3 July 2006British entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson hopes to bring “true competition” to the South African cellular industry with the arrival of Virgin Mobile.Virgin Mobile launched in South Africa in June with the aim of capturing 10% of the South African market with ten years.‘Little tricks’The arrival of a fourth cellular company could shake up an industry dominated by MTN and Vodacom. Branson believes that consumers will benefit from the competition that his company brings.“There’s lots of little tricks that have been used to enable the phone companies to get rich on the back of individuals. For instance, if you only use 31 seconds they’ll round it up to 60 seconds and charge you for it, and so on so,” Branson said on Moneyweb radio.Branson’s Virgin Mobile is a virtual network, a Virgin-branded service running over Cell C’s national network. This is the same model that Virgin Mobile has used in the United Kingdom where they have over 5 million subscribers.Cell C is the youngest of South Africa’s three cellular companies and has been in operation since 2001.‘Free to leave’Virgin’s cellular offering will not require mandatory two-year contract and will unbundle handsets from airtime, removing the “clutter and fog in the market” Sajeed Sacranie, Virgin Mobile SA CEO told ITWeb.“We are selling month-to-month contracts and, if you don’t like us, you are free to leave,” Sacranie said.“We’re trying to have a sort of simple, clear-cut pricing policy like we’ve done around the rest of the world,” said Branson.“It’s worked extremely well in America and the UK and Australia, and we think it will work well in South Africa.”Branson has had a South African presence since 2001, when he bought the bankrupt Health and Racquet Club chain at Nelson Mandela’s request.southafrica.info reporter Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo material
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Senate Bill 150 gives Ohio farmers until September 30, 2017 to become certified to apply fertilizer. We are now in April of 2017, and at the end of the winter meeting season, meaning you have a very, very few meetings left to become certified. This site gives final dates for programs: http://nutrienteducation.osu.edu.Ohio State University Extension has delivered more than 290 programs around the state with over 14,500 attendees trained so far.Record keeping requirements are the most important aspect of the new law, and you will start when you receive your yellow Fertilizer Applicator Certificate. If you are a farmer you will maintain the records for three years. If you are a dealer and apply the fertilizer, you maintain the records for three years and supply a copy of the record to the grower who purchased the nutrients.Within 24 hours of your nutrient application, record: Name of fertilizer certificate holder Name of applicator working under direct supervision of certificate holder (if any) Date of application Location (field ID, farm) Fertilizer analysis (such as 11-52-0) Rate of fertilizer application (lbs/A) and total amount applied Fertilizer application method (surface-applied, incorporated, etc) Soil conditions For surface applications only: is ground frozen or snow covered? Temperature and precipitation during application Weather forecast for day following application.One very good place to get and print weather records and a forecast is http://weather.gov. You will record this information within 24 hours.One other item almost buried in SB 150 was the development of nutrient management plans. To me this may be THE best way to manage our nutrient loss concerns and save ourselves money in production costs. Consult with a nutrient management planner at the Soil & Water office, with a consultant, with Extension, with NRCS or a retailer. They can find those most likely areas of loss and help to reduce them.
UPDATED: 12/9/10 with expert opinions from David White and Marc RosenbaumFrank O’s new house is tight — very tight. Tests by an energy auditor measured 0.13 air changes per hour at 50 pascals of depressurization (ACH50), meaning the house beats the very stringent airtightness target of the Passivhaus standard.Frank O has installed a heat-recovery ventilator (HRV) to provide fresh air as well as fans for spot ventilation and a range hood fan rated at 189 cubic feet per minute (cfm).Sounds perfect. So what’s the problem?“The auditor and I also played with the spot ventilation fans and his manometer, and we were able to reach -46 pascals with all house fans on and the electric clothes dryer on,” Frank O writes in his Q&A post. “My concern is: with such a tight house, where does the air come from during spot ventilation and clothes drying?”Are the numbers right?J Chesnut’s first question is whether the auditor has calculated air leakage correctly.“Are you sure you calculated your ACH number correctly?” he asks. “It is not unusual for someone to determine the volume of the building incorrectly and therefore miscalculate the ACH from the cfm reading. MULTIMEDIA Video: Blower-door-directed air sealing “The tightest among Passivhaus builders in the U.S. I am familiar with is .15 ACH and I heard this was possible to attain because it was a mid-sized commercial building (apparently the smaller the building the more difficult it is to get a low ACH).”In a subsequent post, Frank O confirmed Chesnut’s suspicions. It turns out that his house tested at 2.14 ach50, not 0.13 ach50. So Frank O’s house isn’t quite as tight as his first post claimed.Frank O provided additional details about how the house was constructed: blown-in cellulose in the scissor-truss attic, damp cellulose in the framed walls, EPDM gaskets under the bottom plates and at the top plates, foam along the rim joist and at building penetrations, and good doors and windows.Makeup air comes from random leaksTo answer Frank O’s question, GBA senior editor Martin Holladay says that makeup air usually comes from “random envelope leaks,” such as under mudsills and around windows and doors.“If you are worried, you can always test the airflow of your exhaust fans,” Holladay says. “If you have a 40 cfm exhaust fan, test the airflow. If it is moving 40 cfm out of your house, then by definition, 40 cfm is also leaking in, since airflow out = airflow in.“So as long as your appliances are working, don’t worry. However, if you have an atmospherically vented combustion appliance (like a water heater, furnace, wood stove, or fireplace — something that is not a sealed-combustion unit), you should have a backdrafting test performed to be sure your exhaust fans aren’t pulling outdoor air down your flues.”Wrong, says Robert Riversong.“You must not have read the post,” he says. “This house is so tight that there are virtually NO random leaks. That is evidenced both by the insanely low ACH50 and by the fact that the house exhaust fans can depressurize the house almost as much as the blower door fan.”The result, he says, is that none of the spot fans will be able to pull “anything close” to their rated flow, and that the clothes dryer will run much longer than necessary because it can’t move enough air.“This house absolutely requires additional make-up air, at least in the laundry room and perhaps in the kitchen if the range hood is rated at more than 100 cfm,” Riversong says.Finding a source of makeup airRiversong’s recommendations are what Frank O is hearing from his energy auditor. Are there “smart systems” that will do the trick? he asks.First, Riversong says, a “big arse” range hood fan isn’t a great idea for a house that tight. Try something with a maximum rating of 150 cfm.Second, he says, it’s “crazy” to build a house that tight to begin with. Although this is an old debate on this forum, Riversong thinks 2 ACH50 “is more than adequately tight in most climates.”And as to the makeup air, he adds:“I always install a passive make-up air duct through the wall into a laundry room with a dryer, with a louvered cap on the inside and a screened hood on the outside. To prevent cold air thermosiphoning when the dryer’s not running, I drop the duct 3 ft. in the wall before exiting to the outside, since cold air cannot rise, and I weatherstrip the door to the laundry room.“I prefer simple, fail-safe systems,” he adds, “so I use American Aldes Airlet 100s as make-up air inlets for my exhaust-only ventilation systems using Panasonic bath fans and Grasslin programmable timers.”Like many topics discussed on GBA forums, the question of passive air inlets is debated often, and consensus is elusive. In his comprehensive blog surveying ventilation options, Holladay explained why passive air inlets are usually unnecessary.If a tight house includes a powerful range hood fan, however, a powered makeup air unit often makes sense; Holladay provides advice on the topic in his recent blog, “Makeup Air for Range Hoods.”David White of Right Environments and engineer Marc Rosenbaum weigh in:David White:For passive houses (and any air-tight house) my approach is:1. Try to eliminate exhaust appliancesNot only because they force an air exchange with the outdoors, but also because they penetrate the envelope.2. When a penetration is necessary, use a dedicated inlet the delivers the air directly to the device.For instance, for a gas dryer, I have two 4-inch lines. One is the dryer exhaust while the other is a dedicated outdoor air line that dumps behind the dryer. I have heard that there are pre-manufactured kitchen hoods like this as well. For wood stoves, a dedicated outdoor air line of course.3. Seal the lines.I’m not sure how best to do this, but at this point I use motorized dampers wired to the dryer, on both lines. You could use backdraft dampers, but I’ve had difficulty finding one that doesn’t open too easily (allowing infiltration) but opens easily enough not to excessively de-pressurize the space. Ben Southworth used a sliding gate valve by Valterra on his outdoor air line in one project to positively seal the line when not in use.I’m assuming that ventilation exhaust is not the subject here.I always do a balanced supply/exhaust with heat recovery, and even if heat recovery isn’t involved, it’s best to balance supply/exhaust in my opinion.Now, Marc Rosenbaum:I guess the question is, what impacts are we worried about? The big one is depressurization causing trouble with combustion devices. Sealed combustion (that is really sealed!) is a necessity.My preference in houses that are Passive House tight is no combustion devices, period.Once there is no combustion, then the issue is where does the make-up air come from? I’m not sure I care all that much for transient loads like a range hood or dryer. I think you need to verify that the fans you have installed have a sufficient pressure capability to provide the exhaust you need (I haven’t looked at dryer fan pressure vs flow curves, if you can even get that!).Germans use condensing dryers, no exhaust.If a house is 100 CFM50, then a 100 CFM range hood will depressurize the house to 50 Pa at 100 CFM, so it needs to be able to move 100 CFM at 50 Pa (not a problem I think).My colleague Mike LeBeau has a clever set-up for small exhaust flows.He puts a couple of motor dampers in the exhaust of the HRV and when the kitchen range hood comes on he sends the exhaust of the HRV back into the house to balance the flow.. 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Classy COG: TendulkarBefore the tour of the West Indies, an indian cricketer was asked whether it was the batsmen who lost matches for the team overseas by failing to put up enough runs. He was not amused, “When we lose a match, we all lose. It’s not like the batsmen,Classy COG: TendulkarBefore the tour of the West Indies, an indian cricketer was asked whether it was the batsmen who lost matches for the team overseas by failing to put up enough runs. He was not amused, “When we lose a match, we all lose. It’s not like the batsmen lose and the bowlers don’t. That’s stupid.” It is indeed. Trinidad has shown exactly how stupid.On Day 1 of the Test, Sachin Tendulkar equalled Sir Don Bradman’s record of 29 Test centuries with his steeliest hundred yet. His innings was analysed, the genuflections completed, the tributes paid. By Day 5, in the face of something more powerful, it quietly stepped into the record books. The lingering memory from the Queen’s Park Oval will always be the sight of the Indians after the last wicket fell.They raced around crazy-eyed, seemingly directionless. Then almost by magic, they gravitated towards each other, all the time shrieking wordlessly like kids being let out in the open after five days cooped up in a classroom. Tendulkar put it best, “Nobody has got a five-wicket haul and nobody has a big hundred from this game. Still we won. That’s what winning for a team is all about.”That’s the way it will always be. Tendulkar should know: he has spent 13 years on the team but was part of only the third away Test win of his career last week. He has played in three World Cups, the best being a semi-final spot. He is often lauded for his genius and increasingly now is damned by it; India fails often, it is said, because the great Tendulkar is not great enough and cannot haul them home when needed.That is not about to happen. Find someone else.Find three batsmen willing to forge partnerships and build respectable totals from rock bottom, if necessary. Find two bowlers willing to sweat, another who will not stagger. Find a wicketkeeper and supporting fielders who hold on to chances like a shipwrecked man does a log of wood. They have, Tendulkar included, been with the team for some time. In Trinidad, India found them all.The clash of talents and egos that is Tendulkar vs Lara is enjoyable. But remember Lara scored 688 runs in three Tests against Sri Lanka in the winter and still the West Indies lost 0-3. Tendulkar got a second-innings duck in Trinidad and still India won.If there’s anything that Trinidad should bring home it is this: Tendulkar is a cog in the wheel; a priceless, 24-carat cog, a diamond-studded, precision-crafted cog, sure. But a cog nevertheless. He cannot and should not be expected to be the force that pushes the wheels ahead. The wheel will move only when its other parts are in working order. advertisement