Российская наука и мир (дайджест) - Январь 2005 г.

2005 г.
Российская наука и мир
(по материалам зарубежной электронной прессы)

январь февраль март апрель май июнь июль август сентябрь октябрь ноябрь декабрь

    Innovations report / 21.12.2004
    Orchards Designed By Computer
    Выбрать наиболее подходящие для данной местности сельскохозяйственные культуры позволяет программа, созданная российскими учеными из Северо-Кавказского НИИ садоводства и виноградарства Россельхозакадемии (Краснодар) при поддержке РФФИ и Фонда содействия развитию МП НТС. Огромный банк данных, компьютерные карты и геоинформационная система для работы с ними уберегут садовые хозяйства от убытков даже в самые неурожайные годы. Собственно, даже от самого понятия - неурожай.

A new computer program for orchard planning, which can provide maximal profit in specific local conditions, is developed by a team from Krasnodar supported by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research and Foundation for Assistance to Small Innovative Enterprises. Recommendations offered by the program are based on the data on environmental conditions and soil-climatic requirements of orchard trees, and primarily, stone fruit crops (apricot, peach, cherry).
Potential yields of various fruit crops in a certain soil-climatic situation can be estimated using computer software developed by the horticulturists from Krasnodar (North Caucasus) on the basis of a vast data bank, digital maps, and GIS application for viewing and creating such maps. These materials were provided by scientists from Krasnodar, Moscow, and Obninsk, and the work was supported by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research and Foundation for Assistance to Small Innovative Enterprises.
This project will help orchard farmers to avoid massive losses in lean years. They will even forget about bad harvests and failure of crops, because recommended crops will be just optimal for planting in the local climate and soil conditions. Besides, if one crop fails, the loss can be covered by the yield of another crop, i.e., the program provides a kind of insurance to farmers.
"Actually, everything is simple," - says the project manager Irina Dragavtseva - "It's necessary to identify and consider the responses of crops to the environment and the potential of the latter and, afterwards, to offer an optimal crop distribution."
Firstly, the team members collected the cartographic data base for geographic information system of Krasnodar region. This GIS contains an environment for combining various maps of that region by placing one map over another like layers of a cake. Specifically, the set of superimposed maps is as follows: digital topographic map, delineations of the region's boundary, locations of 35 meteorological stations, distribution of commercial orchards, and soil map.
The two latter maps are supplied also with a server for getting information (e.g., on weather during a certain period or on soil properties) by clicking in a certain point on the map. The programmers have also developed four digital maps: one of absolute heights, the other of slope angles and aspects (which is necessary for orchard planning), and also maps illustrating the suitability of different parts of the region for cultivating pear and apple trees. Of course, the new software needs further improvement, but most important part of this business is already done.
The next step is really impressive: creation of computer bank of biological data on 71 characteristics of growth and development of fruit crops. These are phenological phases from the bud swelling to fall of the leaves, and particularly, phases of flower buds' development and tree growth on the whole. Data on capabilities of various crops for surviving frosts, droughts, and heat and for resisting pests and other vicissitudes of life are included too, as well as information on orchard management and corresponding yields of fruit trees. In total, this bank comprises data collected within a period of 14 years on 8 crops of several tens of sorts.
An intricate system for data processing (available software specially adjusted for this project) allows for using all that information as not only an enormous library that is important in itself, but also as a tool for yield prognosis. Soon, orchard farmers will find those fruit cultures and sorts, which are most adapted for the local conditions of their garden and can provide stable high yields in response to wise management.
And there will be no need for learning from mistakes while choosing the most appropriate cultures for an orchard, since the program can offer the most comfortable place for each crop and also a beneficial combination of trees to obtain high yields every year.

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    AlphaGalileo / 20 December 2004
    Open Systems – Mutual Understanding Without Limits
    Универсальная технология открытых систем позволяет связанным одной сетью компьютерам свободно общаться между собой. Новая технология нечто вроде универсального переводчика-интерфейса - используя различные исходные программные и технические средства, она создает как бы буфер - согласованный набор стандартов, "понятных" всем участникам системы.

The universal open system technology has been developed by Russian researchers with support of the Russian Foundation for Basic Research and Foundation for Assistance to Small Innovative Enterprises (FASIE). The new technology will help to finally achieve mutual understanding between computers even if one of them thinks and speaks the Unix language and the other - the language of Windows.
Computers connected to a single network will soon be able to communicate easily with each other thanks to the development by Russian researchers – specialists of the Institute of Radio Engineering and Electronics, Russian Academy of Sciences, which was performed jointly with specialists of the All-Russian Scientific Research Institute of Standards (State Standards of Russia) and Moscow Institute of Radio Engineering, Electronics and Automation. The "mutual incomprehension" problems, which make people frantic when texts and pictures from one computer "fail to open" or "fail to be read" on another computer with different software will eventually remain in the past. The universal open system technology developed by the researchers will allow to solve the problem.
According to Professor Oleinikov's figurative explanation, the new technology is similar to an electric adapter for European/Russian sockets and plugs. Only in this case, if we continue the analogy, the adapter is generally universal, allowing for utilization of devices with any standards – European, Japanese and Russian.
Generally speaking, it is obvious that the information infrastructure of any level should be based on open system standards and technologies. It makes no sense to connect computers in a network if it is impossible to use from one computer the data stored on the other computer – certainly, for the exception of confidential information, but the openness of systems does not apply to passwords.
The technology developed by the Moscow researchers is actually a universal translator interface. Using different original software and hardware, the technology creates as though a buffer – the agreed set of standards "comprehensible" to all participants of the system. That makes the set of computers connected into a network to be the open information system.
"The open system technology has been under development in the Institute of Radio Engineering and Electronics (Russian Academy of Sciences) for about ten years already, says Professor Alexander Oleinikov, project manager, principal research officer of the Institute. We have now built such a system for the metallurgical integrated works. By the way, the world practice knows examples of constructing similar systems for individual enterprises – for banks and oil-refining companies. However, there are neither systems for metallurgists, nor – universal technologies in particular, which would allow (knowing certain techniques) to create an open system for any enterprises regardless of their line of business. It is universality that primarily differentiates our development. Hopefully, this distinction will allow us to take out a patent for it"
"No wonder that our system roused interest of the Magnitogorsk metallurgical integrated works. This is an enormous enterprise that is among 20 largest steel-casting companies of the world, continues A.Ya. Oleinikov. In fact, this is a big town with the "population" of many thousands and a vast territory. It has multitude of computers in all fields of the enterprise activity - manufacturing, administration, marketing, etc. Our technology will allow to make their interfaces, protocols and data formats compatible with each other." Probably the Magnitogorsk metallurgical integrated works' information system will become open in a year.

© AlphaGalileo Foundation 2003

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    Techno-science.net / Mardi 28 Décembre 2004
    Proton, le lanceur le plus fiable au monde
    Российская ракета-носитель "Протон" признана самой надежной в мире. В исследовании, проведенном корпорацией Futron Corporation, участвовали пять типов ракет-носителей – Ariane 5 (производит концерн EADS, Европа), Atlas V (Lockheed Martin, США), Delta IV (Boeing, США), "Протон" (Космический центр имени Хруничева, Россия) и "Зенит-3SL" (совместный продукт украинского объединения "Южное", российской корпорации "Энергия" и фирмы Boeing).

Futron Corporation a reconnu le lanceur russe Proton comme la fusée la plus fiable au monde parmi quatre autres fusées. Il s'agit d'Ariane 5 (EADS, UE), Atlas V (Lockheed Martin, USA), Delta IV (Boeing, USA) et Zenit-3SL (Yuzhnoye, Ukraine - Energuia, Russie - Boeing, USA).
Développé dans les années 60 par l'ex URSS, le lanceur Proton a été lancé pour la première fois le 16 juillet 1965, emportant un satellite scientifique destiné à étudier les rayons cosmiques à haute énergie. Il s'agissait du satellite Proton-1, dont la fusée héritera du nom.
Le lanceur a sans cesse été amélioré, mais sa configuration générale est restée pratiquement identique tant le lanceur a démontré sa fiabilité. De 18 tonnes en orbite basse, sa capacité dépasse aujourd'hui les 24 tonnes. À l'époque il se composait de seulement 2 étages, contre 3 ou 4 aujourd'hui (en fonction du profil de la mission). Le premier étage est formé de six moteurs de type RD-253 à peroxyde d'azote/UDMH, comportant un système de post-combustion destiné à brûler les gaz qui ont servi à faire tourner les turbines.
Utilisé autrefois pour le lancement des stations Saliout russes et d'autres charges lourdes, il est toujours exploité par la Russie pour la mise à poste de Satcom mais également d'éléments de la Station spatiale internationale, et est aussi commercialisé sur le marché mondial des satellites par le joint venture américano-russe ILS, où il se pose en concurrent du lanceur européen Ariane 5 et des Atlas 5 et Delta 4 américains.

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    India Daily / January 01, 2005
    Russians confirm planetary angular momentum theory to warn of another major tsunami even more devastating
    • Kiran Chaube, Special Correspondent
    По мнению некоторых российских ученых, Земля переживает период сейсмической активности – землетрясения, извержения вулканов и цунами происходят все чаще и чаще. В ближайшем будущем могут случиться новые катаклизмы, в том числе цунами - в несколько раз сильнее предыдущего.

The earth has entered a seismically active period when weakness in earth's crusts start breaking apart, volcanoes erupt, plate collisions cause major earthquakes, mud volcanoes erupt and geysers come out in different parts of the world with much higher frequency. This results in volcanic eruption, mudslides, Tsunamis, mega earthquakes and more.
According to the Russian scientists, the number of earthquakes in the earth has increased exponentially over the past few years, a phenomenon not seen in modern human history.
According thousands of years old Mayan civilization, this kind of period come after thousands of years. The ancient civilization warned that around 2012 the world would face major calamities from natural disasters and other factors. They used planetary positions and interferences as well as sun signs. 
According to some Russian scientists, another major earthquake in the same vicinity and a series of the same near the equator is evident in near future. The resultant Tsunamis will be three to five time as severe as this one. The future Tsunamis will not effect South and South-East Asia, they will devastate even many more countries.
"According to our theory, there exist latitudinal lineaments (cracks of the earth's core), which pose potential danger in terms of seismic activity. If we are to follow equatorial crack westward of South East Asia, we could expect rather serious seismic cataclysms in Equatorial Guinea, Cameroon, Nigeria and Gabon," informed the spokes person of the Russian scientists.
According to Pravda, earthquakes are also likely to hit equatorial countries of South America. Southern part of Ecuador and the islands in close proximity to it will be most susceptible to the quake. Should the seaquakes occur, the waves can easily cover the entire southern part of Colombia, Ecuador and northern part of Peru, noted Dr. Evgeny Dolgivov, director of geological-mineral sciences.
Dolginov has come up with a new theory of latitudinal lineaments, which according to the professor, had emerged during earth's early stages of development, reports "Interfax". Such cracks tend to become seismically active from time to time. In a place where such cracks intersect seismically active zones (i.e. meridian), these zones become most dangerous in regards to earthquakes. This was exactly what happened in South-East Asia, considers the scientist. 
Tsunamis, earthquakes, mudslides and volcanic eruptions are evident in many parts of the world, say some Geological and Earthquake experts. The angular momentum theory also says earth has become more wobbly and there is fair possibility that we will see a polar inversion like North Pole will become South Pole and vice versa. This kind polar inversion has never been experienced by modern human race. No one knows the implication and resultant havoc that can happen in the earth's crust.
Some experts are also saying that based on myths and ancient stories, Atlantis faced even larger – many times larger similar devastation. But the mega devastation that demolished a complete advanced civilization over night did not happen suddenly. Smaller volcanic eruptions, earthquakes and Tsunamis first started happening one year before the big one came. Normally the small ones occur around the epicenter of the future big one. People normally misunderstand the small ones as the big one. 

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    MSNBC News / Jan. 9, 2005
    Navy funds power engine project. Small-scale success spurs development of potent turbine made by Russian scientists
    • By Monica Perin, Houston Business Journal
    Группа российских ученых разрабатывает принципиально новый двигатель, работающий на всех видах топлива. Возможно, со временем он заменит большинство двигателей внутреннего сгорания.

A team of Russian scientists and a Houston entrepreneur hope to develop a revolutionary new engine with a fresh round of funding from the U.S. Navy.
Operating out of a small warehouse in Missouri City, principals of General Vortex Energy Inc. claim their creation will burn any kind of fuel - liquid, gas, or biowaste - at twice the efficiency of other engines. And at the same time, emissions are sharply reduced.
The patented Jirnov Vortex Turbine engine, they contend, could one day replace most of the internal combustion engines and gas turbines that power everything from cars to air conditioners to electricity generation plants.
In 2003, the Office of Naval Research gave General Vortex $100,000 to construct a 30-kilowatt prototype of the engine. Test results impressed the naval salts so much that they upped the ante for a larger version.
General Vortex recently received a $1 million grant to produce an upgraded 125-kilowatt prototype engine that will undergo more extensive tests at a Navy facility.
The Jirnov engine was invented and patented by Russian scientist Alexei Jirnov in collaboration with group of colleagues that included Anatoli Borissov.
Both Jirnov and Borissov came to the United States around 1990 and continued their research at the University of Houston.
General Vortex was formed in 1994 by Borissov, his brother Alexander, and Ken Kramer, a self-described "serial entrepreneur" with a degree in mechanical engineering from Rice University.
The partners launched the startup to develop and commercialize the four patented technologies for separate components of the Jirnov Vortex Turbine. General Vortex is currently owned by 10 shareholders and has so far been self-supporting. Early on, the company received a $155,000 research grant from the Texas Council of Environmental Technology for developing a combustion chamber technology that exceeded the council's targets for fuel efficiency and emission reduction.
That was followed by the $100,000 grant from the Navy to build the small prototype engine, and the $1 million now being used to duplicate the engine on a larger scale. If the 125-kilowatt engine exceeds performance standards along the lines of the first prototype, General Vortex could receive a purchase order and a $3 million grant from the Navy to establish a production facility.
Less fuel, low emissions
Several aspects of the Jirnov engine have especially impressed the Navy, according to Kramer and Borissov
A complementary design that allows reuse of power sources like excess hydrogen from fuel cells increases efficiency and reduces the amount of fuel a ship has to carry.
"Efficiency is important on a ship that is running 24 hours a day seven days a week. If they can carry less fuel, that's an enormous amount of money saved," Kramer says. Another advantage is that the Jirnov can burn virtually any kind of fuel.
"The Navy sent us some of the dirtiest, heaviest crude they had and we successfully burned it," says Kramer.
"You could burn kerosene in this engine. You could pour used cooking oil in and burn it," he adds.
The Jirnov Vortex and traditional gas turbine engines have the same four components - a combustion chamber, a compressor, a turbine and a heat exchanger.
But unlike conventional engines which typically run at 50,000 to 90,000 revolutions per minute, the Jirnov is designed to run at 1,800 to 3,600 RPMs while still delivering the same amount of energy.
This is accomplished by optimizing the performance of each component, Jirnov's developers say. For example, every fuel molecule is sucked into a "vortex" in the combustion chamber where it is thoroughly mixed and completely burned. This wastes very little fuel and keeps emissions low.
Kramer and Borissov claim the Jirnov engine is 58 percent to 70 percent fuel-efficient compared to 30 percent for coal or steam combustion, 35 percent for gas turbines, 50 for fuel cells - and about 20 percent for auto engines.
This translates into consumption of less than 150,000 gallons of fuel a year for a 1,500-kilowatt Jirnov unit compared with more than 600,000 gallons of natural gas needed for a gas turbine of the same size.
Looking ahead
While work continues on the Navy prototype project, Kramer and Borissov see potential applications extending to horizons far beyond seagoing vessels.
The General Vortex principals say they have talked to a "very large" Houston manufacturing company in the energy conversion sector. Discussions have centered on manufacturing and marketing the Jirnov engine in the form of an appliance that could produce all the hot and cold water and air, plus electricity for individual homes and businesses, and larger units to distribute power from electric utility substations.
The partners say they have talked to a company with worldwide operations about distribution and support of the product.
In 2005 the partners plan to target potential partners and licensees - major manufacturers of engines and gas turbines such as General Electric Co. and Rolls-Royce. Also on the list is Houston-based Stewart & Stevenson Services Inc., which builds diesel engines and gas turbine-powered vehicles and equipment for the military, the airlines and the oil industry.
All of these expectations will remain moot while prototypes of the Jirnov engine continue to proceed through an increasingly stringent series of performance tests. But the potential implications are seen as enormous.
"It could be quite a breakthrough as a source of energy," says Keith Thayer, the retired president of a Houston engineering consulting firm and past president of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.
Thayer has provided technical assistance to General Vortex through a business and technology mentoring program at the Houston Development Center.
"It would be an alternative to the internal combustion engine and turbines and a good stand-by power source, which is the initial interest," Thayer says.

© 2004 MSNBC.com

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    Cyberpresse - Montréal, Québec, Canada / Le mercredi 12 janvier 2005
    Le cosmodrome de Baïkonour serait cause de maladies chez des enfants
    Токсичное топливо, распространяемое во время запусков с космодрома Байконур, скорей всего, является причиной болезней проживающих рядом детей. В зараженных районах частота заболеваний эндокринной системы и крови в два раза превышает среднюю по региону. Эти исследования были проведены учеными из российского государственного вирусологического и биотехнологического центра "Вектор". Они изучили записи в медицинских картах за 1998-2000 год тысячи детей, проживающих загрязненных зонах, сравнили их с 330 медицинскими картами детей из незагрязненных районов и пришли к выводу, что дети из загрязненных зон примерно в два раза чаще обращались к врачам, и медицинская помощь оказывалась им вдвое дольше.

Un carburant hautement toxique, répandu lors des lancements de fusées du cosmodrome de Baïkonour, au Kazakhstan, provoquerait des maladies parmi les enfants vivant à proximité, selon une étude non publiée, indique la revue scientifique britannique Nature dans son édition de jeudi.
La fréquence de certaines maladies, tels des troubles endocriniens ou sanguins, correspond, dans les zones polluées, à plus de deux fois la moyenne régionale, selon Nature qui a pu voir l'étude.
La cause en est un carburant de fusée hautement toxique, contenant notamment de l'hydrazine, selon les chercheurs russes de Novossibirsk (centre de recherche Vector), auteurs de l'étude.
L'étude analyse les dossiers médicaux de 1000 enfants de deux zones polluées pour les années 1998-2000, et 330 dossiers d'une zone non polluée. L'équipe de Sergueï Jikov conclut que les enfants de la zone la plus touchée ont vraisemblablement requis jusqu'à deux fois plus de soins médicaux et pour des durées deux fois plus longues que les autres enfants durant cette période.
Baïkonour, géré par l'agence spatiale russe Rosaviakosmos, est l'une des bases spatiales les plus actives dans le monde et une source considérable de revenus pour le gouvernement russe. Un seul lancement commercial peut rapporter jusqu'à 25 millions de dollars, estime un expert.
L'ASE et la Nasa américaine qui utilisent Baïkonour devraient se préoccuper plus de la santé des habitants, suggère Nature.
L'agence russe Rosaviakosmos, sans nier l'existence de pollutions, rejette les conclusions de l'étude. Selon son porte-parole Viatcheslav Davidenko, les zones affectées sont si peu peuplées que le carburant a peu d'impact sur l'être humain. Tout problème de santé serait plus vraisemblablement dû au niveau de vie de la région Altaï, inférieur à la moyenne russe, ajoute-t-il dans Nature.

Copyright © 2000-2005 Cyberpresse Inc., une filiale de Gesca. Tous droits réservés.

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    Astronomie et Espace / 12 jan 2005
    Les activités spatiales au Kazakhstan inoffensives pour l'Homme, selon Moscou
    Федеральное космическое агентство опровергает информацию о том, что запуск ракет на Байконуре провоцирует болезни среди населения. Роскосмос с 1998 года ведет "работы по изучению влияния ракетно-космической деятельности (РКД) на окружающую среду и здоровье населения, проживающего вблизи районов падения (РП)", и до настоящего времени прямого воздействия РКД на здоровье людей не установлено. Роскосмос напоминает, что некоторые из этих территорий официально входят в зону влияния Семипалатинского полигона, на котором за 40 лет существования было произведено более 500 ядерных взрывов, что вполне может быть причиной повышенного уровня заболеваемости.

MOSCOU, 12 jan (AFP) - L'Agence spatiale russe a rejeté mercredi des informations de la revue scientifique Nature selon lesquelles les activités spatiales russes au Kazakhstan provoqueraient des maladies dans la population.
Selon la revue britannique à paraître jeudi, citant une étude de chercheurs russes non publiée, un carburant hautement toxique, répandu lors des lancements de fusées depuis le cosmodrome de Baïkonour, au Kazakhstan, provoquerait des maladies parmi les enfants vivant à proximité.
La fréquence de certaines maladies, tels des troubles endocriniens ou sanguins, correspondrait dans les zones polluées à plus de deux fois la moyenne régionale, selon cette étude réalisée par le centre de recherche Vector à Novossibirsk (Sibérie).
"Aucune influence directe des activités spatiales sur la santé de la population n'a été établie jusqu'à présent", a affirmé l'Agence spatiale russe, dans un communiqué. L'agence affirme effectuer depuis 1998 "des recherches pour examiner l'influence des activités spatiales sur l'environnement et la santé de la population" qui habite près des zones où retombent régulièrement les débris des lanceurs qui mettent en orbite les engins spatiaux.
"Certaines de ces zones sont considérées officiellement comme des zones d'influence du polygone nucléaire de Semipalatinsk", selon le même communiqué qui laisse entendre que les ennuis de santé chez les enfants vivant à proximité sont probablement un écho des tests nucléaires réalisés à l'époque soviétique.
Plus de 500 explosions nucléaires ont été réalisées sur le polygone de Semipalatinsk, dans le nord-est du Kazakhstan. Le polygone a été fermé en 1991 après 40 ans d'exploitation.
"Il n'y a aucune raison pour remplacer le carburant des lanceurs (hautement toxique selon l'étude) par un autre, car tous les autres types de carburants sont également nuisibles pour l'environnement", admet cependant l'Agence spatiale.

Copyright © 2005 AFP. Tous droits de reproduction et de représentation réservés.

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Продолжение дайджеста за ЯНВАРЬ 2005 года (часть 2)

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