Friday, August 27, 2010

Obama Administration - Green Agenda Push Raises Aviation Safety And Security Vulnerability

Wind turbine farms give fits to air traffic control radar. Image Credit: Edmund Jenks (2010)

Obama Administration - Green Agenda Push Raises Aviation Safety And Security Vulnerability

Funny thing about priorities ... they always have a way of pointing out why the simple approach became the simple approach in the first place.

The Obama Administration, picking up and carrying majority of the water for the (largely socialist) Green Movement through its energy policy, highlights just WHY petroleum based products have become so widely used and continue to be the popular choice for power in the face of other proven alternatives.

The new Chevrolet (not Chevy, ever) Volt ... at only 40 miles per several hour recharge (receptacle shown above) and a list price of around $40,000 dollars ... is poised to place additional strains on an already taxed power grid with little positive benefit. Image Credit: Edmund Jenks (2010)

Take the creation of electricity for the general grid used for powering our homes, streetlights, and if you listen to what one United States Government owned automobile company has to say - automobiles like the Volt, for example. Many years have been invested into wind turbine technology to the point that it has become an economically viable contributor to the electric power that fuels the grid but as more turbine farms pop-up, incited by incentives provided by the Federal Government, an unintended problem is making itself clear.

Wind turbine farms, when located near military facilities, impair security and safety. Image Credit: Edmund Jenks (2010)

Wind turbine farms make the radar systems that keep our aviation traffic informed and secure in the skies above completely compromised. That's right, radar systems become confused when wind turbine blades begin to turn enmasse because the radar signal that returns reads or present themselves in many disturbing ways - heavy storm activity and blackout zones where air traffic and its control disappear completely from the radar screen.

This excerpted and edited from The New York Times -

Wind Turbine Projects Run Into Resistance
By LEORA BROYDO VESTEL - NYT - Published: August 26, 2010

The United States military has found a new menace hiding here in the vast emptiness of the Mojave Desert in California: wind turbines.

The wind turbines pose an unacceptable risk to training, testing and national security in certain regions, Dr. Dorothy Robyn, deputy under secretary of defense, recently told a House Armed Services subcommittee.

Because of its concerns, the Defense Department has emerged as a formidable opponent of wind projects in direct conflict with another branch of the federal government, the Energy Department, which is spending billions of dollars on wind projects as part of President Obama’s broader effort to promote renewable energy.

“I call it the train wreck of the 2000s,” said Gary Seifert, who has been studying the radar-wind energy clash at the Idaho National Laboratory, an Energy Department research facility. “The train wreck is the competing resources for two national needs: energy security and national security.”
Collisions between the industry and the military have occurred in the Columbia River Gorge on the Oregon-Washington border and in the Great Lakes region. But the conflicts now appear to be most frequent in the Mojave, where the Air Force, Navy and Army control 20,000 square miles of airspace and associated land in California and Nevada that they use for bomb tests; low-altitude, high-speed air maneuvers; and radar testing and development.
The military says that the thousands of existing turbines in the gusty Tehachapi Mountains, to the west of the R-2508 military complex in the Mojave Desert, have already limited its abilities to test airborne radar used for target detection in F/A-18s and other aircraft.

“We cannot test in certain directions because of the presence of wind turbines in the Tehachapi area,” said Tony Parisi, the complex’s sustainability officer. “Our concern is construction in other areas will further limit where we can do this kind of testing.”
As a result of the military’s opposition, Horizon Wind Energy recently withdrew three project applications in the area. AES Wind Generation said it found out in May, after nine years of planning, that the military had objections to its proposal to build a 82.5-megawatt, 33-turbine wind farm.
The impact of wind turbines on radar had been a back-burner concern for years, but it heated up in March, when the Defense Department put a last-minute halt to the $2 billion, 338-turbine Shepherds Flat wind project in Oregon out of concern the turbines would impair the effectiveness of long-range surveillance radar.
Eliminating turbine clutter on radar is complicated. Part of the challenge is that many radar systems in use in the United States date back to the 1950s and have outdated processing capabilities — in some cases, less than those of a modern laptop computer. While there are technology fixes to ease interference on these aging systems, it can be tricky to filter out just the turbines.

On radar, “a wind turbine can look like a 747 on final approach,” said Peter Drake, technical director at Raytheon, a major provider of radar systems. “We don’t want to have the software eliminate a real 747.”
Mr. Debenham just wants his three individual turbines to win approval. The concerns of the local military have been directed to Washington for review. In the meantime, millions of dollars in financing and renewable energy incentives are, well, twisting in the wind.

“I’m in limbo. My customers are in limbo,” he said. “Can you tell anyone in Obama’s office?”
Reference Here>>

The fact is, and there's plenty of evidence over these last 19 months in office to suggest, no one can tell anyone in Obama's office - or even Back Obama himself - ANYTHING! This crowd is hell bent on placing this country into a full-steam ahead position on every idealistic political agenda they hold no matter how simple the solution or how damaging the alternatives may be.

The Obama Administration is the "Ruling Class" and that is just tough for those who, or what, may be injured from their view and lack of representation of the citizens who supposedly own (Country Class) this country ... remember "by the people, and for the people?"

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Korean Automobile Manufacturer Breaks Into American/Japanese Stronghold

The 2010 Hyundai Genesis is a sporty rear-wheel-drive luxury sedan that takes the top position in Hyundai's lineup, above the front-wheel-drive Azera. In its second year of production, the Genesis returns with an updated navigation system, a new adaptive cruise control option, and other minor trim adjustments. With a base price of about $33,000 for V-6 versions and $38,000 for the V-8 edition. Image Credit: Hyundai America

Korean Automobile Manufacturer Breaks Into American/Japanese Stronghold

According to the latest Kelley Blue Book Market Intelligence Brand Watch™ study, Korean automaker Hyundai has made its first foray into the top five most-considered auto brands among new-car shoppers, ousting Japanese brand Nissan into sixth place.

Domestic auto manufacturer Ford continues its reign in the top spot as the most-considered among the 37 new-vehicle brands tracked in the Kelley Blue Book Market Intelligence study, followed by Toyota, Chevrolet, Honda and Hyundai, respectively.

The Hyundai Genesis claims larger luxury sedans like the Mercedes E-Class and BMW 5-Series as its competition-though it naturally lines up against such sedans as the Chrysler 300, Lexus GS, and Infiniti M as well. Image Credit: Hyundai America Brand Watch Q2 2010 Study

Top Five Most-Considered Auto Brands Overall (Regardless of Segment)

Ford 29%

Toyota 22%

Chevrolet 21%

Honda 20%

Hyundai 13%

According to the Q2 2010 Brand Watch Study, over the past quarter Hyundai consideration has surged nearly six percentage points in the non-luxury coupe/sedan/hatchback segment, now garnering 29 percent of the total consideration among shoppers of this segment and bested only by Honda (45 percent), Toyota (42 percent) and Ford (38 percent).

Ford continues to hold court as the most-considered automotive brand among new-car shoppers, further increasing its lead over the second most-considered brand, Toyota (Ford has 29 percent of overall brand consideration regardless of segment, whereas Toyota has 22 percent). In Q2 2010, Ford particularly excelled in the non-luxury SUV/CUV segment, increasing its lead by four percentage points over the previous quarter to capture nearly half (46 percent) of the consideration among new non-luxury SUV/CUV shoppers. In comparison, Honda and Toyota tie for second and third places, each only having 35 percent.

Meanwhile, Toyota continues to experience the fallout from its recall and reputation crisis earlier this year. Since one year ago (Q2 2009), overall Toyota consideration has fallen eight percentage points (from 30 percent to 22 percent), now holding steady to its number two spot when it formerly dominated the number one spot. In addition, Toyota’s luxury brand Lexus experienced an all-time low since 2007 in the luxury sedan/coupe/hatchback category at 30 percent in Q2 2010 (down from 41% in Q1 2007).

On a bright note for Toyota, the company’s lauded “Swagger Wagon” marketing campaign for the all-new redesigned 2011 Sienna is resonating well with consumers, as the brand surged more than six percentage points in the minivan category over the past quarter to now capture 53 percent of the category consideration for Q2 2010. In addition, new-car shoppers ranked the Toyota brand tops in the minivan category for exterior styling.

“The latest Kelley Blue Book Market Intelligence findings show how the deck is being reshuffled in the automotive marketplace, with certain brands now holding places in consumer perception that we may not have believed just one or two years ago,” said James Bell, executive market analyst for Kelley Blue Book’s “Ford continues its upward trajectory and Hyundai is truly on a roll. Both brands prove that when you make dynamic, exciting and affordable products that appeal to the new-car shopping masses, consumer perception begins to change and subsequently, sales will follow.”

For Q2 2010, new-car shoppers rank durability/reliability, driving comfort, fuel efficiency, driving performance and safety (respectively) as the top five important factors while shopping for their next new vehicle.

The Q2 2010 Kelley Blue Book Market Intelligence Brand Watch Study was fielded to more than 3,000 in-market new-car shoppers on Kelley Blue Book’s from April 6 – June 17, 2010. Kelley Blue Book’s Brand Watch is an ongoing study tracking and trending consumer perceptions, detailing strengths and weaknesses of makes within each segment. Brand Watch primarily tracks brand consideration, segment consideration, important consideration factors for new-car shoppers, and how brands perform on those important factors. Kelley Blue Book Market Intelligence has been tracking Brand Watch since 2007.
(ht: KBB)

... notes from The EDJE

Monday, August 09, 2010

H1N1 Flu Pandemic Danger Is Over ... For Now

Image Credit: US Army, Ft. Bliss

H1N1 Flu Pandemic Danger Is Over ... For Now

The World Health Organization (WHO) says the intensity of outbreaks has been reduced and H1N1 virus is no longer as dominant as it once was. The end of the H1N1 influenza pandemic is now in sight. Fear of H1N1 has now receded to the point that the WHO is expecting to declare the pandemic over in the next week or so.

We, at MAXINE, however, believe that after seeing how the Obama Administration responded to the BP oil rig failure in the Gulf of Mexico ... keep the filtration breathing masks that you bought and make sure to get you flu shots early ... and often!

Image Credit: World Health Organization

This excerpted and edited from the Globe and Mail (Canada) -

WHO to declare H1N1 pandemic over

By Joe Friesen - From Monday's Globe and Mail Published on Sunday, Aug. 08, 2010 11:17AM EDT Last updated on Sunday, Aug. 08, 2010 9:48PM EDT

For a few weeks last autumn, fear of pandemic influenza stalked the land. Death seemed to lurk around every corner. A sneeze in public could draw a reproachful glance, and every handshake sent the anxious fumbling for their hand sanitizer. Gradually, the panic subsided, to be replaced by confusion over all the fuss made by governments and public-health agencies.
Dr. Margaret Chan, director general of the World Health Organization, said the panel of experts that advises the WHO is feeling increasingly confident H1N1, which has killed more than 18,000 people around the world, has taken on the characteristics of a typical seasonal flu.

“All in all, people feel that the overall picture looks like we are ready to declare post-pandemic globally very soon,” Dr. Chan said.

Every pandemic eventually becomes a seasonal flu strain. This fall, when flu season arrives again, H1N1 will still be one of the major variants floating around, but the population has shown sufficient resistance to it that there have been very few new deaths or flu activity in Canada since February, according to Dr. Perry Kendall, British Columbia’s provincial health officer.
“We were planning with [avian flu] and 1918 in mind, and that meant you had to develop a vaccine as quickly as possible. The lesson learned from this is that unless we get some radical new technologies we’re not going to get an influenza vaccine within the first six months. That means for the first wave of the virus, there’s going to be no vaccine to protect people.” [Kendall]
The pandemic’s end will be declared as it takes its second tour of winter in the Southern Hemisphere. So far there has been evidence the intensity of outbreaks has been reduced and the virus is no longer as dominant as it once was.
Reference Here>>

Best takeaway? ... "The lesson learned from this is that unless we get some radical new technologies we’re not going to get an influenza vaccine within the first six months" ... make sure to get you flu shots early, and often, and stock up on the breathing masks now before people start dropping.

Image Credit: US Army, Ft. Bliss

Any combination of these symptoms should be enough of a concern to seek medical advice. Fever above 100.5 F - Cough - Sore Throat - Headache - Nausea - Vomiting.

Recommended actions to prevent spread of H1N1 infection:

-Hand washing with soap and warm water. Cold water is not as effective for killing germs. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

-Use a tissue to cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze, or cough or sneeze into your elbow/sleeve rather than your hand.

-Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.

-Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

-Those with flu-like symptoms should stay home from work, school and social gatherings.