These Three Solar Plants in Chile Could Change the Solar Energy Game

Chile could be the next major world leader in solar power. The government recently approved three solar thermal plants from SolarReserve, a US-based company. Combined, these sites are expected to produce electricity 24 hours a day, seven days a week. That’s 450 MW of continual power. It could generate up to 2,600 GWh each year.Rather than using traditional solar...

Can Sound Waves Be Used to Hack into Smartphones?

When one thinks of modern hacking, most people immediately think of cracking into software. However, one team of researchers took a look at the disturbing possibilities through sound waves and smartphone hardware.Engineers from the University of Michigan and University of South Carolina developed a way to use sound waves to control various hardware. They successfully hacked into a smartphone...

SALT Gun: A Self-Defense Weapon That Shoots Pepper Spray Capsules

SALT is a non-lethal, self-defense gun. The weapon has been created by a start-up company called Salt Supply . This gun is more akin to a paintball gun than a more traditional firearm. This weapon lets you defend yourself against attackers in a simple, clean and more importantly, non-lethal way. It’s also non-lethal for the user or anyone who accidentally...

Google and Levi’s Plan on Releasing a Washable Smart Jacket This Year

Wearable smart technology has been promised for over a decade now, but nothing has really hit production until now. (And no, we’re not including smartwatches.) Google and Levi’s partnered to create an attractive and functional “smart jacket.”The jacket uses Levi’s Commuter jacket and embeds technology from Google’s Advanced Technology and Products group. Project Jacquard was announced in 2015. However,...

Spanish Architect Transforms an Old Cement Factory Into a Modern Castle

Spanish architect, Ricardo Bofill, stumbled upon a WWI-era cement factory in 1973. He decided to purchase the old cement factory, situated near Barcelona, and transformed it into a majestic home called La fábrica.The Cement FactoryAlmost 45 years ago, Bofill saw great potential for the dilapidated cement factory located in Catalonia, Spain. At his first encounter with the cement factory, Bofill found...

Engineers Develop Near-Perfect Underwater Glue Inspired by Nature

Glues are some of the most important substances in engineering today. The ideal adhesive should be strong yet resistant to wear and breaking down. A team of engineers at Purdue University looked to nature to create the perfect glue.The researchers studied shellfish that glue themselves in place to deter predators or resist moving during strong waters. Jonathan Wilker, professor...

Braeön: An Adaptable Paper-Thin Ribbon With Steel-Like Strength

With descriptions like ‘strong as steel but light as a feather,’ this new product seems almost mythological. However, the makers of Braeön (pronounced “brawn”) assure users it’s very much real. This Kickstarter project holds to its promises.The material boasts a tensile strength of over 2,000 lbs (907 kg). Unfurl 100 ft of the stuff and it weighs less than 1 lb...

Uber’s Self-Driving Cars to Hit the Streets of California for Permit Test

After much discussion and dispute, Uber will finally put its self-driving cars back on the streets of California for a practice run. However, it will be sans passengers for now.The taxi company got the permit to test two Honda SUVs on California public roads, according to the Department of Motor Vehicles. The state also approved 48 backup drivers to...

Top 10 Performing Countries for Solar Energy

Have you ever wondered what the top 10 performing countries for solar energy are? Well, my friend, you’ve come to the right place. According to data collected by the International Energy Agency (IEA) for 2015 (2016 data is yet to be published) the global total cumulative PV installation is a whopping 227 GW worldwide. Most of this is grid-connected. This...

Google Introduces ‘Invisible’ CAPTCHA to Tell Humans and Bots Apart

It appears Google found a new way to differentiate between humans and robots. The company removed the annoying CAPTCHA system in favor of a much less visible one. Google says no more input is needed for its ‘invisible’ system.The Invisible CAPTCHA (Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart) comes as an evolutionary development from reCAPTCHA. Google...