The Great Elevator Race

An event to promote the debut of a new Olympic sport featured a Polish man racing an elevator in a seven-story race.

Marcin Dzienski, a speed climbing specialist, scaled a Warsaw hotel as a neon-lit elevator rose next to him. The 26-year-old climbed a 23-m (75-ft) plexiglass wall and hit the top after 12.12 seconds, with the elevator close behind him.

Speed climbing is one of three climbing disciplines that will be included in the upcoming 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo. Dzienski was the world champion in a 2016 event.

Check out the exciting video above.

Elevator-Pitch Competition

The American Institute of Architecture Students (AIAS) announced the winners of the Elevate Your Pitch competition.

The elevator-pitch competition, judged by members of Schindler Elevator Corporation, was based on the premise of giving a quick description of a business and/or idea in the time it would take to ride up an elevator (about 60 s), AIAS said in a press release.

The competition, which ran from February-June 2019, gave students the opportunity to pitch their ideas to a panel of judges for a chance to win one of three cash prizes. The panel of judges chose the top three entries to compete in the finals at the AIAS Grassroots Leadership Conference on July 18-21, 2019.

The winners of the competition were:

First Place | $2,500

The Supply Machine, submitted by Joey Sandoval and Ethan Herrold of the University of Colorado Boulder, is a conveniently located pop-up style vending machine for essential, must-have design materials.

Second Place | $1,000

The Patch Wand, submitted by Joshua Greene of California Baptist University, is a handheld scanner designed to repair objects and reduce waste by enabling clients to 3D print “patches.”

Third Place | $500

Sum of its Parts, submitted by Randa Malkawi and Luke Rumage of the Washington Alexandria Architecture Center of Virginia Tech, is a series of unique outdoor furniture that invites everyone to interact with it and create their own space.

For more information on the competition, visit

New Ultra-Strong Fiber Could Make the Space Elevator a Reality

A new fiber, developed by a research team in Beijing, China could be strong enough to make a space elevator possible.

A theory for how a space elevator would work; courtesy of South China Morning Post

According to South China Morning Post, the team from Tsinghua University built a fiber from carbon nanotube that they say is “stronger than anything seen before.” They say 1 cm3 of the fiber wouldn’t break under the weight of 160 elephants (more than 800 t). In addition to being strong, a piece of cable that size would only weigh 1.6 g.

Ideas for a space elevator have been floating around for more than a century but the idea has never made it past physical and mathematical models because no material has been found that is strong enough to build the unit.

One of the main theories for a space elevator would involve sending a large satellite into orbit that would lower a cable to the ground and be anchored. Another cable would go in the opposite direction to serve as a counterweight. The lift would then, theoretically, be suspended between the two cables, pulled taut by gravity and centrifugal force.

The new fiber is the first that may be strong enough to make the space elevator a reality, but for now, it’s too soon to tell.