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China’s Horizontal Skyscraper

Raffles City Chongqing's "horizontal skyscraper" is named the Conservatory and measures 300 m (984 ft)-long
Raffles City Chongqing’s “horizontal skyscraper” is named the Conservatory and measures 300 m (984 ft)-long(Credit: CapitaLand)

China boasts more than its fair share of impressive engineering feats, including the world’s second-tallest skyscraper and the highest bridge. We can soon add highest skybridge to the list too, courtesy of Moshe Safdie’s Raffles City Chongqing project, which is currently under construction in southwest China. read more

Weapon Wednesday – New MQ-9 Reaper Drone

An MQ-9 Reaper, assigned to the 62nd Expeditionary Reconnaissance Squadron, armed with four GBU-38 Joint Direct Attack Munition parks on a flightline before a mission on Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan Feb. 22, 2018. (U.S. Air Force/Tech. Sgt. Paul Labbe)
An MQ-9 Reaper, assigned to the 62nd Expeditionary Reconnaissance Squadron, armed with four GBU-38 Joint Direct Attack Munition parks on a flightline before a mission on Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan Feb. 22, 2018. (U.S. Air Force/Tech. Sgt. Paul Labbe)

Go out for strikes first, gather intel later. It’s the way officials are sending out the MQ-9 Reaper drone for a new, tailored multi-role mission to strike Taliban targets in Afghanistan. read more

First Artificial Eye

The complex nanostructures give the eye an iridescent sheen
The complex nanostructures give the eye an iridescent sheen(Credit: Alan She/Harvard SEAS)

Harvard has reported a breakthrough flat artificial eye just 30 microns in depth which can exceed the capabilities of the human eye. The technology, which builds on so-called metalens technology by adding electrically-controlled flexible muscles, could make a real impact in all manner of optical fields, including those in cameras, telescopes, microscopes, glasses and even virtual reality. read more

Battery Charges in Under 30 Seconds

KAIST researchers have developed a new hybrid aqueous energy storage device, which boasts high energy and...
KAIST researchers have developed a new hybrid aqueous energy storage device, which boasts high energy and power densities and can be recharged in as little as 20 seconds(Credit: KAIST)

We’re so used to having our everyday devices powered by lithium-ion batteries that sometimes it’s hard to imagine using anything else. But there are plenty of teams working on alternatives like lithium-airsodium-ionlithium-metal and aluminum-ion designs that may help solve some of the drawbacks of lithium-ion batteries. The latest, an aqueous hybrid capacitor, is stable, safe and boasts high energy and power densities, recharging in as little as 20 seconds. read more

Foldable House Installs in a Day

Italian architect Renato Vidal has created a prefabricated foldable house that takes less than a day...
Italian architect Renato Vidal has created a prefabricated foldable house that takes less than a day to install (Credit: M.A.Di)

Italian architect Renato Vidal has created a prefabricated foldable house that takes less than a day to install once on site. The M.A.Di home is an economic flat-packed housing solution that is not only sustainable, but designed to last and withstand earthquakes. Manufactured by wood specialist Area Legno in Italy, the M.A.Di home is built using CLT (cross laminated timber) to create a modular and multi-functional anti-seismic family home.

The M.A.Di home comes in several sizes, including a 27-sq m (290-sq ft) tiny house; 46-sq m (495-sq ft) or 56-sq m (603-sq ft) double home and a 70-sq m (753-sq ft) or 84-sq m (904-sq ft) triple family house. Each home stretches over two levels and comes equipped with a kitchen, dining area and bathroom located on the ground floor, while the bedroom/s are located on the upper floor. The building’s A frame structure and unique folding ability allows the home to be prefabricated off site, flat-packed and transported via truck or container to its designated build site. read more

Self-Regulating Heated Jacket

Early pledges of US$195 are still available for the Mercury jacket on Kickstarter
Early pledges of US$195 are still available for the Mercury jacket on Kickstarter

We’ve seen a number of smart home thermostats over the past few years that learn just how toasty you like your living room, but these won’t do much good when you venture out the front door. Boston apparel company Ministry of Supply wants to bring this kind of personalized climate control to people on the move, launching a heated jacket that tunes its temp in line with user preferences, and has a few other handy tricks up its sleeves as well. read more

Weapon Wednesday – Navy Gets DARPA Autonomous Sub Hunter

Following the successful completion of its Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Continuous Trail Unmanned Vessel (ACTUV) program, DARPA...
Following the successful completion of its Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Continuous Trail Unmanned Vessel (ACTUV) program, DARPA has officially transferred the technology demonstration vessel, christened Sea Hunter, to the Office of Naval Research (ONR)(Credit:DARPA)

Following a series of successful sea trials, DARPA has handed its experimental autonomous warship over to the US Navy. The Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Continuous Trail Unmanned Vessel (ACTUV) “Sea Hunter” technology demonstrator was formally transferred to the Office of Naval Research (ONR) for further development of what could potentially be the first of a new class of ocean-going ships called Medium Displacement Unmanned Surface Vehicles (MDUSVs). read more

Electric Supercar – 0 to 60 in less than Two Seconds

Aspark Owl: this Japanese supercapacitor car project has just recorded an absurd 1.89 second sprint time...
Aspark Owl: this Japanese supercapacitor car project has just recorded an absurd 1.89 second sprint time from 0-100kmh (0-62 mph)(Credit: Aspark)

How much does a couple of hundredths of a second cost? Somewhere in excess of US$4 million, it would seem, as this Japanese supercapacitor supercar fractionally out-accelerates an upcoming Tesla Roadster worth less than 1/20th the price.

As EV genius Luke Workman once told us, electric vehicles have virtually limitless performance potential. “Your tire to street interface is your performance limiter,” he said, and that’s the first thing that came to mind when we saw the Aspark Owl blast onto the scene. read more

Black Holes Bigger than Supermassive Found

An illustration of one of the ultramassive black holes discovered by the Spanish-Canadian team
An illustration of one of the ultramassive black holes discovered by the Spanish-Canadian team(Credit: NASA)

Since they’re basically invisible, it can be hard to pin down just how big a black hole is. They can range anywhere from a few times the mass of the Sun up to millions or billions times that mass, but there’s a potential class that are even bigger than that. read more

New Samsung Galaxy S9 Launch

Samsung fans will finally be able to get their first look at the new Galaxy S9 and S9+.

The Korean smartphone giant, Sony and Nokia will be among the tech giants revealing new smartphones when Mobile World Congress (MWC)  kicks off in Barcelona.

The annual trade show is one of the biggest mobile industry events of the year and this year is expected to see Korean giant Samsung unveil its latest flagship devices, the Galaxy S9 and S9+. read more