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Approximately 80 solar panels are incorporated into the 450-meter (492-yard) system

The tiny Swiss town of Tenna has put itself on the eco-map by building an innovative solar-powered ski lift. The solar lift is one of the world's first of its kind, and utilizes a "cable car system" where the solar panels are integrated directly into the lift. Approximately 80 solar panels are incorporated into a 450-meter (492-yard) system that is suspended above the ski lift, which has the capacity to pull 800 skiers up the mountain per hour. To avoid running out of energy during bad weather and snow storms, the ski lift is also connected to the local power supply, so skiers will not be left hanging on in the dark!  Read More

An 83-year old woman is the first in the world to receive a full 3D-printed titanium lower...

The ability to create your own replacement curtain rings, door knobs or even a custom chess set at home using a 3D printer like the Replicator or the Cubify 3D printer has the potential to knock global production models on their heads. Such advances are certainly impressive but not quite in the same league as those being made in the field of medicine. We've already seen small bone-like objects printed by Washington State University researchers, and now an 83-year old patient with a serious jaw infection has become the first person to receive a full 3D-printed titanium lower jaw implant. Amazingly, the combined effort by researchers and engineers from Belgium and the Netherlands is said to have allowed the patient unrestricted mandibular movement within a day of surgery.  Read More

Astronauts training aboard the KC-135 aircraft, which inspired the proposed Zero Gravity R...

It appears that BRC Imagination Arts, a Southern California design firm, have a zero gravity roller coaster proposal that’s waiting for a US$50 million investment. BRC’s proposed theme-park ride is inspired by NASA’s astronaut training aircraft the KC-135 (aka “Vomit Comet”) and would give riders the sensation of floating within a stable chamber.  Read More

West Coast Chill is being touted as the world's first beverage to be sold in a self-chilli...

Miller Beer may have announced its plans to do so several years ago, but now someone else is actually going through with it ... releasing a beverage in a self-chilling can, that is. At the end of the first quarter of this year, Joseph Company International will be launching its West Coast Chill all-natural energy drink, which will come in the company's patented Chill Can. When buyers press a tab on the can, the temperature of the liquid inside will decrease by 30ºF within three minutes.  Read More

Alesis has unveiled the world's first USB/MIDI keytar - the Vortex - with a built-in accel...

Noted rock vocalist and bass player Glenn Hughes (Trapeze, Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, and more recently Black Country Communion) has often been quoted as saying that, for him, much of the 1980s was just a blur. It's probably just as well, or he might have had a hard time dealing with the emergence of the keytar - a strap-on keyboard that has a little neck with a number of parameter-changing buttons on it. Okay, I admit it, I'm not a great fan of the Jan Hammers and Jean-Michel Jarres of this world, but those who want to emulate these digital music innovators without digging deep for a Korg, Roland or Moog original can now rejoice with the release of the world's first USB/MIDI keytar - the Vortex from Alesis.  Read More

GHOST is a prototype military boat, that is claimed to be the world's first super-cavitati...

If you combined a stealth jet fighter and an attack helicopter and stuck them in the water, what would you get? Well, according to the folks at New Hampshire’s Juliet Marine Systems (JMS), you’d get their GHOST marine platform. Privately developed for possible use by the U.S. Navy, the boat would reportedly be invisible to enemy ships’ radar, while also being faster and more economical than existing military vessels. The company’s big claim, however, is that GHOST is the world’s first super-cavitating watercraft.  Read More

Nissan's Scratch Shield iPhone case that employs technology used on cars to self-repair fi...

Just over six years ago, we reported that Nissan had developed a "Scratch Guard Coat" paint designed to repair scratches on not only cars, but on painted surfaces in general. The company has already applied its paint technology to a number of Nissan and Infiniti models, and in 2009 it announced that it would license it for use on mobile phones. It appears there weren't many takers as Nissan has now announced that it has produced the world's first self-healing iPhone case that makes use of the Scratch Shield paint.  Read More

Chimeric monkeys Roku, Hex and Chimero (not pictured) are the first three primates ever to...

Scientists have reached a major milestone in the field of stem cell research. A team at the Oregon National Primate Research Center (ONPRC) say their work has led to the first successful birth of three chimeric monkeys - monkeys developed from stem cells taken from two separate embryos.  Read More

The foxLO subwoofer (rear) adds some low frequency oomph to the foxL portable speaker (fro...

Soundmatters has announced a new speaker designed to bring some low frequency oomph to its portable foxLv2 Bluetooth and non-Bluetooth brethren. The new foxLO, which Soundmatters calls “the world’s first palm-sized hi-fi subwoofer,” plugs directly into foxLv2 speaker’s subwoofer output but will also work with other branded portable speakers, such as the Jawbone Jambox, thanks to the inclusion of a 3.5 mm full pass-through output.  Read More

Multi-modal geolocation hardware designer and manufacturer Edgetrak and performance skateb...

Contrary to celluloid legend, Marty McFly did not invent the skateboard in 1955. Street surfing actually originated a little later and has gone from a few home brewers mounting some roller skate wheels onto the underside of a plywood board to an international sport which challenges both the creative ingenuity and physical capabilities of its participants. The design and structure of board and components have improved greatly over the years, but there appears to have been little headway in feeding back vital performance data to riders. Designer and manufacturer of military grade tracking technologies Edgetrak and performance board producer wefunk have now joined forces to fill the void. The newly-formed Stealth Division has just put the finishing touches to a new operational prototype longboard called the Mach1, the first deck in the world to feature built-in telemetrics.  Read More

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