A new fiber, developed by a research team in Beijing, China
could be strong enough to make a space elevator possible.
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
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.
For anyone who’s ever been annoyed or bewildered by the security-check process at airports — a demographic that includes virtually everyone who flies — inventors Charles Bombardier and Ashish Thulkar have a solution that will guide travelers through the process quickly, easily and without a second thought. They call it the Aerochk, a security scanning system mounted on an escalator that checks person, passport and carry-on simultaneously.
The system, featured in online magazine Yanko Design, allows travelers to ride up to the gate concourse next to their luggage and passports, which ride on separate conveyors. All reach the top at the same time, squared away and ready to board. Now, if these guys would only turn their attention to the Department of Motor Vehicles and supermarket checkouts …
Easily getting the escalators to move in just one direction was just one of many high-tech aids on display at an event at Singapore’s Jewel Changi Airport last month, CNA reported. Using more than 5,000 sensors, more than 700 closed-circuit TVs and more than 200 mobile devices, the Mozart security platform from Certis makes it all possible. Data from 12 different systems is integrated and analyzed and enables officers to make quick decisions in situations like crowd control and other security situations.
“I think the escalators (are) an interesting point, because nobody expected the crowd watching the (light) show to be so (big). . . . That kind of analytics help us make sure that you got no choice but to make both escalators go up during those timings,” Certis Senior Vice President and head of Certis Aviation Security Benny Lim said of them. He added that, once the crowds have thinned, the escalators are switched back to travel in alternate directions.
But, this feature is far from all the security suite offers. The “PETER” robot, dubbed a “Robocop,” is also on the prowl for parking violators: