Inside story on Hovingham Hall

Hovingham Hall has opened its doors to visitors this month. Sharon Dale takes a tour of the family home with owner Sir William Worsley. The drawing room at Hovingham Hall was last decorated 82 years ago, not that you’d guess from its pristine yellow walls, which show no signs of old age. “It was done in 1935 but we’ve washed the walls down and they have come up as good as new, though we daren’t move any of the paintings or you’d notice the fading,” says Sir William Worsley, who puts the longevity down to poisonous lead paint, now mostly banned. Sir William Worsley with his wife Marie-Noelle

He is also careful about how the room is used. It’s for special occasions only and, as the evening progresses, guests are moved down to the stone-floored hunting hall where they can get squiffy and spill their drinks with no risk to the historic décor. The property, which sits in the centre of the village of Hovingham in the Howardian Hills, is a Palladian gem built for Thomas Worsley between 1750 and 1770. The childhood home of the Duchess of Kent, its architecture and interiors are a joy. It is the only house in the world where the front door is approached through a large covered riding school and the grounds include the oldest continually-played-on private cricket ground in England.

You can see it for yourself, as Hovingham Hall is open for a month ending on June 28. The opening fulfils the terms of an English Heritage grant that helped with re-roofing costs. “We had to open for one month a year for 15 years and this is the last year but I think we will continue it because it feels right to share the house,” says Sir William, who adds that opening for longer would destroy the “sparkle” and the feel of what is still a family home. There is no financial incentive as the ticket revenue only just covers the cost of opening. The formal dining room with family portraits Keeping a close eye on money is imperative and, so far, primogeniture hasn’t let the Worsleys down. Successive generations have done a splendid job of preserving the estate, which includes about half the homes in the village, agricultural land and forestry.

Income from the land, which the Worsleys bought in 1563, helps maintain the hall, which costs £100,000 a year to run. If you add in repairs, then the bill doubles to £200,000. “A Labour government allowed us to offset repair bills against tax but then roofers dublin scrapped it. I’m hoping it will be reinstated because it’s all about preserving history and it’s much cheaper to keep these homes in private hands. If they are taken on by the National Trust, they cost the country millions,” says Sir William, who took over from his father in 1987. Farming, he says, is always volatile. Rents from estate properties generate a good income but maintenance costs are high. Forestry, which makes up a third of the land, is not very profitable but it is his great love. It’s why he decided to accept the post of chair of the National Roofer Company, a government-led initiative to turn industrial wastelands in the Midlands into woodland.

The nursery with favourite vintage toys Like many historic home heirs, he studied estate management and is also a chartered surveyor with a genuine love of architecture. His Dutch wife, Marie-Noelle, is a gifted artist and her design skills have been put to good use on the hall’s interiors. “She’s the best room dresser in Britain,” he says. The couple, who have three children, Isabella, Francesca and Marcus, lived in a house nearby until moving to the hall in 2002. Since then they have renovated and improved the property. Re-roofing by roofer dublin was the first job and took two years. Repairs to high-level stonework took another two years and then there was a rewire. Money is now being spent on the “bits you can see”. Their love of art is apparent. Sir William likes modern British and contemporary paintings, while Lady Worsley loves ceramics, so there are plates by York’s Mark Hearld and a new stand-out piece by Merete Rasmussen. Continuous Yellow, a bright contemporary ceramic sculpture, adds zest and dynamism to the Samson room, which is full of classical busts and statues.

Read more at: http://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/news/analysis/inside-story-on-hovingham-hall-1-8588434

What is time-sensitive networking?

Time-sensitive networking (TSN) is the most recent leg of the journey that will make critical data available where and, most importantly, when it’s needed. The automotive industry’s use of audio video bridging has evolved into time-sensitive networking for in-vehicle and out-of-vehicle communications.

But what exactly is TSN, and why does it matter?

“On the one hand, time-sensitive networking denotes a set of IEEE 802 standards, which extends the functionality of Ethernet networks to support a deterministic and high-availability communication on Layer 2,” explains Dipl. Ing. André Hennecke, researcher at DFKI, a research center in Kaiserslautern, Germany. “In particular, this includes an improved timing synchronization and a real-time scheduling method, enhancements of the stream reservation protocol, explicit path control and network policing procedures.”

On the other hand, the term “time-sensitive network” is also used to designate a series of acts from different organizations to enable a deterministic communication via Ethernet, not only with a focus on Layer 2, but also with a view on Layer 3 (DetNet), applications and certification processes, such as those from AVnu Alliance, says Hennecke.

“It’s possible to have a network that offers no value to a customer, even though it conveys 100% of the requested information, simply because of the transmission latency it introduces,” warns Doug Taylor, principal engineer, Concept Systems, a system integrator in Albany, Oregon. The aim of TSN is to eliminate that latency for critical data by reserving a traffic lane for those packets.

In the generic sense, TSN is a set of capabilities being added to standard Ethernet to support applications that need deterministic characteristics for data transfer.

At one level, time sensitive networking it is a set of IEEE 802.1 and 802.3 standards, explains Paul Didier, solutions architect manager at Cisco. “The objective is to enhance Ethernet and core standard networking to better support time-sensitive applications, such as industrial automation control,” he says.

“We’re trying to match up standard networking with a lot of the requirements coming out of industrial automation and control. The concept of these control transactions or messages is a little challenging. Control engineers think they’ve got a controller or motor, and there’s a wire between the two of them. Technically, they understand that moving to standard networks and being able to do things in those models makes things a lot easier. Queuing the stuff up is counter-intuitive. They’re looking for deterministic network performance characteristics around latency, jitter and reliability that are easy to implement and use. It gives them an open and interconnected network that allows much more freely flowing information from those devices and to enhance and add to those devices over time, which drives the overall story of the IoT, where you can do off-line or close-to-the-machine. You need access to the data without having to drop extra lines in. It’s about convergence. There’s all of this IIoT, and it’s all about these things using the Internet. Aren’t there different requirements? Isn’t there a reason they haven’t used the Internet? Should we make some modifications?”

At the heart of TSN are mechanisms that provide time synchronization for networked devices and scheduled forwarding of defined traffic flows through the network, explains Markus Plankensteiner, vice president, sales industrial, North America, and global alliance manager, TTTech Computertechnik (www.tttech.com). “Through time synchronization and scheduling, TSN delivers deterministic communication over standard Ethernet, thereby enabling the convergence of critical control traffic with data traffic over one infrastructure without the need for gateways or proprietary solutions,” he says.

“The TSN standards define mechanisms for the time-sensitive transmission of data over Ethernet networks; these in particular address the transmission of data at very low latency and high availability, allowing for time-determination communication and synchronization,” says Sari Germanos, open automation business development manager, B&R Industrial Automation.

Time-sensitive networking is a collection of projects aimed at improving Ethernet, and specifically Internet technologies for time synchronization, explains Joey Stubbs, P.E., North American representative, EtherCAT Technology Group. “These projects are intended to improve routing, pre-emption, time synchronization, security and throughput of Ethernet traffic for A/V streaming and bridging,” he says. The IEEE 802.1 standard encompasses the work of the TSN Task Group, which used to be called the AVB Task Group for audio video bridging.

Fieldbuses are proprietary, well-designed for the applications they support, but getting data out of them is a bear, says Didier. “We can support that much better than the much-less-deterministic methods that we currently have,” he explains. “They have control problems they’re trying to solve. We’ve got an ecosystem we’re trying to build this into. This isn’t going to be a separate network configuration. It’s simply incorporated in the standard tools that you use. The idea is those programs understand the control loops and what information needs to come in and leave. The network will say it can handle it, sometimes with modifications, and push it out into the network. That’s the architecture we’re putting together on top of the IEEE standards.”

Read more: http://www.controldesign.com/articles/2016/what-is-time-sensitive-networking-iiot/

Lumber Liquidators Settles Charges Related to Safety of Chinese-Made Laminate Flooring

Lumber Liquidators Inc. has agreed to pay $2.5 million to California state regulators to settle charges related to the safety of the hardwood-flooring company’s laminate products sourced in China.

The company didn’t admit wrongdoing, according to a regulatory filing, and Lumber Liquidators said the California Air Resources Board “concluded its review with no formal finding of violation or admission of wrongdoing on the part of the company.”

Shares in the company rose 11% to $13.39 midday, though they are still down more than 20% so far this year.

As part of the agreement, Lumber Liquidators will implement a series of compliance procedures to ensure its flooring products comply with CARB’s formaldehyde standards, which are the most stringent in the country. The company and CARB have also agreed to collaborate to establish best practices and protocols for testing flooring products with the aim of setting a new industry standard.

Lumber Liquidators came under fire after a “60 Minutes” segment last March alleged the company sold laminate flooring with unsafe levels of formaldehyde, a carcinogen. The report has pummeled the company’s stock, and led to sharp declines in sales and the departures of several top executives, including the CEO at the time.

In February, federal regulators said certain types of its laminate flooring are three times as likely to cause cancer than it previously reported.The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention corrected an error in a previous report it had issued, which said the flooring contained levels of formaldehyde that could cause minor health issues but posed little chance for increased cancer risk.

On Tuesday, Chief Executive John Presley pointed to consumer-safety initiatives the company has taken over the past year.

“We strengthened our quality assurance procedures, launched the largest voluntary testing program in our nation’s history and, in May 2015, voluntarily suspended the sale of all laminate flooring sourced from China,” he said.

Read more: http://www.wsj.com/articles/lumber-liquidators-settles-charges-related-to-safety-of-chinese-made-laminate-flooring-1458665403

Green Building talk explores energy-efficient roofing materials

Considering a new roof in the not-too-distant future? Residents can learn about options for durability, environmental performance and curb appeal at a free Green Building Program 7 p.m. Thursday, April 7 at the Granite Reef Senior Center, 1700 N. Granite Reef Road.

Tyler Allwood

Tyler Allwood

“Beyond Reflectivity: The Future of Energy Efficient Roofing” will feature a presentation by Tyler Allwood.

Over 43 percent of all electricity consumed in Valley homes is used for air conditioning. Roofs that reflect the desert sun’s heat back into space and help keep building interiors comfortable offer attractive savings on energy costs for air conditioning.

“Cool” roofs also reduce ambient air temperature, air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions.

The program will discuss energy-efficient roofing products and the pros and cons of using reflective roofing surfaces, ventilation, insulative materials and innovative roofing products.

Mr. Allwood will share his experience with energy efficiency, performance and durability of roofing products in the harsh desert environment. He is the national director of Technical Services and Systems for Eagle Roofing Products, the largest USA owned concrete roof tile manufacturer.

The lecture series is sponsored by the Scottsdale Green Building Program. The lectures are free and open to the public; no reservations are needed.

Read more here: http://www.scottsdaleindependent.com/news/green-building-talk-explores-energy-efficient-roofing-materials/

 

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Volkswagen: Sharan launches with new engines and extensive networking features

Ten key facts about the new Sharan:

  1. New TSI and TDI engines up to 14.3 per cen more fuel efficientt; the most efficient model consumes just 5.0 l/100 km.
  2. All engines (115 to 220 PS) fulfil the Euro-6 standard.
  3. Completely new array of infotainment systems.
  4. Perfectly networked with ‘Android Auto™’ (Google), ‘CarPlay™’ (Apple), ‘MirrorLink™’ and ‘Volkswagen Car-Net’.
  5. Thanks to Blind Spot Monitor (optionally linked to Lane Assist), Rear Traffic Alert and Automatic Post-Collision Braking System even safer.
  6. Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) and Front Assist with City Emergency Braking are available in the Sharan for the first time.
  7. New LED rear lights and 16-inch alloy wheels.
  8. Interior is upgraded with higher quality trim and materials, plus enhanced instrumentation.
  9. The launch in Europe starts in mid-July (w/c 13th July).
  10. Exclusive ‘Beach’ and ‘Ocean’ models for the launch.

Volkswagen Sharan

  • For two decades the highly flexible Sharan has been one of European families’ main motoring companions. In addition, the 5- to 7-seat Volkswagen has also made a career for itself as a refined business vehicle, especially in Asia. Having sold over 200,000 units in the current generation and over 800,000 in total, a technically much enhanced version of the MPV is now making its debut. Numerous convenience and driver assistance systems are new on board, with many of these celebrating their premiere in the Sharan’s vehicle segment. Volkswagen – with the ‘VW Campervan’ the inventors of the compact MPV – have also completely updated the array of infotainment systems. These provide a maximum degree of connectivity, as ‘MirrorLink™‘ ‘CarPlay™‘ from Apple and ‘Android Auto™‘ from Google are also included for the first time. Also at the forefront of the changes are the Sharan’s new engines, which consume up to 14.3 per cent less fuel and fulfil the Euro-6 emission standard.
  • 115 to 220 PS. The engines* used – two petrol (TSI) and three diesel (TDI) – are four-cylinder, 16-valve engines that are both powerful and efficient, featuring turbocharging and direct fuel injection. The TSI engines deliver 110 kW / 150 PS and 162 kW / 220 PS (a gain of 20 PS) respectively, with the 150 PS version consuming, in combination with the standard manual transmission, just 6.4 l/100 km. The TDI engines are available at three power levels: 85 kW / 115 PS, 110 kW / 150 PS (gain of 10 PS) and 135 kW / 184 PS (gain of 7 PS). The TDI versions delivering 115 and 150 PS consume, in combination with the six-speed manual gearbox, a mere 5.0 l/100 km. All diesel engines are fitted with an SCR catalytic converter. Also standard on all models are Stop-Start and brake energy recovery systems. A remarkable feat given the size of the vehicle is that practically all TSI models achieve efficiency class B (220 PS: C) and all TDI versions achieve efficiency class A. With the exception of the smallest diesel, all engines can be combined with an automatic six-speed dual clutch gearbox (DSG), which now provides a ‘coasting’ function (decoupling of the engine when lifting off the accelerator) for additional fuel-saving. The DSG transmission is included as standard with the top 220 PS engine. As an alternative, the 150 PS TDI engine is also available with 4MOTION all-wheel drive.
  • New driver assistance systems. Further increases in convenience and safety are provided, as outlined above, by the new driver assistance systems in the Sharan. The Automatic Post-Collision Braking System is included as standard. The optional Front Assist traffic monitoring system alerts the driver if the distance to the vehicle ahead is too short and applies the brakes as necessary. Meanwhile, the City Emergency Braking function integrated within the system is active at speeds of up to 30 km/h and, if worse comes to worst, automatically initiates emergency braking in order to avoid a collision or to minimise its intensity. For the first time, the Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) system is also available on the Sharan. The electronic parking brake system now features an Auto Hold function, which stops the vehicle rolling back when stationary or driving off. Other new optional features include the third generation Park Assist system (assisted manoeuvring in and out of parking spaces) and the Blind Spot Monitor (alerts drivers to the presence of vehicles in the blind spot when changing lanes), which also includes Rear Traffic Alert, a system that warns of any traffic coming across the vehicle’s path when reversing out of a parking space.
  • Second generation modular infotainment matrix. The completely updated array of touchscreen infotainment modules encompasses the standard 5-inch ‘Composition Colour’ system and the 6.5-inch systems called ‘Composition Media’ and ‘Discover Media’ (with navigation). The Sharan also offers an extremely high degree of connectivity, as it can for the first time be equipped with the ‘App-Connect’ and ‘Guide & Inform’ Car-Net functions. ‘App-Connect’ is based on the smartphone interfaces ‘MirrorLink™‘, ‘Android Auto™‘ (Google) and ‘CarPlay™‘ (Apple), via which all sorts of different apps can be fed into the infotainment system. Volkswagen ‘Guide & Inform’ online services also provide information such as up-to-date traffic alerts and details of free spaces in nearby car parks and filling stations with low fuel prices. The ‘Discover Media’ infotainment system can also be linked to ‘Media Control’: via this new app users are able to use Wi-Fi and a tablet to access functions of the on-board system, such as navigation or the media player.
  • Optimised exterior and interior. The Sharan’s exterior has been sharpened: the rear light cluster with LED technology presents a more concise light signature, while the revised model also gains an extended range of wheels, including the new 16-inch ‘Jakarta’ alloys, and two new body colours (‘Hudson Bay Blue Metallic’ and ‘Crimson Red Metallic’). The interior has been optimised as well: three new trim designs – ‘Platinum Silver’ (standard on the Trendline), ‘Piano Black’ (standard on the Highline) and ‘Mirror Oak’ (available as an option for the Comfortline and Highline) – enhance the dashboard and the door panels. Modified steering wheels and a massage function for the optional 12-way seats optimise ergonomics
  • Exclusive special models. Volkswagen is enhancing the Sharan’s launch with two stylishly customised special models: the Sharan Ocean and Sharan Beach. They are painted in two new colours: ‘Hudson Bay Blue Metallic’ (Ocean) or ‘Crimson Red’ (Beach). Extended options for exterior equipment include the newly designed ‘Jakarta’ 16-inch alloy wheels and silver roof rails. The two exclusive versions are also equipped with the ACC assistance system, Lane Assist, the Blind Spot Monitor plus Rear Traffic Alert and Park Assist (including ParkPilot). Also included as standard are specially designed seat covers with contrast stitching coordinated with the exterior colour, a multifunction steering wheel, a gear lever gaiter with corresponding decorative stitching, electric rather than manual sliding doors for the rear seating area and automatic air conditioning.
  • The model range. The Sharan is available with 5, 6 or 7 seats and always with two sliding doors. As was once the case with the first ‘VW Campervan’, the Sharan has been designed on the principle of ‘form follows function’ in order to be able to create a superbly flexible and spacious interior. Clear, precise design and the ratio of its proportions make a confident, unmistakable presence a hallmark of the new Sharan. It is 4,854 mm long, 1,713 mm high (without roof rails) and 1,904 mm wide (2,081 mm including wing mirrors). The result is a dynamic interplay of proportions and a powerful overall look and feel. The Sharan is one of the most successful MPVs in its class. Key reasons for this are its flexibility and exceptionally good interior space. The EasyFold seat design, with its quick-to-use folding mechanism, makes it easy to stow the individual seats of the second and third rows into the floor of the vehicle, thus maximising its flexibility. The passenger seats in the second row can be repositioned laterally, and the backs can be adjusted by an angle of 20 degrees. Features such as two integrated child seats, up to nine air bags and 33 storage bins, plus an impressive luggage capacity of 2,430 litres also speak for themselves. Further characteristic features of the Sharan that have made it the most successful German MPV in its class include a high level of quality, perfect ergonomics and intuitive ease of use.

Find the original article here: http://www.automotiveworld.com/news-releases/volkswagen-sharan-launches-new-engines-extensive-networking-features/

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