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Monday, March 19, 2012
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NIST Announces Funding to Form Steering Group to Support Trusted Identities in Cyberspace

CyberspaceOn March 9, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) announced that it is soliciting proposals to establish a steering group in support of the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace (NSTIC) and to provide the group with ongoing secretarial, administrative and logistical support. NIST anticipates supporting one proposal with approximately $2 million in funding for up to two years.

In April 2011, President Obama released NSTIC as a way to improve security in cyberspace and e-commerce. NSTIC charts a course for the public and private sectors to collaborate to raise the level of trust associated with the identities of individuals, organizations, networks, services and devices involved in online transactions.

"This grant will help to establish an independent steering committee led by the private sector that works in conjunction with the federal government to support NSTIC,” said Jeremy Grant, NIST’s senior executive advisor for identity management. “The committee will guide creation of an ‘Identity Ecosystem’ in which businesses and individuals can have more confidence in the security and privacy of their online transactions. The committee will also be responsible for identifying resources that will support the effort into the future.”


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Hot Topics

PET with Florbetapir Achieves Good Image Quality
A study in the March issue of the Journal of Nuclear Medicineprovides more evidence that the radiotracer florbetapir can be a “robust imaging tool.” It appears well-suited as a biomarker to detect characteristics of Alzheimer’s disease and someday could possibly guide treatment of individuals with the disease.
—The Medical Imaging & Technology Alliance (MITA)

Five Renewable Energy Trends to Watch in 2012
Green technology and renewable energy research firm Clean Edge reports that the solar photovoltaic, wind power and biofuels markets grew 31 percent last year to reach $246.1 billion, despite the bad rap that renewable energy has been suffering since the Solyndra bankruptcy.

Key Changes in the 2011 NEC
With rare exception, the National Electrical Code® (NEC) changes every three years. While many of these changes can be considered nominal rewording that just clarifies the intent of a particular code article, there are always some changes that have a major impact on the code’s scope. The most recent NEC is the 2011 edition, and the following are some of the more important changes that were implemented during this cycle.
—Consulting - Specifying Engineer (CSE)

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On the Hill/Around the Nation

Renewables Can Supply 100% of Minnesota's Power Needs, Study Says
Wind and solar power could supply all of Minnesota's power needs if they are combined with demand-slashing improvements in the grid and energy storage, according to a study from the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research. The shift would raise power costs by about 3 cents per kilowatt hour, but it would cost roughly the same to replace the state's aging coal and natural gas plants, the study showed.
—Pioneer Press (St. Paul, Minn.)

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International News

An Impossible Dream? Rare Earths and High-performance Magnets
Many plans for reducing the world’s carbon-dioxide emissions—at least, those plans formulated by environmentalists who are not of the hair-shirt, back-to-the-caves persuasion—involve peppering the landscape with wind turbines and replacing petrol-guzzling vehicles with electric ones charged up using energy gathered from renewable resources.

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