What will America’s roads and highways look like in the future?

The New Jersey Institute of Technology has been looking into the future to see how roads and highways will change over the next few years, and found a significant proportion of roadways in a poor state. 

Across the United States, says the NJIT, there are more than 4 million miles of public roadways, and 28 percent are listed as being in “poor condition”.

Throughout those roadways, 61,000 bridges are considered “structurally deficient”.

On top of the needs for rebuilding US roadways, 42 percent of America’s major urban highways remain congested, which costs an estimated $101 billion in wasted time and fuel annually.  Continue reading What will America’s roads and highways look like in the future?

Solar power revolution ‘unavoidable’ in Asia, says industry expert

REC solar panel manufacturing plant in Singapore
A robot operates at a production line during a tour of an REC solar panel manufacturing plant in Singapore. Reuters / Edgar Su

By Henning Gloystein and Vera Eckert, Reuters

Investors are increasingly excited about the prospects for much faster growth in the solar power industry in Southeast Asia, which has until now been a backwater for renewable energy.

They say that the region is in a perfect position to benefit from rapidly declining prices in solar panels. It has strong economic growth, relatively high costs of electricity and a shortage from traditional sources, undeveloped infrastructure in more remote areas, plenty of sunshine, and backing for more renewable energy from many of Southeast Asia’s governments.

“Dramatically falling costs for solar energy technologies means businesses and governments are choosing renewable energy not for environmental reasons but for economic ones,” said Roberto De Vido, spokesman for Singapore-based Equis, one of Asia’s biggest green energy-focused investment firms with $2.7 billion in committed capital. “It simply makes good business sense. And that’s a trend that’s not going to change.”  Continue reading Solar power revolution ‘unavoidable’ in Asia, says industry expert

World Economic Forum selects robotics and automation companies in its ‘Technology Pioneers 2017’ list

physee window

The World Economic Forum, the global nonprofit foundation whose annual meeting in Davos is attended by global leaders from business and politics, has published a list of companies which it considers to be the most pioneering in the field of technology.

In publishing its Technology Pioneers 2017 list, WEF has chosen 30 different companies to highlight from a variety of industries including biotechnology, agriculture, energy, transport, as well as a number of companies from the robotics and automation sector.

One of them is Horizon Robotics, a Chinese company which develops computer infrastructure to enable artificial intelligence computing and real-time decision-making, mainly aimed at enhancing self-driving vehicle safety.  Continue reading World Economic Forum selects robotics and automation companies in its ‘Technology Pioneers 2017’ list

Airships: Ready to fly high again after a century of suspicion

futuristic-airship

The Hindenburg disaster, in which a massive German airship caught fire while landing in the US, resulting in the deaths of 36 people, occurred in 1937, but even today it’s remembered and thought of as the reason why airships never took to the skies in large numbers. 

The powerful images of the accident left many who viewed them with the impression that airships were dangerous, partly because they were filled with gas lighter than air.

But whereas the Hindenburg was filled with a flammable gas, modern airships are not – they haven’t been for many decades.  Continue reading Airships: Ready to fly high again after a century of suspicion