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The Blunt Umbrella boasts improved strength, durability, stability and is safer than tradi...

Umbrellas have been around for thousands of years but, aside from the introduction of the collapsible umbrella in 1935, their design has remained largely unchanged - despite the well known design flaws that see them flip inside out in strong winds or threaten to take out an eye with their pointy rib tips. It was this threat to his eyeballs as he negotiated busy London streets in wet weather that set 1.9 m tall New Zealand designer Greig Brebner on a mission to design a better umbrella – a goal he believes he has achieved with the Blunt Umbrella.  Read More

The new Raytheon 4K by 4K, 16 megapixel focal plane array

Raytheon has announced the creation of the world's largest infra-red light wave detector, the "4K by 4K" focal plane array. Not only will it allow whole hemisphere satellite monitoring at 16 megapixel resolution but it should also make sensors less dependent on the complicated scanning mechanisms used in current systems.  Read More

The beauty of sunspots has been revealed through the use of supercomputers (Photos: Matthi...

An international team of scientists led by the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) has created the first-ever comprehensive computer model of sunspots. It is hoped the use of the supercomputer modeling - the supercomputers undertake 76 trillion calculations per second - will help scientists unlock mysteries of the sun and its impacts on Earth.  Read More

Satellite image of tropical storm Humberto (Photo: www.noaa.gov)

When it comes to severe thunderstorms, every minute of advance warning can be vital. Present methods rely on radar to detect impending storms, but a new technique that uses satellites to measure the temperature changes in the tops of clouds, could predict severe thunderstorms up to 45 minutes earlier than relying on traditional radar alone.  Read More

The +ECO Clima Control solar powered weather station

Oregon Scientific’s solar powered +ECO Clima Control weather station allows users to monitor the temperature and humidity in up to four locations within the home and outdoors and includes weather predictions on the best time for the unit to soak up the sun’s rays.  Read More

The new control interface now includes a bigger LCD screen and a familiar dial control

With the return of Summer comes the now familiar imposition of water restrictions and the unwelcome return of headaches for gardeners and nursery managers alike. Fortunately, pain relief for lovers of all things horticultural is available in the form of clever green tech known as smart irrigation, which plugs in to online weather information to optimize garden watering and minimize waste. Timing being everything in business (as well as comedy), smart sprinkler manufacturer Cyber-Rain has recently upgraded its range to add more independent zone control, better wireless communication, a simple and clear interface and an enhanced software solution.  Read More

View from a specially outfitted C-130 aircraft operated by the National Center for Atmosph...

The climate change debate has focused our collective attention on the importance of understanding the complex workings of our planet's weather system, but there is still much we don't know. In this latest breakthrough, a UC San Diego-led team of atmospheric chemistry researchers has made the first-ever direct detection of biological particles within ice clouds. By providing insights into, for example, how particles from Asia effect rainfall in North America, the research aims to shed light on one of the most uncertain factors of climate modeling and enhance our understanding of atmospheric cooling and regional precipitation.  Read More

Pedal power: the four-wheeled transport, called Quikey, Australians Roger Chao and Megan K...

An Australian pair plan to travel more than 7,450 miles in 12 months, through extreme weather conditions and terrains on a four-wheeled recumbent bicycle called a "quike" (on account of the four wheels). They plan to leave later this month on what promises to be an incredible journey, starting from Astana, Kazakhstan. All medical supplies, food and camping equipment will be carried on the back of the quike which could weigh as much as 960 pounds.  Read More

Image credit – Willem van Aken, CSIRO

March 24, 2009 The weather conditions that lead to Southern Australia’s past two devastating bushfires may be linked to lower than normal sea-surface temperatures in the eastern Indian Ocean, according to CSIRO research presented at the Greenhouse 2009 Conference today. The Ash Wednesday bushfires in February 1983 and the Black Saturday bushfires in February were preceded by months of very dry conditions. Those dry conditions were partly caused by cooler ocean sea-surface temperatures in the eastern Indian Ocean, which contributed to a substantial reduction in spring-time rainfall over the south-east of Australia.  Read More

Cloud seeding in action

Rainmaking has advanced since the days when a ritual dance was believed to invoke the wet stuff, but while modern day cloud seeding has been shown to change the structure and size of clouds, it’s still debatable whether the practice actually has any effect on rainfall. After all, even if precipitation does occur after cloud seeding there’s no way of knowing whether it would have rained anyway. This uncertainty hasn’t stopped widespread use of cloud seeding in countries around the world including the US, Russia, Australia and China, which boasts the largest cloud seeding system in the world. Now a breakthrough by an international team of scientists could help in the development of new materials which could be used to enhance the process.  Read More

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