The News – 29 September 2014

Overview

  • The CSIRO’s new research vessel Investigator is unable to access shore power in Hobart and is running off the ship’s engines.
  • Scientists at the University of Rochester in New York have discovered a way to hide large objects from sight using inexpensive and readily available lenses.
  • Finance Minister Mathias Cormann announced the Federal Government would soon begin a national advertising campaign to promote the pre-registration process of the share offer which could generate up to $4 billion.


Stories Discussed
News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the 29th September 2014. Read by Rebecca Foster.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-09-27/csiro-investigator-cant-plug-into-hobart-shore-power/5773804

The CSIRO’s new research vessel Investigator is unable to access shore power in Hobart and is running off the ship’s engines.

The ship has been moved from its berth alongside the CSIRO to Macquarie Wharf following complaints by neighbours about the noise.

It is the latest in a string of issues with the $120-million flagship vessel, which was besieged by delays before eventually arriving at its home port of Hobart earlier this month, a year later than expected.

But it was unable to connect to onshore power at Princes Wharf, despite the facility being upgraded 12 months earlier.

Executive director of the Future Research Vessel Project, Toni Moate, said the issue of compatibility was known before taking delivery.

Experts have been engaged to find a solution.

Meanwhile, power to the ship is being supplied by one of its three diesel engines.

The latest problem and the potential for a cost blowout has the CSIRO Staff Association concerned.

The CSIRO also reiterated the project was still on budget.

The ship is still on schedule to conduct four weeks of sea trials in November.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-09-27/new-york-scientists-unveil-invisibility-cloak/5773528

The magical “invisibility cloak” from the Harry Potter books has moved closer to reality.

Scientists at the University of Rochester in New York have discovered a way to hide large objects from sight using inexpensive and readily available lenses.

Cloaking is the process that allows an object to become hidden from view, while everything around it appears undisturbed.

“A lot of people have worked on a lot of different aspects of optical cloaking for years,” professor of physics at the New York school, John Howell, said.

The so-called Rochester Cloak is not really a tangible cloak at all. The device actually looks like equipment used by an optometrist. When an object is placed behind the layered lenses it seems to disappear.

Previous cloaking methods have been complicated, expensive and not able to hide objects in three dimensions when viewed at varying angles, creators of the new device said.

“From what we know this is the first cloaking device that provides three-dimensional, continuously multidirectional cloaking,” said graduate student Joseph Choi, who helped develop the technology.

In their tests, the researchers have cloaked a hand, a face and a ruler, making each object appear “invisible” while the image behind the hidden object remains in view.

The implications of the discovery were endless, they said.

Professor Howell said cloaking could effectively let a surgeon “look through his hands to what he is actually operating on”.

“It can be used for surgery, in the military, in interior design, art,” Mr Choi said.

The device cost the scientists about $1,000 in materials. A patent is pending but simple instructions on how to create a Rochester Cloak at home for under $100 have been released.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-09-28/federal-government-begins-medibank-private-sale-pitch/5774458

Investors can now pre-register for shares in Australia’s biggest health insurer, Medibank Private.

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann announced the Federal Government would soon begin a national advertising campaign to promote the pre-registration process of the share offer which could generate up to $4 billion.

He said those who pre-register can be allocated more shares than those who do not; while eligible policy holders who pre-register and apply for shares will receive a greater preferential share location.

“It’s been long standing Coalition policy to sell Medibank Private. There is absolutely no good reason for the Federal Government to own a private health insurance business today,” Senator Cormann said.

“Medibank Private is a commercial business operating in a well-functioning, well-regulated market with 34 private health funds.”

He said the Government was removing the current conflict of being a regulator and the largest market participant.

The Government’s objective was to sell 100 per cent of the company with money to be used for infrastructure projects.

He said subject to market conditions the prospectus was expected to be available in late October.

“Importantly, pre-registration is not a commitment to buy shares,” he said.

“Medibank Private is Australia’s largest private health insurer. It is a very well known business which has been providing private health cover for almost 40 years.

“It provides cover for over 3.8 million people across Australia through its two brands, Medibank and AHM,” he said.

Pre-registration closes Wednesday, October 15.

Medibank Private is expected to be listed on the Australian Stock Exchange in December.

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