Infrastructure

  • Critical infrastructure companies targeted by malware

    Companies in the critical infrastructure sector, such as oil, energy, and chemical industries, experienced a higher percentage of malware in 2009 than organizations in other sectors – much, much higher: more than 350 percent more than other industries

  • ShockWave cyberdrill will see former officials manage cyberattack on U.S.

    Simulated cyberattack to test government response to nation-wide cyberattack on the United States; the purpose of the drill is to see how officials in key government positions would react to a real-time cyberattack, and to evaluate the split-second decisions they may be required to take to deal with it

  • New method of sensing concrete corrosion

    Researchers develop a novel sensor system to monitor the early signs of concrete corrosion, which could reduce expensive, long-term maintenance costs; the sensors measure the key parameters related to concrete corrosion — pH, chloride, and humidity — in highly alkaline environments

  • Engineers group gives Illinois infrastructure low marks

    The ASCE says that the dilapidated Illinois infrastructure is endangering the state’s future prosperity; the group examined nine infrastructure elements; the two that got the highest grade – C+ — are aviation and bridges; the others fared worse

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  • NIST issues expanded draft of its smart grid cyber security Strategy for public review

    The coming Smart Grid will offer efficiency and savings, but also new cybervulnerabilities; NIST has issued the second draft proposal of its smart grid cybersecurity requirements; the document identifies more than 120 interfaces that will link diverse devices, systems, and organizations engaged in two-way flows of electricity and information and classifies these connections according to the risks posed by a potential security breach

  • Revolutionary water treatment system may make coping with disaster easier

    Researchers develop a revolutionary waste-water treatment device which uses little energy, is transportable, scalable, simple to set-up, simple to operate, comes on-line in record time, and can be monitored remotely; new system cleans influent wastewater within twenty-four hours after set-up to discharge levels that exceed the standards established by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for municipal wastewater

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  • Concerns in Brockton over proposed power plant

    Residents in Brockton, Massachusetts do not want Advanced Power Services of Boston to build a 350-megawatt plant near their neighborhood; they point to the weekend’s explosion in a power plant in Connecticut as reason for added concern

  • Aging infrastructure poses economic, security risks

    The World Bank says global infrastructure investment needs will be $35 trillion over the next twenty years; in the United States, a leading engineers group estimates that $2.2 trillion is needed over the next five years; the group gave U.S. critical infrastructure a D grade in 2009

  • Utilities to bolster smart grid cybersecurity

    Annual spending on cybersecurity by electric utilities will triple by 2015, driven by investment in equipment protection and configuration management; between 2010 and 2015, Utility companies will invest more than $21 billion on cybersecurity

  • Waterfall receives U.S. patent for SCADA solution

    SCADA, or Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition, is used, among other things, to monitor and control the U.S. critical infrastructure assets and facilities; Waterfall receives a patent for unidirectional security gateways to be used in SCADA

  • DNI Dennis Blair: U.S. critical infrastructure severely threatened

    Blair: “The United States confronts a dangerous combination of known and unknown vulnerabilities, strong and rapidly expanding adversary capabilities, and a lack of comprehensive threat awareness”

  • Haiti earthquake a reminder that disasters are preventable

    While earthquakes are inevitable in earthquake zones, and hurricanes and tornadoes are inevitable under certain weather conditions — “there are no inevitable disasters,” a University of Colorado expert says; “There is no such thing as a natural disaster”; the scope of death and injury, the magnitude of damage to buildings and infrastructure, are the result not of nature – but of man-made decisions; what we see in Haiti is the result of decades of corrupt and ineffective Haitian governments, indifferent to the welfare of the Haitian people

  • Obama signals shift to re-use of spent nuclear fuel

    The Obama administration is making two big moves on the nuclear power front: in order to boost the U.S. nuclear power industry, the administration will include $54 billion of loan guarantees in the 2011 budget request to Congress, up from $18.5 billion; the administration will also reverse a 50-year U.S. ban on reprocessing nuclear waste: fearing the creation of more weapon-grade fissile material, the United States, since the late 1950s, has opposed the reprocessing of nuclear waste, preferring to find a permanent burial site for the waste instead; the administration has pulled the plug on the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository project, indicating it would reconsider the issue of reprocessing the waste

  • Hospital scanner could curb nuclear waste threat

    Medical gamma-ray cameras were used for the first time to track radioactive isotopes in soil samples from a U.S. civil nuclear site; the technique, which is used in hospitals for heart, bone, and kidney scanning, is now being used to study the environmental behavior of nuclear waste — and its success could help scientists find new ways of using bacteria to control the spread of radioactivity

  • Experts: U.K. must act now to prepare for rising sea level

    A joint study by the leading U.K. civil engineering and architectural associations says that steps must be taken now to protect coastal towns from rising sea levels; the reports says policy makes should consider three options for tackling rising sea level: “retreat” — moving critical infrastructure and housing to safer ground; “defend” — building town or city-wide sea defenses; and “attack” — extending the existing coastline and building out on to the water