ISO 9001 & UKAS Registered, Electron Beam Services in the United Kingdom ISO 9001 & UKAS Registered, Electron Beam Services in the United Kingdom

Electron beam technology could be at the forefront of plans to introduce high-speed 5G wireless data coverage, producing speeds of up to 100 gb per second.

A European project, led by a team of UK engineers, is exploring how exploiting the millimetre wave spectrum could provide a cost-effective, efficient means of accessing data through 5G wireless networks.

Wireless devices, which already use more data that desktop computers and the like, are set to eat up even more data with the advancement of 4k video streaming and other services. Increasing the amount of available wireless data would involve laying grids of micro, nano and pico cells in urban areas to serve a small number of users, which could be expensive and difficult to execute.

Professor Claudio Paoloni at Lancaster University said that existing base stations are fed data via fibres, “but if the number of cells were to increase substantially, the fibre would be very difficult and expensive to install”.

The professor, who is heading the €2.9 million (£2.56 million) ULTRAWAVE project, is developing a system based on a millimetre wave travelling wave tube that transmits data wirelessly. An electron beam is sent along the long vacuum tube, along with the millimetre wave signal. The mass of electrons then loses kinetic energy and transfers it to the signal, commented the professor.

“As a result, the signal increases in power to a level that is impossible with any other technique,” he added.

The project was presented to the public earlier this month at Lancaster University’s Kickoff Workshop and is expected to run until 2020.

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Bottled water brand Evian, which is part of the Danone Group, has unveiled its new bottling site, which has been certified as carbon neutral by the Carbon Trust.

According to, this is part of Evian’s bid to become the first carbon-neutral Danone brand by 2020. The new production facility in France is the first step on this journey, and can produce 72,000 bottles of water per hour.

The facility is fully powered by renewable energy and all the bottles produced there are 100 per cent recyclable. Evian also announced that it plans to invest €280 million in a new facility that will produce all Evian water bottles sold worldwide.

Emmanuel Faber, Danone’s chief executive, said he was very proud to open the new facility. “This achievement combines a unique workplace organisation, a shift to digital technology, and technologies and sustainable solutions at the cutting edge of our sector worldwide,” he stated.

As well as producing bottles that can be recycled, the firm intends to use 100 per cent recycled materials for all of its packaging by 2020. By the end of this year, the company estimates that 25 per cent of the materials it uses will be from recycled plastics.

Plastic pollution is known to be a huge problem for the planet and one that more and more people are trying to combat. Earlier this month, Scotland’s first minister Nicola Sturgeon announced that she supports a deposit return scheme on glass, plastic and aluminium bottles and cans.

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The Egyptian government has signed three new oil and gas exploration deals with Royal Dutch Shell and Apex International Energy, covering a total of 16 sites in the country’s Western Desert.

It is a boost for Egypt, which has been looking to entice foreign investors back to its energy sector. The deals for exploring these new fields are worth $81.4 million in total.

Shell is set to invest $35.5 million following its deal, while Apex will be spending $45.9 million on two projects in the Middle Eastern country.

At one time Egypt was a net exporter of oil, but has become a net importer in recent years because demand has increased while production has fallen.

Daily News Egypt reported that Tarek El-Molla, the country’s minister of petroleum, explained that the ministry is hoping to attract a greater level of foreign investment in oil and gas exploration, helping it to exploit the potential of a number of areas.

Mr El-Molla also revealed that the sites in the Western Desert are of particular interest to US companies, like Apex, which is going to be operating in Egypt for the first time after signing these deals.

Oil and gas exploration activities aren’t without their risks though, as Statoil recently discovered. The oil giant revealed that its exploratory drilling in the Arctic has been “disappointing”, explaining that the volumes of natural gas it discovered weren’t large enough for commercial development.

However, the firm revealed that it will continue exploration activities in the region, noting that it intends to drill further exploratory wells in the south-east of the Barents Sea in 2018.

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