Sci/tech

Now It's Not Just Spiderman That Can Scale The Empire State Building
August 29, 2007 08:59 AM - Insitutue of Physics

Physicists have found the formula for a Spiderman suit. Only recently has man come to understand how spiders and geckos effortlessly scuttle up walls and hang from ceilings but it was doubted that this natural form of adhesion would ever be strong enough to hold the weight of real life Peter Parkers.

Isuzu and Toyota Reach Basic Agreement on Small Diesel Engines
August 29, 2007 08:25 AM - , Green Progress

Isuzu Motors Limited (Isuzu) and Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) announced today that they have reached a basic agreement concerning a business collaboration on the development, production and supply of small diesel engines. Isuzu and TMC signed a memorandum of understanding last November to begin studying the synergic effects of business collaboration to mutually utilize their management resources in the fields of R&D and production, and to supplement each other's technological development. Since then, the two companies have conducted investigations with the aim of reaching agreement on the specific details of the business collaboration.

New roof technology could save you money
August 29, 2007 07:04 AM - DOE/Oak Ridge National Laboratory

From an energy efficiency perspective, roof technology has not progressed substantially in hundreds of years, but that is changing with the use of active thermal mass components, reflective pigments and coatings, subventing, radiant barriers and other novel techniques being tested by a team led by Bill Miller and Jan Kosny of ORNL�s Building Envelopes group. Their prototype roof and attic system works by reducing attic temperatures by about 22 degrees Fahrenheit during a typical summer afternoon and decreasing the amount of heat that gets transferred through the attic floor to the living space.

Ford Launches ECOnetic Range of Ultra-Low CO2 European Models
August 29, 2007 07:01 AM - , Green Progress

Ford of Europe will offer its customers ultra-low CO2 alternatives with the launch of a new range of Ford ECOnetic models at the 2007 Frankfurt Motor Show. The first vehicle to benefit will be the company's most popular model - The Ford Focus.

Jatropha Curcas: Promising Biofuel Feedstock Or Invasive Species?
August 28, 2007 07:27 PM - Bruce Mulliken, Private Landowner Network

Generally speaking, transplanting a species from one part of the world to another - either accidentally or on purpose - has, on occasion, had some really negative consequences. A prime example is kudzu that was moved from Asia to the southeast US beginning in the 1930’s to control erosion. It did that but now kudzu overgrows just about everything in its path and is almost impossible to get rid of. Now, with the push to find alternative and renewable sources of fuel in the US and elsewhere, oil from the seeds from a shrub called Jatropha Curcas has arisen as a very good source of biodiesel.

Electricity Generating Thermal Insulation
August 28, 2007 07:23 PM - , Private Landowner Network

NAPLES, Florida - A company called Nanotech, Inc, is researching thermal insulation which uses temperature differential as a source for generating electricity.

Europe Wants To Turn Wine Into Biofuel
August 28, 2007 06:30 PM - Reuters

BRUSSELS - The European Union has opened a tender to sell unwanted wine in four countries for use in making bioethanol, its Official Journal said on Tuesday. The tender would offer roughly 693,376 hectoliters of wine alcohol stored in France, Greece, Italy and Spain. The deadline for bids was September 10, it said in its latest edition. France, the world's largest wine producer, would offer 239,995 hectoliters of wine alcohol for distillation, while Italy and Spain would offer 200,000 hectoliters apiece. The balance of roughly 53,381 hectoliters will come from Greece.

Bacteria Sense Light, Use It To Regulate Virulence
August 28, 2007 04:39 PM - UC Santa Cruz

University of California, Santa Cruz - The bacteria that cause brucellosis can sense light and use the information to regulate their virulence, according to a study in the August 24 issue of the journal Science. The discovery comes after 120 years of research into the disease, which causes abortions in livestock and fevers in humans. Researchers found that two other bacteria, including a species that attacks plants, sense light using the same type of protein structure, and at least 94 more species possess the code for it in their DNA.

A Better, Cheaper Way To Make Biofuels: Algae
August 28, 2007 03:56 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

GILBERT, Ariz. - An Arizona company says they've developed a better, cheaper way to make biofuels, and more of it, from algae. Diversified Energy Corporation has developed a "breakthrough algae production system". The system is called "Simgae", for 'simple algae'. It utilizes common agriculture and irrigation components to produce algae at a fraction of the cost of competing systems. At 1/2 - 1/16th the capital cost, profitable oil production costs at $0.08 - $0.12/pound, and low operations and maintenance requirements, the system offer the biofuels industry access to cheap and readily available oils and starches for the production of biodiesel, ethanol, and other renewable fuels.

New Optical Fiber Home Network Demonstrates 100Mb Capacity
August 28, 2007 12:47 PM - Paul Schaefer and Quinn Shanahan, ENN

DENVER - Mitsubishi International and partner Firecomms says they'll demonstrate a new home network with a transmission rate of 100 Mb of Ethernet content. The trick, the company says, is a network entirely comprised of Polymer Optical Fiber. That increase in capacity is a big jump from existing home capacity say experts. The technology means web pages that load faster, video with fewer breaks and potentially more resolution.

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