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October 05, 2010

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Business Knowledge Counters Business Risk

The school of hard knocks is expensive and full of risks. Along with a little luck, it’s an entrepreneur’s skills and knowledge that can make or break a successful venture. Today, the University of Victoria’s Faculty of Business is making it even easier to become business savvy by launching a new graduate certificate and diploma in entrepreneurship.
        “At UVic Business, we specialize in teaching entrepreneurs, and developing their skills, experiences, and knowledge before they launch their venture,” says Dr. A.R. Elangovan, UVic’s associate dean of business. “We help to reduce their risk. Through this new program, learners will gain a better understanding of their own venture readiness and fit, and will master key skills needed to be successful in their venture.”
        Students can participate in the graduate certificate and diploma in entrepreneurship on a full-time or part-time basis. Classes begin in May 2011. For more information visit: http://www.business.uvic.ca/entrepreneur/


  Media Contacts:

Dr. Brent Mainprize (Business) at 250-721-6404 or brentm@uvic.ca
Dianne George (Business Communications) 250-721-6411 or dgeorge@uvic.ca

Planet Neptune Not Guilty of Harassment

New research by a University of Victoria PhD student is challenging popular theory about how part of our solar system formed. At today’s meeting of the prestigious Division of Planetary Sciences in Pasadena, California, Alex Parker is presenting evidence that, contrary to popular belief, the planet Neptune can’t have knocked a collection of planetoids known as the Cold Classical Kuiper Belt to its current location at the edge of the solar system.
       Parker and his thesis supervisor Dr. J.J. Kavelaars (Herzberg Institute of Astrophysics) studied binaries—systems of two objects that, like the Earth and the moon, travel around the sun while orbiting around each other. Binaries are very common in the Kuiper Belt. Using computer simulations, the researchers determined that binary systems in part of the Belt would have been destroyed by any interaction with the giant planet. “They would not be there today if the members of this part of the Kuiper Belt were ever hassled by Neptune in the past,” says Parker. “It suggests that this region formed near its present location and remained undisturbed over the age of the solar system.”
        The Kuiper Belt is of special interest to astrophysicists because it is a fossil remnant of the primordial debris that formed the planets, says Parker. “Understanding the structure and history of the Kuiper Belt helps us better understand how the planets in our solar system formed, and how planets around other stars may be forming today.”
        The research will be published in an upcoming edition of Astrophysical Journal Letters. A preprint is available online at http://arXiv.org.


  Media Contacts:

Alex Parker (graduate student, Dept. of Physics and Astronomy) at 250-661-8162 (cell) or alexhp@uvic.ca
Valerie Shore (UVic Communications) at 250-721-7641 or vshore@uvic.ca

  Image attachment:
Artist’s impression of a binary Kuiper belt object during a close encounter with planet Neptune.


Volcano Fuels Massive Phytoplankton Bloom

Advocates for seeding regions of the ocean with iron to combat global warming should be interested in a new study published today in Geophysical Research Letters. A Canada-US team led by University of Victoria oceanographer Dr. Roberta Hamme describes how the 2008 eruption of the Kasatochi volcano in the Aleutian Islands spewed iron-laden ash over a large swath of the North Pacific. The result, says Hamme, was an “ocean productivity event of unprecedented magnitude”—the largest phytoplankton bloom detected in the region since ocean surface measurements by satellite began in 1997.
        Phytoplankton are free-floating, single-celled plants that form the base of the marine food chain. They take up carbon dioxide (CO2) to grow, which is why seeding key regions of the ocean with iron has been proposed as one way to offset increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations.
        But although the volcanic ash fueled such a massive phytoplankton bloom, it resulted in only a “modest” uptake of atmospheric CO2, says Hamme. “The event acts as an example of the necessary scale that purposeful iron fertilizations would need to be to have an impact on global atmospheric CO2 levels.”




  Media Contacts:

Roberta Hamme (School of Earth and Ocean Sciences) at 250-686-4140 (cell) or rhamme@uvic.ca
Valerie Shore (UVic Communications) at 250-721-7641 or vshore@uvic.ca


 Image attachments:

Ash cloud 2008
Phytoplankton distribution 2007
Phytoplankton distribution 2008
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