Friday, May 25, 2012

2Wheela: A futuristic electric vehicular concept splits into two to let people travel in different directions !

Owning a family car is great when you and your partner live and work along the same commute route. But for folks who need to travel in separate directions more often, the only real practical thing to do is to either own two cars or two 2-wheelers or have a system in place where one of them has to travel by public transport system most of the time. To make owning and using a practical family vehicle for people with diverse commuting needs like these, designer Andrej Kregar has created the 2-N-1 2Wheela concept vehicle.

The first of its kind, the 2Wheela is a concept vehicle that merges the practicality of super-compacts with the spaciousness of vans. Confused?! It’s actually 2 cars in 1! The modular system features 2 sporty looking cars that can be joined at the ends when you need the extra room or want to travel as a group. When it’s time to split, simply pull over, detach, and go your separate ways! Thanks to the designer Andrej Kregar.

2-N-1 2Wheela vehicle gives a couple the space to carry a whole family and their cargo. The vehicle runs on in-wheel motors powered by a battery pack and features a front opening as well as a back door on both vehicles. This capricious design is still in its conceptual stage. However, the designer has divulged some primary attributes about the futuristic vehicle. These include the powertrain of low emission electric motors, a comprehensive system control and a stability computer for regulating the fusion and detachment of cars.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Hotel that Houses the World's Largest Cylindrical Aquarium with Over 1,500 Fish

A hotel in Berlin decided to welcome its guest with the world's largest cylindrical aquarium that boasts more than 1,500 tropical fish of 56 species. The aquarium, dubbed Aquadom, is can be found in the Radisson Blu Hotel. It is filled with 260,000 gallons of water and features a mini reef that serves as the base.

Two full time scuba divers work in the tank, taking care of the fish and their habitat. Besides being able to observe the tank from any angle, guests also have the opportunity to ride the elevator that runs through a tube in the center of the cylindrical aquarium. The elevator takes guests up to a viewing platform located just under the glass roof of Radisson Blu.

Probably the most interesting thing is that the aquarium was not built inside the hotel - the latter was constructed around the already existing aquarium.

Drink Up Your Juice and Eat the Bottle !

Researchers are working on a special material that would make it possible for people to drink their favorite juice and afterwards easily get rid of the bottle by simply eating it. The bottle is going to be made of a special biodegradable plastic mixed with food particles. Its taste will be the same as the taste of the drink.

The material, from which the bottle will be made, is called WikiCells, and it consists of natural food membrane that has liquid inside a biodegradable shell. WikiCells, the material of the edible bottles was developed by professor David Edwards at Harvard University. It consists of natural food membrane with liquid within biodegradable shell.

The new technology will solve the problem of plastic bottles, which exacerbates the environmental burden. So far the specialists were able to create tomato membrane with gazpacho soup, orange membrane with orange juice, grape membrane with wine and chocolate membrane with hot chocolate.

The edible membrane could be produced with the help of special WikiCells Machine and will be available in restaurants, but Edwards hopes it will soon appear in supermarkets and stores.

Supermarket Scanner that Identifies Products by Look Instead of Barcodes

The days of barcodes attached to different products could be over in the near future. This is because Toshiba Tec has recently presented its latest invention called Object Recognition Scanner.

The device is able to instantly identify any type of grocery just by their appearance. The apparatus does not make use of a scanner. Instead the company has equipped it with a camera that sees only objects that are brought close to its lens, filtering out the unwanted background in its picture.

With the help of pattern recognition software, the device is able to identify different fruits and vegetables, as well as packaged products and coupons. Everything is performed rather quickly. The products are scanned even if they're held in front of the camera for a very short period of time. Besides, it is unnecessary to hold the product still so it could be properly scanned.

However, probably the only thing that supermarket staff will have to work on is pre-installing a huge database of produce and some other products. Due to the fact that the look of fresh produce changes according to the season, the staff will be able to spend a full year creating the database. Currently Toshiba is improving its technology so it could read the products quicker and at various distances.

Monday, May 14, 2012

PAL-V One [Personal Air and Land Vehicle] - Flying Hybrid Vehicle

PAL-V One - a hybrid vehicle that is also a gyroplane. The name of the two-seater car stands for "Personal Air and Land Vehicle" and it allows the driver to travel by road or air. Developed by the Dutch company, PAL-V, The car is very maneuverable and quick thanks to its three wheels and a special patented "tilting" system.

In case the driver wants the car to take off, they should visit the nearest airport first and then, with the help of a single motor and propeller that opens out from the top of the vehicle, leave the ground. The transformation of the car into a gyroplane takes about 10 minutes. All that the driver has to do is just push a special button.

"Personal Air and Land Vehicle" is allowed to reach an altitude below 4,000 feet, according to uncontrolled Visual Flight Rules (VFR) traffic.

Due to the fact that the car boasts a short take off and landing capability, you can land it almost anywhere. The maximum speed that PAL-V One can reach is 112mph. While on the road, the hybrid vehicle can travel 750 miles using its gasoline engine. In the air the car can has a range of up to 315 miles.

Although currently it is powered by gasoline, the developers look forward to making versions that run on biodiesel or bio-ethanol.

An Outdoor Gym Where Your Workout Creates Power

Great Outdoor Gym Company decided to open a special outdoor gym in England. The most interesting about this gym is that it allows people to actually generate electricity while working out. Visitors can spin hand bikes, recumbent bikes, and fitness bikes, and thus produce enough energy to light the installation at night.

In addition, the gym makes it possible for people to recharge their phones and music players. The unused energy is sent to the grid. Besides, the installation can help educate children about renewable energy. Despite the fact that today there are plenty of indoor gyms that produce energy, Georgie Delaney, creative director of the firm that built the gym in a park in Hull, says that their gym is the first for the outdoors. In the upcoming months Great Outdoor Gym Company looks forward to installing more outdoor gyms, and it welcomes users to suggest their ideas.

Tata Motors to Debut Cars Powered by Air !

India-based Tata Motors has said that it has tested two cars that can run on compressed air, and that the next step is setting up the manufacturing plants to actually build them. In 2007, Tata Motors signed a licensing deal with Motor Development International, a French design firm.

Compressed air engines aren't a new idea. The first models were proposed more than a century ago, and they were used in the mining industry for decades before electric motors became commonplace. Even now, compressed air powers all kinds of tools, notably the pneumatic impact wrenches in auto body shops. A compressed air car engine works in a way similar to the internal combustion version - Fuel forces pistons to turn a crankshaft and power the car. The difference is that in a compressed air engine, the pistons are moved by air and not gasoline. Researchers in Sweden have experimented with single-cylinder engines of this type.

The only problem is power. Air compression alone only gets a car moving to about 30 to 35 miles per hour. So to supplement that, the car could take in more air as it moves faster, using an onboard air compressor. The air compressor could be electric or, more likely, gasoline-powered. But even that would reduce emissions a lot, since the gasoline engine wouldn't be running at lower speeds.

Range is also an issue. Like all vehicles, an air-powered car can drive only as far as the amount of fuel in its tank. And storing compressed air requires "fuel" tanks that are stronger than steel to contain the thousands of pounds per square inch necessary. On the bright side, compressing air in such a tank is a lot less dangerous than natural gas or hydrogen. Then there is the issue of filling the car's tank, most air compressors would take at least a couple of hours to do that.

Tata seems to be the only manufacturer that has committed to actually building an air-powered car. Honda unveiled an air-powered concept car in 2010, and a company called Zero Pollution Motors had promised to deliver one to the United States, but that was two years ago. If Tata is successful, it will go a long way toward reducing emissions in India-and perhaps freeing cars from fossil fuels completely.