Ohio State junior linebacker Keandre Jones (16) tackles Tulane’s offense during the first half of the game against Tulane on Sept. 22. Ohio State won 49-6. Credit: Amal Saeed | Assistant Photo EditorFormer four-star linebacker Keandre Jones is transferring from Ohio State, the program confirmed Tuesday. Ohio State has not confirmed Jones’ destination, but reports say that the linebacker will transfer to Maryland. An Olney, Maryland native, Jones played in 32 games with Ohio State primarily on special teams and never started a game at linebacker. He recorded 29 total tackles with a tackle for loss: a sack against Tulane on Sept. 22. Ohio State will have sophomore Baron Browning, sophomore Pete Werner, junior Malik Harrison and redshirt sophomore Tuf Borland returning at linebacker. Freshmen linebackers K’Vaughan Pope, Dallas Gant and Teradja Mitchell will fight for playing time in the middle of the defense as well.
River Wicker grooms the softball batting cages at Buckeye Field. Credit: Collin Ginnan | Lantern ReporterThe snow had just started to fall on the cold February morning when the carts began traveling across the athletic campus to lay down a layer of salt.Later that day, a women’s lacrosse match would be played at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center, and walking paths needed to be clear.The softball team might not have a home game, but the batting cages needed to be cared for. And something had to be done about the new cryotherapy chambers blocking the path of the lacrosse nets.It’s just another gameday at Ohio State University.Behind the sports people love is a different kind of team. The grounds crew at Ohio State works year-round to ensure that the university’s athletic facilities are in peak condition for competition. Monday’s team consisted of four student assistants: River Wicker, a recent graduate in sustainable plant systems; Nick Gauthier, a fourth-year in mechanical engineering; Nate Grady, a fourth-year in accounting; and Kacey Browning, a third-year in sustainable plant systems.The noon shift began with a trip to Buckeye Field, the home of Ohio State softball. First up was to tend to the indoor batting cages. Embedded in the turf are rubber pellets that fill the playing surface. With repeated wear and tear such as pivoting in the batter’s box, the pellets are displaced, and divots are created. Once per week, the crew has to fill these spots to create a level surface.“It just depends on softball and how much the [women] are out here,” Wicker said. “We do mounds every day though.”Next up was Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. There, the team worked on cleaning up trash and dirt from the locker rooms to prepare for the impending women’s lacrosse season.On the way to the Woody Hayes Athletic Center, the crew took a pit stop at the fences surrounding the football practice fields. The tarps covering the fence had taken a beating in the recent winter storms, and the team had to repair them. It was a quick job, but was just another addition to an ever-changing to-do list.Once they reached the WHAC, it was finally time to prep the field for women’s lacrosse. For the indoor game, the traditional football field was painted with standard lacrosse lines two days prior. To set up for the match, the grounds crew worked in a rather choppy process — fast-paced and relentless at times, and slower with moments of anticipation while the crew waits for instructions. The main objectives were to set up practice goals, game nets and protective screens for the sandwiched crowd, while also checking goals for tears and grooming the turf.Of course, there are often hiccups along the way, such as unexplained wooden pallets, which held new cryotherapy chambers. Not exactly part of the typical description for a grounds crew, but these units were in the way of their setup process. So, the answer was naturally a forklift.Keep in mind, this was only February. With baseball and softball on the road, the brunt of spring sports has yet to hit.In February, the crew is caught between caring for winter facilities and preparing for the spring season.When spring sports are in full stride, the process is even more hectic. The day of the 2019 football spring game, the grounds crew is also responsible for baseball, softball and women’s lacrosse.“That day gets really interesting because of [the potential of] rain,” Brent Packer, Ohio State athletic grounds specialist, said. “We’re trying to keep softball dry. Meanwhile, we’re trying to get lacrosse set up and baseball — we’re communicating with coaches.”With spring sports, a challenge for the grounds crew is getting the grass ready shortly after winter. To do this, the fields are painted green.“The real reason we’re doing it is to make that surface darker, so it attracts more solar heat,” Brian Gimbel, superintendent of athletic grounds, said. “To heat the ground up underneath there and get the roots growing sooner than they would by nature.”Bending to the will of scheduling and mother nature, Ohio State’s grounds crew’s work looks different day to day. In April, the crew may be working the fields for four sports each day. In July, it could be maintaining Bill Davis Stadium for external tournaments. The job is always changing, and the crew is always on its toes.
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. Citation: Seabird’s morphing wings inspire design for robots that can both fly and swim (2010, November 19) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2010-11-seabird-morphing-wings-robots.html (PhysOrg.com) — There are robots that can fly, and there are robots that can swim, but so far a robot that can both fly and swim does not exist. With the goal to design an aerial/aquatic robotic vehicle, a team of researchers is investigating how nature achieves both aerial and aquatic motion in a single entity, particularly in a seabird called the common guillemot. They plan to use their calculations, models, and simulations to design a robotic vehicle with a morphing wing similar to the one used by the seabird. Copyright 2010 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. Explore further A robotic vehicle with the ability to fly and swim could have a variety of applications. For example, the vehicle could be used to inspect underwater oil pipes while flying to and from remote oil rigs. It could also be used for aerial and aquatic surveillance for counter-terrorism purposes. Variations in the missions could require very different operating speeds in each medium. The numerical model developed by the researchers takes these issues into consideration and can provide mission-specific optimal values to use in future concept vehicle designs. Currently, the researchers are developing an experimental platform from which they can investigate various parameters associated with flapping propulsion during aquatic locomotion.As Lock noted, there are still several challenges that need to be addressed, starting with the need to better understand the performance compromise between operations in the air and water due to the fact that robots of this type have not yet reached a level of maturity within the research community. “The second biggest challenge that we face is one that everybody within the robotics community has to deal with, and that is the problem of a suitable power source,” he said. “There is of course a finite payload which any robotic vehicle can carry, of which the power source invariably contributes a significant proportion of the overall mass. Implementing a power source that is light enough to allow aerial operations but provides sufficient power to enable the use of the locomotion mechanisms for any feasible length of time is a huge problem that we face. Luckily this is a common problem faced by many robots whereby the ultimate aim is for the untethered operations and as such many research groups are striving towards new power sources with greater power-to-weight ratios and lifespans. Although not currently available, we believe that in time a suitable power source will be developed that allows aerial/aquatic vehicles to be developed.“Finally, the third challenge we face comes from developing a vehicle of this scale capable of aerial operations utilizing beating wing flight. Very few mature examples exist that achieve this mode of locomotion through a flapping locomotion strategy, and they are not attempting operations in water as well. Solutions to this problem do exist, such as the inclusion of an additional propulsion source for use whilst in air such as a propeller, but this then moves away from the biological example from which the work drew inspiration. However, we are not ruling this out as a stepping stone whilst addressing other elements of the complex task that we face.”
Good day. The dollar remained in pretty tight ranges yesterday as currency traders wait to see what Ben Bernanke and the rest of the FOMC will come up with. The markets are counting on a big stimulus project to be announced, with the Dow hitting 5 year highs. Yesterday’s German court ruling continued to support the euro and a fairly surprising Dutch election result also calmed fears. Labor unrest in South Africa had the ran trading lower and central banks in both New Zealand and Switzerland decided to keep rates unchanged.But the big event driving the markets yesterday and this morning is the expected announcement of another quantitative easing program by the Federal Open Markets Committee. Ben Bernanke will hold a press conference just after noon today to explain what measures he and the rest of the FOMC have decided to enact in hopes of stimulating the US economy. Chairman Bernanke has reiterated his ‘grave’ concerns regarding the stubbornly high unemployment rate here in the US, and many are now expecting him to announce an ECB like unlimited bond buying program.I don’t think that is what the US economy needs right now. It worked for the ECB, but what is good for them is not necessarily what is needed on this side of the pond. The two central banks are facing much different problems, and therefore need very different solutions. The ECB was facing constant questions regarding the future of their single currency. They were also battling ‘bond vigilantes’ who moved from one country to the next running interest rates up and then profiting from the fears of a euro collapse. The ECB had to take bold action to combat these bond traders, and unlimited buying of bonds certainly seemed to scare off most of those selling bonds short. The ECB’s has definitely had the desired effect, stabilizing the bond markets and giving countries a little more time to work through their debt problems. It has also pushed the euro higher as the risks of a full blown euro breakup have been reduced.Ben Bernanke and the FOMC face a very different problem. The Fed has taken it upon themselves to try and revive the labor market. In the past the Fed had a single mandate: to keep prices steady by keeping inflation at bay. But recently they accepted the additional responsibility of keeping the labor markets at maximum employment. The problem with this new dual mandate is the Fed can only hire so many employees, and any other attempts at directly impacting the labor picture are untested. Low interest rates seemed to be a good idea, as the lower cost of funding should create an inviting environment for companies looking to spend on new factories and equipment. In the past these lower rates also stimulated consumers to add more ‘cheap’ debt enabling them to go out and spend. But the credit crisis and resulting plunge in housing prices and consumer net worth have taken away most of the projected benefits of these lower rates.That is why I question another round of quantitative easing. Just what does Bernanke and the rest of the voting members think they are going to accomplish by pumping unlimited cash into the bond markets? The 10 and 30 year interest rates are already near record lows, does he thing another 10 or 20 basis points is going to make much of a difference? The ECB bond buying had a specific goal; to lower rates from what they considered unjustifiably high levels. In contrast, the FOMC is trying to force rates which are already abnormally low even lower. I just don’t think another round of QE, and the accumulation of new debt which will accompany it is justified.But I guess if Bernanke is measuring the success of his stimulus programs by the stock market, they have been a huge success. As I mentioned in the opening paragraph, the Dow Jones average is trading back at levels it was at prior to the credit crisis. The last time the stock markets were at these levels was December of 2007. But higher stock prices obviously doesn’t translate to higher employment. Companies are returning to profitability, and their stock prices reflect this. But their workers aren’t participating, and the middle class continues to get squeezed.Probably took that line of thought a bit too far off course, so let me return to the currency markets. The Fed stimulus expectations sent the dollar lower through the first part of the week, but it stayed in a fairly narrow range yesterday as some started to worry that Bernanke wasn’t going to be able to sufficiently deliver on all of the hype surrounding QEIII. I am still confident the FOMC will announce some sort of bond buying program, but it may not duplicate the bold ‘unlimited’ purchase plan enacted by the ECB. The size of the program announced will likely determine the direction of the dollar. A smaller target for bond purchases would probably cause the dollar to rebound, but a larger program would send the dollar lower. Extremes on either side would have an even more dramatic impact on the greenback.The euro remained above $1.29 after the German court dismissed the challenges to the funding of the ESM. The ruling was a victory for German Chancellor Angela Merkel who has emerged from the euro-crisis as a very impressive leader. Some would also call her an excellent manipulator of the markets, as she has seemed to get them to follow in any direction she wants to take them. For now the euro is looking entrenched in a new higher range, but I’m fairly certain we will see more volatility as Greece and the other weaker EU members try to work through their debt problems.Greek prime minister Antonis Samaras was again unable to get his coalition partners to agree on plans to reduce spending. These austerity measures are the key to receiving another round of aid, so Samaras must get his ruling partners to agree or they risk throwing their rescue back into crisis mode. It sure looks like things are going to remain interesting in Europe, and particularly in Greece.The Danish Krona is pegged to the euro, and elections in Demark were seen by some to be a vote of confidence in the EU. Voters in Denmark rejected hard-line left and right parties calling for the withdrawal from the EU, and early results suggested the prime minister would remain in power. Many of the WorldMarket clients have invested in DKK 3 month CDs with the thought that Denmark will eventually break the peg. The pressure on the DKK/Euro peg has been reduced with these election results, but as I mentioned earlier, we have not seen the end of the European debt problems. This peg may yet be tested.The Swiss national bank pledged to uphold its peg to the euro in an announcement following their meeting yesterday. Like the ECB, the SNB pledged ‘unlimited quantities’ of purchases in an effort to keep the value of the franc from moving through their ceiling of 1.20 francs per euro. The central bank also left its benchmark interest rate at zero, as expected. The defense of the euro peg has led the SNB to increase their foreign currency reserves 64% to 418 billion francs ($446 billion). These holdings now equate to about 73% of GDP, an unsustainable level. The majority of these reserves are held in euros, as the SNB has had to exchange their Swiss francs for euros in order to keep the value pegged. Currency traders expect the Swiss franc to appreciate dramatically if/when the SNB would drop the peg, and the central bank is obviously wanting to end any speculation with their use of the word ‘unlimited’ in their defense.South Africa’s rand weakened the most out of the major currencies yesterday after continued labor strikes at mines. Workers at two different mines were either on strike or staying away from work following conflicts which left 44 dead last month. The Rand remains in a trading range of 8.55 – 8.06 in which it has been since the end of May.The New Zealand central bank kept interest rates unchanged and suggested they would remain at current levels through mid 2013. Reserve Bank Governor Alan Bollard worried to reporters about the strength of New Zealand’s trading partners. This was the last meeting for Bollard, who is stepping down later this month after spending 10 years at the head of the New Zealand central bank. With the coming change in leadership, any projection of future interest rate moves should be discounted as the new leader may decide to take a different approach. But the accompanying monetary policy statement definitely sounded a cautionary tone with regard to the New Zealand economy. “Headwinds for the economic outlook are still evident,” according to today’s report released by the RBNZ. “Domestically, the unemployment rate remains elevated.” Slow domestic growth and higher currency prices are keeping inflation in check, and the central bank thinks rates will remain where they are for most of 2013.Gold dropped a bit yesterday as investors anxiously awaited the decision by the Fed. Gold jumped over 2.4% in the past 10 days so a pause in the price movements is to be expected. Like the direction of the dollar, the movement of the price of gold will be determined by the size of the stimulus announced today by the Fed. If the stimulus is large or unlimited, gold should rally. But if the stimulus is smaller than expected, or is pushed off until the next meeting, we could see gold give back some of its recent gains.To recap. The dollar stayed in fairly narrow ranges yesterday as we await a stimulus decision by the FOMC. I question the need for more bond buying here in the US, and compare our situation to that faced by the ECB. The euro remained well bid after the German court ruling and a good election result in Denmark. The Swiss national bank left rates unchanged, as did the RBNZ in what was Bollard’s last meeting. And Gold dropped a bit yesterday, pausing before the FOMC decision.Currencies today 9/13/12. American Style: A$ $1.0440, kiwi .8217, C$ $1.0253, euro 1.2908, sterling 1.6110, Swiss $1.0653. European Style: rand 8.4202, krone 5.7515, SEK 6.604, forint 219.49, zloty 3.1833, koruna 18.9651, RUB 31.419, yen 77.70, sing 1.2301, HKD 7.7553, INR 55.375, China 6.33, pesos 13.0231, BRL 2.0260, Dollar Index 79.684, Oil $97.19, 10-year 1.74%, Silver $33.0775, Gold $1,731.27, and Platinum $1,656.52That’s it for today. Running late again today, but we have a full desk again so it will hopefully be a great day. I got to watch my daughter’s first field hockey game last night, and I have to admit I am still a bit lost with regard to the rules. They lost 2-1 but Lauren played well and had a good time (she always has a good time!). I hope everyone has a Tub Thumping Thursday and thanks for reading the Pfennig!Chris Gaffney, CFA SVP & Director of Sales T. 314-951-1619 EverBank World Markets 8300 Eager Road, Ste. 700, St. Louis, MO. 63144 EverBank.com