Before I started making the Redwood Bowl my home away from home during the fall sports season, I spent plenty of afternoons driving to the other end of Eureka to cover the College of the Redwoods football team.For four seasons it was my beat. And for what seemed like each one of those four seasons, I was interviewing a different head coach at the start of preseason practice.From Tino Romero to Chris Vicory and then over to Taylor Breitzman and finally Frank Borba. That’s four coaches in four …
(Visited 145 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterest It’s hard to keep up with the numerous advancements in science coming from inspiration provided by natural design.Climbing bot: Robots inspired by geckos can now carry 100 times their own weight, New Scientist reports.Cell pump light switch: Adjustments to a sodium pump in cell membranes is enabling a protein-based light switch, PhysOrg says, in the new field of “optogenetics”— switching with light-sensitive proteins.Sunflower scissors: A protein found in sunflower seeds can both cut and repair molecules. PhysOrg says that using this molecular machine will help the development of new drugs.Neural computers: Use of “memristors” (resistors with memory) is allowing computer scientists to design computers that mimic the neural networks in the brain (Nature News).Ant-i spam: Need better spam filtering? Look to the ant, thou programmer. PhysOrg says that ants use a “distributed decision network” that is inspiring anti-spam technologies.Ant-i traffic: Why don’t ants get into traffic jams on their trails? Science Magazine says that traffic engineers could alleviate congestion by following their example. Counter-intuitively, “the bugs hit the gas instead of the brakes as it got more crowded, upping their speed by about 25% as their density doubled.” Don’t try that on the freeway just yet until scientists work out the dents.Synthetic nanofactories: The future is in sythetic biology, Live Science says. Ginkgo Bioworks, seeking to build nature-inspired factories at the molecular scale, “is one of a growing number of companies engineering technology with lessons from nature,” the article says. “Its founders are redesigning industrial engineering for a new generation — a manufacturing revolution powered by biology.”Pulling water from thin air: Tomatoes and other plants with tiny hairs on their leaves are inspiring ways to collect mist from the air to alleviate global water shortages, Science Daily reports.Fish armor: More on efforts to create armor from designs in fish scales was reported on PhysOrg. “The secret behind this material is in the combination and design of hard scales above with soft, flexible tissue below,” an engineer said of the scales on elasmoid fish that inspired the biomimicry.Fish submarines: Speaking of fish, PhysOrg also reported that submarine designers are looking to extinct lungfish for innovations in submarine design. They call this “paleobiomimicry.” They’re investigating how sensitive hair cells on the “lateral line” of fish, used for their sonar, might help design subs that can more effectively locate things like downed aircraft MH370.Membrane channels: Lawrence Livermore Labs has found a way to build spontaneously-assembling “biomimetic, nanoporous membrane channels” with carbon nanotubes the way cells build them with proteins (PhysOrg).Win-win photosynthesis: Progress in artificial photosynthesis continues. Science Daily reports a major breakthrough for sunlight harvesting, using light-capturing nanowire arrays and live bacteria. If it works, it will be a win-win for humans and the environment.Cuttlefish camo: Researchers at University of Nebraska-Lincoln are making progress imitating the “master of disguise,” the cuttlefish, which can change colors almost instantly. “This is a relatively new community of research,” said Li Tan of UNL on PhysOrg, who co-authored a recent paper outlining the team’s design. “Most of the people (in it) are inspired by the cuttlefish, whose skin changes color and texture, as well.” Changing texture is much harder than changing color, they are finding.Insect hearing aids: “An insect-inspired microphone that can tackle the problem of locating sounds and eliminate background noise is set to revolutionise modern-day hearing aid systems,” reports Science Daily.Sandalwood yellow: Sandalwood is known for its red pigment, but the yellow pigment is much more complex. PhysOrg reports that “biomimetic access to yellow pigment” has been found in red sandalwood. Trying to mimic the complicated production of this pigment would make for easier access to the popular color for various uses.Cautionary tales: All this mimicking of nature is wonderfully promising, but safety must be considered. The Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Design at Harvard has drawn up some guidelines for proactive safety processes when working on experiments involving risks like synthetic bacteria.Wonderful reports keep coming from the world of biomimicry: copying nature’s incredible designs! Just don’t turn loose any biomimetic rattlesnakes or mosquitos.
Air travel is booming with growth rates surging at 5 per cent a year. Boeing and Airbus are responding manufacturing aircraft in record numbers to meet demand. However the problem is the industry could soon be facing a significant shortage of skilled pilots to fly them.The 2014 Boeing Pilot and Technician Outlook projects the need for 533,000 new commercial airline pilots worldwide over the next 20 years. To meet the demand, “We probably need 8,000 to 10,000 pilots per year in the United States alone,” says Kit Darby, president of Kit Darby.com Aviation Consulting in Atlanta. The noted industry observer says the rest of the world will have to come up with twice that number. In the U.S. Darby says flight schools are only producing about 2,000 commercial pilots per year; the military some 1,000 to 2,000.Low Entry Pay A February 28, 2014 report by the United States Government Accountability Office (GAO) concludes the shortage stems from “imminent retirements, fewer pilots exiting the military, and new rules increasing the number of flight hours needed to become a co-pilot.” Then there’s the matter of pay, entry pay for commuter/regional airline pilots in the U.S. be precise.Commuter/Regional airlines are the point of entry for many pilots, where they start their professional career.According to Darby’s figures pay averages US$24,335 per year in 2014 for flying those flying the smallest aircraft, such as 19-passenger Beech 1900D propjets. To earn the right to sit in the low-paying right-hand co-pilot’s seat of such an aircraft, the U.S. Airline Pilots Association’s Fact Sheet says, “many new pilots have invested US$150,000 or more in their college education and flight training with the expectation that they will be able to pay off their loans and eventually earn a salary that is commensurate with their education, training and experience.”By contrast an assistant manager at a McDonald’s fast food restaurant in the U.S. earns an average of US$29,076. And they don’t have to pay US$150,000 to train for the job.To make sense of that pay difference, Darby believes you’ve got to put things in perspective. His figures show the average yearly pay for a captain flying the smallest commuter/regional aircraft is US$76,965. Top paid regional airline captains in the U.S. “can make US$110,000 to US$120,00 per year,” he says. “That’s clearly a career.”If the regional airlines act as stating places for pilots’ professional career, major carriers are the springboard to far higher earnings. Darby says a pilot hired on by a U.S. major at age 30, who goes on to retire at age 65, can realistically expect to earn approximately US$10 million in pay, benefits and retirement.But first you’ve got to manage to make it through the lean years in the co-pilot’s seat of a regional aircraft. That’s the hard part, the part that renders the airline profession less than attractive.Pay PerceptionsIf low entry pay per se persuades some not to become pilots, so too does the perception of the total price paid to pursue this sometime precarious profession. In the wake of the September 11 attacks some airlines went bankrupt. Others went out of business. US Pilots suffered a 40 per cent pay cut over the past ten years due to airlines restructuring after filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.One 747-400 captain for a major airline, a person at the top of his profession puts a human touch to this. Preferring not to be identified, the captain says when his airline went bankrupt not only did he lose 35 percent of his pay, but US$250,000 worth of stock and 80 percent of his pension. Much of that has been regained, but not all.“I’m one of the lucky ones,” he says. “I really am. I’ve had a good career. I’m a 747 captain, so I’m at the top of the pile.” Still, he wouldn’t recommend his profession to anyone. “I can’t imagine anyone wanting to be an airline pilot,” he says. “It’s too hard.”Indeed, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) says one of the main challenges in increasing the number of airline pilots is “reduced career interests of younger generations.”Stricter RequirementsAfter Continental Connection Flight 3407 crash on February 12, 2009 outside of Buffalo, New York the U.S. Congress passed a law mandating, among other things, that most pilots have at least 1,500 hours of flight time to get an Airline Transport Pilot certificate, or ATP. Before that, a person could fly as co-pilot with a few as 250 hours.This, and other measures, were designed to cut the number of pilot error accidents. Time will tell if the measures will do that. What the 600 percent expansion of minimum flight time has done, however, is add to the obligation an aspiring co-pilot must fulfill before going to work for a U.S. airline.How the Shortage Affects FlyersU.S. regional/commuter carriers are most affected by the new rules. But so is the airline industry as a whole. Remember, regional airlines feed major carriers with pilots.Approximately 18,000 airline pilots are due to retire over the next eight years and there is a significant need to recruit pilots from those regional carriers.In the May 15, 2014 edition of the U.S. Regional Airline Association’s newsletter Regional Horizons, RAA Senior Vice President Government Affairs Faye Malarkey Black said the stage is now set for “a perfect storm” of a pilot shortage over the next few years.The effects of that storm are already being felt, not just in the United States, and not merely among regional airlines. Regional Airline Great Lakes Aviation suspended flights to six U.S. cities in early 2014, citing lack of pilots. Regional airlines are bracing for more route cutbacks.If the shortage is becoming acute in some sectors in the U.S., Darby contends, “It’s worse” in the rest of the world, “far worse.” Take Japan, for instance, a nation whose population is growing older. This fact has helped fuel a significant pilot shortage there. Cases-in-point: Peach Aviation and Vanilla Air, a pair of Japanese low-fare airlines. Both have had to cancel flights earlier this year. Neither had enough pilots to fly their full schedule of A320 departures.Based on June 2013 data derived by IATA from Boeing, the Asia/Pacific region tops the list of regions in most need of pilots between then and 2030. That part of the planet must somehow come up with 9,280 pilots per year, or 185,600 overall.Next in need is Europe, where the demand is for 5,045 each year, 100,900 in total. North American airlines must have 3,450 new pilots per year, 69,000 overall. Latin America is very much in the equation, with a yearly requirement of 2,100 pilots, and longer-term demand for 42,000. Africa needs 725 new pilots per annum, 14,500 in all. Lastly, Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States require 525 pilots every year to meet demand, 11,900 in all.Who’s Paid What, WhereComparing airline pay across the globe is far from an exact science. Just what constitutes compensation differs – sometimes significantly. Typically airline pilots fly a maximum of 1,000 hours annually. In the U.S. that cap is mandated by regulation. The 1,000-hour total limit has to fit into a framework of no more than 30 hours of flight time during a seven-day period, and no more than 100 hours per month.Pilot pay is based not just on hours flown, but “on weight and forward speed of the aircraft,” says Darby. “That determines pilot productivity, and is the basis for the pay.” For example, a 400-seat Boeing 747-400 pilot is typically paid more than an 180-seat Airbus A320 pilot.AirlineRatings.com derived pay data from a number of sources: KitDarby.com Aviation Consulting, IAC, Airline Pilot Central, Flightglobal and some airlines. These numbers do not necessarily take into consideration things such as housing allowances and the tax-free status of pay, in some instances, for foreign expatriate pilots. Those elements can boost total compensation considerably.Two figures matter most: average entry-level first officer (co-pilot) pay and average top captain’s pay. Looked at that way the leading U.S. passenger airline is Delta, which pays its entering first officers an average of US$68 per hour. That’s as much as US$6,800 per month and US$68,000 a year. Average top captain’s pay at Delta is $213 per hour. If based on 100 flying hours maximum per month, and 1,000 per year that translates into US$21,300 each month, or US$213,000 a year.By contrast, a Korean Air 747-400 first officer can earn as much as US$9,800 per month, and a 747 captain as much as US$16,100.Cathay Pacific’s first officers can earn US$8,878 each month; top captains US$14,343.Based on basic salary plus flying pay, Emirates first officers are paid around US$7,935 a month; Captain’s pay can be US$11,227.In Australia a Qantas A330 captain takes home up to A$260,000 a year, (A$21,666 a month) whereas a Virgin Australia A330 skipper will get around A$242,000.For a Qantas A380 captain the remuneration is higher at A$350,000 (A$29,166 a month) compared to a Virgin Australia 777 captain at A$262,000.A recent article in The New York Times says experienced pilots at German flag carrier Lufthansa “can easily earn…about US$275,000 each year.”But it’s China where pilot demand (particularly for foreign captains) is soaring. And so is the foreign pilot pay scale. Jim Morris is CEO of Australia-based IAC, an international airline pilot recruiting firm. He asserts, “You cannot get [expatriate pilots] to go there for love nor money at the moment.” Not even at captain’s pay that’s around US$20,000 per month. He says that 20K paycheck “would have been unheard of two or three years ago.”The pay disparity between local pilots and expatriate cockpit crewmembers can be significant, and not just in China. “The pay rates…for foreign pilots under contract…are usually premium rates,” says Kip Darby. That can produce real tensions in the cockpit. “Local pilots making less look at foreign pilots making more and [they’re] not happy with that.” Indeed, earlier this year more than 100 Air China pilots signed a letter to the airlines’ management, citing complaints about pay and scheduling differences in how the two groups are treated.In the end, however, IAC’s Jim Morris says the challenge in attracting contract pilots to work in China isn’t pay per se. Increasingly, it’s lifestyle. “Pilots are not all motivated by money,” says Morris. “Route structures, the ability to come home and be with your family” are critical.Solutions?There are things industry can do to meet the expected demand. Whatever action is taken (and some is already underway) time is precious. “This is not something you can do overnight,” says Kit Darby. It’s not like turning on a tap and expecting fully-qualified pilots to suddenly flow out. The process “can easily take eight years,” He says.“We find ourselves with a structural problem based on the system of how we train pilots,” contends Dan Akins of the aviation consultancy Flightpath Economics. Speaking before the 39th Regional Airline Association Convention he said, “We have to regain some kind of linkage between the airlines and cadet pilots” saying that since the 1970s “We have offloaded the training expense on the military and on the backs of the students themselves.”Darby notes that back in the 1960s, when there was an earlier pilot shortage, airlines reached out to pilots “and helped them pay for their training.”In fact, in its report Aviation Workforce: Current and Future Availability of Airline Pilots the U.S. Government Accountability Office says airlines are already taking action. Several regionals interviewed by GAO have “developed partnerships with schools to provide incentives and clearer career paths for new pilots.”The GAO reports says some regionals, and pilot schools, believe the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration “could do more to give credit for various kinds of flight experience” to meet the new, higher U.S. 1,500-flight hour threshold.All agree the system needs adjustment. Darby thinks it should be more than a mere tweaking of the structure. “It takes a certain type of personality to do this job,” to be an airline pilot. “Just because you have a flight rating and training doesn’t mean you have the ‘right stuff,’” he contends.One thing is certain in all this: it’s the traveling public that will eventually pay the cost of the emerging pilot shortage. How big the bill and how long before payment is due are the only real questions.But it is essential that pilots are well paid for their work and sacrifice and the career is as attractive as possible. It is of great concern that the emergence of low cost airlines has also meant that we are getting low cost pilots. This is something that the industry cannot afford and is a false economy.
LIST: Class, gov’t work suspensions during 30th SEA Games Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC LATEST STORIES SEA Games in Calabarzon safe, secure – Solcom chief WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding Read Next Jose is currently with Gilas Pilipinas in the 2017 Southeast Asian Games as the Philippines seeks its 18th gold medal in the biennial meet.He is the third player from Far Eastern University to win the plum, following the footsteps of Mac Belo (2016 Aspirants’ Cup) and Mike Tolomia (2016 Foundation Cup).FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutJose edged Cignal teammate Jason Perkins, Flying V’s Jeron Teng, and CEU’s JK Casiño for the award. Catriona Gray spends Thanksgiving by preparing meals for people with illnesses LOOK: Venues for 2019 SEA Games UPLB exempted from SEA Games class suspension MOST READ Raymar Jose. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.netDisplaying unmatchable grit all-conference long, Cignal HD’s Raymar Jose came away with the Conference Most Valuable Player award for the 2017 PBA D-League Foundation Cup.The hardworking forward averaged 12.27 points and 10.18 rebounds in leading the Hawkeyes to a second straight Finals appearance this conference.ADVERTISEMENT Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:42Cayetano asks Robredo, opposition to stop ‘politicizing’ drug war01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games SEA Games: PH’s Alisson Perticheto tops ice skating short program ‘Sorry it didn’t last long,’ says Marvin after 21-second KO leads 2-gold boxing haul Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View comments
Touch Football Australia (TFA) has recently designed and released the new banner for SportingPulse online systems used by the Touch Football community. This is just a small part of TFA’s re-branding objective, and continuous technological developments for the current strategic cycle.The Touch Football Online tool is the ‘official Membership and Payments system of TouchFootball Australia’, and is available for all recognised affiliates. It helps affiliates maintain their organisation’s membership and financial details.No matter the size or scope of your affiliate, SportingPulse Membership can build new efficiencies into your business processes, saving you time while enabling you to manage your membership information the right way.For more information, please click on the attached memo. Related Filestouch_football_online-_banner_release-pdfRelated LinksTouch Football Online