5 Sep

Issue of sovereign gold bond postponed to November 30

first_imgThe issue date of the first tranche of Sovereign Gold Bond scheme has been extended by four days to November 30 to enable their proper processing, the government announced on Wednesday.A finance ministry statement said a large number of applications has been received by banks and post offices, and “to enable smooth uploading of applications into RBI’s E-kuber system, particularly by the post offices, it has since been decided to shift the issue date of the Sovereign Gold Bonds from November 26, 2015 to November 30, 2015”.Subscription for the sovereign gold bonds, announced by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in the 2015-16 budget as a financial asset serving as an alternative to the precious metal, was open from November 5 to 20.The finance ministry announced last month that the bonds, issued by the Reserve Bank of India on its behalf, would be sold through banks and notified post offices.The scheme, so far, has generated lukewarm response, with bankers pegging the overall collections at Rs.150 crore. This, according to banks, is owing to a higher issue price, which the RBI had set at Rs.2,684 per gram, while the ruling market price was lower.The gold bonds are denominated in multiples of gram(s) of gold with a basic unit of one gram while the minimum investment limit is two grams and the maximum subscription is 500 grams per person per fiscal. For joint holders, the limit will be applied on the first holder.As per the scheme, the gold bonds will be sold only to resident Indian entities including individuals, Hindu undivided families, trusts, universities, and charitable institutions.The issue and redemption price are in Indian rupees fixed on the basis of the previous week’s (Monday-Friday) simple average of closing price of gold of 999 purity published by the India Bullion and Jewellers Association Ltd.The bond tenure will be eight years with exit option beginning the fifth year onwards. The bonds will also be tradable in the bourses.The rate of interest will be 2.75 percent per annum payable semi-annually on the initial value of investment.Bonds can be used as collateral for loans. The loan-to-value (LTV) ratio is to be set equal to ordinary gold loan mandated by the RBI from time to time.As to the tax treatment, interest on gold bonds will be taxable as per the provision of Income Tax Act, 1961 and the capital gains tax shall also remain same as in the case of physical gold.last_img read more

3 Sep

Travel permit restrictions to prevent return of militants

first_img*This report, originally appeared in Prothom Alo print editon, has been rewritten here in English by Nusrat Nowrin. Militant illustrationIn order to prevent the return of Bangladeshi militants who joined wars in Syria and Iraq, the home ministry has issued directives to Bangladesh embassies abroad not to issue travel permits without the ministry’s approval.This decision was reportedly taken at a recent meeting between the Inspector General of Police (IGP) and the top officials of home ministry.The home ministry’s immigration department under the security services division sent a letter to the foreign ministry on 16 May, stating that security threats had increased recently due to militant activities in the international arena. Granting travel permits without proper verification could pose as a threat to the country’s security, the letter said.Militants might conceal their identity and enter the country, the letter added, asking the foreign ministry to issue directives in this regard to Bangladesh’s diplomatic missions abroad.Home minister Asaduzzaman Khan said the airports have also been alerted about militants entering the country. The airports have been provided details of militants with Bangladeshi passports, he added.”The US has said certain militants who were Bangladeshi-origin US citizens, were also trying to enter Bangladesh. The agencies in Bangladesh do not have much information about the matter. As they did not have passports, they might try to get travel permits from the embassies and enter Bangladesh. That is why it has been decided to verify everyone’s identity before they enter the ocuntry. Anyone with a travel permit can return to the country as soon as the home ministry gives its approval,” the minister said.While asked whether this decision may hamper the return of immigrant Bangladeshi workers who had lost their passports for various reasons, Asaduzzaman said, “We will speedily send them approval by e-mail or fax.”According to sources in the law enforcement, many have gone to Syria and Iraq from Bangladesh, influenced by Islamic State (ISIS) ideology. The authorities do not have information on the exact numbers of these militants, whether they are dead or alive, or their whereabouts.The law enforcement sources referred to a foreign terrorist fighters’ list prepared by a certain western country, which said over 40 Bangladeshis went to Syria from Bangladesh in 2014-15. Many of them were killed and several landed in prisons in Syria and Iraq after being detained. Many Bangladeshi-origin citizens from other countries also went to Syria.Several other countries have already taken cautionary steps against militants of their respective countries from returning after the fall of ISIS in Syria.Officers of Dhaka Metropolitan Police CTTC (Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime) unit stressed the need to verify the identities of the people coming from Syria, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Turkey, and Lebanon as they may be militants returning from these countries.According to several sources, Mutaz Abdul Majid, a youth born and brought up in Saudi Arabia, came to Bangladesh from Turkey last February. He was taken into custody at the airport and later shown arrested.Mutaz had taken his passport from the Bangladesh embassy in Saudi Arabia and went to Turkey using the passport in 2016. Later, the Turkish police detained him and sent him to Bangladesh. However, the law enforcement here could not verify as yet whether Mutaz fought in Syria on any militant front.Militants have been blacklisted in many countries, and so will try to enter any country with a travel pass, CTTC chief Monirul Islam said.Fast travel passes are often sought to send back illegal workers. Militants may try to use such travels passes to return to the country and so the home ministry has issued the alert in this regard.last_img read more

31 Aug

Scientists Create First NonCarbon Material with NearDiamond Hardness

first_imgResearch scientists have created the first non-carbon-based material with a hardness approaching that of diamond. Their work could have a significant impact on technologies and industries that rely on diamond as a cutting and drilling tool and abrasive. Extremely hard yet metallically conductive: Researchers develop novel material with high-tech prospects Explore further Citation: Scientists Create First Non-Carbon Material with Near-Diamond Hardness (2007, March 28) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2007-03-scientists-non-carbon-material-near-diamond-hardness.htmlcenter_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. The material is a boron nitride “nanocomposite.” This means that, rather than consisting of one large continuous crystal, it is made of crystalline boron-nitride grains that are each a few to several nanometers in size. Although research groups have previously reported boron carbonitride materials, claimed to be the second and third hardest materials after diamond, the particular versions, or “phases,” of those materials were unstable at high temperatures. In industry, this is a major drawback.“The real breakthrough would be a bulk material that is hard, tough, and thermally stable, and thus ideal for cutting and drilling. We are the first to synthesize a bulk noncarbon material that fits this description,” said Natalia Dubrovinskaia, a researcher with the University of Heidelberg and the University of Bayreuth, both in Germany, to PhysOrg.com. Dubrovinskaia is the lead author of the paper describing the new material, which appears in the March 8 edition of Applied Physics Letters.For many materials composed of crystalline grains, also referred to as polycrystalline materials, there is a grain size for which the material’s hardness is optimized. This size is often in the nanometer range.Along this line of thought, Dubrovinskaia and her colleagues synthesized and conducted several experiments on a series of polycrystalline and nanocrystalline phases of boron nitride. This characterization included measuring the samples’ “Vickers hardness,” a test that assigns a hardness value to a material based on how readily it is indented by diamond. That value can be expressed in terms of the pressure applied by the diamond – using the pressure unit “pascal” – before it makes an indentation. For very hard materials that usually means billions of pascals (gigapascals, GPa). Single-crystal diamond, the hardest type, has a hardness of about 100 GPa.The boron nitride nanocomposite synthesized by Dubrovinskaia and her group displayed a maximum hardness of 85 GPa at a grain size of about 14 nanometers, and is thermally stable up to 1600 degrees Kelvin (about 2400 degrees Fahrenheit). The material’s hardness arises from two factors: the nanoscale-grain-size effect and each grain’s two-phase composition. That is, each grain has a nanoscale crystalline structure and a sub-nanoscale structure. This complex composition significantly increases the bulk material’s mechanical strength.Prior to this research, the next hardest known material after single-crystal diamond was cubic boron nitride, a single-crystal phase of the material, which has a Vickers hardness of 50 GPa. That leaves a rather large 50 GPa gap.“This gap can be filled by boron nitride nanocomposites, particularly by tuning their grain size and the compositional structure of the grains,” says Dubrovinskaia. “These materials may come to play an important role in industry.”Citation: Natalia Dubrovinskaia, Vladimir L. Solozhenko, Nobuyoshi Miyajima, Vladimir Dmitriev, Oleksandr O. Kurakevych, and Leonid Dubrovinsky, “Superhard nanocomposite of dense polymorphs of boron nitride: Noncarbon material has reach diamond hardness.” Appl. Phys. Lett. 90, 101912 (2007)Copyright 2007 PhysOrg.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com.last_img read more

31 Aug

New holographic radar system can track high speed shells

first_img One of the costs associated with training military personnel is in the constant replacement of targets. To get around this problem, the DoD sent out a request for development of a system that would allow for shooting at “off-sets” – positions that are close enough to the target to measure hits versus misses, without damaging the actual target. To achieve good results in such a system, a trainee would need to see not just where the shells he’s firing are landing, but the trajectory they take in getting there. Such information helps in plotting where to send the next rounds so as to move ever closer to the intended target, improving accuracy in the process.To address the problem, engineers from Cambridge Consultants designed an entirely new kind of radar; one that uses 3D technology to create a realistic holographic image in real time that shows the trajectory of rounds fired as well as where they burst in the air or when they hit a target; all of this in a 360° image. More information: www.cambridgeconsultants.com/news_pr304.html Citation: New holographic radar system can track high speed shells (2011, September 23) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-09-holographic-radar-track-high-shells.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. (PhysOrg.com) — The British firm Cambridge Consultants has announced the successful test of its new 3D holographic radar system that can track fired shells traveling up to 1000 miles per hour. The new system called the Land and Surface Target Scorer (LSTS) and developed for the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), is expected to help lower the cost of training and hopefully defend against small high speed enemies. GPS-Based Fuze Expected To Triple Cannon’s Accuracy The biggest hurdle the team faced was in differentiating the shell it was tracking from surrounding “noise.” In real world environments, everything from moving water to other projectiles to debris fragments can produce radar hits making it difficult to discern what is what. The new system had to have a way of clearing all the other stuff away to allow the person manning the gun to see very clearly where his round was going. And that’s just what the recent demo of the system showed, an ability to track 5 inch shells being fired at a rate of one every three seconds.In addition to saving money on targets, such a system should also lower the cost of ammunition as it appears such a system would reduce training time. The DoD is also hoping to employ the new technology to help in tracking small fast moving targets, such as terrorists in a rubber dingy out to blow up portions of a ship as was done with the USS Cole in 2000. Explore further © 2011 PhysOrg.comlast_img read more