Organic flash memory developed

first_img Citation: Organic flash memory developed (2009, December 17) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2009-12-memory.html (PhysOrg.com) — Researchers at the University of Tokyo have developed a non-volatile memory that has the same basic structure as a flash memory but is made from cheap, flexible, organic materials. Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Flash memory devices store data electrically in silicon transistors. The information can be written and read quickly and is retained in memory even when power is removed. This makes flash memory useful for devices such as cameras, USB drives, and MP3 players. If a flexible flash memory can be developed it could find application in large-area devices such as large area sensors, displays, or actuators with flash memory built-in.The organic flash memory was developed by a team of scientists led by Professor Takeo Someya, of the Department of Engineering and Information Systems at the University of Tokyo. The device uses an array of 26 x 26 memory cells on a plastic polyethylene naphthalate (PEN) resin sheet substrate that is flexible enough to be curved to a radius of only 6 mm without causing electrical or mechanical problems.The device is called an organic flash memory device because it has the same kind of floating-gate transistors as those used for silicon-based flash memories. A floating gate is a component of the transistor that is fully enclosed by a thin insulating material called a gate dielectric, which isolates it electrically and allows it to retain its charge for years (in silicon devices). If a large voltage is applied an electronic charge can be brought on to the floating gate and it remains there until the charge is erased when a voltage of opposite polarity is applied. Professor Someya said the challenge for an organic memory device is finding a suitable insulating material to electrically isolate the floating gate in which the charges are stored. The layer has to be thin enough to allow charge to be transferred to the floating gate but must not melt during assembly. The insulating layer prevents the electrons leaking away and consequent degradation of the data.The insulating film was made using a two nanometer thick self-assembled monolayer (SAM) and a four nanometer layer of aluminum oxide formed by oxidizing the surface of the aluminum floating gate.The erasing voltage of the memory is around 6V, while the reading voltage is only 1 V, and these voltages are considerably lower than those of organic memories developed previously. Data can be written to and erased from the memory over one thousand times, which is much less than the 100,000 times for silicon flash memory.The organic flash memory’s disadvantage is its short memory retention time of just 24 hours, but the researchers think this could be improved by using a SAM with a longer molecular length, and reducing the size of the transistors.The results of the research were published in the December 11 issue of the journal Science. © 2009 PhysOrg.com More information: Organic Nonvolatile Memory Transistors for Flexible Sensor Arrays, Tsuyoshi Sekitani et al., Science 11 December 2009:Vol. 326. no. 5959, pp. 1516 – 1519; DOI: 10.1126/science.1179963 The polyethylene naphthalate resin sheet with a memory array. Carbon Nanotubes with a Memorylast_img read more

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Researchers use wholegenome sequencing to monitor evolution of drug resistance in bacteria

first_img(PhysOrg.com) — Two research groups working independently have come up with two different ways to use whole-genome sequencing to follow the path bacteria take in developing resistance to anti-bacterial drugs. Such research could prove useful in figuring out ways to stop the evolutionary process, thereby safeguarding current anti-bacterial agents for future patients. Both groups have published papers describing their work in Nature Genetics. The first group has found a way to actually monitor the evolution of the E. coli bacteria over several generations as it’s exposed to three types of anti-bacterial agents. The second group has figured out a way to follow mutations in bacteria that occur after anti-bacterial agents have been discontinued. More information: [1] Whole-genome sequencing of rifampicin-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis strains identifies compensatory mutations in RNA polymerase genes, Nature Genetics (2011) doi:10.1038/ng.1038AbstractEpidemics of drug-resistant bacteria emerge worldwide, even as resistant strains frequently have reduced fitness compared to their drug-susceptible counterparts. Data from model systems suggest that the fitness cost of antimicrobial resistance can be reduced by compensatory mutations; however, there is limited evidence that compensatory evolution has any significant role in the success of drug-resistant bacteria in human populations. Here we describe a set of compensatory mutations in the RNA polymerase genes of rifampicin-resistant M. tuberculosis, the etiologic agent of human tuberculosis (TB). M. tuberculosis strains harboring these compensatory mutations showed a high competitive fitness in vitro. Moreover, these mutations were associated with high fitness in vivo, as determined by examining their relative clinical frequency across patient populations. Of note, in countries with the world’s highest incidence of multidrug-resistant (MDR) TB, more than 30% of MDR clinical isolates had this form of mutation. Our findings support a role for compensatory evolution in the global epidemics of MDR TB.Evolutionary paths to antibiotic resistance under dynamically sustained drug selection, Nature Genetics (2011) doi:10.1038/ng.1034AbstractAntibiotic resistance can evolve through the sequential accumulation of multiple mutations. To study such gradual evolution, we developed a selection device, the ‘morbidostat’, that continuously monitors bacterial growth and dynamically regulates drug concentrations, such that the evolving population is constantly challenged. We analyzed the evolution of resistance in Escherichia coli under selection with single drugs, including chloramphenicol, doxycycline and trimethoprim. Over a period of ~20 days, resistance levels increased dramatically, with parallel populations showing similar phenotypic trajectories. Whole-genome sequencing of the evolved strains identified mutations both specific to resistance to a particular drug and shared in resistance to multiple drugs. Chloramphenicol and doxycycline resistance evolved smoothly through diverse combinations of mutations in genes involved in translation, transcription and transport. In contrast, trimethoprim resistance evolved in a stepwise manner, through mutations restricted to the gene encoding the enzyme dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR). Sequencing of DHFR over the time course of the experiment showed that parallel populations evolved similar mutations and acquired them in a similar order. Citation: Researchers use whole-genome sequencing to monitor evolution of drug resistance in bacteria (2011, December 19) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-12-whole-genome-sequencing-evolution-drug-resistance.html © 2011 PhysOrg.com Explore furthercenter_img The first group, all working out of Harvard University, created what they call a “morbidostat”; a computer controlled environment that reads signs from a bacteria culture to asses its degree of happiness with its surroundings, then tweaks it just a little bit to make it unhappy. Bacteria that are happy don’t need to adapt, thus, to cause them to evolve, three types of antibacterial agents were introduced into the morbidostat along with the bacteria: chloramphenicol, doxycyclin, and trimethoprim. To see what evolutionary changes were occurring, the team took regular samples and studied them using whole-genome sequencing. Using this technique the team found they could actually watch the bacteria evolve into resistant strains. But of particular note, they found that at least when exposed to trimethoprim, Escherichia coli evolves in very predictable ways, a bit of knowledge that could help doctors stay one step ahead of such changes when treating patients by predicting them before they are able to occur.Just as interesting is the study undertaken by the second group; a team made up of an international group of researchers. Here the team wanted to know what goes on with bacteria that are subjected to anti-bacterial agents, after the treatment is stopped. Do they stop evolving, or do they keep on doing so as a means of responding to the effects of the drugs?Prior research has already shown that most often drug-resistant bacteria for some reason don’t grow as quickly as those that aren’t resistant when in an environment free of antibiotics, which should mean resistant strains should have transmission rates that are lower. Unfortunately, this is not always the case as some resistant strains of some types of bacteria have shown an ability to transmit just as quickly as their non-resistant brethren. To find out why this is, the team analyzed both types of strains using whole-genome sequencing to find out exactly what was going with different strains of M. tuberculosis.The team found that those strains that were both resistant and able to transmit at the same rates as the non-resistant group had developed two types of mutations. The first was, obviously, the changes that had come about that had made them resistant. The second change was the surprise; the bacteria samples had actually evolved in a way that allowed them to regain a high transmission rate, which showed they had continued to evolve after the anti-bacterial drug had been stopped, this time, to get back something it had lost due to the drug.Taken together, the studies show that by using whole-genome sequencing, researchers are moving ever closer to fully understanding how bacteria mutate and evolve to make themselves resistant to anti-bacterial agents. The hope is that once the entire process is fully understood, new ways to prevent it from happening can be developed. Drug-resistant bacteria can be controlled This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

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New theoretical technique applied to properties of ultrathin solar cells

first_img More information: Near-Field Electromagnetic Theory for Thin Solar Cells, Phys. Rev. Lett. 109, 138701 (2012) DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.109.138701AbstractCurrent methods for evaluating solar cell efficiencies cannot be applied to low-dimensional structures where phenomena from the realm of near-field optics prevail. We present a theoretical approach to analyze solar cell performance by allowing rigorous electromagnetic calculations of the emission rate using the fluctuation-dissipation theorem. Our approach shows the direct quantification of the voltage, current, and efficiency of low-dimensional solar cells. This approach is demonstrated by calculating the voltage and the efficiency of a GaAs slab solar cell for thicknesses from several microns down to a few nanometers. This example highlights the ability of the proposed approach to capture the role of optical near-field effects in solar cell performance.Physics Synopsis Explore further Citation: New theoretical technique applied to properties of ultrathin solar cells (2012, October 5) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-10-theoretical-technique-properties-ultrathin-solar.html © 2012 Phys.org Journal information: Physical Review Letters This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Cheap and efficient solar cell made possible by linked nanoparticles To start, the team describes the connection in solar cell technology between two states: thermal equilibrium and one where a disturbance has occurred. When in equilibrium, they say, many processes are occurring, most specifically those involving absorbing and emitting photons. To calculate a cell’s efficiency, its photocurrent (the rate of creation of electron-hole pairings) and recombination current (the rate of recombining of electron-hole pairs in making photons) must be known. In looking at the recombination events, the team found they were able to use the fluctuation-dissipation theorem (to connect the equilibrium state to the one where a small disturbance has occurred) to calculate the power involved as it applies to thermodynamic properties, e.g. chemical potential and temperature. Such calculations allowed them to then generate parameters for voltage, current, and efficiency for ultrathin solar cells based on an idealized cell made of gallium arsenide on a gold substrate. Using these parameters, the team then measured four emission channels of the idealized cell—two polarizations each of light that is emitted back into the air or the gold substrate. In so doing, the researchers were able to calculate the overall efficiency of the solar cell in advance of its actual construction. Such a discovery leads to the possibility of creating a simulator capable of providing such statistics to build new, more efficient solar cells based on ultrathin materials. In testing their calculations, the team found that while nanometer-sized structures do allow for taking advantage of near-field optical effects, their properties can also affect the rate at which electrons and holes combine, impacting overall efficiency. Consequently, this impact must be taken into consideration when developing real-world applications to prevent building in a negative efficiency factor. (Phys.org)—As solar cell technology matures, researchers continue to look for ways to develop ever-thinner technology to reduce material costs. Such technology also reduces the distance electrons and holes, loosened by light, have to travel—resulting in less loss when they recombine. However, using traditional materials means that less light is absorbed. As such, recent efforts have focused on using cells with nanometer-sized structures as they allow for the number of light interactions to be increased. However, researchers have been limited in their ability to predict the properties of solar cells when using such materials. Now researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, have developed a theoretical technique for calculating such properties. As they write in their paper published in Physical Review Letters, the technique lends itself to possible use in simulation tools. last_img read more

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Superstructured solar cells achieve record efficiency of 109

first_img Dye-sensitized solar cells with carbon nanotube transparent electrodes offer significant cost savings Copyright 2012 Phys.org All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. More information: Michael M. Lee, et al. “Efficient Hybrid Solar Cells Based on Meso-Superstructured Organometal Halide Perovskites.” Science Express. DOI: 10.1126/science.1228604 , Science Express (Phys.org)—It may sound counterintuitive that replacing one of the most photosensitive solar cell materials with a material with less desirable photosensitive properties can improve the solar cell’s efficiency, but that’s what scientists have shown in a new study. By replacing the highly photosensitive titanium dioxide (TiO2) with alumina (Al2O3) in a solution-processable solar cell, the researchers have achieved a record power conversion efficiency of 10.9%. They attribute this high efficiency to the Al2O3 acting as an inert scaffold, forcing the electrons to remain within and be transported through an extremely thin absorber (ETA) layer. The researchers, led by Henry J. Snaith at the University of Oxford in the UK, with coauthors from the University of Oxford, Toin University of Yokohama in Japan, and the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology in Ibaraki, Japan, have published their study on the highly efficient solar cells in a recent issue of Science.”This is a new technology, so in essence a new record,” Snaith told Phys.org. “All solar cell technologies have different efficiencies, with GaAs being the highest at over 28%. This is not an absolute world record, but probably the highest for a solution-processable solid-state solar cell. And the real excitement is where it may reach over the next few years; it should have a steep improvement curve.”The choice of electrode material in a solar cell is one of the most important factors contributing to solar cell efficiency, and TiO2 is often used as an electrode material in solution-processable solar cells due to its good ability for photoexcitation, or converting photons into electrons, as well as its strong electron-accepting properties when photosensitized with a dye or absorber. But in order to improve solar cell efficiency, the scientists here addressed the fundamental energy losses that arise throughout the photovoltaic process of absorbing photons and generating electrons. As they explain, energy is lost during the photogeneration of electron-hole pairs (excitons), the separation of tightly bound excitons, and the extraction of free electrons from highly disordered networks. In attempts to overcome these losses, previous research has investigated the use of coating an ETA layer, 2 to 10 nm in thickness, on the internal surface of the TiO2 electrode in order to increase the current density and voltage. So far, solar cells with ETA layers have achieved power conversion efficiencies of up to 6.3%.Here, the researchers have investigated the possibility that TiO2 may be hindering the effectiveness of the ETA layer due to its electronic disorder and low mobility. Because Al2O3 is a wide band gap insulator, the researchers found that, when it’s used as the electrode, the photoexcited electrons remain in the ETA layer and do not drop to lower energy levels in the oxide as they do in the TiO2 electrode. This difference offers several advantages. For instance, the researchers found that using Al2O3 significantly speeds up the electron transport process, forcing electrons to quickly travel through a perovskite ETA layer, and also increases the voltage. These improvements increased the power conversion efficiency from 8% with the TiO2 electrode to 10.9% with the Al2O3 electrode. Because the Al2O3 is mainly acting as a meso-scale scaffold, and does not play a role in photoexcitation, the researchers call this device a “meso-superstructured solar cell” (MSSC). “The alumina is acting as a scaffold for the perovskite layer, and subsequently the hole-conductor which is coated on top of the perovskite layer,” Snaith said. “It is not electronically active, but purely acting as a physical support.”It is very surprising and would not have been predicted,” he added. “However, in hindsight we can see where the efficiency gains come from. The real surprise is that the perovskite layer is so effective at transporting charge and generating high photovoltage in the solar cell.”The scientists expect that the efficiency can be further improved in the future by various means, such as experimenting with new perovskites, using other semiconductors, and extending the absorption range.”This work moves low-cost solution-processable solar cells significantly closer to the performance of perfectly crystalline semiconductors, while at the same time opening extensive possibilities for future research and development,” Snaith said. Explore further Journal information: Science A comparison of the charge transfer and transport in (left) a solar cell with a titanium dioxide electrode (where excitons travel through the titanium dioxide) and (right) a solar cell with an alumina electrode (where excitons travel more quickly through the thin perovskite layer). Credit: Michael M. Lee, et al. ©2012 AAAS Citation: ‘Superstructured’ solar cells achieve record efficiency of 10.9% (2012, October 11) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-10-superstructured-solar-cells-efficiency.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

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Studies show a pathway for imported proteins through cell membrane that can

first_img Explore further Journal information: Nature (Phys.org)—Two teams of researchers have been looking into the ways that toxins can fool cell membranes into gaining access, thereby allowing for human ailments such as cholera. One team describes a pathway that is independent of the clathrin protein while the second team shows that such a pathway can be hijacked by toxins such as the bacteria responsible for cholera. Both teams have published their findings in the journal Nature. More information: Endophilin-A2 functions in membrane scission in clathrin-independent endocytosis, Nature (2014) DOI: 10.1038/nature14064AbstractDuring endocytosis, energy is invested to narrow the necks of cargo-containing plasma membrane invaginations to radii at which the opposing segments spontaneously coalesce, thereby leading to the detachment by scission of endocytic uptake carriers. In the clathrin pathway, dynamin uses mechanical energy from GTP hydrolysis to this effect, assisted by the BIN/amphiphysin/Rvs (BAR) domain-containing protein endophilin. Clathrin-independent endocytic events are often less reliant on dynamin, and whether in these cases BAR domain proteins such as endophilin contribute to scission has remained unexplored. Here we show, in human and other mammalian cell lines, that endophilin-A2 (endoA2) specifically and functionally associates with very early uptake structures that are induced by the bacterial Shiga and cholera toxins, which are both clathrin-independent endocytic cargoes. In controlled in vitro systems, endoA2 reshapes membranes before scission. Furthermore, we demonstrate that endoA2, dynamin and actin contribute in parallel to the scission of Shiga-toxin-induced tubules. Our results establish a novel function of endoA2 in clathrin-independent endocytosis. They document that distinct scission factors operate in an additive manner, and predict that specificity within a given uptake process arises from defined combinations of universal modules. Our findings highlight a previously unnoticed link between membrane scaffolding by endoA2 and pulling-force-driven dynamic scission. Mitosis mystery solved as role of key protein is confirmed EndoA2 localization to endocytic pathways. Credit: Nature (2014) doi:10.1038/nature14064center_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. One of the ways our bodies try to keep us healthy is by maintaining a plasma membrane around every one of our cells—the membrane’s job is to keep out harmful substances while allowing those that are beneficial to pass through—no easy feat. One of the ways the membrane does this job is through a protein called clathrin—the process by which it does so, under normal conditions, is called clathrin-mediated endocytosis (CME). In this new effort, one team has found that there is a clathrin independent process whereby proteins are allowed to enter cells—they’ve named it fast endophilin-mediated endocytosis (FEME), while the other team has found that some bacteria are able to take advantage of this process to create channels to get inside cells and cause problems.FEME, the first team found, appears to be triggered by membrane-bound receptor proteins or by bacterial toxins. The molecules in the protein appear to be converted to a form that is able to attract the endophilin protein which causes the membrane to invaginate into tubules which eventually form into visicles containing proteins or worse toxins. The second team found that the process involves endophylin, dynamin and actin proteins, in ways that allow the channel to come into existence, suggesting that some bacteria may even drive the process.These findings by the two teams suggest there are pathways into our cells that scientists still don’t understand and also provide avenues for additional studies in a variety of ways—such as looking into how bacteria are able to recruit endophilin in either FEME or CME and whether there are substances that might prevent it from happening in the first, place, bolstering the cell membrane defenses that are trying to keep us healthy. Citation: Studies show a pathway for imported proteins through cell membrane that can be hijacked by toxins (2014, December 18) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2014-12-pathway-imported-proteins-cell-membrane.html © 2014 Phys.orglast_img read more

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Salt of this earth

first_imgThis is perhaps the most befitting tribute an artiste could pay to the spirit of nationalism and swadharma synonymous with Mahatma Gandhi. After stunning the audience with her last show – held in Delhi in September 2013 – of artworks that married khadi with ajrakh traditions of printing and dyeing, Delhi-based artiste Shelly Jyoti is now presenting a new body of works in tandem with the Gandhian theory of satyagraha. The show titled Salt: The Great March II (Re-Contextualising Ajrakh Textile Traditions on khadi in Contemporary Art and Craft), will be held at The Art Gallery, India International Centre. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The show will be inaugurated by Tara Gandhi Bhattacharya (grand daughter of Mahatma Gandhi and Chairperson, Kasturba Gandhi Memorial Trust). The show includes site-specific textile (khadi fabric) installations, garments with ajrakh printing, paintings that document 21st century textile traditions of India using clothing samplers, twenty four artworks utilizing Ajrakh textile traditions and a spoken poetry video film.Talking about why she has been attracted to the Ajrakh tradition, Jyoti says, ‘Ajrakh is one of the oldest types of block printing on textiles still practiced in parts of Gujarat and Rajasthan. This is a centuries-old craft practiced by Khatris, characterized by its complex geometrical patterns, its use of natural dyes and its skilled, extensive production process. The patterns share similarities with ancient Indus Valley Civilization patterns, and the patterns of medieval cloths traded along the Indian Ocean route. The partition of India and Pakistan hugely affected the practice and trading of block-printed textiles. Many families were split up over the two countries, and displaced into new surroundings. I personally feel responsible towards the craft as I feel heritage should be preserved and documented through visual art works.’ Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixSalt: The Great March II is a sequel project to Salt: The Great March I which was exhibited at Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts in Sept-Oct 2013. The Salt March series II, like its first edition, explores salt as a symbol of non-violence. The project is inspired by the Gandhian theory of satyagraha – a challenge to one’s own truth with stress on self-purification, self-examination and self-assessment. It stimulates our conscience and soul searching for the uplift of all (sarvodaya). These works further explore the practice of nonviolence, tolerance, peace and harmony through the narratives of swadeshi politics. The ‘Salt’ series draws upon the history of India’s colonial past and Mahatma Gandhi’s 1930 Dandi March, which began the Salt Satyagraha and became an important part of the Indian independence movement.last_img read more

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Horsetrading allegations Yadav comes in defence of Kejriwal

first_imgCalling as “sting-fest” emergence of certain audio clips purportedly featuring Kejriwal’s voice, Yadav said “innocuous conversations” were being presented as stings to “discredit” AAP.”One incident is being used to discredit the entire movement. Now innocuous conversations are also being presented as stings. Big accusations are flying sans any evidence. The media is happy to dish it all with a glee,” a post on his Facebook page said.”Whatever our internal differences, no one from this movement can possibly enjoy let alone join this mudslinging. All of us must join hands to preserve the organisationl unity and ethical integrity of this movement,” it added. Also Read – Need to understand why law graduate’s natural choice is not legal profession: CJIThis assumes significant as Yadav and Prashant Bhushan, who were ousted from AAP’s Political Affairs Committee, have been at odds with the party leadership over various issues including efforts to form a government with the help of Congress last year.Former party Member of Legislative Assembly Rajesh Garg on Wednesday had accused Kejriwal of trying to poach six Congress MLAs to form government last year following which the party’s prominent Mumbai face Anjali Damania quit the party. Also Read – Health remains key challenge in India’s development: KovindOn Friday former Congress legislator Asif Mohammed Khan alleged that a senior AAP leader had offered him a ministerial berth in return for support.”The manthan in the last few days has produced good deal of visha; it’s time now for amrita. Or so I hope,” he said.Yadav, who had also issued a joint letter with Bhushan rejecting the allegations of anti-party activities against them, wondered whether “powerful forces” were behind the tumult in the party. “… Is this situation playing into the hands of those powerful forces who would rather that the idea of AAP is nipped in the bud?,” he asked adding the need to “resist” such designs.”The spate of attacks on the party in the last two days can only evoke deep anguish. Have received messages from thousands of volunteers. Everyone is hurt and pained,” he said.Meanhwile, Shahid Azad –who was a part of the AAP’s minority wing –, and who leaked the Kejriwal audio, said he just wanted to bring to the notice the issues discussed by the top leadership.”The real intention is not to disrespect or harm the party. I just want to point out the party leadership talking about various issues between them.”They talk about eradication of communal politics, which is one of our ideals to achieve. I want this issue to be discussed. This audio tape is only confined to that extent and nothing else,” Azad saidlast_img read more

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Govt to set up West Bengal Film Academy

first_imgKolkata: The state government has set up West Bengal Film Academy (WBFA) to ensure an overall development and promotion of the film sector in the state.It may be mentioned that a notification has been issued, announcing the setting up of WBFA. There are a total of 23 members in it, with Aroop Biswas, the state Youth Services and Sports minister, as its chairman.The members of WBFA include personalities from the film industry, representatives of different associations, senior officials of the state Information and Cultural Affairs department, etc. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsDirector Goutam Ghosh, actor Prosenjit Chatterjee, MP and actor Dipak Adhikari, MP Satabdi Roy, director Shoojit Sircar, Srikanta Mohta and many others from the film industry are in WBFA. Moreover, the presidents of the bodies, including Federation of Cine Technician and Workers of Eastern India and Eastern India Motion Pictures Association, are also its members. Among state government officials, Principal Secretary of the Information and Cultural Affairs department, Finance Secretary, Director of Films, Director and CEO of Roopkala Kendra and managing director of West Bengal Film Development Corporation Limited, are also members of WBFA. The CEO of Nandan and Director of Kolkata International Film Festival is the member-secretary and its convener. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedIt has been stated that the step to set up WBFA has been taken to encourage and promote development of films and to act as an “umbrella body” for all issues related to the film industry. With setting up of the same, stress will be given on the development of infrastructure needed for the industry.Moreover, it will also ensure creation of employment opportunities in the sector and at the same time, the body can also give advice on various ongoing issues, to sort out the problems faced by producers, distributors and exhibitors. The body can also extend necessary help in connection with the ongoing schemes such as group mediclaim policies, accident insurance schemes for the cine and television artistes and workers in the studios.Members of WBFA will also seek to ensure further development of Roopkala Kendra, West Bengal Film Development Corporation Limited, Cinema Centenary Building and other related institutions.last_img read more

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Outsiders reaping benefits of Bengals health schemes

first_imgKolkata: Thousands of people from neighbouring states are getting benefits of various health schemes initiated by the Bengal government.Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s dream projects of providing free-of-cost health services in all state-run hospitals and medical colleges, have already become a great success with a large number of people availing free treatment at the hospitals. Now, it has been found that many patients from neighbouring states and countries are also benefitting from the health schemes.The success of the project has gone to the extent where a large number of people are coming to the city to undergo critical surgeries at various hospitals, thereby availing the benefits of the health schemes started by the Mamata Banerjee government. According to a senior Health department official, people from outside the state are reaping the benefits of the projects and many of these patients are undergoing critical surgeries at various state-run medical colleges in the city, free-of-cost.A sizeable number of patients are from Bangladesh. In most of the cases, the state Health department is clueless about the whereabouts of these patients coming from outside, as they show themselves to be local residents. After the disease is cured, the patients go back to their respective native places. This in turn is creating a pressure on the state government.”We cannot stop a patient from outside from being treated at a government hospital free-of-cost, only because he/she is not a resident of the state. Thus, many outside patients are found to be getting the benefits of various health schemes of the state,” a senior official of the Health department said.It has been found that in many cases, the patients mention the address of their local relatives, where they stay during their visit to the state. Most of these outside patients are from Jharkhand and Bihar, among other states. A large number of people from Bangladesh and Nepal also visit the hospitals.last_img read more

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75 magnitude earthquake strongly felt in Chinas Xinjiang

first_imgA powerful 7.5 earthquake that jolted Afghanistan, Pakistan and India on Monday was also strongly felt in parts of northwest China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.Residents of Kashgar, Hotan, Aksu and Kizilsu in southern Xinjiang felt the quake and many ran out of their homes. “First, we felt a minor quake and then a strong one. People rushed out of their buildings to open ground,” Kashgar resident Feng Zhuoyi said, adding that she felt dizzy when the tremor struck. Also Read – Nine hurt in accident at fireworks show in French resortHowever, there have been no reports of casualties or collapsed houses in Xinjiang, fire service officials told state-run Xinhua new agency. At least 105 people were killed and over 1,000 others injured on Monday as a strong 7.5 earthquake rocked northern Pakistan. The quake’s epicentre was located near Jurm in northeast Afghanistan, 250 kilometres from Kabul and at a depth of 213.5 kms, according to the US Geological Survey.last_img read more

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NDA destroying key institutions TMC to save country Mamata

first_imgKolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Friday slammed the BJP-led NDA government at the Centre for allegedly destroying key Indian institutions such as the CBI and the RBI. The Trinamool Congress (TMC) could play a vital role in saving the country from such destructions, the party supremo said. “They (the NDA government) are destroying institutions. They are trying to change the way the RBI and the CBI function. The party that has made ‘building statues’ its poll agenda will itself become a statue after the coming Lok Sabha election,” she told a party meeting here. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal life Banerjee, who gave a call for a mega rally at the Brigade Parade Ground here in January, said the saffron party is only interested in creating communal divisions by updating National Register of Citizens (NRC). “The TMC will not tolerate such exercises. The party will play a bigger role in the coming days to save the country from the BJP,” she asserted. The CM also said that she would invite all opposition leaders to the TMC rally in January and put up a united fight against the BJP. “BJP hatao, desh bachao will be our slogan at the rally,” she stated. Referring to the BJP’s scheduled ‘rath yatra’ in the state next month, Banerjee said, “The saffron party is organising a political ‘yatra’. Our workers, on the other hand, will organise ‘ekta yatra’, aimed at uniting all communities.”last_img read more

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Matildas Delhi debut

first_imgEver thought how exciting it would be to witness your childhood favourite persona on stage, in the very Capital just before Christmas? There is a good news for all Roald Dahl fans as his famous novel ‘Matilda’ has been adapted into a play by the KidsWorld Theatre Group duo Bubbles Sabharwal and Lushin Dubey with performances on till Sunday at DLF Promenade.Talking about the play titled ‘Oye Matilda! Tu hai Ustad!’ co-director Bubbles Sabharwal said, “Our play is contemporary, and would connect well with the Delhi audience as in the play, Matilda’s family lives in West Delhi. While Mr Fernandez is a ‘jugadu’ guy, Mrs Fernandez is a materialistic consumer freak, and their son, Matilda’s brother is a phone freak. We have also written the play in Hinglish, just the way delhiites speak now. We’ve also composed a one-of-a-kind song, ‘Arre main hu ustad’ which is sung by the father, entirely based on the Hinglish dialect spoken these days. Our musician Laura Santana has done the music composition.” Also Read – Add new books to your shelf”It took us five-six weeks to prepare the play. These children come to us for a workshop, and now they are getting an opportunity to portray their skills at DLF. They’ve learnt teamwork, projection, working with props… all these lessons integrated together produces the play entirely,” informed Bubbles Sabharwal.When asked about the challenges Lushin and she had faced while working with children, Bubbles remarked, “I have been working with children for about 27 years, and noticed that people do not take children seriously. But over the years, now the situation has improved. We’ve been lucky to have good sponsors with God’s grace. Mothers would usually get their children for workshops as part of holiday activities, without knowing how it leads to personality enhancement, as over the years, a lot of life skills are learnt on stage. The first challenge is finding a sponsor, someone who beliefs in the cause of children. Children are like life insurance, you know you invested right when you open up the policy 20 years later. Similarly, theatre gives children a tremendous amount of confidence in dealing with people. The other challenge is to make the parents realise that if they allow the children two hours per day for five days a week, it is time well spent.” Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThe duo is expecting a family audience for the show, with very little options of family entertainment available these days. Matilda is a novel by prominent British storyteller Roald Dahl, that tells the tale of a genius little girl who is utterly ignored by her family. Some other famous works of Roald Dahl are ‘The Twits’, ‘The Witches’, ‘The BFG’, and ‘Charlie and the chocolate factory’, most of which have been adapted into films. Drop by with your little ones towards the end of the week to experience the awe in magic, as you watch children unfold the tale of Delhi’s Matilda.last_img read more

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New Town to soon get first Primary Health Centre

first_imgKolkata: The first Primary Health Centre (PHC) in New Town will be opened shortly.The centre will be manned by a specialised doctor and the facility will be expanded over a period of time. It may be mentioned that New Town is coming up as a medical hub and many private players have set up their hospitals and medical centres in the area. They are also treating every type of disease including cancer. However, the need for setting up a state-run institution was urgently felt as a part of the expansion of the net of state-run health establishments. Also Read – Bose & Gandhi: More similar than apart, says Sugata BoseIt may be recalled that availing treatment in a state-run medical establishment in Bengal has become completely free. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has also said that to get the best quality treatment, people from neighbouring states and countries are coming to Bengal. Bengal is the only state in the country where heart transplantation and kidney transplantation are done free of cost in the state-run hospitals. In this backdrop, the PHC in New Town is also expected to provide quality treatment to the patients, free of cost.last_img read more

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White tiger from Patna set to greet Kolkata Zoo visitors

first_imgKolkata: The Alipore Zoological Garden is bringing in a white tiger from the Sanjay Gandhi Biological Park popularly known as Patna Zoo to augment the tiger population in the city zoo. Apart from the white tiger, six blackbucks and a pair of sambar deer will also be brought from the Patna zoo. The animals are being procured as a part of exchange programme with the Alipore zoo sending a female zebra to Patna.”The six-year-old white male tiger that we are bringing from Patna zoo is mainly for the purpose of breeding to increase the tiger population at the zoo. The white tiger has yellow gene so cross breeding can be done with the yellow tigers as well,” said Asis Kumar Samanta, director of Alipore Zoo. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataThe Alipore Zoo presently has three white tigers — Bishal, Rupa and Rishi and three Royal Bengal tigers Payel, Tista and Raja. Tigers remain compatible for mating from the age of 5 to a maximum of 9 years. However, all male tigers at the zoo are over the age of 10 years. So the white male tiger is being brought from outside. “We are trying to make arrangements to procure the tiger by next week while the sambar deer and blackbucks will be brought after the summer months. It will be easier for them to adjust to the weather in the city after summer,” a senior official of Alipore Zoo said. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateThe zebra population at the city zoo is presently ten with seven females. Two of the three males are juveniles and there is the only one adult male in the mating game. Five of the seven adult females are fit for breeding but they have only one partner. The female zebra that will be sent is aged around six years. “We are in talks with a number of zoo to bring an adult male zebra,” the official added. The Alipore Zoo presently has three sambar deer and a single deer. The six blackbucks will make our deer population reasonably healthy. The Patna Zoo has a single male zebra Chottu. The plan is to mate him with the female being procured from Alipore Zoo to augment the zebra population.last_img read more

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Mexico through the lens of Szalay

first_img‘Mexico in the World Heritage’ – a collection of stunning photographs showcasing the architecture, art, and culture of the country – are on display at the Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts, until September 14.Organised by The Embassy of Mexico in India, the collection has images captured by Mexican photographer Adalberto Ríos Szalay in which he highlights the sites and practices of the country that have been listed as World Heritage by UNESCO. Mexico is ranked in 7th place by UNESCO for its cultural and natural sites that are of remarkable value to humanity. In Mexico, there are 35 sites included in the list as of 2018: 27 cultural sites, 6 natural sites, and 2 mixed sites. Additionally, Mexico has 9 listed intangible cultural heritage of humanity. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThis exhibition aims to initiate creative dialogues between Mexico and India and explore the opportunities of knowledge exchange on restoration, conservation, and promotion of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Mexico, as India, is one of the finest examples of the complexity of these processes and of the gradual formation and transformation of the idea of cultural heritage. The exhibition is open from 11 am to 7 pm every day. (Except Monday)last_img read more

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Swagatalakshmi pays her tribute to Tagore

first_imgAs a gift to lovers of Rabindra sangeet, Swagatalakshmi Dasgupta – a noted Randindra Sangeet exponent – will be presenting a solo programme at Rabindra Sadan, on May 2 (the eve of Kabipaksha).The programme will start with the last song composed by Rabindra Nath and end with the poet’s first song ‘Nirab Rajani Dekho’. Also at the event, Bhavna Cassettes and Records will bring out an experimental CD titled ‘Ogo Bideshini’ by Dasgupta. Tagore had come in contact with Western music from his early life. That is why, in many of his compositions, the influence of Western music is evident. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfTherefore, the CD will have the singer’s compilation of original Western songs and the songs composed by Tagore. The compilation will also have some English, Scottish and Irish original songs, from which Tagore has taken the tunes and later composed his songs. Some of these songs are ‘Drink to me’, ‘Auld lang sune’, ‘Nancy lee’, ‘British Grenadiers’, ‘In good King Charles’, to name a few. The Bengal compositions include ‘Kotobaro bhebechinu’, ‘Purano sei diner kotha’, ‘Kali kali bolore aj’, ‘O dekhbi re bhai’, ‘Sokoli Phuralo’, etc. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveSwagatalakshmi got her initial training from her father Pabitra Dasgupta, who used to sing various types of songs when she was a kid. And, even her mother Subrata was a student of great Rabindrasangeet exponent Debabrata Biswas. After her mother’s demise, Swagatalakshmi translated 53 of Tagore songs which were later published in a book titled ‘Galaxy’. The singer also had the honour to sing in Parliament in 1995 and took part in functions all over the globe. Dasgupta was the playback singer in Rituporno Ghosh’s Chokher Bali. She got an award for singing ‘Eki labonye purno pran’ in the playback in a film directed by Gautam Ghosh. During her career, she came in contact with stalwarts like Kanika Bandyopadhyay, Supriyo Thakur, Suchitra Mitra, William Radice, Amartya Sen, among others. Dasgupta has given music to 75 songs from ‘Gitabitan’ which have not been given the musical form.last_img read more

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High School Production of Alien goes Viral

first_imgIn space, no-one can hear you scream, but there was certainly much applause for a high school production of Alien. Staged by the Drama Club at North Bergen High School in New Jersey, it boasted performances, detailed sets, and costumes that have turned the show from a local curiosity to a worldwide sensation. The offbeat and ambitious choice of material has earned rave reviews, with photos and footage circulating on social media. Parents proudly posted lovingly-recreated sequences, such as the infamous egg opening in which Kane (played by John Hurt in the 1979 movie) is attacked by the iconic face-hugger.American actress Sigourney Weaver with director Ridley Scott on the set of his movie ‘Alien’. Photo by Twentieth Century Fox Film Corpo/Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty ImagesIt wasn’t long before celebrities joined the conversation. Adam Savage (Mythbusters) loved what he saw and tweeted some praise. Elijah Wood (Lord Of The Rings) and Rosario Dawson (Daredevil) also showed support.The Governor of New Jersey Phil Murphy pitched in. But the best was yet to come when the official @AlienAnthology account commented, “We are impressed!”Naturally, the school budget didn’t stretch to a multi-million dollar price tag. The Guardian writes that “costumes and sets were made largely from recycled materials.”Ridley Scott on the set of ‘Blade Runner’. Photo by Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty ImagesEven so, the homemade experience blew people away, with The Hollywood Reporter commenting that they “appear to be almost exact replicas of those from the Ridley Scott film that spawned a massive franchise.”BBC News refers to “airlock doors with moving parts and the so-called ‘space jockey’ — the lone pilot of a derelict spaceship, which the Nostromo crew investigates.” The notorious “chest-burster” scene was accomplished with a hand puppet.The idea to bring the legendary xenomorph to New Jersey was the brainchild of director Perfecto Cuervo who, together with art director Steven Defendini, realized this would be a true challenge. Recalling his words to Cuervo, Defendini said in The Guardian, “I don’t even know if that is a thing that is possible but if the students are engaged, then I think we can make it happen, however, we make it happen.”A model of a Xenomorph from the ‘Alien’ film franchise. The model is made by NECA.The pair raided their bank accounts to plow approximately $3,500 into the feature-length play, which ran for two nights in March. Around 20 students were involved and the group even shot a trailer.To further create the right ambiance, the actual film was projected behind the stagebound action, giving audiences the opportunity to compare and contrast scenes like the exciting climax. In this, heroine Ripley (Sigourney Weaver’s classic role) ejects the creature into space.North Bergen is described as “one of the most underfunded schools in the entire state”, making the achievement even more of an eye-opener. For Cuervo and Defendini the experience is all about inspiring young minds and broadening horizons.“I think the best thing for us was that we showed the kids, and the kids kind of pieced it together themselves, that you can really make something out of nothing,” Defendini remarked.North Bergen High School. Photo by Luigi Novi CC BY 3.0As for the official franchise, Alien grew from relatively humble beginnings into a movie phenomenon. The alien’s distinctive design was the work of Swiss artist H.R. Giger, who together with visionary director Scott crafted a nightmare with an enduring legacy.Following three sequels, the alien locked horns with another sci-fi horror favorite for the Alien vs. Predator series. Scott then returned to the concept for prequels Prometheus (2012) and most recently Alien: Covenant (2017). An animated series based on the game Alien: Isolation is streaming online.H.R. Giger, photographed in July 2012. Photo by Matthias Belz CC BY-SA 3.0James Cameron, who directed Aliens in 1986, is currently working with Neill Blomkamp (District 9) on a new installment based on the latter’s concept. This reportedly ignores Alien³ onwards, creating an alternate timeline.Read another story from us: Can You Dig It? New Shaft Movie Combines 3 Generations of the Iconic DetectiveThe original movie celebrates its 40th anniversary this month, making the play an unexpectedly poignant tribute. And if North Bergen High think this is the end for Alien: The Play, they’re wrong. Because the Mayor is talking about reaching into the coffers for extra performances, meaning this could be a cult classic in the making.last_img read more

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Brazilian club signs goalkeeper convicted of murdering his girlfriend and feeding her

first_imgBrazilian goalkeeper Bruno Fernandes de Souza didn’t deserve a second chance, but he got one anyway.The former goalkeeper for Flamengo of Brazil’s Serie A just signed to play with Brazilian BOA Esporte after serving 7 years of a 22-year prison sentence for killing his mistress and feeding her remains to his dogs.de Souza did not actually kill the woman, but ordered her torture and murder, which took place in his apartment.Not surprisingly, fans of his new team are outraged, and the team has already lost four sponsors. They probably won’t be the last. Advertisement Aside from the shock of a team signing a convicted murderer, how does someone only do 7 years for killing someone?Here’s de Souza making saves during his playing career before he started killing people:last_img read more

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VIDEO KState coach Bill Snyder gives weak explanation for blocking player transfer

first_img A rare bad look for Bill Snyder, but a bad look nonetheless. Just let the kid go.“The feeling all along, if you’re a No. 2, you probably want to be a No. 1. If you have the option to leave and you have 22 No. 2’s on your team leaving, you don’t have much of a team left. It doesn’t make sense to not try to prevent that from happening.” Here’s Snyder explaining his decision:Bill Snyder goes on a dissertation about the decision to deny Corey Sutton the opportunity to transfer. @KCTV5 #KState #KstateFB pic.twitter.com/qTUkfnb7bO— Andrew Carter (@Andrew__Carter) June 2, 2017 Advertisementcenter_img Legendary Kansas State Head Coach Bill Snyder is entering a self-inflicted PR disaster by blocking Wildcat receiver Corey Sutton’s transfer to 35 schools.Snyder met with reporters and attempted to explain why he was not allowing Sutton to freely transfer. He didn’t cite his specific issue with Sutton leaving the program, and for some reason, mentioned that Sutton had failed two drug tests.So?Snyder is a unilaterally respected college football coaching legend for building a powerhouse program in the middle of the Dust Bowl, but we’ve seen this movie before, and it always ends up in bad press for the coach blocking the transfer.last_img read more

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The Falcons confirmed who they really are against the Patriots

first_imgNotre Dame has reached their ceilingNotre Dame dominated USC on Saturday, and many are announcing the return of the Irish as a playoff contender.Colin disagrees, and thinks a senior dominated Irish offensive line has been able to physically dominate weaker opponents by running the ball down their throat, which gives the appearance of dominance, but they’ve already reached their ceiling. He believes other top teams are still improving, and still have another gear to reach down the stretch.Notre Dame is better than they have been, but this is as good as they’ll get.Guests:Michael Vick – FS1 NFL Analyst is in-studio to talk Cam Newton’s inconsistency, and what he saw out of Brett Hundley.Peter King – Founder and Editor-in-Chief of the MMQB joins the show to discuss the Falcons lackluster performance in New England; if the Cowboys are finally hitting their stride; why Derek Carr’s game winning drive against the Chiefs is a huge step for his career; and why Chuck Pagano could be fired at any time.Rob Ryan – FS1 NFL analyst is in-studio to break down the improved Dallas pass rush; and why NFL coaches don’t care about a draft pick’s college record.Alex Rodriguez – FS1 MLB Analyst is in-studio to explain why sabermetrics doesn’t work in the postseason; his unique connection to The U; and what it’s like working with former rival Big Papi.Bucky Brooks –  NFL Analyst and former scout is in-studio discussing the Colts future; why they should trade Andrew Luck; and what characteristics he looks for in a college pass rusher. The Falcons showed who they really are against the PatriotsThe Falcons gave a lackluster performance in their Super Bowl rematch against the Patriots, and Colin thinks it represents who the Falcons are as a franchise more than their incredible Super Bowl run from last season.Matt Ryan has regressed to the mean after an MVP season a year ago under Kyle Shanahan. Shanhan is now gone, and what’s left is an average team that’s never own their division in back-to-back years.The truth is, the Falcons having a 28-3 lead against the Patriots in the first place was a bigger shocker than the fact they coughed it up.Separation Sunday in the NFLThe Patriots started the year slowly, and have been gashed on defense, but in a Super Bowl matchup with Atlanta, they looked like they’re starting to hit their stride after re-tooling much of their roster in the offseason.While the first third of the season has seen several surprise teams, Sunday was the day when powers like New England, Seattle, Dallas, and Pittsburgh, showed they will still have to be dealt with come playoff time.This is the part of the NFL season when the pretenders are separated from the contenders, and the list of the contenders always features the usual suspects.last_img read more

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