During separate meetings with officials from both houses of Parliament — the Duma and the Federation Council — Mr. Annan discussed a wide rage of international issues, including the Balkans, the Middle East, globalization and terrorism. In a surprise move that departed from the scheduled programme, the Chairman of the Federation Council awarded Mr. Annan the Peter the Great Prize at a ceremony attended by many of the 100 members of the Council. Thanking the Chairman on behalf of the UN and all of its staff members, the Secretary-General said, “I think that through me, he was honouring them.”The Secretary-General also held talks with Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov on areas of mutual concern, including Georgia, Nagorny Karabakh, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, Sierra Leone, Angola, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iraq and the Balkans.Speaking to reporters at a press conference following the meeting, the Foreign Minister said his country “highly appreciates the personal contribution of Secretary-General Annan to the strengthening of the role of the United Nations.” “Russia will support the candidacy of Kofi Annan for a second term as Secretary-General,” Mr. Ivanov said.According to a UN spokesman, the Secretary-General’s talks with the Russian Foreign Minister also touched on a proposal by the United States to build a new antiballistic missile system. Commenting on that issue yesterday in response to questions from the press, Mr. Annan said, “We must be sure that the new antiballistic missile system does not lead to another arms race.” He added: “The US Government has indicated that strategic discussions are required — long and deep strategic discussions — on this issue. I believe that dialogue has begun and the US administration has sent envoys around the world to explain their position.”The Secretary-General heads next to Amsterdam for a brief stopover before going to Geneva, where on Thursday he will address the annual meeting of the World Health Assembly.
Honeywell company City Technology will be unveiling a new addition to its gas sensing range, the 4OxLL long-life oxygen sensor, at the QME Mining show in Queensland, Australia from 22 to 24 July. Protecting workers in underground mines from oxygen depletion and the hazards of toxic and flammable gases is a continuous challenge. Companies must not only maximise safety and adhere to stringent regulations, they must also leverage operational cost efficiencies, whilst ensuring their people and assets are protected. Selecting the right gas sensing solution is an intrinsic aspect of fulfilling this remit. City Technology states: “The new AN/NZS 4641 compliant 4OxLL redefines oxygen sensing for mining applications, with unsurpassed stability in challenging environmental conditions, minimised nuisance alarms and extended operational life.”One of the key drivers of the launch in Australia is improving the reliability of gas detectors in underground mines, whilst reducing cost of ownership, according to Mario Moura, Marketing Director for Honeywell Life Safety. Mario comments: “Mining applications represent some of the most challenging environments for portable gas detectors; temperature and relative humidity can fluctuate dramatically as workers move from external locations into hot and humid mining environments, and pressure shocks can occur during mine shaft lift descent – sometimes resulting in incorrect oxygen readings; these aspects can make nuisance alarms a prevalent and costly issue.”A portable gas detector is only as good as the sensors it contains. The serious safety concerns created by the abundance of flammable and toxic gases and the depletion oxygen in underground mines means only the highest performing sensors can be used. “Our new AN/NZS 4641 compliant 4OxLL oxygen sensor is the result of more than 35 years’ experience serving the mining industry for City Technology. In fact, our company was founded from a joint project with the National Coal Board in the UK in the 1970s, where we developed and patented the first mining carbon monoxide sensor. Since then, we have been innovating and pioneering mining sensing solutions that raise the global industry standard and 4OxLL is no exception, providing an impressive combination of specification advantages. For example, our 4CM carbon monoxide sensor was designed to meet the World’s most challenging mining standard; the Chinese Mining Specification, AQ6205-2006. 4OxLL incorporates a unique, patented Electrochemical Cell (ECC) internal geometry – designed using Six Sigma and FEM modelling practices and manufactured to exacting standards. Most oxygen sensors struggle under the considerable adverse conditions of a mine due to large temperature/RH changes, pressure shock or vibrational damage, which can cause nuisance alarms or sensor damage. Not only does this compromise life safety, but it can prove very costly in terms of downtime, sensor replacement and maintenance requirements. 4OxLL’s revolutionary component design virtually eliminates these occurrences, working without any issue in changing humidity and temperature conditions.”Moura continues by highlighting how the 4OxLL can provide a cost-saving for mining operators: “Aside from enhancing safety and ensuring maximised device uptime, the 4OxLL can also dramatically reduce ongoing costs. Designed as a five year solution, this sensor lasts as long as the operational life of a typical portable gas detector; most oxygen sensors last approximately two years. This longevity reduces maintenance costs considerably, with no need for sensor change out and its patented design helps to extend calibration intervals, delivering further cost reductions.”