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California

Space

Lockheed Martin engineers get first look at Orion post splashdown

The Orion spacecraft may have taken less than five hours to fly into space and back, but it will take a fortnight for it to return to the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, so Lockheed Martin, builder of the capsule, is conducting tests on the fly. As the 19,650 lb (8,913 kg) capsule designed to take astronauts beyond low-Earth orbit was unloaded ashore in San Diego, California from the recovery ship USS Anchorage, Lockheed engineers were waiting to take samples of the heat shield and begin processing the flight recorders. Read More

Environment

Silicon Valley's latest high-tech gadgetry makes sewage water drinkable

Drinking recycled urine may be the stuff of Dune novels, and a drastic response to California’s ongoing drought. But officials in Santa Clara County in the heart of Silicon Valley are hoping its new high-tech purification plant will help residents get past the ick factor and eventually allow treated wastewater to flow through their faucets in a "toilet to tap" scenario. Opened in July, the $72 million Silicon Valley Advanced Water Purification Center is the most advanced such plant in the US, and uses a multi-step system of microfiltration, reverse osmosis and ultraviolet rays to produce water of higher quality than typical drinking water.Read More

Architecture

Students rethink Californian "Parkitecture"

Students at California Polytechnic Pomona have been reinterpreting the cabins used by visitors to US state parks as part of a program by the Architecture Department Studio. Revamp the Camp aimed to make the cabins in California State Parks cheaper and greener, as well as more appealing to a wider range of park users.Read More

Automotive

In the hills with Aston Martin's DP-100 Vision GT concept, and Q-series rides

During the concept lawn show at Pebble Beach’s Concours d’Elegance a few weeks back, Mercedes-Benz’ Gran Turismo inspired AMG VGT literally stole the show. But while that PlayStation concept enjoyed its 15 minutes of fame down by the Pacific, another GT6 concept was enjoying its North American debut at a private event up in the sun-scorched hills east of Monterey. Aston Martin had invited a select group of media and clientele to not only drive and experience cars like the Vanquish and V12 Vantage S, but also to view firsthand the digital-inspired awesomeness that was the DP-100 Vision Gran Turismo. Read More

Automotive

Hyper-rare 1964 Ferrari 275 GTB/C Speciale heads to auction in California

The collector car market has been anything but boring in recent times. The price for collectible Ferrari's has consistently been on the rise, culminating in last year's world record price of US$27.5 million for a 1967 Ferrari 275 NART Spider. Now another impressive bidding scenario is shaping up as one of only three 1964 Ferrari 275 GTB/C Speciale’s goes up for auction next month.Read More

Automotive

Sandia study examines potential for hydrogen fueling infrastructure

Hydrogen fueled vehicles, such as Toyota's FCV and Hyundai's Tuscon Fuel Cell, face a chicken or egg predicament: consumers are rightfully hesitant to invest in such vehicles if they don't have a convenient way to refuel them, and energy companies don't want to cough up dollars for costly infrastructure without significant numbers of such vehicles on the road. But a study by researchers at Sandia National Laboratories says that more existing gas stations in California could readily integrate hydrogen fuel than previously thought.Read More

Automotive

Hyundai Tuscon Fuel Cell hits Californian roads with free hydrogen

The hydrogen economy sounds great, and has ever since it was first proposed in the 1970s. The tricky bit is how to get there, because without the necessary infrastructure, a fuel cell car that runs on hydrogen is little more than a conversation piece. As Hyundai delivers its first Tucson Fuel Cell CUV to its new lessee, Timothy Bush, the South Korean carmaker unveiled its plan to jump-start the hydrogen car economy by giving the fuel away to its customers.Read More

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