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Spectrum, IEEE

Issue 7 • Date July 1994

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Displaying Results 1 - 7 of 7
  • A bit is a bit is a bit? [Reflections]

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    Freely Available from IEEE
  • L+25: a quarter century after the Apollo landing

    Page(s): 16 - 29
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    When the Apollo 11 rose into space, it was guided to the Moon by a mainly pre-IC, onboard computer with only 36 kilobytes of memory. Even the rendezvous of the lander with the command/service module employed a technique practised only once before in lunar orbit. Twenty-five years on, the author presents an historical overview of the Moon landings, examines the Russian role in the lunar race and details future projects aimed at a return to the Moon.<> View full abstract»

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  • Higher visibility for LEDs

    Page(s): 30 - 34
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    The gradually evolving technology of light-emitting diodes has of late made a quantum leap. These semiconductor devices are usurping some of the slots that, till now, had been filled by incandescent lamps and cathode ray tubes. The author describes how the luminance and luminous effiency of light-emitting diodes (LEDs) in the last few years have reached such high levels that they can replace incandescent lamps in running lights on trucks. Particularly where safety is involved, the longer life and inherent ruggedness of the solid-state devices make them a highly desirable substitute; the lower maintenance cost of the LEDs is a boon to any application.<> View full abstract»

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  • A Capitol experience [IEEE Congressional Fellow, experience]

    Page(s): 40 - 43
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    Freely Available from IEEE
  • Multimedia's push into power

    Page(s): 44 - 48
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (757 KB)  

    The power plant is the specific focus of a prototype supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system that integrates multimedia and visualization. Intended for a coal-fired power plant, the prototype was developed in 1992 by researchers at ABB Corporate Research in Heidelberg, together with practitioners at ABB Power Plant Control in Mannheim, Germany. The prototype equips a control room with wall-sized screens and the operators with a mouse for use on a window-based interface. Other features are new forms of visualization of process information, access to hypermedia documentation, interactive video facilities, and videoconferencing. Special attention has been paid to the seamless integration of functions and to ease of navigating among the varied forms of information and varied media that are used. The goal of ABB's work in this area is to lighten the operators' workload and simplify the cognitive demands made on them, and hence increase the availability, economy, and safety (ecological and otherwise) of plants and production processes. Today, operators are really the ones who "integrate" and work with the information from the process control system, the documentation, and many other sources.<> View full abstract»

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  • A slow start for emissions trading

    Page(s): 49 - 52
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    Because of differences in state regulations, plant efficiencies, electrical demand, and the costs of labor, equipment, and fuels, the annual cost of cleaning up emissions from power plants varies significantly from utility to utility in the United States. In a system in which allowances can be traded utilities that can significantly clean up their plants' emissions at relatively low cost can do so, retaining allowances they may then sell to utilities whose clean-up costs are much higher. Both groups thereby reduce the cost of complying with sulfur dioxide restrictions. However, several years after unveiling in US legislation, emission-allowance trading seems to be floundering. Regulators and utilities are blaming each other-and both may be partially right. The author discusses the reasons why there are problems and how they can be solved.<> View full abstract»

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  • A peripatetic prodigy goes home

    Page(s): 56 - 58
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    Mathukumali Vidyasagar was 13 when he entered college, and 35 when he was made an IEEE Fellow. This pacifist has taken charge of a defense research center in his native India. This article briefly reviews his life and work.<> View full abstract»

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