Could the first private lunar rover be an Audi? The car maker has announced a partnership with one of the teams competing for the Google-sponsored Lunar XPrize – the Part-Time Scientists. Audi will provide technical expertise in building an unmanned rover that aims to set down in the vicinity of the Apollo 17 landing site in 2017.
Air conditioners are a bit of a paradox. On the one hand, they're most needed in the hottest weather, but on the other, the hottest days are when air conditioners are least efficient. Mistbox is an add-on technology for domestic air conditioners that uses a water mist to pre-cool the air conditioner, increasing its efficiency and lowering energy costs.
Processor chips may get all the glory, but if it wasn't for lithium-ion batteries, modern electronics would look like something out of the 1950s. Unfortunately, while they may be compact and long lasting, these batteries also suffer from overheating and can become fire hazards as they get old. Now a team led by Stanford University and the Department of Energy’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory has come up with an additive that holds the promise of extending lithium battery life while improving safety and performance.
A British woman has been fitted with what's billed as the "world’s most lifelike bionic hand". The bebionic small hand is the latest model in Steeper's bebionic line of prosthetic hands and is the first of the advanced myoelectric hands to be specially designed to fit women and teenagers as it senses the user's muscle movements and uses these to trigger individual motors in each finger.
The British Royal Navy is a step closer to getting a fighter wing for its new Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carriers after the F-35B Lightning II made a successful take off from a ski-jump on June 19 at Naval Air Station in Patuxent River, Maryland. The vertical and/or short take-off and landing (VSTOL) variant of the F-35B is being jointly tested by an Anglo-American team as part of the program to bring the aircraft into service with the Royal Navy and the US Marine Corps.
In a nod to Star Trek's Dr McCoy, Viatom has shown a device it bills as a "real medical tricorder" at this week's Consumer Electronics show in New York City. The handheld CheckMe is designed to provide fast readouts of several vital signs as well as tracking patient progress in both clinical and home settings.
Sleep and activity monitors have a lot of advantages, but aesthetics often isn't one of them. Many look like exactly what they are and even ones that are incorporated discretely in watches aren't very popular with people who don't want to wear watches in bed. Billed as the "world’s first wellness ring," the Ōura ring takes a sleep and activity monitor and hides it inside a piece of finger jewelry that makes the technology unobtrusive and unself-conscious.
ESA has announced that its Rosetta comet orbiter mission will be extended by nine months. The unmanned spacecraft that rendezvoused with comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko last year will carry out further observations until September 2016, by which time it will be too far from the Sun to power itself and will land on the comet.
There was a time when shipping containers were just used for cargo, but these days, they're used for everything from housing to restaurants and urban farms. While these steel boxes have proven to be extremely versatile, they're also very expensive to move and require some heavy lifting. Excalibur Shelters is making this a bit cheaper and simpler with SL-Tainer, a self-lifting container that does away with the need for a crane to get it on and off the back of a truck.
The age of steam is over – at least, as far as US aircraft carriers are concerned. At Newport News, Virginia, theUSS Gerald R Ford (CVN 78) successfully test fired a revolutionary Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS), which replaces the steam catapults that have been standard carrier equipment since the 1950s. The test made a literal splash because it involved an unmanned dead-weight sled rather than an aircraft, which landed about a hundred yards off the bow of the still under construction vessel.