Search Walk Score and Walk Some More

Search Walk Score and Walk Some More

In metropolitan areas the foot commute can be a part of the everyday. Walkways can often be overlooked in places where concrete tends to take over the greenery. Community walk paths that are arranged around nature and not intruding upon it can be found in several designs. Safe, easily cleaned and synthetic materials kept to a minimum, these paths actually encourage walking. Great for sneaking in exercise and improving health, walking as opposed to riding saves environmental energy while increasing individual energy levels. So, how does your neighborhood or favorite spot do on a walkabout? You can find out at Walk… read more

Prize Awarded in Human Powered Helicopter Competition

After 33 years, the American Helicopter Society has finally awarded a winner in the Igor I. Sikorsky Human Powered Helicopter Competition, declaring the official winner to be the AeroVelo Atlas. “This incredible flight was 64.11 seconds in duration (World Record for “Duration on Hover”), reached a 3.3m peak altitude, and drifted a maximum of 9.8m. The Atlas as flown on June 13th behaved very differently from the aircraft we first flew some 9 months ago, a result of many incremental improvements and changes. In 18 months this passionate team went from preliminary design to achieving what many considered impossible, taking… read more

Stanford Unveils 2013 Solar Challenge Car

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In the realm of solar electric cars, the yearly World Solar Challenge (WSC) is the most competitive and challenging race in the world, forcing teams to push the limits of their knowledge and technology to build a car that can stand up to the race conditions across 2000 miles of the Outback. The 2013 entry from the Stanford Solar Car Project, “Luminos“, was just unveiled, and it promises to be a strong contender in this year’s WSC, which will include 47 teams from 26 countries. According to the team, for this year’s car, there were several major changes, including the… read more

A 3-D Printed Rocket Engine From NASA

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The magicians over at NASA have worked their secret magics in their secretive labs again, and created a 3-D printed rocket engine–and it actually works. It’s not really secret, nor is it magic, but it might as well be. The process behind ecological 3-D printing is absolutely incredible, and will one day bring us printed houses, printed jets, and even printed food. Right now, however, we’ll stick with on-demand jet engines. At the Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio, researchers used laser-melting tools to heat metallic powders and fuse them into shape. Though the entire crafting process took four months,… read more

Elon Musk Promises Open Source High Speed Transport

Elon Musk

Building a better and more sustainable transportation system will take a lot of work on all fronts, including better planes, trains, automobiles, and boats, but it might also take a new type of transportation entirely. And Elon Musk, of Tesla, PayPal, and SpaceX fame, says he’s ready to deliver one. According to Musk’s Twitter feed, he plans to publish his designs for what he refers to as “the fifth mode” of transportation by August 12th. Will publish Hyperloop alpha design by Aug 12. Critical feedback for improvements would be much appreciated. — Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 15, 2013 According to… read more

Forget Boring Streetlamps

Forget Boring Streetlamps

Nepenthes. This word is taken from a potion in Greek mysticism that is said to have made the person who consumes the enchanted beverage to completely forget their worries. This is what designer Dan Corson named his streetlight installations, and they are giving ordinary streetlamps a conscious. The name also comes from a type of carnivorous plant which although striking, it is unusual too. Nepenthes are a tropical variety that are referred to as pitcher plants due to their distinctive shape, which Corson stated inspired the model of the design. They have cups that gather rainwater and collect insects, which are… read more

Volvo’s Self-Parking Car Concept

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In the future, even if we don’t have our own self-driving cars, perhaps we’ll all be having our cars at least park themselves, if this new concept from Volvo is any indication. The Volvo concept car can not only find its own parking space, but can pull into it all by itself, with no driver inside. According to Volvo, the car with the Autonomous Parking feature in it can interact safely with pedestrians and other cars, ensuring that the parking process is safe and simple. “Autonomous Parking is a concept technology that relieves the driver of the time-consuming task of… read more

Rolls-Royce Bets on Sailing Ships for Cargo

Rolls-Royce Bets on Sailing Ships for Cargo

One of the more insidious and invisible aspects to our global economy is its reliance on dirty fuels, such as bunker fuel (fuel oil) and the resultant emissions in order to ship goods around the world. And not only is the fuel getting more expensive, there’s been a push to curb the emissions from these cargo ships by switching to cleaner fuels, so this next move by Rolls-Royce could be the dawn of a new age of shipping. Rolls-Royce partner B9 Shipping Ltd is working to develop a coastal sailing vessel that is capable of carrying 3000 dwt (deadweight tonnage),… read more

Biofuel to Power 1/3 of Cars in Sweden by 2030

Natural forests

As part of an investigation into how the country of Sweden can wean their fuel needs for transportation away from fossil fuels, a study found that it would be possible to power one out of every three cars by biofuel made within the country. Researchers submitted a study, The Production of Today’s and Future Sustainable Biofuels, to the government investigation outlining their discovery that the country could increase its biofuel production to as much as 25-35 terawatt hours (TWh) annually, using mainly the residue left from forestry projects or agricultural waste. The current biofuel production level in Sweden has been… read more

Harvesting Icebergs Can End Droughts

Artist's Rendering

Wouldn’t it be nice to know that one day, the threat of a calamitous drought affecting third-world countries will be eliminated? Welcome to the possible future, presented by Dessault Systemes and Georges Mougin. Mougin is a French entrepreneur, who for over 40 years has been trying to see his vision of harvesting icebergs to solve food shortages become a reality. Enter Dessault Systemes; a French software company with the money, the means, and the desire to back Mougin’s project. In 2009, Dessault Systemes provided Mougin 15 software engineers to create a computer simulation to test his theory. In 1976, Mougin… read more