2015.04.10 21:45 South Surrey & White Rock
2015.04.26 02:50 Sedorner Behold, the Master Race
2014.07.28 03:20 boredop True Blues
2023.03.25 12:48 Financial_Goat_9179 A stream of white particles when looking at a dark surface.
2023.03.25 12:48 MattEspiritu 24/PST/PC Come one come all, looking for friends :))
2023.03.25 12:48 lahanasarmasi Reducing the cost
2023.03.25 12:47 alexsinha Paragliding Aims To Allow You To Fly Through The Skies Of Varkala
“Professional instructors make sure of an exciting and secure paragliding experience”submitted by alexsinha to u/alexsinha [link] [comments]
Paragliding in varkala
Tours offer paragliding in VarkalaA little town in the state of Kerala in southern India, Varkala is famous for its breathtaking beaches, peaceful scenic beauty, and amazing cliff views. But many aren’t aware that Varkala is also a well-liked holiday spot for adventure lovers who enjoy flying high in the sky.
You guessed it, paragliding in Varkala is what I’m referring to. Varkala gives a one-of-a-kind chance to parachute over the mountains and beaches while taking in the breathtaking views of the Arabian Sea and Kerala’s gorgeous landscape. You will have lifelong memories as a result of this once-in-a-lifetime adventure.
First, on rocks near Varkala beach, paragliding is performed in Varkala. Because of the amazing views of the Arabian Sea, the town, and the surrounding hills, the area is perfect for paragliding. It is a thrilling and unforgettable experience because the take-off point is on the mountain and the landing point is on the beach.
Best Places in VarkalaTourists looking for a refreshing vacation enjoy visiting Varkala, a beautiful coastal town in the southern Indian state of Kerala. Varkala has something to offer everyone with its perfect beaches, breathtaking cliffs, and ancient sites. We will explore some of the must place to visit in Varkala.
A Guide for Budget TravelersVarkala Beach is a beautiful and popular tourist site in Kerala, India’s southern part state. Paragliding is one of the many sports available to guests here, and it provides beautiful views of the beach and nearby scenery. This page will go through the price of paragliding at Varkala Beach.
The Varkala beach paragliding cost varies according to a variety of parameters. This 10–15 minute flight typically costs between INR 3000 and INR 5000 per person. This can, however, vary depending on the time of year, demand, and the service you pick.
The Best Time to Go ParaglidingThe fee for paragliding is likely to be higher during peak season (December to February) due to increasing demand. Similarly, during the off-season (June to August), its price may be reduced due to lower demand. It is Varkala worth visiting mentioning that wind speeds play a part in deciding the cost of the paragliding, as operators may have to cancel or reschedule flights due to inclement weather.
OverallThe adventure activities sport of paragliding in Varkala provides a singular viewpoint of the town, the mountains, and the sea. Varkala has grown to be a well-liked holiday spot for Indian paragliding at Varkala lovers due to its pleasant weather, qualified instructors, and stunning scenery. All adventure enthusiasts can participate in it, and it will provide you with lifelong memories that you will treasure. Flying through the air, feeling the wind in your face, and viewing the world from a new angle are all incredibly thrilling experiences. You will have memories from this activity that you will treasure forever.
2023.03.25 12:47 KimJongAndIlFriends Legendary creature + signature legendary spell pairings (3/10)
submitted by KimJongAndIlFriends to custommagic [link] [comments]
2023.03.25 12:46 DMSetArk I've been barely eating for 9 days. Gonne from 124kg to 117. What do i do?
2023.03.25 12:43 asron67 my ranking of bowie albums after full binge:
2023.03.25 12:42 Toom200 A day like any other
2023.03.25 12:41 AhhhItsMe 34 F wondering about post-COVID respiratory symptoms one month after a positive test
2023.03.25 12:40 No-Performance3426 Spear + shield + Aquilon is a thing - excerpt from The End And The Death
In the arming chambers below, two full war companies of Legio Custodes are priming for war: Valdor's assault company, and the Companion company that will flank the King-of-Ages. In truth, there is little to do, for every guardian has been fully and permanently war-ready for months. Weapons, cells, plate seals and armour systematics are simply checked and approved by white-clad adpets. Only a handful, like Diocletian, and the captain-general himself, who have been in recent combat, are obliged to submit to more thorough attention. Weapons are reloaded, cells recharged, blades re-edged. Damaged plate components are cleaned, re-finished, re-polished, or entirely replaced. Minor wounds are treated. Dirt, grease and blood are washed away. Perfection of wargear ensures perfection of performance.
It is almost silent in the Custodes arming vault. No one talks. Caecaltus Dusk submits to inspection. Serfs take his paragon spear and his praesidium shield aside for examination. Diagnostics check his sensoria, his refractor system, and his arae-shrike device. Scanners play inquisitive light across every segment and component of his ornate Aquilon-pattern plate.
The checks seem to take longer than usual.
"Done?" Caecaltus asks.
The adept-supervisor nods, but asks that the proconsul's breastplate be removed for cleaning.
"Why?" Caecaltus asks.
To wash away minute traces of an unknown organis residue, he is told.
Caecaltus looks down at his golden chest plating. The old man. The spittle on his finger. The mark's not visible any more. It barely ever was.
"No," says Caecaltus.
2023.03.25 12:39 Middlaa12 Crazy brunerre Tory Lane roller skates all over the city debases storefronts with spray paint and kicks up a row at the rock-band rehearsal where her boyfriend performs
|submitted by Middlaa12 to Ojkhho [link] [comments]|
2023.03.25 12:38 Neanti23 Quintorius, Biblioplex Keeper
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2023.03.25 12:38 Cheemingwan1234 Kombatant Profile: Cure Prism (Mortal Kombat 11 x PreCure)
One for Cure Prism from Hirogaru Sky PreCure as a Kombatant in Mortal Kombat 11.submitted by Cheemingwan1234 to precure [link] [comments]
And yes, I’m going to use this to connect the Edenians to the people of Sky Land in Hirogaru Sky PreCure for my concept of a Mortal Kombat/PreCure fusion universe.
Kombatant Profile: Nijigaoka Mashiro/Cure Prism.
Note, her face model is based on her voice actress, Kakuma Ai. Her appearance is the same as her appearance in Hirogaru Sky PreCure with holders to hold her Sky Tones and Sky Mirage at the sides of her waist
Nijigaoka Mashiro (nicknamed Mashiron) at first glance appears to have an ordinary life. The childhood friend of Ageha Hijiri, she was dismayed at first when Ageha moved out via her mother getting a new job and promised to keep in touch with her during her childhood. She grew up into a kind and gentle girl willing to help, though a bit lacking in self-confidence. After meeting Sora Harewataru/Cure Sky and Princess Elle, natives of the realm known as Sky Land/Skyrealm and witnessing them fight one of the Undergu Empire’s general, Kabaton. Mashiro decided to take them into her household. With Ageha’s encouragement during an encounter with Kabaton, she mustered up enough confidence to take her Sky Tone and Mirage Pen after it was previously granted by Elle, to transform into Cure Prism, the PreCure of Light. Together with Cure Sky, they held off the Underg Empire as warriors of legendary prowess.
Unknown to her, she also hides another heritage. The natives of Sky Land are Edenian descendants that have escaped into another realm when Edenia was merged into Outworld after it lost its Mortal Kombat tournament millennia ago. Like Sora, Elle and her family via her grandmother ; Nijigaoka Yoyo , Mashiro possesses Edenian blood (though hers is diluted) . It is this hybrid vigor that would drag the players of Mortal Kombat and the Titan; Kronika into her life and she would need her PreCure abilities, both solo and with her partner; Cure Sky to fend off any attempts to enslave her for breeding stock for an army in Mortal Kombat.
Select Screen animation: Cure Prism adjusts her ribbons on her arms before creating a prism construct in her hands and shattering it. She then pulls out her Sky Mirage.
Crystal Breaker: Grants Crystal Armor and ability to create bladed weapons made from crystals.
Blinding Light: Grants Blinding Flash (Cure Prism lets out a blinding flash to blind the enemy).
Sky to Infinity: Can summon Cure Sky as an assist character for attacks.
Gear: Sky Mirage, Hair Bow (her hair ornaments) and Sky Tones.
Skins: Default (her PreCure form), Civilian (her civilian costume), Tremors (a costume based on Mortal Kombat X Tremor), Dream (based on Cure Dream’s Yes! PreCure 5 costume) Edenian Heritage (based on Kitana’s Mortal Kombat X outfit) and Snuffed Out (Revenant themed skin)
Johnny Cage Announcer Nicknames: “Prism”, “Mashiron”, “Kawaii” and “Cute Cure”
Gentle Light: Cure Prism does her end of transformation pose.
Crystal Teleport: A bunch of crystals forms into a humanoid shape and shatters to reveal Cure Prism.
Parent Con: Cure Prism video conferences to her parents on a tablet computer before noticing her opponent.
Mirage Inspection: Cure Prism inspects her Sky Mirage before noticing her opponent.
Prism Ball: Cure Prism executes her Prism Shot attack at the screen.
Stylish: Cure Prism adjusts her hairbow.
Futari Wa PreCure!: Cure Prism summons Cure Sky and they pose.
Crystal Smash: Cure Prism creates a crystal gauntlet and punches the camera, smashing it in the process.
Bone Breaker: Cure Prism breaks one of the opponent’s leg with a kick, then smashes the opponents ribcage with a underhanded punch before kicking the opponent down.
Sucker! : Cure Prism taps on the opponent from the back to get their attention, then punches the opponent with a prism gauntlet hard enough to knock the opponent to the ground.
Fatal Blow: Hop, Step, Maim! :
Cure Prism starts her Fatal Blow by kicking the opponent into the air. She then jumps up and bounces off a platform and grabs the opponent before smashing the opponent into a crystal spike. She then pulls the opponent from the spike, her holding her opponent’s neck before then conjuring another prism construct, this time, a crystal wall and then throwing the opponent into the wall, shattering it.
Fatality 1: One for the Money.
Cure Prism grabs the opponent by the neck and conjures up a crystal wall behind her opponent with her Sky Mirage after inserting her Sky Tone W Shining. She then grabs the opponent by their neck and their lower back after turning the opponent around to face the crystal wall and proceeds to smash the opponent’s head against the wall, smashing in her opponent’s face. She then checks the damage caused by her smashing the opponent’s face against the crystal wall before then winding up a powerful smash that splatters the opponent’s head and shatters the crystal wall.
Fatality 2: Prism Skull:
Cure Prism grabs the opponent’s head, turns their flesh of their head into crystal and shatters it, revealing her opponent’s skull which then crystalizes. She then rips out the opponent’s skull and spine and then uses it to smash into the opponent’s upper torso as an improvised flail, shattering the opponent’s skull and splattering their upper torso.
Spreading Softly: Cure Prism checks her Sky Mirage.
Fluffy and Soft: Cure Prism pats her hair bow.
Brutality/Round Win lines:
“Don’t mistake me as harmless.”
“You have been dealt with!”
“The only purification for you will be your death!”
“Gentle Light Soaring Softly: Cure Prism!”
“It’s Brutality Time! Wait, that does not sound right…..”
“You will not harm Elle-chan!”
“You will not threaten Sky Land and Earthrealm!”
“Worse than the Undergu Empire!”
“What a pity it has to come to this….” (Against Raiden or Liu Kang)
“You will not make an army from me!” (Against Shang Tsung)
“I’ve never met such a scumbag as you!” (Against Kano)
“Just because I’m a half-blood does not mean I can fight!” (Against Kitana)
“Your domination plans end here!” (Against Sindel)
“Descended from cowards!? My ass!” (Against Shao Kahn)
Friendship: Crystal Touch:
Cure Prism conjures up some crystals that she then shatters into a statue of Cure Sky and Cure Prism. Cure Sky then walks up to the statue and gives a thumbs up of encouragement to Cure Prism who is beaming with happiness.
Dialogue Samples (With Cassie Cage, Shao Kahn, Mileena, Kano and Sindel)
“You taught Elle-chan to swear!?”
“What, it’s funny to me!”
“Note to self: never invite Cassie to my household.”
“The descendant of Edenian cowards is a PreCure?”
“I can stand up to you, tyrant!”
“You will suffer, PreCure whore!”
“Another halfblood, like me?”
“Your face looks ugly.”
“I will feast on you, Pretty Cure!”
“Just like Tremor, only with a frilly dress.”
“Why you overgrown bastard….”
“You seek to dominate others…”
“As is my right to rule.”
“You will be put down!”
(Shot of Cure Prism approaching the Hourglass, with the corpse of Kronika behind her that )
“Kronika’s plan to rewrite the timeline proved to me and Sora that she was just as bad as the Undergu Empire, if not as worse. We put her down for her crimes. With the death of Kronika, the Elder Gods were brought back and appointed Liu Kang, now one of their own as the new keeper of the Hourglass. His personality has proven itself resistant to the temptations of abusing the Hourglass.”
(Shot of Cure Prism and Cure Sky bidding farewell to Kitana and Jade as they return to Earthrealm).
“Kitana and Jade offered me and Sora a place in their government as they went to rebuild their realm of Edenia as fellow Edenians. We refused and returned to Earthrealm and Sorashido City and gathered new allies to help us in the fight against the Undergu Empire.”
(Shot of Cure Prism and Cure Sky fighting alongside Sonya Blade, Sub-Zero and Scorpion as they charge into battle against the Undergu Empire)
“After all, a hero’s duty is to their realms and to protect it from threats such as the Undergu Empire.”
2023.03.25 12:34 helppppppppph HELP PLEASE
2023.03.25 12:32 Chico237 #NIOCORP~ NIOBIUM~& THE QUANTUM INTERNET, U.S. & EU Critical Minerals & more....
submitted by Chico237 to NIOCORP_MINE [link] [comments]
#NIOCORP~ NIOBIUM~& THE QUANTUM INTERNET, U.S. & EU Critical Minerals & more....
New experiment translates quantum information between technologies in an important step for the quantum internetNew experiment translates quantum information between technologies in an important step for the quantum internet (phys.org) =
A NIOBIUM superconducting cavity. The holes lead to tunnels which intersect to trap light and atoms. Credit: Aishwarya Kumar
Researchers have discovered a way to "translate" quantum information between different kinds of quantum technologies, with significant implications for quantum computing, communication, and networking.
The research was published in the journal Nature on Wednesday. It represents a new way to convert quantum information from the format used by quantum computers to the format needed for quantum communication.
Photons—particles of light—are essential for quantum information technologies, but different technologies use them at different frequencies. For example, some of the most common quantum computing technology is based on superconducting qubits, such as those used by tech giants Google and IBM; these qubits store quantum information in photons that move at microwave frequencies.
But if you want to build a quantum network, or connect quantum computers, you can't send around microwave photons because their grip on their quantum information is too weak to survive the trip.
"A lot of the technologies that we use for classical communication—cell phones, Wi-Fi, GPS and things like that—all use microwave frequencies of light," said Aishwarya Kumar, a postdoc at the James Franck Institute at University of Chicago and lead author on the paper. "But you can't do that for quantum communication because the quantum information you need is in a single photon. And at microwave frequencies, that information will get buried in thermal noise."
The solution is to transfer the quantum information to a higher-frequency photon, called an optical photon, which is much more resilient against ambient noise. But the information can't be transferred directly from photon to photon; instead, we need intermediary matter. Some experiments design solid state devices for this purpose, but Kumar's experiment aimed for something more fundamental: atoms.
The electrons in atoms are only ever allowed to have certain specific amounts of energy, called energy levels. If an electron is sitting at a lower energy level, it can be excited to a higher energy level by hitting it with a photon whose energy exactly matches the difference between the higher and lower level. Similarly, when an electron is forced to drop to a lower energy level, the atom then emits a photon with an energy that matches the energy difference between levels.
Rubidium atoms happen to have two gaps in their levels that Kumar's technology exploits: one that exactly equals the energy of a microwave photon, and one that exactly equals the energy of an optical photon. By using lasers to shift the atom's electron energies up and down, the technology allows the atom to absorb a microwave photon with quantum information and then emit an optical photon with that quantum information. This translation between different modes of quantum information is called "transduction."
Effectively using atoms for this purpose is made possible by the significant progress scientists have made in manipulating such small objects. "We as a community have built remarkable technology in the last 20 or 30 years that lets us control essentially everything about the atoms," Kumar said. "So the experiment is very controlled and efficient."
He says the other secret to their success is the field's progress in cavity quantum electrodynamics, where a photon is trapped in a superconducting, reflective chamber. Forcing the photon to bounce around in an enclosed space, the superconducting cavity strengthens the interaction between the photon and whatever matter is placed inside it.
Their chamber doesn't look very enclosed—in fact, it more closely resembles a block of Swiss cheese. But what look like holes are actually tunnels that intersect in a very specific geometry, so that photons or atoms can be trapped at an intersection. It's a clever design that also allows researchers access to the chamber so they can inject the atoms and the photons.
The technology works both ways: it can transfer quantum information from microwave photons to optical photons, and vice versa. So it can be on either side of a long-distance connection between two superconducting qubit quantum computers, and serve as a fundamental building block to a quantum internet.
But Kumar thinks there may be a lot more applications for this technology than just quantum networking. Its core ability is to strongly entangle atoms and photons—an essential, and difficult task in many different quantum technologies across the field.
"One of the things that we're really excited about is the ability of this platform to generate really efficient entanglement," he said. "Entanglement is central to almost everything quantum that we care about, from computing to simulations to metrology and atomic clocks. I'm excited to see what else we can do."
Old School Meets New School: Critical Minerals Used in Quantum ComputingOld School Meets New School: Critical Minerals Used in Quantum Computing Pillsbury - Internet & Social Media Law Blog - JDSupra
Quantum technology runs on the notoriously difficult-to-stabilize qubit. Unlike binary bits in classical physical components in computers and cell phones, qubits can operate in more than one state at a time (known as superposition), and they have an uncanny ability to remain interconnected with one another even when separated (known as entanglement). These features mean that the speed with which quantum computers can solve problems is virtually limitless—once science understands how to capitalize on their abilities, that is. An MIT article reports that an encryption problem that only a short while ago was thought to require billions of qubits may be susceptible to solution with a much more manageable number.
But there’s a hang-up—quantum machines are finicky. They tend to like things quiet, still and cold, in some cases requiring a temperature around absolute zero, or about -460 degrees Fahrenheit. The quantum computing process must be isolated and protected from “decoherence.” Noise in the system means that answer-checking routines consume enormous amounts of computational effort and energy.
Scientists are still working out the best ways to help quantum machines function in real-world scenarios. Regardless of the paths taken to get there, it seems a given that rare earth metals and other critical materials will prove essential building blocks.
Rare earths themselves are described in our prior post concerning their use in the energy transition. Each element has subtle differences in charge characteristics that can be isolated with precision in the beneficiation, processing and manufacturing process. That precision can in turn address this field’s other biggest challenges—scalability and reproduction.
As scholars grapple with these puzzles, a number of techniques have emerged for taming otherwise rowdy qubits, each with its own material needs. Some of the elements are household names, while others are generally known only as obscure boxes on a high-school chemistry class periodic table.
Superconducting: At a low-enough temperature, metals like aluminum and niobium.) no longer offer electrical resistance. This phenomenon makes them popular options for keeping fussy qubits stable in superconductor systems. Superconducting quantum computers are perhaps farthest along on their path to usability, with tech companies betting heavily on the approach. For example, Rigetti Computing is making advances in quantum computers and the superconducting quantum processors used to power them.
Europe turbo charges its critical minerals driveColumn: Europe turbo charges its critical minerals drive Reuters
Geothermal water is seen through a sight glass at a pipeline system of a geothermal power station of German power supplier EnBW Energie Baden Wuerttemberg AG, where a pilot facility for lithium extraction will be built, in Bruchsal, Germany, April 23, 2021. REUTERS/Ralph Orlowski
LONDON, March 24 (Reuters) - The European Union has unveiled the accelerator in its drive to reduce the bloc's import dependency for critical minerals and metals.
The Critical Raw Materials Act (CRMA) "will significantly improve" Europe's domestic extraction, processing and recycling capacity for metals such as lithium and rare earths, according to Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission.
The Act comes with targets for production and for reducing dependency on any single third country. China currently dominates the supply chain for many of the entries on Europe's list of "strategic" metals.
The EU is also playing catch-up with the United States, which is already investing heavily in critical metals capacity under the aegis of the Defense Production Act and the Inflation Reduction Act.
Europe may, however, have given itself a competitive edge by moving to streamline project permitting, a tortuous process that often drags on for years before the first shovel hits the ground.
(MOVING) TARGETSThe CRMA covers a subset of the EU's critical minerals list, with particular focus on battery metals like lithium, nickel, cobalt and manganese and magnet inputs such as boron and rare earths.
Copper is on the list as an enabler of all things electric but aluminium and zinc aren't, which is a striking omission given the recent shrinkage of European production capacity.
Germany's Speira has joined the list of casualties, this month announcing the full closure of its Rheinwerk aluminium smelter due to high energy costs.
"Today's strategic raw materials list must not be the finished picture," warned Evangelos Mytilineos, president of industry group Eurometaux.
It probably won't be. The CRMA includes a provision for periodically updating the list to reflect evolving economic importance and supply risks across the critical metals spectrum.
For those metals on the list the target is for the region to mine 10%, process 40% and recycle 15% of what it consumes annually by 2030. By which time not more than 65% of any strategic metal's consumption will be able to come from a single third country.
These are ambitious targets given Europe currently sources 97% of its magnesium in China, which also has a complete monopoly on the processing of heavy rare earths and graphite.
Europe's lithium extraction can in theory meet the 10% target but it hinges on multiple new projects, many of them using innovative technology.
Recycling lithium-ion batteries is also a technical challenge that has to be resolved at scale to meet the 15% recycling target.
PERMITTINGIn terms of maximising domestic mining and processing capacity, Europe is following the United States in instructing all national governments to go back and look at what may have been left behind in tailings ponds and historic mine sites.
Operators of existing mines and plants should prepare an economic assessment study of what they're losing in "waste" streams. It's a policy that has already significantly closed the U.S. dependency gap for tellurium and scandium.
However, Europe has overtaken the United States in one key area, aiming to streamline the permitting of "strategic" projects to ensure a maximum time-line of two years for mines and one year for processing plants.
All such projects should be considered as being "in the public interest" by the relevant national authority when considering environmental impact.
The U.S. Administration has come under fire for using the Inflation Reduction Act to incentivise domestic mining while simultaneously blocking development of mines on federal land. The green-on-green environmental clashes seem set to continue until there is a long-overdue rewrite of the General Mining Act of 1872.
COLLECTIVE BUYING AND STOCKPILESMany strategic metals markets are opaque, not easily financially hedged and concentrated on the supply side, according to the CRMA. All of which "increases the negotiating power of sellers and increase prices for buyers".
It calls for the Commission to set up a system for collective purchasing by interested buyers, a mechanism already trialled in the gas market.
It also recommends the accumulation of strategic metal stocks to buffer against unexpected supply disruptions. Europe has no strategic metal inventory, unlike the United States, China and South Korea.
Member states may have their own stockpiles and "as a first step and considering the lack of relevant information", the 27 countries in the bloc should report to the Commission what, if anything, they are holding.
Given such a humble starting point, it seems unlikely EU strategic metal reserves are going to come any time soon, if they come at all.
METALLIC ARMS RACEThe EU accepts it will never be fully self-sufficient in most if any of the metals it's identified as being critical to its industrial and defence sectors.
The CRMA advocates diversifying supply in favour of "reliable partners" and creating "mutually beneficial partnerships with emerging market and developing economies".
It represents a further tectonic decoupling of global supply chains.
What started as a response to China's dominance of critical metals supply has been accelerated by Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
Russia has historically been a major supplier of aluminium, copper and nickel to Europe's industrial sector to the extent that the EU has to date held back from sanctioning Russian material even as the United States imposes penal import duties.
But the metals world is clearly starting to split between West and the East.
It's a messy process, witness the dispute between the EU and the United States over the exclusion of European products from the electric vehicle subsidies introduced in the Inflation Reduction Act.
That particular hurdle may shortly be cleared, German newspaper Handlesblatt reporting that a draft agreement has been reached.
It is evidently in neither side's interest to compete with each other in the context of reducing resource ties with China and Russia.
Assuming future trans-Atlantic harmony can be achieved, something akin to a metallic NATO will start to take ever clearer shape.
BIS Issues Proposed Rule to Establish “Guardrails” to Prevent the Improper Use of CHIPS Act FundingPosted on March 24, 2023POSTED IN BIS, SEMICONDUCTORS, SUPPLY CHAIN
BIS Issues Proposed Rule to Establish “Guardrails” to Prevent the Improper Use of CHIPS Act Funding SmarTrade (thompsonhinesmartrade.com)
On March 23, 2023, the Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking implementing measures to prevent the improper use of CHIPS Act Incentives Program funding. Described as “guardrails,” the proposed rules are intended to ensure technology and innovation funded by the Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors (CHIPS) and Science Act are not used for malign purposes by adversarial countries against the United States or its allies and partners. The CHIPS Act was enacted in August 2022 to incentivize the manufacture of semiconductors and semiconductor manufacturing equipment in the United States, especially amid growing national security concerns and economic competition risks posed by China’s increasing chip production in recent years. It provides appropriations to develop domestic manufacturing critical to U.S. competitiveness and national security interests. See Update of July 29, 2022.
The proposed rule provides additional details on national security measures that would be applicable to the CHIPS Incentives Program, including limiting recipients of funding from investing in the expansion of semiconductor manufacturing in foreign countries of concern (i.e., China, Russia, Iran and North Korea). According to BIS, these guardrails “will advance shared national security interests as the U.S. continues coordinating and collaborating with allies and partners to make global supply chains more resilient and diversified.” The proposed rule provides additional details on and definitions for these national security guardrails, including:
Establishing Restrictive Standards and Limiting Facility ExpansionTo protect national security and the resiliency of supply chains, CHIPS Incentives Program funds may not be provided to a foreign entity of concern. The proposed rule provides a detailed explanation of what is meant by “foreign entities of concern,” as well as a definition of “owned by, controlled by, or subject to the jurisdiction or direction of.” The proposed rule defines other terms used in the CHIPS Act (including terms that will be used in required agreements with funding recipients), identifies the types of transactions that are prohibited under the Expansion Clawback and Technology Clawback sections of the CHIPS Act and provides a description of the process for notifying the Secretary of Commerce of significant transactions involving expansion of semiconductor manufacturing in a foreign country of concern.
Classifying Semiconductors as Critical to National SecurityWhile the CHIPS Act allows companies to expand production of legacy chips in foreign countries of concern in limited circumstances, the proposed rule would classify a list of semiconductors as critical to U.S. national security. In doing so, the rule would define “legacy semiconductors” subject to tighter restrictions, which would include “current-generation and mature-node chips used for quantum computing, in radiation-intensive environments, and for other specialized military capabilities.” The proposed rule seeks to also clarify what would not be considered legacy semiconductors.
Reinforcing U.S. Export ControlsIn October 2022, BIS implemented export controls to prevent China from purchasing and manufacturing advanced chips that would enhance that country’s military capabilities. See Update of October 31, 2022. The proposed rule provides definitions that are harmonious with and reinforce these export controls “by aligning prohibited technology thresholds for memory chips between export controls and CHIPS national security guardrails.” Accordingly, the proposed rule applies a more restrictive threshold for logic chips than is used for export controls.U.S. lays out possible critical raw materials agreement with EU -Handelsblatt
Dig, Dig, Dig: US and Europe Target China’s Grip on Critical Raw MineralsBy Otto LanzavecchiaMarch 23, 2023
Europe and the US share a common goal — increasing self-sufficiency for minerals and tech products needed to fight climate change. Alignment looks set to defuse transatlantic trade tensions.
The European Commission unveiled this month a two-pronged strategy to reduce its dependency on China and boost its green industries. The Critical Raw Materials Act aims to wean the continent off Chinese critical minerals. The Net-Zero Industry Act is geared at boosting the EU’s production of clean tech equipment by a recent decision to relax strict state aid rules.
Together, the proposals represent Europe’s response to the US pressure against China and to compete with protectionist subsidies included in the US’s Inflation Reduction Act. Although a danger remains that the US’s generous pockets and hard-line approach against China will sow discord, these European moves signal a desire to strengthen the transatlantic alliance.
Start back in August 2022, when the US Congress passed the IRA, which contained gargantuan government subsidies to US industries. Europeans were aghast. Confronted with sky-high energy prices and roaring inflation, they could hear a deafening sucking sound of investments leaving the continent and heading across the Atlantic Ocean. The US subsidies jolted European capitals to reconsider their strict limits on state aid, instrumental in building and preserving the European single market.
At the same time, Vladimir Putin’s weaponization of gas exports woke up the continent to the danger of Chinese-supplied critical raw materials and Beijing’s dominance in green industries, such as solar panels and electric car batteries. If China cut sales of these key products, Europe’s plans for its ecological and digital transition would be at risk of collapse — not unlike the United States’.
How could Europeans condemn Americans for steeling themselves against the same threat they faced? The answer to that question challenged the EU’s status quo, and European capitals began tilting westward. In January, while speaking in Davos, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen downplayed frictions over the IRA and stressed the need to “de-risk” vis a vis China.
The Biden administration took constructive steps: it began exploring extending some of the IRA’s benefits to European industries. US Trade Representative Katherine Tai had been urging the EU to develop its own, parallel strategy on subsidies and reshoring, saying that the US wanted to “work with our friends and allies to allow us to together build a resiliency and to wean us off some dependencies.” An agreement on critical raw materials would allow the US to extend the IRA’s reach to European industries, indicated US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen. EU countries began to adhere to the US-led Minerals Security Partnership, aiming to create a like-minded critical raw material “buyers’ club” between democratic countries.
The political breakthrough came on March 10. President von der Leyen went to the White House to meet President Biden, while back home her Commission relaxed state aid rules. Afterward, they produced a statement signaling a transatlantic climate truce. And upon her return to Brussels, the Commission launched the two-pronged legislative proposals.
The Net Zero Industry Act aims to ensure that European produces at least 40% of European demand for green products by 2030. EU governments will be able to match subsidies provided in other countries “where there is a real risk of investments being diverted away from Europe,” according to European Commissioner Margrethe Vestager.
The Critical Raw Materials Act aims to supply Europe’s green industries with crucial inputs. European mining and refining must cover at least 10% of the EU critical raw materials by 2030. That would be a giant feat for a continent that spent decades outsourcing most of the extraction and production.
Key provisions have China written all over them. If a foreign country has more than 65% of the market, its companies will have little chance of winning a public contract in the EU. For context, Beijing controls more than 80% EU market share in the solar sector.
Permitting will be sped up. It can take up to 15 years to get the green light for a new mining project in Europe. Under the Critical Raw Materials Act, mines designated as strategic must receive a decision on permits within two years.
Critics question whether Europe can achieve its stated goals. Environmentalists have vowed to oppose projects to mine lithium and other minerals, citing the danger to water and nature preserves. Business leaders from Solvay, Merck, and Dow warn that the Net Zero Industry Act offers too little funding and is too complex to compete against the US’s $369 billion of green tax incentives and subsidies.
Even so, the European proposals signal a U-turn in economic policymaking — and a potential transatlantic alignment. On both sides of the Atlantic, the love affair with free markets and globalization is fading. Instead of market-driven decision-making, we are entering an era of strategic planning with democracies moving to onshore and subsidizing critical industries.
The transition will be rocky and perilous. Divergences over how hard to hit China could re-emerge. The US takes a hard line, while European officials continue to consider Beijing both a “rival” and a “partner.” But both Brussels and Washington are working hard not to let their support for green tech deteriorate into a counter-productive and protectionist subsidy race. If they work together, they could shore up the democratic world’s shift to clean tech.Modelling and experimental investigation of Nb2O5 as a high-rate battery anode material
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December 2022 E & MJ (e-mj.com)
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