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Australia

— Architecture

Other Architects envisions new official residence for Australia's Prime Minister

By - June 6, 2013 12 Pictures
The official residence of Australia's current Prime Minister (known as "The Lodge") was only ever intended to offer temporary accommodation when constructed back in 1925. To celebrate this year's Canberra centenary celebrations, the University of Canberra and the Gallery of Australian Design invited architects to produce a modern replacement for the venerable lodge. Sydney-based Other Architects duly produced its "A House That Floods" concept. Read More
— Architecture

From prefab skyscrapers to prefab houses, Klik claims to fit the bill

By - May 7, 2013 5 Pictures
With Klik, Australian companies Elenberg Fraser and Unitised Building have come up with a prefabricated modular building system they claim is equally suited to knocking up a quick skyscraper as it is a modern, designer house. It makes sense, then, that the product is pitched at developers, architects and would-be homeowners, and that the multiple choice procurement procedure is identical for each. If you can tick a box, you can design a Klik building, more or less. Read More
— Science

Scientists clone extinct frog that gives birth from its mouth

By - March 17, 2013 1 Picture
Australian scientists have successfully revived and reactivated the genome of an extinct frog. The "Lazarus Project" team implanted cell nuclei from tissues collected in the 1970s and kept in a conventional deep freezer for 40 years into donor eggs from a distantly-related frog. Some of the eggs spontaneously began to divide and grow to early embryo stage with tests confirming the dividing cells contained genetic material from the extinct frog. Read More
— Architecture

The Stamp House: a self-sustaining, solar-powered cyclone shelter

By - February 26, 2013 10 Pictures
Thanks to its tropical climate, Far North Queensland (FNQ), Australia, is a place where residents regularly have to deal with threats from the environment in the form of cyclones, while being mindful of their impact on the environment. One architectural firm has constructed a building that attempts to address both concerns simultaneously. Designed by Charles Wright Architects, the Stamp House in FNQ is a self-sustaining home that's sturdy enough to withstand a Category 5 cyclone. Read More
— Environment

Analysts say renewable energy now cheaper option than new fossil fuels in Australia

By - February 14, 2013 1 Picture
In 2008, the Garnaut Climate Change Review ranked Australia as the highest per capita emitter of greenhouse gases of any OECD country and amongst the highest in the world. One of the reasons for the country's high carbon footprint is its reliance on coal for electricity generation – 54 percent of it, according to the Australian Coal Association. But a new study by Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) points to a cleaner energy future with the claim that unsubsidized renewable energy is now a cheaper option for electricity generation than new coal- or gas-fired power stations. Read More
— Architecture

Cantilevered residential heliostat takes shape in Sydney

By - February 11, 2013 17 Pictures
A major urban redevelopment is taking place in Sydney, Australia, as it attempts to become one of the word’s most liveable green cities within a 20-year time-frame as part of the “Sustainable Sydney 2030” vision. One remarkable inner city project passed a major milestone this month as part of its contribution to the eco plan. The development, named “One Central Park,” had its 110-tonne steel heliostat frame hoisted into place during the early hours of February 1st. Read More
— Robotics

University of Sydney developing robots to automate Australian farms

By - December 19, 2012 2 Pictures
The idea of an automated farm has probably been around since rural electrification started in the early 20th century. Replacing back-breaking labor with robots has an obvious appeal, but so far cheap labor in many countries and the insistence of agriculture on being so darn rural has made automation limited in application. Despite this, Salah Sukkarieh, Professor of Robotics and Intelligent Systems at the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technologies of the University of Sydney, is heading a team working on developing robotic systems for farms with the aim of turning Australia into the “food bowl” of Asia. Read More
— Motorcycles

Phillip Island gets a $3 million facelift

By - December 18, 2012 8 Pictures
Australia’s motorsport mecca is in the midst of its first major facelift in 14 years, with the Island’s hallowed race circuit being treated this week to a $3 million resurface to create the smoothest, fastest race track in the world. The huge undertaking will see 5,000 tonnes of specially blended asphalt mix laid at a temperature of ~160ºF in a process that shows it's not just high-tech bikes that make the world of international motorcycle racing tick. Read More
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