When asked why they had not designed a disc wheel before now, Specialized’s Chris Yu responded with a surprisingly simple answer. There were already a lot of great disc wheels on the market. If they were to make their own disc, it would have to hit a few key metrics. With input from a few of their sponsored riders like Fabian Cancellara, they started to frame their design targets. Chief among them were the usual criteria for aerodynamics, but also for stiffness, compliance, and weight was a major concern.Although it was proven weight was not as critical to speed as previously believed, riders like Cancellara stuck to their guns and said the low weight had a positive feel and feedback. It wasn’t an easy benchmark to hit, but the new Roval 321 is the lightest manufactured disc on the market at 1,005 grams.The new 321 uses DT Swiss internals for easy integration with various drivetrains.To achieve their aerodynamic goals the team relied heavily on their Win Tunnel, which just celebrated its fifth birthday last week. The Specialized aerodynamics team created a wheel with the widest possible shape to help retain air contact as long as possible. The design was optimized to accommodate a 26c tire, which also improved compliance. The drive side has a unique, and subtle, recessed pocket to accommodate the derailleur in its most inboard position.The construction of the wheel and the layup of the carbon was carefully engineered to provide optimal stiffness without compromising compliance and all-day riding comfort for long-course athletes.After carefully evaluating the rolling resistance values between tubular and tubeless clinchers, the decision was made to create only a clincher variant of the 321. The design is tubeless ready out of the box.The new wheel isn’t all about speed and efficiency. The valve hole is large enough to accommodate a standard pump head and fits a 60mm valve stem. Riders using deep section front rims now only need one spare tube for both wheels. A hardcover snaps over the valve hole in lieu of less sophisticated sticker solutions.To achieve their aerodynamic, weight, rolling resistance, and stiffness objectives, the Roval team leaned on the comprehensive resources at the Morgan Hill facility. That includes their advanced machine shop, new carbon fiber lab, and other testing tools. They now use advanced imaging machines to inspect the internals of every component. No design, engineering, or testing stone is left unturned.Central to the process is their ability to now create the tools and processes by which Roval 321 wheels will be made by manufacturing partners overseas. They have the resources to construct special tooling components which simplify the manufacturing steps with devices used to help shape the wheel lenses, facilitate the joining of the rim, and serve as the jig for any necessary drilling. They can design, test, and fabricate test wheels while simultaneously creating the exact manufacturing process, on-site, that will be used to produce all of their wheels going forward. Many of the first wheels used by sponsored riders during the last year were manufactured start-to-finish in the Morgan Hill office.It’s that holistic approach from prototyping to manufacturing that allowed the Roval 321 to hit its design marks in such a short amount of time.The 321, named in part after the iconic countdown before every time trial, is available in rim and disc brake versions with a retail of $2,500. Some of you may have noticed Specialized does not currently have a disc brake equipped time trial bike in their quiver. That speaks to their desires to build for the overall market but certainly hints to a reboot of the Shiv.Specialized.com
Tidal Wave Auto Spa, a national car wash company based in Thompson, Georgia, opened its 50th location in Prairie Village this week.Register to continue
Almost everyone gossips. “We actually found that the overwhelming majority of gossip was neutral,” says study author Megan Robbins, a psychologist at the University of California, Riverside, who studies how people’s social interactions are related to their health and well-being. “About three-quarters of the conversation we heard in our sampled conversations wasneither positive nor negative,” Robbins says. Read the whole story: NPR But here’s the surprise: Despite the assumption that most gossip is trash talk, the study finds that the vast majority of gossip is nonjudgmental chitchat. And a new study finds that people spend about 52 minutes per day, on average, talking to someone about someone else who is not present.
From MEMA Industry News The Kettering/GMI Alumni Association will recognize Neil De Koker, president and CEO, OESA, and Bob Oswald, former chairman, president and CEO, Robert Bosch Corp., and a founding member of the OESA Board of Directors, as Distinguished Alumnus at the Alumni Awards Dinner & Ceremony on Oct. 16 at The Fairlane Club, Dearborn, Mich. The Distinguished Alumnus Award recipients are honored for specific and exceptional career achievements. Click here for event details. AdvertisementClick Here to Read MoreAdvertisement
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Global Maritime Consultancy & Engineering is to provide mooring and risk management support to the European Union’s OPERA (Open Sea Operating Experience to Reduce Wave Energy Cost) project.Global Maritime is part of a 12-member consortium led by TECNALIA for the three-and-a-half-year program with the objective being to progress offshore wave energy development, reduce costs, and ‘de-risk’ new technologies.As part of the project, Global Maritime will be responsible for providing mooring and risk management support to the 42 meter-tall spar type, wave energy converter (WEC) due to be operational in August 2016. The WEC will be based in the Bay of Biscay up to two nautical miles offshore in 85 meters of water.David Sutton, CEO of Global Maritime Consultancy & Engineering, said: “Wave and tidal energy is a tremendously important element of the future energy mix with the World Energy Council estimating that up to 10% of worldwide electricity demand could be met by harvesting ocean energy. And yet today, wave energy costs remain high compared to conventional forms of energy.”“That’s why OPERA is such a ground-breaking project and why Global Maritime is delighted to be involved in the mooring and risk management element. For the first time, the wave energy industry will be able to access high quality, open-sea operating data, see some of the latest mooring and other technology innovations tested offshore, and look forward to long-term cost reductions of up to 50%.”Inside the WEC is an oscillating water column (OWC) that forces air through a turbine that in turn generates electricity. The WEC has been developed by OCEANTEC and will use a novel shared mooring arrangement consisting of conventional tethers. The shared mooring system is designed to reduce the overall amount of mooring lines, share anchors and reduce costs. Global Maritime will help ensure that the mooring system is robust, delivering telemetry and tension data; and carry out operational simulations, if required.As the project continues into phase two in August 2017, Global Maritime will then help support the testing and integrating of further cost reducing innovations into the WEC. These include an elastomeric mooring tether, developed by the University of Exeter and which will reduce peak loads at mooring and hull connections. This should improve structural survivability and reduce mooring line strength requirements and costs.
Shadley Schroeders show, called Reborn, will be held at the Joseph Stone Auditorium on Saturday November 12. In a bid to keep “old school songs” alive, Crawford resident Shadley Schroeder has put together a show called Reborn, which will premiere at the Joseph Stone Auditorium on Saturday November 12.Mr Schroeder, who is being supported by a strong group of artists, said the title of the show was his way of bringing back the 1980s Motown music genre.“A lot of youngsters forgot about these songs. I remember listening to songs from the Manhattans, Jackson 5, Stevie Wonder, Peaches and Herb, Jonathan Butler, and Ricardo Groenewald, among others. I grew up listening to these songs while my mother cooked food on a Sunday morning, with the smell of the nice spices coming from the kitchen. Other memories these kinds of songs trigger, is when our family made their way to the beach, with home-made grilled chicken and yellow rice… The lyrics of these songs have meanings to a lot of us. This is what inspired me to put together a show like Reborn,” Mr Schroeder said.Among the artists that will support him, are Kashiefa Blaauw, Sumaya Hendricks, Luqmaan Vardien, Georgie, Yazeed and Ruth. Reborn will also have a live band.This is the 24-year-old’s second production. His first one, called Just a Simple Cape Flats Boy, enjoyed a successful run in 2014.Mr Schroeder has a full-time job, but says his heart lies in the entertainment industry.He is no stranger when it comes to performing. Since a little boy, he has been involved with variety shows, Malay choirs and minstrel carnivals. He also featured in the movie, Four Corners, and David Kramer’s Blood Brothers.And although there are many challenges when it comes to putting a show together, Mr Schroeder said he takes it as learning curves to prepare for better shows. He is already planning another show for next year, he announced proudly.For tickets to Reborn, on Saturday November 12, at 8pm, at R100 each, call 021 697 1086 or 062 373 0257.
Yorkshire Bank has signalled that confidence is returning to UK legal lenders by increasing the number of law firms in its portfolio and completing 100 new deals this year.The latest to secure funding is north-west firm MLP Solicitors, which received £640,000 to progress with expansion plans.The perceived stability of the legal sector has suffered in recent years, with the downturn followed by a series of high-profile failures leaving many creditors out of pocket.However, a spokesman for Yorkshire Bank, part of the National Australia Group, said the lender is increasingly attracted to law firms. ‘As the economy continues to recover, there are more opportunities for growth created in the sector,’ he said.‘Firms with growth ambitions are now in a better position to move forward with those plans – a clear sign that confidence is building within professional services. The bank remains focused on supporting these firms and investing in their growth ambitions.’Sue Carter, head of professional services at Clydesdale and Yorkshire banks, indicated last year that the bank was willing to lend to law firms if they could prove they were financially viable. ‘You must be able to robustly measure performance, both in terms of financial and non-financial aspects,’ she told the Gazette.The deal to invest in MLP Solicitors, a 25-year-old commercial firm, was made through the bank’s business and private banking centre in Manchester.The firm, which employs 30 people and has turnover of £1.8m, plans to increase headcount by 15% in the next year.Stephen Attree, managing director, said: ‘We are currently looking to increase our footprint in the north-west, employing more staff and increasing our turnover as we continue to help regional businesses grow by getting the right legal structures in place.’
USA: A hydrogen-powered shunting locomotive now being assembled will serve as a testbed for reducing diesel fuel use by North America’s railroads. David Lustig reports from Topeka.,Taking shape in the BNSF Railway workshop at Topeka, Kansas, is an experimental shunting locomotive powered by hydrogen fuel cells. BNSF believes that fuel cell technology offers the potential to reduce air pollution as well as preparing the way for a future locomotive fleet that is not dependent on oil.‘While it’s not a proven technology and the project is still in its infancy, we believe investments like the fuel cell switching locomotive are important for the advancement of new technology’, explains Craig Hill, BNSF’s Vice-President of Mechanical & Value Engineering.BNSF estimates its diesel locomotive fleet burns more than 15 million litres a day, about 2% of all US diesel fuel usage. In its third-quarter results for 2008, the railroad said diesel fuel represented 26% of its operating costs. This was more than $500m higher than the equivalent quarter in 2007 for a comparable level of consumption. The use of fuel cells in road vehicles such as buses and cars is not new, but to date there have only been a few attempts to introduce the introduce the technology to the rail sector. An experimental fuel-cell railcar is being tested in Japan, and another is expected to start test running in Denmark in 2010 (RG 1.08 p30). BNSF’s project was officially launched in January 2008, and is the first to be undertaken by a Class I railroad in North America.The railway is working with Vehicle Projects LLC, a private engineering company based in Denver which has been developing and demonstrating prototype fuel cell vehicles for various modes. Since 2003 the company has also been working on a project sponsored by the US Department of Defense to develop a 1·2 MW fuel cell locomotive. The two companies insist that the latest prototype, which is being assembled by BNSF’s mechanical department using a former Railpower Green Goat hybrid as the platform, is strictly a testbed.In simple terms, a fuel cell is an electrochemical device that combines hydrogen and oxygen to generate electricity, producing water and heat as a by-product. As long as fuel is available, the fuel cell continues to generate power. Oxygen is available from the air, but the hydrogen must be supplied. BNSF envisages that the hydrogen will be generated off the vehicle using electricity, which can be drawn from a number of available sources including nuclear, wind or solar.The experimental locomotive will carry compressed hydrogen on board in tanks similar to those used on fuel-cell road vehicles. Since the fuel cells use an electro-chemical process rather than conventional combustion, it is clean (meaning no environmentally-harmful emissions), quiet and is expected to be two to three times more fuel-efficient than a standard US diesel locomotive.According to BNSF, the electricity generated by the onboard fuel cell power module will be stored in batteries or fed directly to the locomotive’s high-voltage propulsion system. DC choppers will be used to control the power to each traction motor independently, providing substantially improved adhesion compared to a conventional locomotive wheel-slip system. BNSF says the locomtoive will be rated at 2 000 hp for traction.The Railpower locomotive, which had been reduced to a shell, was delivered from Montréal to Topeka in 2007, and the various components, including the fuel cell power modules and the hydrogen storage tanks are now being installed, along with the electrical transmission and control systems. BNSF and Vehicle Products had hoped to begin testing the completed unit in 2008, but are now expecting to start operations during 2009. The loco is also expected to visit the Transportation Technology Center at Pueblo for testing by the Federal Railroad Administration.According to the President of Vehicle Projects, Arnold Miller, ‘the world burns millions of barrels of oil for energy, and the waste carbon is then emitted to the atmosphere. Because they don’t rely on oil as a fuel source, fuel cells solve these two issues’. He believes that developing proof-of-concept locomotives is an important first step toward the use of fuel cells in future rail applications. CAPTION: The prototype locomotive uses a former Green Goat diesel-battery hybrid as a platform. CAPTION: BNSF says that fuel accounts for around a quarter of its operating costs. Fuel cell technology is intended to reduce the railway’s dependency on oil in future.
USA: Chicago commuter operator Metra has issued a request for proposals for the supply of at least 200 double-deck coaches, with options for up to 200 more if funding is available. The operator has said it will accept alternatives to the gallery cars that have been used on its routes for nearly 70 years.Requirements include CCTV, LED lighting, racks for two to five bicycles and seats with arm rests and cup holders. Manufacturers have the option of proposing features such as USB ports, foot rests, tray tables and heated floors. There should be provision for wi-fi, either from new or for retrofitting at a later date. Proposals should be submitted in August, and Metra hopes to finalise a deal by the end of the year. Important factors in evaluating the proposals will include seating capacity and the most efficient passenger flow within the vehicles. ‘We are excited to open this procurement up and explore all the alternative designs that may be proposed’, said Metra CEO Jim Derwinski on March 20. ‘Safety, reliability and an improved, modern passenger experience will be important aspects to Metra in this procurement.’