Why innovation thrives in cities
Larry Hardesty, MIT News Office
June 4, 2013
Double a city’s population and its economic productivity goes up 130 percent. MIT researchers think they know why.
Read more: http://web.mit.edu/n...ities-0604.html
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Posted 05 June 2013 - 03:26 PM
Why innovation thrives in cities
Posted 11 June 2013 - 05:40 PM
Ultra elevator takes you higher with carbon-fibre tape
14:28 11 June 2013 by Paul Marks
Going up? Elevators can now carry people to the top of a kilometre-high skyscraper in a single run. The key is the development of a super-light and super-strong lift-hoisting cable. The sheer weight of the steel cable that hoists today's elevators has prevented them going any higher than 500 metres in one go.
That means, for instance, that people in Dubai's 828-metre-high Burj Khalifa tower, currently the world's tallest building, have to switch lifts to go above the 500-metre mark. But lifts in the nascent Kingdom Tower in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia – due to top out above 1 kilometre in 2019 – could use the new technology to zoom to the top in one go.
With at least 20 buildings more than 500 metres high on architects' drawing boards around the world, and more expected as megacities proliferate, lift maker Kone Corporation of Espoo, Finland, has been engineering ways to move people up and down them in more convenient and less energy-intensive ways. In London yesterday it revealed its solution: UltraRope.
Instead of interwound steel hawsers, Kone's hoisting line comprises four carbon-fibre tapes sealed in transparent plastic about 4 centimetres wide and 4 millimetres thick. It's more like a belt than a rope and looks like a school ruler shot through with magnetic tapes.
UltraRope beats steel for tensile strength but weighs only one-seventh as much. "That's a tremendous amount of steel you won't have to move around the building," says Kone's head of technology, Johannes de Jong. "And it will last longer than steel too."
UltraRope will also save energy. Simulating its use in a 640-metre-high building, Kone found that the elevator used 11 per cent less electrical power than a steel-cabled version.
Kone's main rival, Otis Elevator of Farmington, Connecticut, is also looking at carbon fibre for use in future ultra-tall buildings. However, the US company is thinking of using the material to strengthen steel cables.
"UltraRope is one of the biggest breakthroughs since the advent of the [Otis] safety elevator 150 years ago," says Antony Wood, executive director of the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat in Chicago.
"The biggest limiting factor in building higher until now has been the steel rope weight – and we have reached the limit of that technology at 500 metres."
Edited by Matthew, 11 June 2013 - 05:40 PM.
- wjfox likes this
Posted 12 June 2013 - 09:45 PM
Posted 17 June 2013 - 04:04 AM
The thinnest t.v on the market!
Meet the Philips DesignLine LED HDTV, the Thinnest TV on the Market
By Brock Cardiner posted on March 15, 2013 4:00 pm
File this one under “woah.” The DesignLine LED HDTV from Philips is nothing more than a sheet of glass available in numerous sizes and appears to be a thin mirror when switched off. The TV’s design allows for it to be hung or leaned against any wall for a truly contemporary look. Check out a video demonstration below and look for them to hit retailers towards the end of the summer.
The flying train: transportation with an identity disorder
There, in the sky. Is it a bird? A plane? A … train? It’s definitely two of the three, and that thing can’t chirp. They’re calling it “Clip-Air,” and it’s one of the craziest things I’ve ever seen.
Put simply: it’s a single flying wing that you can clip capsules onto. These capsules, as you’ve probably guessed by now, can be bullet-shaped train cars.
So consider this: you could hit the train station, take the rail to the closest airspace, where you’re then clipped to a giant wing and flown to your destination.
Here’s an obligatory understatement: transportation sure is changing.
One wing can carry 3 capsules, each of which can hold 150 passengers, making this probably the most effective means of travel on Earth.
We’ve got the EPFL technical university in Lausanne to thank for the technology, which will be shown at the Paris Air Show.
Edited by Matthew, 18 June 2013 - 01:25 AM.
Posted 18 June 2013 - 01:56 PM
Saudi prince eyes world's big cities for mile-high tower
By Mirna Sleiman
DUBAI | Tue Jun 18, 2013 12:31pm IST
(Reuters) - Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal says he is looking at the world's largest cities, including Shanghai, Moscow, London and New York, as possible locations to build a mile-high skyscraper that would be the world's tallest building by far.
The prince is inviting Dubai's biggest real estate developer Emaar Properties, chaired by Mohammed Alabbar, to team up with his investment firm Kingdom Holding on the project.
"Right now we are discussing and evaluating the possibility of building a one-mile (1.6-kilometer) tower," Alwaleed told Reuters by telephone late on Monday.
"We also need good partners. I invite Emaar and Mr. Alabbar to join forces with us and see how we can build the ultimate one-mile tower somewhere in the world."
Alwaleed did not say how the project would be financed if it went ahead, or when it might be completed. He said the cost had yet to be decided.
Posted 24 June 2013 - 09:32 AM
'Go park yourself': Volvo driverless prototype will obey
15 minutes ago by Nancy Owano weblog
(Phys.org) —Conversations about advancements in driverless cars on the road eventually have to pull over to discuss what happens when the cars need to be parked. Interactions with pedestrians and other moving objects are among the self-parking challenges confronting automobile R&D. Volvo is eager to ignite interest in its efforts thus far. They have developed the driverless car that, with the assistance of a smartphone, parks itself in a suitably vacant space. Here's their concept. The driver drops the vehicle off at a designated drop off zone at the parking lot. The driver uses a mobile phone application to activate "Autonomous Parking." Pressing a button on that mobile device institutes the command to the vehicle to go park itself; the driver walks away from the car. The vehicle deploys its sensors to navigate to a free parking space. The sensors and cameras scan for pedestrians and vehicles. Once a parking space is found, the vehicle parks there and automatically sends the driver notification that the Volvo has parked safely.
Read more at: http://phys.org/news...eo.html#jCp]'Go park yourself': Volvo driverless prototype will obey (w/ video)[/url]
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Posted 26 June 2013 - 07:06 PM
HS2 may cost £10bn more than planned
26 June 2013
The proposed budget for the HS2 railway has risen by nearly £10bn to more than £40bn, the transport minister has said.
Patrick McLoughlin told the Commons the new projected cost of £42.6bn, up from £33bn, included "contingency" money.
He said the final cost could be lower than the new estimate, but said revising the figure was "right".
Several MPs criticised the High Speed Rail (Preparation) Bill in a debate earlier, but it passed its second reading vote by 325 to 37.
The new high-speed railway line is intended to link London to Birmingham by 2026, with branches to Manchester and Leeds, via Sheffield, planned by 2032.
The first phase budget is now £21.4bn, with £21.2bn for phase two. These figures include a contingency fund of £14.4bn across the scheme.
Mr McLoughlin said contingency money was built into the London Olympics budget but the cost ended up "below the price that had been set by the government".
"While I expect the final costs to be lower than those I have just outlined... this is the right way to plan the project," he told MPs.
He also said the new budget took account of "design and environmental changes to improve the scheme", including alterations to the route such as a tunnel under the M6 near Birmingham.
H. G. Wells
Posted 03 July 2013 - 11:33 PM
China opens city-sized shopping mall, with fake sun
http://news.cnet.com...fake-sun/]China opens city-sized shopping mall, with fake sun | Cutting Edge - CNET News[/url]
If you don't care about authenticity, the New Century Global Center has everything you could want, including an artificial Mediterranean village.
The international tallest building arms race has been dominated by Dubai, with its Burj Khalifa, for several years, but China has upped the ante by unveiling what it calls the world's largest building.
The New Century Global Center building opened recently in Chengu, a city of more than 14 million people in southwest China's Sichuan province. It's described as "the world's largest standalone structure" by Chinese officials and is 328 feet high, 1,640 feet long, and 1,312 feet wide.
Posted 17 July 2013 - 03:46 AM
Sound waves can be used to levitate and move small objects
Tuesday, July 16, 2013 - 1:19pm
It seems that levitation without contact is no longer just a cool illusion trick performed by magicians. Scientists at the Laboratory of Thermodynamics in Emerging Technologies in Zurich, Switzerland, have successfully levitated small objects using only sound waves.
Acoustic levitation is better than magnetic levitation in that it can be used on any object, not just materials that are magnetic. The only limitation with acoustic levitation is that the object's diameter must correspond to half the wavelength of the acoustic waves. Although acoustic levitation has been performed before, this new method allows researchers to have full control over an object's movement with a precision not seen in previous studies. With this new technique, the effect is created by static waves that are held in place by a reflector that bounces the wave back upon itself. This causes interference and creates a consistent upwards pressure that can cancel out the effect of gravity on an object placed within its field.
Posted 22 July 2013 - 10:39 PM
These streetlamps only light up when you need them
If a tree falls in a forest and no one’s around to hear it, does it still make a sound? It’s an age-old philosophical quandary, but it isn’t nearly as pressing as this one: If a streetlamp shines when no one is around, is it using energy? The answer, of course, is yes. And lots of it. That’s where Tvilight comes in.
We waste a lot of money on streetlights. Europe spends $13 billion powering them, which is more than 40 percent of its energy expenditures. And these release 40 million tons of CO2 each year. Think 20 million cars. Tvilight drastically changes this.
It’s a simple concept: the streetlights only light up when you need them. The rest of the time, they remain dim. By using intelligent wireless sensors, the lights can detect people, bikes and cars. The sensors detect how fast something is approaching, and the lights pop on as needed.
http://www.dvice.com/2013-7-21/these-streetlamps-only-light-when-you-need-them]These streetlamps only light up when you need them | DVICE[/url]
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Posted 02 August 2013 - 09:05 PM
Swiss adventurer Yves Rossy, also known as "Jetman," made his first public flight in the United States, zooming across the skies over Oskkosh, Wisconsin, where the Experimental Aircraft Association's AirVenture 2013 was held.
From the EAA website: Using a carbon-Kevlar jetwing with four engines, each of which capable of a 22-kilogram thrust, the Swiss aviator is able to propel himself through the sky at upward of 150 mph, controlled by a simple throttle in his hand. The rest of the controls are left to the human fuselage - Rossy himself - who simply uses his shoulders, body, and legs to steer, pitch, and descend.
More from Discovery News' best tech photos of the week >>http://bit.ly/1bSXVyp
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Posted 03 August 2013 - 01:29 AM
Hybrid planes trying to charge into action
The airliner of the future may feel very alien to our fuel-guzzling planes, at least if one ambitious quest to build the Prius of the skies is anything to go by.
Edited by MarcZ, 03 August 2013 - 01:29 AM.
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Posted 13 August 2013 - 08:00 AM
Everyone seems really excited about the idea too. Check out the comments in this article.
It's not really a new idea, the idea for tube trains was around for some time, but if someone with a reputation like Elon Musk and the funding he has is working on it, it has actually a fair chance to come to reality and bring proof that it's so much more efficient than trains.
Posted 14 August 2013 - 02:38 AM
White House calls for increased grid spending
August 12, 2013
The cost of weather-related power outages is high and rising as storms grow more severe and the U.S. electric grid gets older, according to an Obama Administration report that calls for increased spending on the nation's electric power system.
Power outages cost the economy $18 billion to $33 billion per year, according to the report, a figure that has been rising steadily over the past 20 years. That can rise to $40 billion to $75 billion in years with severe storms such as 2008's Hurricane Ike and last year's Superstorm Sandy.
- Ru1138 and Sciencerocks like this
"Since we first emerged, a few million years ago in East Africa, we have meandered our way around the planet. There are now people on every continent and the remotest islands, from pole to pole, from Mount Everest to the Dead Sea, on the ocean bottoms and even, occasionally, in residence 200 miles up - humans, like the gods of old, living in the sky."
Posted 14 August 2013 - 05:08 AM
We need to spend a lot more on our own country for once...I agree strongly with Obama on this.
- Cody930 likes this
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