this version, available to surface and underground mines, is combined interactive and automated scheduling, an innovation coupling automated scheduling techniques with the ability to selectively schedule on a period-by-period basis to save significant time in schedule creation.  “With MineSched 7.0, the industry has the most advanced scheduling user experience available today. When we set out to develop this version, our objective was to extend MineSched’s renowned ease of use and sophistication to the development domain so better underground schedules could be created faster,” said Robin Sweeny, Gemcom’s Product Manager for MineSched. “The integration of development and production scheduling in MineSched 7.0 will lead to improved mining efficiencies and reduced costs for a number of reasons, such as the ability to include ore and waste from development headings in the material flow network through the mine operation. Further benefits will be realised through the combination of interactive and automated scheduling, which will result in significant time savings in updating and generating schedules for both underground and surface mines.”“MineSched gives us the tools we need to create a schedule and then run it using different scenarios to find a near optimal solution. When scheduling underground mines, the software has enabled us to accomplish development and production scheduling faster, while giving us greater ability to run sensitivities on different options. By applying standard financial analysis to the MineSched results it is possible to quickly view each scheduling alternative with associated economic value,” commented Martin Drennan, Principal Engineer, Python Mining Consultants.  MineSched 7.0 benefits include:■ Unified development and production scheduling results in more efficient, easy to produce, and cost-effective schedules■ Intuitive five-step workflow guides users through the scheduling process, ensuring consistency of work and enabling new users to be proficient quickly■ Conveniently manage all development and production scheduling parameters within a single scenario■ Unique Setup Development user interface with a close interaction between the 3D display and data grids where parameters are entered simplifies the configuration of development headings■ Ability to rapidly reproduce scenarios across development and production with a single mouse click to efficiently compare scheduling alternatives■ Combined interactive and automated scheduling saves users significant time by permitting users to resume scheduling from any period without the need to regenerate the schedule from the beginning■ Schedules can be paused at any point in the scheduling process to see results up to the last full period scheduled■ Analysis of the schedule across development and production using combined views in MineSched’s unique visual dashboard.Smart mine, smart managementThe Dynamics AX (DAX) Mining, Minerals and Processing (MMP) solution is based on over 15 years of experience in mining. This experience highlighted the cost and limitations of bespoke integration and extensive use of non integrated spreadsheet in key departments, resulting in the silos of information and thinking. Frustrated management and concerned auditors expect improvements, but little choice is available. The integrated MMP modules will help bring together thedistributed parts of the operation in daily decisions that will help maintain throughput and quality.Axnosis and Solitech launched the integrated suite of DAX MMP. The key features being integrated – i.e., Lims to Ledgers, Asset to Accounts Payable, PLC to P&L, also integrated to Microsoft Excel and pivotally a business process Template (MS4Mine) for operations Blueprints. MMP consisting of the two modules MMP Commercial and MMP Operations. The commercial modules provide integrated management to projects, procurement, stores, assets and plant maintenance. The modules are Stores, Procurement (supplier to stock), Projects (plan to accounts payable) and Plant and Fleet Maintenance (asset to accounts receivable).In MMP Operations there is the Production Accounting (PAM & LIMS) (LIMS to Ledger) module. The PAM1 module manages the mine value chain from panel to port. From the geology planning system a short term plan is down loaded to PAM for execution.  The PAM2 module integrates to plant SCADA and LIMS to provide an automated model for calculating metallurgical streams, balances and lock-up, costing and stock replenishment.  The PAM3 minerals sales module provides a sales and logistics function; customer contracts with analysis requirements and pricing terms; inventory levels with sample analysis results; as well as weighbridge integration and product allocation and finalisation of invoice-able quantities and values. LIMS provide laboratory instrumentation integration, and is dedicated to the mine laboratory to automate unit tasks performed by analytical staff. The integration into PAM1, 2 and 3 greatly improves crucial assay visibility and retest scenarios.The other two Operations modules are Occupational Health & Safety (OHS) and Software Integration Module (SIM).  John Wilson, Director, Solitech says competing in the future with low cash cost calls for smarter moves, and for most, a reinvention of how MMP companies manage their core operations through information and know-how.■ Instrumented: using sensors and “smart” devices to gain greater visibility■ Integrated: interconnecting the entire value chain■ Intelligent: advanced analytics, simulation and modelling to manage increasing complexity■ Innate: visible blueprints and models of processes, roles and structures.“Well functioning instrumented, integrated and intelligent value chains improve performance. It is a general unstoppable trend in our modern world. The complexity of a smarter value chain hold MMPs back when faced with skills shortages and remote locations.”MS4Mine (Modelling and Simulation 4 Miners) provides a simple, method for managing the instrumented and integrated organisation.  Optimisation necessitates changes in people roles, technologies and processes. The simultaneous changes of all three require a roadmap shared between all stakeholders. The most critical time of the MMP’s life is at the design and start-up of a new site.  Teething problems occur at these stages and frequently delay the start of full production and lead to isolated silos developing.  MS4Mine provides an integrated platform for operational support for life of mine.  Transform data to insight for decision makers, through intranet self taught to knowhow.  Sensor to board room systems become manageable and maintainable for and by the miner, ultimately improving cash cost through consistent throughput.■ Template for predefined standard mining and plant operations.■ SCADA tools for process control mapping and integration■ Simulation engine for mine value chain processes■ P4B core platform■ Microsoft Technologies: SharePoint, Visio, Excel.Solitech is the exclusive distributor of P4B to the mining sector. Its says its mission is “to help miners achieve smarter operations across different planning, ERP, SCADA, OPC and other islands of software. The P4B core module is a flexible familiar modelling tool.”Global Integrated Solutions (GIS) works exclusively with companies in the mining industry around the world to implement business management/ERP systems using the fully integrated PRONTO-Xi platform. GIS says it “delivers immediate benefits and lasting value to clients by leveraging the decades of hands on industry experience many of our employees have from their previous careers in the resource sector. This unmatched international industry experience allows GIS to have an excellent understanding of the challenges clients face and the functionality they require.”PRONTO-Xi is currently being used by drilling companies, small exploration companies, as well as by junior producers with a single producing mine site to large multi site and multinational Tier 1 mining companies. In addition, it is widely used by various suppliers, contractors and consultants to the industry. In fact, there are over 200 companies in the mining industry alone that have chosen PRONTO-Xi to fulfil their business management needs.  As a fully integrated and fully scalable real time ERP/business management system for mining, PRONTO-Xi from GIS allows users to focus on:■ Saving money – seamlessly integrate general ledger, accounts payable, fixed assets, project costing, purchasing, inventory, warehouse and planned and preventative maintenance activities, as well as HR and payroll■ Providing efficient operating procedures – well thought out and developed business processes are mirrored in PRONTO-Xi, allowing personnel to know the necessary steps to get the job done quickly and correctly■ Increasing transparency – full drill down and drill back capability throughout PRONTO-Xi gives the clarity to see the bigger picture of how the various activities across departments impact the bottom line■ Saving time – eliminate error prone rekeying and manual data entry tasks allowing the redeployment of staff to more profitable activities■ Controlling costs – maintain facilities by tracking the movement of assets and plan for both predictive and preventative maintenance activity to optimise cashflow and eliminate unnecessary downtime in operations.The new Midas 2.0 version from Siemens Industry Solutions provides mine operators with a further improved database driven software solution to boost the efficiency of mining machines that feature Siemens electrical drives. The software includes a data logger, a visualisation tool and a report generator. Compared with the previous version, the database connection has been updated in particular and the user interface given a simpler and more flexible design.  Built on the solid foundation of the .NET platform, the Midas 2.0 solution uses an active SQL Server database to deliver substantial performance increases over the previous release. SQL Server Reporting Services generates predefined reports, as well as custom reports spanning any time period and covering any number of machines. This important new feature significantly increases worker productivity by eliminating the need to retrieve data logs from each truck and each shift then enter the data into the database.  Real-time monitoring, or historical review, is now much easier with the new desktop GUI, featuring enhanced animations and userfriendly controls. Midas 2.0 is also very flexible for international operations. The intuitive user screens are based on industry-standard icons, instead of written English terms, to significantly reduce training for non-English speakers. Midas 2.0 also supports multiple written languages to optimise its use throughout the world.The Midas solution is fully integrated with the development of the Siemens AC drive system itself to offer great insight into the machine’s operations. This enables the addition of new functionalities with only a limited amount of modification. It offers read/write options whereas other packages have read-only functionality that precludes the addition of new reporting parameters. For example, a user recently requested to include the operators’ identification numbers in reports. This was easily achieved with only minor modifications to the system.Mine planningGeorge McCullough, Principle Mining Systems Analyst of Runge, stresses that “the importance of having a well documented and comprehensive mine planning process cannot be over emphasised as it is a rendition of the relationship between the economic and physical aspects of a mining asset. The deliverable of a good mine planning process is a predictable production schedule which protects the asset against uncertainty whilst providing the best opportunity to maximisecash flow in the business. A good mine planning process is repeatable and can scale across all mine assets and projects.“The main ambitions of mining organisations, like any other businesses, are to be as profitable as possible and to add shareholder value. This requires careful planning and the mine plan is the cornerstone of a mining organisation’s business plan. It can be very challenging to apply the mine planning process effectively across a global mining company. This can lead to inconsistencies among the mine plans which put the overall business plan of the company at risk. This risk is in turn transferred to the net present value of the assets and ultimately shareholder value.  “Adding shareholder value and maximising Net Present Value has always been our company’s raison d’être. We carry this maxim out by helping mining companies create repeatable mine plans with predictable results. Most recently we have intensified this focus in our technology development and developed the Mining Knowledge Platform solution. We now have an expert system that delivers mine schedules by following a business process. We have de emphasised non essential features and functions that can distract engineers in their work and we have streamlined the workflows that people use to derive schedules. In doing so, we have reduced the complexity of the tools and made them more fit for purpose. The key concept behind this platform is to help mining engineers to effectively schedule their mining operations within days instead of months.“In the past, it took a lot of time and effort to train mining professionals to use planning tools. The tribulations of the problem space together with the complexity of the tools created long implementation times meaning mining organisations made a significant capital investment in solutions that would take months to mature. The Mining Knowledge Platform solution reduces implementation timeframes and to adds value faster.“The process driven nature of the Mining Knowledge Platform solution also means that mining engineers all across an organisation will follow the same process to create a mining schedule. Gone are the days where mining engineers in the same organisation come up with opposing answers to the same challenge, and gone are also situations where mining engineers are abandoned to their own devices to experiment with a vast array of features to get a meaningful outcome. Now it’s about having simple and effective tools that take the guesswork out of scheduling and add reliability to the results.”In March Micromine’s Brazilian Partner, BNA Consultoria e Sistemas (BNA) signed an Academic Licence Agreement with the Department of Mining and Petroleum Engineering of University of São Paulo (USP).  Recognised as one of Brazil’s most well respected Universities, USP’s Laboratory of Mine Planning and Optimisation (LAPOL) has a team of lecturers dedicated to teaching modelling and mine planning applications as well as developing graduate research and innovation for the mining industry. It has undertaken this strategic partnership arrangement with Micromine and BNA, endorsing the use of their premier mine design solution, Micromine for teaching and research purposes at USP.Adoption of Micromine technology should enable LAPOL and USP the potential of joint research programs to be developed in specific areas of interest such as multithread and parallel computing, virtual reality and 3D mine planning.  BNA develops geological engineering applications for the exploration and mineral sector. Its founder and Managing Director, Beck Nader, says “Micromine has the most advanced technology in the world and we look forward to being part of its continuous evolution. Working with LAPOL will be a very rewarding technological experience, for the University, for the Students and Researchers as well as for us.”  Dr. Giorgio de Tomi, Associate Professor at USP, states “Our students will benefit deeply from the advanced functionalities and the userfriendliness of Micromine for their class projects, and USP is very excited with the research potential of this new partnership with BNA and Micromine.”Earlier that month, Micromine had announced the release of Micromine 2010, the latest version of its geological exploration and mining software. Popular for its user friendly functionalities, it enables geologists and engineers to locate prospective regions, search for mineral indicators, model and visualise ore distribution patterns and design mining operations. Micromine’s suite of exploration and mining software is both advanced and robust, encompassing the entire mining process from greenfields exploration, resource modelling and mine design to mine production control and high-level management reporting.In September, Canadian 3D software technology company ThreeDify announced the release of a new version of its FlowPit 2.0, a 4D pit limit optimiser that can compute a pit design solution many times faster than competing technologies, the company claims.  Open pits are typically designed with block models, which represent the material inside the pit using millions of blocks of a predefined volume. The computation required to determine the optimum pit boundary and phase pits is typically time consuming.  ThreeDify believes that the latest release of its software represents a genuine performance breakthrough for mine planning engineers. “The advantage of our technology becomes obvious when handling very large block models,” explained ThreeDify CEO Dan Jiang.  “Typically, determining the optimal pit limit and sequencing would take a long time – over 24 hours or even days for large block models.  With FlowPit, we can now arrive at the optimum solution in about one hour on today’s commodity laptops for a block model with 4 million blocks (one hour on a Gateway NV79 laptop) – up to an order of magnitude faster and yet costing one third of the competing technologies.”  This advance in computational speed makes FlowPit an effective tool not just for determining the optimal pit limit, but also for medium and long term planning and sequencing of large open-pit mines where mine planners frequently need quick and reliable answers to “what if?” questions.  Key FlowPit benefits include, says ThreeDify:■ Robust and scalable – 4D open pit optimiser that offers simplicity, robustness and up-to an order of magnitude speed-up over other competing products■ Simple and lean – intuitive GUI front-end with re-blocking and graphical post processing capabilities that allow users to graphically navigate through plan and crosssectional views, and strip ratio graphs■ Flexible – ability to import block model formats created by other generic mining packages■ Extensible – available as a COM component for integration with third party applications■ Affordable – guaranteed optimum solution with phase pit sequencing and sensitivity analysis (aka 4D) that costs much less than similar products.Mincom has been busy this year, including announcing a major upgrade to its suite of software for mine design and modelling.  Featuring new functionality identified through input from leading mining companies around the world, MineScape 5 speeds the development of more accurate plans, thereby improving the predictability and profitability of  operations across the entire mining value chain.  “The long-term performance of an operation is completely dependent on effectivemine modelling and planning,” said John Jessop, Vice President of Global Mining Solutions, Mincom. “MineScape 5 is now the most advanced mine planning and modelling solution in the marketplace. With the introduction of MineScape 5, we leverage 30 years of experience and intellectual property to offer our customers robust new functionality for mine planning, designed to deliver efficiency improvements to the modelling and planning process.” He also noted it was “a core component of our complete enterprise solution set for the mining industry.”MineScape is the mine planning component of the Mincom Intelligent Mining Solution (IMS) suite, which provides a very comprehensive set of technical mining solutions spanning the entire spectrum of mining processes, from exploration to final product sales.  “As a customer of Mincom MineScape for more than 20 years, we’ve experienced tremendous gains in efficiency and productivity in our mining operations,” said Jason Buenemann, Project Engineer at Kiewit Mining Group (KMG), a North American producer of coal. “The solution has dramatically increased the productivity of our engineers, allowing many to transfer to management roles where their analytical skills better benefit the entire operation and they can now review multiple design concepts in much shorter periods of time. In short, MineScape has become a critical core competency for any engineer working for KMG, bringing efficiencies that are unsurpassed by any other solution.”  Mine planning and scheduling is a multifaceted, labour-intensive process, complicated by a shortage of skilled staff and the need to quickly create and deploy mine plans that most accurately reflect a site’s geology. This process can be even more difficult due to inadequate data sharing across disparate business software systems, which delays or prevents informed decision-making.  MineScape 5 takes a significant step forward to meet the pressing needs of mining operations by moving geology and mine planning functionality onto a technology platform better suited to integrate business processes.The newest release of MineScape delivers industry-leading tools to improve mineplanning accuracy at the start of a project, speed the ability to update plans in the face of constantly changing field data, and optimize resource coordination to decrease costs associated with idle equipment.  MineScape 5 was developed as a platform to serve as a single source for information gathering across databases, geologic models and mining plans. Not only will users enjoy productivity gains from the modern and efficient user interface, but the most significant improvements are under the covers. Unlike other products, MineScape uses a true clientserver architecture, which enables multiple departments to work on a plan simultaneously, thus shortening the time from planning to deployment. This services-based architecture has been further enhanced in MineScape 5, exposing geological modelling, mine planning and mine scheduling data and functionality to third-party applications and standard business process orchestration technologies, enabling true business process integration and automation.  In addition to its enhanced architecture, MineScape 5 – which includes 15 modules – features:■ Improved resource modelling and planning, which helps decrease costs associated with idle equipment, resources and transportation■ A new, high-performance integrated 3D CAD system■ Streamlined, flexible task-automation functionality that allows users to easily create tasks and build customised workflows.  The capability to build workflows to automate mine planning processes has been a key feature of MineScape for many years, but is now accessible to end users■ A new, best-in-class plotting engine, Mincom claims.“Mincom understands that mines are complex and dynamic environments, where significant value can be derived from the modelling and planning stages — but where significant value can also be lost in the operational stages from, for example, equipment failures, logistics problems or unexpected ore variations,” said Jessop. “With MineScape 5, we are in an even better position to help our global customers optimize complex processes and improve business results.”  In July Mincom announced two new agreements; one with Colossus Minerals, a development-stage mining company with an exploratory gold and platinum project in Brazil (http://www.im-mining.com/wpcontent/themes/immining/pdfs/countryfocusbrazil.pdf). The second is with Kazakhmys, a global copper player.Colossus has licensed the Mincom Ellipse solution for Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) to maximise operational efficiency during the exploratory stage of its flagship Serra Pelada mining project. Colossus has also licensed Mincom LinkOne, a graphical content-delivery solution providing maintenance workers with timely and accurate parts information to help reduce equipment downtime and improve maintenance efficiency.  To quickly achieve return on investment, the company will implement Mincom Ellipse leveraging the on-demand delivery model and other support services provided by Mincom.Mincom’s managed-services offering can help companies decrease total cost of ownership by speeding time to deployment and reducing IT overhead, and achieve faster time-to-results while minimising risk. Mincom offers customers a fully managed solution over their entire project lifecycle, implemented either onpremise or fully hosted from Mincom’s data centre to support the unique requirements of remote mining operations.  Taking a phased approach to implementation, Colossus will initially deploy Mincom applications for finance, as well as maintenance and materials management.  With Mincom Ellipse, mining companies such  as Colossus can manage the complete asset lifecycle of their capital equipment, maximising productivity and minimising downtime. They can also significantly reduce working capital by optimising inventory levels, thereby improving supplier management and  streamlining procurement processes.One of the world’s ten-largest copper producers, Kazakhmys has licensed Mincom MineScape to streamline its processes of geological modelling, mine design and production planning. By more efficiently scheduling mining work and production tracking, Mincom MineScape can improve the overall management of Kazakhmys’ mining operation. It will also help speed deployment by enabling the creation of 3D mine models, allowing multiple users to simultaneously update these models in real time.  “A lot of vendors claim to have integrated, end-to-end mining solutions, but only Mincom offers the most comprehensive set of technical mining solutions spanning the entire spectrum of mining processes, from exploration to final product sale,” said Andrey Nadein, Regional Vice President, Russia and CIS. “With 17 of the world’s top 20 mining companies already leveraging Mincom’s solutions to improve the efficiency and productivity of their operations, we’re pleased to extend our deep domain expertise to yet another global industry leader.”MineSight says it is pioneering short term planning solutions with long term gains. It is constantly enhancing its MineSight software, especially products that improve short term planning. The MineSight Schedule Optimiser, MineSight Haulage, and MineSight Axis mark the culmination of two years Mintec spent developing its short term planning tools. They complement a comprehensive suite of powerful analytical software that empowers mining and geology professionals to manage the entire lifecycle of a mine.Working together with the popular MineSight Interactive Planner and Planning Database, the latest additions allow short term planners to tackle the challenges of material scheduling and routing.  Mintec recognises that while unpredictable, mine planning must focus on value over volume. It must also be dynamic, versatile and practical. The company aims to deliver on all fronts, taking the guesswork out of short term planning while maximising profit potential.The software is simple to use and versatile enough to deal with grade blending, stripping, environmental and other requirements. Each tool performs a unique function and tends to be used in sequence to complete a short term plan. But, the programs are flexible enough to work in a different order when short term planners are confronted with changing company protocol or unexpected changes in material destination, haul route, or material/equipment availability.  Using the Interactive Planner and SQL reporting services, cut and blasthole data can be reported and used for planning and evaluation. MineSight Haulage is then used to organise the haul network. Recent enhancements include an equipment repository, Rimpull curves, and interpolated methods of speed calculation.  Based on the haul network, the MineSight Schedule Optimiser plans mining cuts before blast patterns are designed and exported using MineSight 3D and the Blast Pattern Editor. It also now handles data from stratigraphic models, empowering mine planners to handle layered deposits, such as coal, bauxite, and oil sands. Those blast patterns can be checked and imported using MineSight Axis Drill and Blast, which calculates key performance indices for actual blast patterns. The program reports blasthole information and models actual blast pattern KPI data. The ability to quickly view and edit allows mine planners to work more efficiently and save operational costs.Drill and Blast is one of four specialised modules within Axis, which is already recognised globally for providing mines with business intelligence. Leveraging off the MineSight Interactive Planner, MineSight Axis Grade Control completes execution of the short term plan, optimising and confirming material classification, creating material routing cuts, and reporting cut reserves.  Minesight says “whether taken as a whole or individually, [its] short-term planning software gives planners peace of mind. No longer must they just expect the unexpected:  Now they can prepare for it, manage it, and ultimately, exploit it.”During the CIM meeting in May, SimMine introduced its newest program, SimMine Short Term Planning Package. This is an extension to SimMine that simulates short term scheduling.  It provides shift schedules for development crews, what section they will work on and with what machines. It also gives the user ability to quickly reschedule/simulate the schedule if something happens that will affect the original schedule. To see how such changes will affect the long-term plan, users can export the changes back to SimMine for simulation of the long-term effects to the mine plan.One of the mine’s recently visited, and due for an Operations Focus article soon in IM, is the South Deep gold mine near Johannesburg.  Mine design and scheduling there is done in Mine 2-4D and Earthworks Project Scheduler (EPS) software, on a Datamine platform. All designs are based on 3D resource models. Due to the depth of the orebody (mining is between 1,575 and 3,500 m below surface), mining of de-stress horizons has to be scheduled such that sufficient reserves are made available for mass mining. Large mechanised targets are then sequentially scheduled for extraction within the de-stress envelopes. Backfill scheduling is also incorporated in the extraction sequence, both for the de-stress and the massive horizons.  All designs and schedules are completed in consultation with production and all technical personnel, to ensure safe and efficient layouts and plans. Production efficiencies are based on past experience and production models describing activities for the different fleet combinations.In May Minemax announced new software releases for all three of its scheduling solutions:  Scheduler V5.0 for strategic schedule optimisation, iGantt V3.6.7 for underground production scheduling and Tempo V1.1 for integrated and optimised mine scheduling.  Scheduler V5.0 Beta has been in testing by selected customers and the V5.0 production release is available for maintained customers.  Minemax says this release “provides significantly superior optimisation performance in comparison to the version 4 series, allowing you to evaluate more scenarios in the same time span. There have also been improvements to the block model importer to make it easier to set up your Scheduler model before optimising.”  In the new release of iGantt the import of data from various reserve systems has been updated and is significantly more intuitive. It handles the import of depleted reserves more effectively giving better integration with realtime reserve systems.Version 1.1 of Tempo includes the following new/improved capabilities:■ Precedence generation that radiates out from a selected starting position on a bench (e.g. from ramp intersection with bench), giving practical mine schedules■ Reporting improvements that allow easier inspection of the change in stockpile composition over time■ Geometry re-blocking capability in the reserves importing function that can produce updated 3D visualisation information as part of the import process.Gemcom recently updated its SurpacTM – Advanced Underground Design Module. This is an automated mine design system that maximises the overall economic benefit of ore reserves. It delivers improvements in the planning process by freeing mine planners from time consuming and tedious tasks.  The module forms part of a complete solution for underground mine planning together with Gemcom MineSched scheduling software. The solution, design, scheduling and analysis are seamlessly linked together to provide mine planners with more control over mine development and economic return. The underground mine planning solution can be applied to any underground mine layout. With this module users can easily and quickly make several designs that test different scenarios and can set up and create MineSched development schedules.For specialist mining methods, Gemcom’s GEMSTM PCSLC Module has been developed specifically to meet the challenges of estimating sub-level caving projects. Building on the industry-leading success of PCBCTM for block cave mines, PCSLC offers a powerful set of capabilities for building sub-level caving production scheduling models. It has already been implemented on projects for De Beers, Newcrest, and SRK, and has also been successfully calibrated against REBOPTM (from Itasca) for two separate projects and replicated ring recoveries published for Ridgeway mine.Geotechnical supportMineGeo says its software for real time mine geology and geotechnical mapping in 3D gives “the complete picture. Plus is it safe? – with the MineGeo Geotechnical module you find out straight away.”  The ability to display all or selected classes of geology data means that you improve your ability to better understand the geometry that controls your orebody and hence make better decisions to minimise dilution, improve grades and improve the bottom line. When you can view block models, drilling data and digital mapping this enables you to get the complete geological picture.“Geotechnical data capture with immediate ‘Q prime’ calculations turns a chore into a time efficient and easy task to achieve,” MineGeo says. All menu items are set up by the site geotechnical engineer and Senior Geologist.  Then more junior staff (with a small amount of training) can capture both geology and geotechnical data.  Geotechnical Data Output:■ Output as CSV (comma delimited) format file as a Pseudo drill hole for input into any database system■ All input values and selections are output including geologist/engineer names■ Additional calculations can be done from captured data – e.g. the Jw values can be used for working with SRF(Stress Reduction Factor)Immediate results mean qualified on the spot decisions can be made on rockbolting, meshing, shotcreting and local mine safety issues.  With MineGeo software you digitally capture your mapping once at source in 3D. It is then available and useable as soon as you get back to the office.MineGeo says its software “has the CAD facilities lacking in mine planning software and the mining facilities lacking in standard CAD software.” It is an integrated suite of software which includes:■ Import capabilities from DXF or Surpac string format files■ Live 3D lithology data capture tools■ Capture of sample/geotechnical data with Lithology and ‘Q’ parameters for each ‘from-to’ exported as pseudo drill hole data■ Mining ‘face’ parameters at 3D location■ Output of parameters used for creating face positions when no survey is available for the surface being mapped■ Export of lithology geometry (with attributes) as intelligent string files (which import into your mine planning system)■ Extensive CAD utilities to aid capture and presentation output.Bulk handlingIntergraph has released its SmartPlant 3D Materials Handling Edition (SP3D MHE) software for the automation of the design and modelling of bulk materials handling systems.  It automates the design of conveyor systems, processing facilities and transfer chutes to enable planners to rapidly and easily create or expand facilities. Specific functionality addressing conveyor layout and detailed chute design is provided in a simple, user-friendly rules-based automation application to help reduce design times and ensure safer, higher quality projects through less rework and reconfigurations.Two companies, Sinclair, Knight and Merz (SKM) and United Group Ltd (UGL) Resources, provided industry input to Intergraph in the development of SP3D MHE and are committed to using the solution on upcoming projects.  SKM, whose work on El Teniente was reported in detail last month, “is currently in the process of implementing the solution on a mining project in Chile,” Intergraph notes.  Denis Hamel, SKM’s Global Engineering Manager for Mining and Metals said “the technology will significantly improve cost and time efficiencies, creating real value in the design and delivery of projects worldwide.”“The solution created by Intergraph to meet the requirements developed throughout a proof-of-concept phase is truly cutting edge,”  said Jeff Lawrence, Projects Development and Systems manager at UGL Resources. “We expect this technology to revolutionise the work processes and methods used to design, fabricate, construct and commission materials handling systems. This is the new industry standard approach for bulk materials handling systems.”Key features of SP3D MHE include:■ Conveyor belt line layout – a simple, easyto-use workflow enables conveyor belt design and layout in a 3D environment, complete with associated belt line equipment such as idlers, pulleys, gantries, scrapers and conveyor drives■ Transfer chute design – it allows users to design to the detailing and manufacturing level■ Significant 3D display performance – designers can perform 3D navigation on even the largest models with response performance as much as 10 times faster than previously available■ Design reuse – a new ‘Model Data Reuse Wizard’ allows users to copy systems and the objects nested under those systems to a new destination within the same plant model. This is a significant market differentiator that allows the systematic reuse of 3D model data.SP3D MHE automates much of the design process, allowing changes to be completed faster with detailed fabrication-level deliverables for chute plate design, reducing the need for third-party software. Faster completion of projects directly relates to a reduction of man-hours required to achieve system options and to lower project costs and increase overall revenue. Also enhancing the ability to reduce capital expenditure cost is the opportunity to design and model sections of the system once, save them to a catalogue and re-use the design in future projects.Equipment monitoringStrengthening its presence in South Africa’s coal mining industry, Australian leader in dragline mine monitoring solutions, MineWare has secured a major contract in Middelburg valued at A$2 million. MineWare founder and CEO Andrew Jessett said the company’s latest remote dragline monitoring technology- mRoc Desktop – was integral in winning the deal.  He explained the superior system works in partnership with MineWare’s Pegasys monitor to provide the highest level of on and offboard machine monitoring. “By capturing sophisticated data from one or multiple draglines, we are getting people out of the operational area of the mines and allowing them to see exactly what’s happening in real time,” he said.  “As well as the obvious safety benefits, our ability to capture and analyse more comprehensive data is improving clients’ knowledge and understanding of machine and fleet performance. This directly supports the delivery of key operational improvements across individual mine sites and multiple dragline fleets.”Jessett sold his first Pegasys dragline monitoring system to BHP Billiton after commercialising his own invention without seed money. Five years later, MineWare has secured its position as a leading global provider of sophisticated dragline monitoring technology to open-pit coal mining. He attributes the company’s continued success to its evolutionary approach to improving how the industry measures the performance and productivity of major machinery such as draglines. “Meeting the needs of industry, our focus has extended from the draglines themselves, to the comprehensive off-board monitoring of the machines.”Vale has chosen to implement Modular Mining Systems’ IntelliMine technology at its Moatize mine site, a new coal mine in Tete Province, Mozambique. The selection marks the 200th Modular customer over 30 years as a mining technology pioneer. The bundled solution includes the DISPATCH mine management system, MineCare maintenance management system, ProVision machine guidance solutions, PowerViewTM reporting software, and MasterLink wireless network.  “We decided to purchase the IntelliMine system for its reliability and its power to meet our mine’s requirements,” said Reinaldo Goncalves, Vale Mine Planning and Geology Manager, “and we’ve been working with the system at other Vale operations with good results.”For Modular, the partnership marks an important milestone. When Moatize is commissioned later this year, it will become the 12th Vale operation using IntelliMine solutions and the third new mine to adopt Modular technology this year. “Vale has been a longterm customer of Modular, with the first system commissioned at Carajas in 1994,” said Peter Carter, Modular CEO. “It’s an honour to further our relationship with Vale.”   For Vale, the new system will provide haulage optimization, proactive maintenance tools, and increased safety, while boosting production and lowering operating costs.Four Leaf Solutions, a Canadian technology company based in Sudbury, offers its new MineTracker as a safety solution, delivering, it says “the largest impact the industry has seen in decades.  MineTracker integrates mining hardware/software with a specific focus on safety.”  The product was unveiled in North America at the CIM in Vancouver and Timmins Mining Trade show and is now available on YouTube for the Global Market to review.  “MineTracker makes critical improvements to safety procedures by integrating location data with telemetry and communications” says Bob Dutchman, Senior Project Manager. “The digital capabilities are endless”. The affordable, all-in-one application allows operators to monitor and control location tracking, ventilation, belts, vehicles, gas detection and all fixed or mobile assets, within one easy-touse interface. The software has been built to communicate with leaky feeder, WiFi, and/or fibre systems with connections to multiple manufacturers’ products. IMlast_img read more

Masama 390 Mt thermal coal mine in Botswana gets licence commissioning in

first_imgBotswana Stock Exchange (BSE)-listed Minergy Ltd, a coal mining and trading company, today announced that it has been granted a mining licence by the Ministry of Mineral Resources, Green Technology and Energy Security. This marks a significant milestone for the company, which listed on the BSE in April 2017, and is seeking a listing on the UK’s Alternative Investment Market (AIM) during 2019.The award is later than the projected timeline of mid-2018 for the granting of the licence as announced when the company listed. However, it states: “this is a substantial step forward in terms of Minergy’s intention of focusing on delivering high-quality coal to the regional market, including Botswana and South Africa, and entering the international seaborne thermal coal export market.”Minergy owns 100% of the 390 Mt Masama Coal Project in the Mmambula Coalfield, in south west Botswana, 50km north of Gaborone. The open-cast, low-strip ratio mine has the potential to produce 2.4 Mt/y of coal within a year after opening. The granting of the mining license follows the completion of a feasibility study and the authorisation of the Environmental Impact Statement by the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) in Botswana.Following dispensation from the DEA, certain pre-construction work has already commenced on site at Masama, allowing Minergy to have the final mine commissioning in January 2019, and producing its first saleable coal the following month.According to CEO Andre Bojé, the award, whilst delayed, is a significant milestone in Minergy’s journey: “The licence is critical for Minergy to continue as a business. This will be the first open-cast coal mining license granted by the Government of Botswana, so the process was not without its challenges for both parties. However, Government was so confident in our economic model that we were never in doubt that these could be overcome.”Bojé  goes on to explain what the award of the license means for Minergy: “Well, first and foremost, it immediately reduces the risk for any potential investors who view investments such as this, which often rely on regulatory discretion, as a key risk when investing; second, we can now go on site to break ground and invite contractors to start work; third, we can actively engage the local communities about job creation and a number of upliftment programmes, including improving the school and the clinic in the village closest to the mine, Medie, as well as bringing in electricity; and lastly, for management, the directors and all those directly involved in the project, it is just so exciting to finally get onto site and see the mining activity taking place.”He adds: “Whilst the delay has brought the 2018 festive season into the equation moving first production and AIM listing timelines out, the license will truly enable us to reach our full potential with the Masama Coal Project, alongside our commitment to the development of the coal mining, marketing and distribution industry in Botswana. I reiterate what I said at our listing in Botswana last year – this marks the beginnings of a resurgence in the Botswana coal industry.”With Minergy looking to list on AIM, the sustained buoyancy in the coal market bodes well for the mine, and according to Bojé is set to continue well into the future, given global demand.  He explains: “During the past 18 months, thermal coal prices increased by 33%, making it one of the world’s top five highest-performing commodities. In 2016, 4 Mt of coal were exported from South Africa to the African continent, this is forecast to rise to 38 Mt by 2030. Botswana and Minergy both have a significant role to play in fulfilling that increase in demand. Investors looking to invest in coal have lots of opportunity at the moment; the price of coal is rising, there is a deficit in supply and a strong demand, especially in the developing world which is driving up the prices and keeping them high.  In my experience, there’s never been a better time to invest in coal.”In conclusion, Bojé said: “I have always been an advocate for coal power; it remains inexpensive compared to other energy sources and world-wide demand for the commodity remains high, given population demographics in fast-growing countries and regions such as India and China, as well as in Asia and Africa, the latter being where our geographic focus will initially lie.”With the award of the licence and works now underway, Minergy is confident that its production milestone of January 2019 for the final commissioning of the mine will be met, with the first saleable product available in February 2019.last_img read more