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Делегация кипрских бизнесменов, научных работников, и специалистов по туризму во главе с Никосом Роландес, Министром торговли, промышленности и туризма, прибыла в российскую столицу с деловым визитом. Делегация посетит семинар по высоким технологиям, который состоится в Москве по инициативе Министерства торговли Кипра и Ассоциации технологического образования Российской академии наук. Участники семинара обсудят проблемы тесного сотрудничества между двумя странами в области высоких технологий
NICOSIA, March 20 (Itar-Tass) -- A delegation of Cyprus businessmen, scientific workers, and tourism specialists, led by Nicos Rolandes, Minister of Trade, Industry and Tourism, heads for the Russian capital on Onday for a business visit.
The delegation will attend a seminar on high technologies, which is to be held in Moscow on the initiative of the Cyprus Ministry of Trade and the Association of Technological Education of the Russian Academy of Sciences.
Participants in the seminar will discuss matters concerning close cooperation between the twocountries in the field of high technologies, Rolandes said on the eve of his trip to Moscow.
The delegation's visit is of much importance to Cyprus which, in accordance with its new economic policy, reorganises its economy and determines new reference-points. A "high-tech databank" is being established in Cyprus to include the results of research, scientific development efforts for their further materialisation both in Cyprus and in other countries in the Eastern Mediterranean, Rolandes pointed out.
An understanding on cooperation with a number of technologically developed countries has already been reached. As far as Russia is concerned, the purpose of the seminar is for Cyprus to attract high technologies which are developed by the scientists of the friendly country. The prestige of Russian science is still rather high and the use of its achievements in practice will undoubtedly be of benefit to both Russia, Cyprus, and countries in the region, the Cyprus Minister emphasised.
Nicos Rolandes is to attend the opening of an international tourism exhibition in Moscow.
© 1996-2000 ITAR-TASS. All rights reserved
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Associated Press / March 2, 2000 10:57 a.m. EST
Russia reports more than 30,000 infected with HIV
Очень быстро увеличивается число зарегистрированных случаев HIV в России. Теперь здесь больше чем 30,000 инфицированных людей, и более 50% из них заразились СПИДом в прошлом году. 90% употребляют наркотики.
Ирина Савченко, специалист Министерства здравоохранения по предупреждению СПИДа, заявила, что быстрое увеличение случаев заражения связано с тем, что министерство присоединилось к новой кампании против СПИДа в сотрудничестве с движением "Доктора без границ".
MOSCOW -- Registered HIV cases in Russia are rising steeply and there are now more than 30,000 infected people, with more than 50 percent of them contracting AIDS last year, a health official said Thursday.
Irina Savchenko, a Health Ministry specialist on AIDS prevention, announced the rapid increase as the ministry kicked off a new anti-AIDS campaign in cooperation with Doctors Without Borders. The campaign will spread information on safe sex and the dangers of drug use. Savchenko said that the number of people who contracted AIDS in 1999 was four times higher than in the previous year. Ninety percent of those infected are young drug addicts, she said. The Russian government and health officials were slow to react to the emergence of AIDS and HIV, the virus that causes the disease. In the early 1990s, the few cases recorded in Russia were limited mostly to homosexual men.
But drug abuse and prostitution have flourished in post-Soviet Russia, and intravenous users now account for 90 percent of new cases. Meanwhile, the number of registered alcoholics in Russia has nearly doubled since 1992 to 2.2 million, Deputy Health Minister Olga Sharapova said Thursday. More than 110,000 of the alcoholics are aged 12-16, she said, according to the ITAR-Tass news agency.
© 2000 The Associated Press
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UniScience / 02-Mar-2000
Collisions Of Galaxies Create Cosmic Weather System
Столкновение галактик формирует космическую погоду
A colossal cosmic "weather system" produced by the collision of two giant clusters of galaxies has been imaged by NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. For the first time, the pressure fronts in the system can be traced in detail.
The fronts show a bright but relatively cool 50 million degree central region embedded in a large elongated cloud of 70 million degree gas, all of which is roiling in a faint "atmosphere" of 100 million degree gas.
"We can compare this to an intergalactic cold front," said Maxim Markevitch of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, Mass., and leader of the international team involved in the analysis of the observations. "A major difference is that in this case, cold means 70 million degrees."
The gas clouds are in the core of a galaxy cluster known as Abell 2142. The cluster is six million light years across and contains hundreds of galaxies and enough gas to make a thousand more. It is one of the most massive objects in the universe.
Galaxy clusters grow to vast sizes as smaller clusters are pulled inward under the influence of gravity. They collide and merge over the course of billions of years, releasing tremendous amounts of energy that heats the cluster gas to 100 million degrees.
The Chandra data provides the first detailed look at the late stages of this merger process. Previously, scientists had used the German-US Roentgen satellite to produce a broad brush picture of the cluster. The elongated shape of the bright cloud suggested that two clouds were in the process of coalescing into one, but the details remained unclear. Chandra is able to measure variations of temperature, density and pressure with unprecedented resolution.
" Now we can begin to understand the physics of these mergers, which are among the most energetic events in the universe," said Markevitch. "The pressure and density maps of the cluster show a sharp boundary that can only exist in the moving environment of a merger."
With this information, scientists can make a comparison with computer simulations of cosmic mergers. This comparison, which is in the early stages, shows that this merger has progressed to an advanced stage.
Strong shock waves predicted by the theory for the initial collision of clusters are not observed. It appears likely that these sub-clusters have collided two or three times in a billion years or more, and have nearly completed their merger.
The observations were made on August 20, 1999 using the Advanced CCD Imaging Spectrometer (ACIS). The team involved scientists from Harvard-Smithsonian; the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center; the University of Hawaii; the University of Birmingham, U.K.; the University of Wollongong, Australia; the Space Research Organization in the Netherlands; the University of Rome, Italy; and the Russian Academy of Sciences.
The results will be published in an upcoming issue of the Astrophysical Journal. The ACIS instrument was built for NASA by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Pennsylvania State University. NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., manages the Chandra program. RW, Inc., Redondo Beach, Calif., is the prime contractor for the spacecraft. The Smithsonian's Chandra X-ray Center controls science and flight operations from Cambridge, Mass. For images connected to this release, and to follow Chandra's progress, visit the Chandra sites at: Harvard and at NASA. High resolution digital versions of the X-ray image (JPG, 300 dpi TIFF) are available at the Internet sites listed above.
© 1995-2000 UniSci. All rights reserved.
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The Associated Press / Wednesday March 1 11:15 AM ET
Russian Environmentalists Targeted
В России преследуют защитников окружающей среды
- By VLADIMIR ISACHENKOV Associated Press Writer
MOSCOW (AP) -- Prosecutors have launched investigations into several Russian environmental groups, a move the groups says is intended to intimidate them. In recent days, one environmental group has been approached by prosecutors and tax police, while police entered another group's office and demanded it be shut down for building violations. The investigations are focused on the groups' funding, especially from abroad, said Oleg Bodrov, the head of the Green World group. "It seems that we have gotten in someone's way," Bodrov said in a telephone interview. Yuri Strelnikov, the head of the environmental protection desk at the Prosecutor General's office, confirmed that a probe into environmental groups was underway, but denied that it was aimed at bullying the groups. He refused to give further details. Ivan Blokov, an activist with the international environmental group Greenpeace, said police entered the group's Moscow headquarters today and ordered it sealed off because it had failed to get official permission for a recent renovation. When Greenpeace activists demanded to see an official order, the police retreated. "The campaign against environmental groups seems to be a well-coordinated effort," Blokov said. "There has been nothing like it in recent years." He said the campaign was part of an effort to silence environmentalists' criticism of various industrial projects. The probe also has targeted environmental groups in the Russian Far East, St. Petersburg and Dubna, a city near Moscow, he added.
Bodrov's Green World group, based in the northern city of Sosnovy Bor, has irritated local officials with its campaign against construction of an oil terminal. The group was approached by local prosecutors last week, with a directive from the federal Prosecutor General's office to check environmental groups, "paying special attention to funds received from foreign sponsors," Bodrov said. Tax police also showed up, demanding a detailed accounting of the group's activities. Russian environmentalists have had several run-ins with the authorities in recent years. Two activists, Alexander Nikitin and Grigory Pasko, were tried separately on charges of divulging state secrets for reporting on pollution by the Navy. Both were jailed pending trial, but acquitted last year.
© 2000 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.
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University Science / March 24, 2000
Russia's Potato Blight Worse Than Irish Famine's
Новые вирулентные сорта картофеля, появившиеся в России, представляют опасность для фермеров и потребителей. Патогенные микробы выдерживают суровые зимы в почве, угрожая будущему урожаю.
New virulent types of the potato late blight pathogen have emerged in Russia, threatening farmers and consumers with the destruction of an essential staple crop there, according to the Cornell-Eastern Europe-Mexico (CEEM)Potato Late Blight Program.
The new strains of Phytopthora infestans, better known as potato late blight, are far more aggressive than the pathogen that triggered the Irish potato famine of the 1840s, having evolved through sexual mating. Unlike the ld strains, the new pathogen can survive harsh winters in the soil, further endangering crops.
"Potatoes are a sustaining food crop, the second bread for many parts of Russia. A severe late blight problem could harm millions of people and possibly destabilize the region," says W. Ronnie Coffman, the chairman of CEEM and the associate dean for research at Cornell University's New York State College of Agriculture and Life Sciences."But that would depend on whether alternate food supplies could be moved into the affected areas in a timely manner."
Because of a drought-caused potato shortage in 1976, the Russian Federation and the nations of Eastern Europe imported the disease in shipments of 25,000 tons of potatoes from Mexico, where the late blight pathogen originated.
In the 1980s the Europeans successfully battled the pathogen with fungicides, says K.V. Raman, Cornell University professor of plant breeding and the executive director of CEEM. But Russia's current harsh economic conditions make fungicides unaffordable for the nation's myriad small farm holdings.
The story of the late blight pathogen is complex. There are only two mating types of this organism, the A-1 and the A-2, both fairly short-lived on their own. The Irish potato famine, though calamitous, was caused only by the A-1 and subsided gradually during the latter 19th century with the discovery of Bordeaux mixture, the first fungicide effective against late blight.
There was no A-2 mating type strain in Ireland at the time. After the famine, "only one mating type of the late blight pathogen - the A-1 that escaped Mexico in the 1840s -- was found worldwide," says William E. Fry, Cornell professor of plant pathology, whose research focuses on the late blight problem. "Sexual reproduction didn't occur then because partner mating types were found only in Mexico."
When potato tubers from Mexico arrived in Europe in 1976, some contained the A-2 strain, permitting A1 and A2 organisms to reproduce sexually and create oospores, the resting state of the pathogen.
Sergey Elansky, Moscow State University assistant professor of plant pathology, who worked in Ithaca with Cornell scientists under CEEM funding, says the pathogens proliferate freely and survive in the soil despite harsh winter conditions.
When warm and moist summers arrive, they attack the potatoes and destroy the harvest. Being the result of sexual reproduction, these spores can, in turn, reproduce and adopt other characteristics.
To date, a series of fungicides have been used to combat the late blight and have been fairly dependable for those farmers who can afford it. As a result, developing-world potato production has grown to 85 million tons from 30 million tons in the last 40 years, a greater rate of increase than for any other food crop.
In Russia, small farmers annually grow 3.4 million hectares (8.4 million acres) with an average yield of 10 tons per hectare. Total annual potato production is between 34 million and 39 million tons.
CEEM scientists see no quick solution. However, they are cooperating with other international agricultural organizations, such as the International Potato Center in Peru, the International Cooperative Program for Potato
Late Blight in Mexico, Mlochow Research Center at the Plant Breeding and Acclimatization Institute in Poland and the Vavilov Institute for Plant Research in Russia, to develop new potato varieties that resist the disease.
Research emphasis is on survival of the fittest. Researchers are crossing domestic potatoes with wild relatives from Latin America which have developed resistance naturally by co-existing with the disease for millennia.
Such research usually takes about 14 years for one variety.
Just in February, Cornell announced a blight-resistant variety, the New York 121, a white potato derived from Peruvian and Argentinean descent by Robert Plaisted, Cornell professor of plant breeding.
In the last 10 growing seasons, the St. Petersburg region of Russia has seen at least seven blight years, the Moscow region has seen five and Siberia has seen three blight years. The federation's Sakhalin Island, north of Hokkaido, Japan, has seen blighted potato harvests every year for the past decade.
CEEM's work in Eastern Europe is funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Foreign Agricultural Service, the Wallace Genetic Foundation and the Civilian Research Development Foundation. - By Blaine P. Friedlander, Jr.
© 1995-2000 UniSci. All rights reserved
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Associated Press Online / March 4, 2000
Hacking in Russia Is Serious / Хакерство в России - это серьезно
MOSCOW, Mar 04, 2000 (AP Online via COMTEX) -- Alexei Rayevsky understood early on how lucrative computer hacking can be. As a teen-ager, he broke into corporate networks, then confronted the companies with his exploits - and offered his expertise for making their systems more secure.
Unlike their counterparts in richer countries, most Russian hackers are not just motivated by the subversive thrill of cracking code and embarrassing corporate titans or government agencies -- they're driven by empty pockets.
Sure, Russian hackers still sometimes sabotage systems for fun or political reasons, and advertise their antics on irreverent Web sites. They don't broadcast how they spend the rest of their time: making money, usually illegally, sometimes with global fallout. Some of the world's biggest computer crimes have involved Russians, including break-ins at multinational banks and the Pentagon. The majority of Russia's hackers, however, are software pirates working on the country's thriving black market. Recent computer attacks on major U.S. Internet companies including Yahoo! And Amazon.com have heightened security fears among American businesses and politicians. "The threat can come from anywhere. The specific danger from Russia is that financial motivation," said John Vranesevich, a U.S. computer security consultant. His Pennsylvania-based company, AntiOnline, saw its Web site hacked last August from Russia. Rayevsky is among a few Russians who have found a legitimate way to turn their hacking background into cash: He works for Aladdin Knowledge Systems in Moscow, testing the security of clients' computers. "All hackers have that drive to prove you know everything. But Russian hackers are also professionals. It's their job," Rayevsky said. "Looking at our economy, it's understandable why many hackers work illegally." Sharp computer students in the United States are inundated with high-paying job offers. Many launch their own Web-based businesses while still in school. U.S. hackers are routinely recruited by computer security companies.
In Russia, lucrative jobs are scarce, particularly since the country's financial markets collapsed in August 1998. Most Russians have no access to the Internet, and few have home computers. Computer science students make do with outdated hardware and extremely poor phone lines. Yet Russian computer talent is abundant, thanks to a strong tradition of science education and technical training. A gregarious 22-year-old Moscow student who goes by the name Radon claims to have disabled dozens of government Web sites. Among his more frivolous escapades, he said, was placing pornographic banners on Russian police department sites. Asked how he earns money, he lowered his voice and said, with a mischievous glint in his eye, "I work with Gorbushka." At Gorbushka, an outdoor market sprawling through a park in western Moscow, tables spill over with videos, CDs and computer software -- nearly all of it bootleg. About 80 percent of the software in use in Russia is pirated, according to the Interior Ministry's department for computer crime. Radon, who spoke on condition that only his online pseudonym be used, said he can earn up to $200 for a day's work copying a new program from a company like Microsoft. His copies are then sold for a few dollars each at Gorbushka, a fraction of what they cost legally. His earnings are stunning in Russia, where the average official income is about $55 a month, according to recent government figures. Russian law enforcement agencies have tried to crack down on piracy and more sophisticated computer crimes, but observers say they lack the experts, money -- and even the computers -- they need. That has made Russian hackers surprisingly bold, Vranesevich said. "They're not even trying to cover up their identity," he said. "They use their real names to set up Western Union accounts."
In other dramatic computer scams involving Russians:
- A mathematician from St. Petersburg, Vladimir Levin, transferred $12 million from Citibank accounts by hacking bank workers' passwords. A Florida court sentenced him to three years in prison in 1998.
- Last month, a 19-year-old Russian stole credit card numbers from an Internet retailer and demanded a $100,000 ransom. When denied the money, he posted 25,000 of the numbers on a Web site.
- A group of hackers including two Russians broke into the Pentagon computer system in 1997 and stole software that coordinates the military's Global Positioning System, which is used to target missiles.
Russia still sees its share of political hackings. Both sides in the Chechnya war have seen their computers sabotaged. Hackers have had fun resisting efforts by the KGB's main successor, the Federal Security Service (FSB), to step up surveillance of the Internet. Some have reached unusual targets, such as attacks earlier this month on real estate company Web sites in Florida and Colorado, signed "Anti-FSB."
© Copyright 1999 Associated Press, All rights reserved.
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PRNewswire / Thursday March 2, 3:50 pm Eastern Time
Holographic Dimensions, Inc. Appoints Dr. Vitali Prisicar As Director of Research and Development
- SOURCE: Holographic Dimensions, Inc.
Holographic Dimensions, Inc. объявила о назначении Виталия Присикара руководителем отдела исследований. Он окончил политехнический институт в 1986 в Молдавии, степень магистра получил в Московском Физико-технологическом институте в 1989 году. Докторскую степень по прикладной физике В.Присикар получил в Уральском Государственном университете. С 1992 по 1994 году работал главным инженером отдела специальных исследований Российской академии наук и в институте прикладной физики в Молдавии, где создавал быстродействующую голографическую память для систем наведения ракет дальнего действия. Он основал и был президентом научно-производственной Компании Оптики, где проводились исследования и разработки в области голографии, лазерного медицинского оборудования и низкотемпературного магнитоплазменного оборудования. В 1993 Институт кибернетики Украинской Академии Наук, включил фирму в свой состав. Это один из немногих случаев, когда частная компания была присоединена к Академии наук.
MIAMI, March 2 /PRNewswire/ -- Holographic Dimensions, Inc. (OTC Pink Sheets: HGRM) announced today that it has appointed Dr. Vitali Prisicar to the newly established full-time position of Director of Research and Development effective February 28, 2000. The position was established for the development of the numerous applications of the Company's new digital technology and other security technologies under development.
Dr. Prisicar obtained his Bachelor of Science Degree (BS) in Electronics Engineering from the Moldova Polytechnic Institute in 1986. He obtained his Masters Degree - Science in Engineering Physics from the Moscow Engineering Physical Institute in 1989. Dr. Prisicar further obtained his Ph.D. in Applied Physics from the Uralsk State University in Russia in 1992.
Prior to his employment at Holographic Dimensions Inc. (HDI), Dr. Prisicar was an engineer-physicist for Civil Construction Co. in Santa Fe De Bogota where he developed and prototyped medical laser equipment and CD mastering equipment. During 1997, Dr. Prisicar managed an optical lab in Mexico where he worked on digital and commercial holography.
From 1994 to 1997, Dr. Prisicar was an engineer-physicist for the Military Polytechnic Institute in Quito, Ecuador. Dr. Prisicar was also awarded a ministry of defense grant for the development of laser guidance systems.
From 1992 to 1994, Dr. Prisicar was the principal engineer for the Department of Special Investigation, Russian Academy of Science, and Institute of Applied Physics in Chisinau, Moldova where he developed and designed high- speed holographic memory systems for cruise missile guidance systems.
Dr. Prisicar was also the founder and president of R&D Optics Co., where he conducted research and development in holography, laser medical equipment and low temperature magneto-plasma equipment. In 1993 the Ukrainian Academy of Science, Institute of Cybernetics, extended an invitation to R&D Optics to be included in the Academy. This was one of the few instances where a private company was invited to join the Academy of Science based on their work in the research and development of low temperature plasma physics.
Holographic Dimensions, Inc. is a vertically integrated manufacturer of holographic imagery. The Company's products are incorporated into a variety of security products including, but not limited to, credit cards, negotiable documents, event tickets, transit passes, and consumer products for marketing. For more information visit the World Wide Web page at www.hgrm.com