2015 Detroit NAIAS Auto Show
The hull of the cargo ship Vindskip acts as a large wing sail (Image: Lade AS)

In 2013, Norway's Lade AS unveiled designs for Vindskip, a "hybrid" merchant ship which aims to harness the wind courtesy of a specially-shaped hull, in the process taking the burden off of its natural-gas powered engines and saving fuel. Researchers from the Fraunhofer Institute's Center for Maritime Logistics and Services (CML) have been working to help realize this goal by developing an algorithm that will allow the Vindskip's navigation system to use the combination of power and sail at its most economical.  Read More

The Dolfi is designed to wash delicate clothes using ultrasonic waves

Delicate clothing are the here-there-be-dragons of the laundry world. Unlike jeans and socks, one mistake can result in a favorite garment shrinking to doll size or ending up a gray, shredded mess. To help avoid this sort of wash day tragedy, Swiss engineering lab MPI Ultrasonics has come up with Dolfi, a pocket-sized device that makes laundering hand-washables a hands-free job.  Read More

Vanadate-borate glass could almost double the amount of time lithium-ion batteries last be...

The batteries inside our smartphones and laptops are fighting a losing battle when it comes to keeping these devices juiced up, but researchers from ETH Zurich have discovered a new type of glass material that could make a major difference: vanadate-borate glass. The glass can be used as an electrode material in lithium-ion batteries to almost double the amount of time they last between charges.  Read More

The Integrated Structural Assembly of Advanced Composites (ISAAC) robot that will be commi...

The robot revolution continues at NASA this month as its Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia prepares to bring its Integrated Structural Assembly of Advanced Composites (ISAAC) robot online. One of only three robots like it in the world, it will be formally commissioned on January 26 before being put to work making lighter, stronger composite components for aerospace vehicles.  Read More

Cluster quartet (Image: ESA)

Space maneuvers have often been described as an orbital ballet, but the European Space Agency's (ESA) Cluster II satellites are currently in a ballet where the dancers are moving blindfolded at hypersonic speeds as they pass within a cosmic hairsbreadth of one another. That's because two of the Cluster satellites are flying within "touching distance" of one another as scientists try to learn more about the effects of solar wind on the Earth's magnetic field.  Read More

The futuristic looking Zeppelin three-wheeler features an aluminum and polycarbonate exter...

The team behind The Future People, who brought us the FireFly back in 2013, has recently completed two more human-powered velomobiles which where on display during the 2015 Detroit NAIAS Auto Show. Dubbed Zeppelin and Cyclone, both prototypes push the boundaries of the common human-powered vehicle (HPV) with designs that look to the past and the future.  Read More

Artist's concept of the IXV re-entering the atmosphere (Image: ESA)

The European Space Agency has given the green light for the launch of its unmanned spaceplane, Intermediate eXperimental Vehicle (IXV). The original plan for a launch atop a Vega rocket from the ESA space center in French Guiana last November was put on hold due to safety concerns about its trajectory. With these issues now resolved, lift off is rescheduled for February 11.  Read More

Falcon 9 crashing on the deck of the barge (Photo: SpaceX)

Elon Musk has revealed video and details of the crash of the Falcon 9 booster as it attempted to make an historic powered landing after the launch of the CRS-5 mission. In a series of brief statements on Twitter, the SpaceX founder and CEO explained the cause of the crash and future plans for the company's ambitions to produce a fully reusable space launch system.  Read More

The Geco Mark II weighs just 20 grams

The idea of video eyeglasses and sunglasses always sounds great at first – forget strapping a boxy camera to your head and get footage straight from your glasses. What's not so great is the limited selection and acquired taste nature of the options currently available. Not everyone is into the "Red Bull-chuggin' extreme" styling of the Pivotheads or the "forgot my sunglasses so bought these at the pharmacy" look of Eyez glasses. The tiny Geco Mark II action cam solves the problem by letting you build your own using the glasses of your choice.  Read More

Powered by a 3.0-liter, 270 kW (367 hp) twin-turbo V6 engine driving all-four wheels, the ...

Mercedes has done a good job of catering for most tastes with its new C-Class range. Economy-oriented drivers have the C350 Plug-In Hybrid, while those who crave power and the odd cloud of tire smoke tend to gravitate towards the C63 AMG. But what if you want a car that is sharp to drive without stretching all the way to the 476 hp C63? Mercedes has provided the answer with its C450 AMG 4MATIC.  Read More

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