Category Archives: News

News: Google’s Moonshot Factory

  News Google’s Moonshot Factory

Bloomberg Businessweek/TechnogyExternal Link
has a very interesting article about big research being done at Google’s Google X.

“As the polymath engineers and scientists who work there are fond of saying, Google X is the search giant’s factory for moonshots, those million-to-one scientific bets that require generous amounts of capital, massive leaps of faith, and a willingness to break things. Google X (the official spelling is Google [x]) is home to the self-driving car initiative and the Internet-connected eyeglasses, Google Glass, among other improbable projects.”

Some of the projects that have passed Google’s way include:

Airborne Wind-power Generators

Airborne Wind-power Generators

The Makani AWT is a tethered, autonomous rigid-wing fitted with onboard turbines for power generation. Flying in circles at 1,000 feet (300 meters), the system mimics the motion, and speed, of a conventional turbine’s aerodynamically effective blade tips. Pictured is the Wing 7 flying in June 2012. Google bought Makani in May 2013.

Photo by Makani PowerExternal Link

Google Glass

Google Glass

Google’s augmented reality head mounted display as glasses.

Google’s Multigenerational Nerd Fantasy: Space Elevators

Google’s Multigenerational Nerd Fantasy: Space Elevators

Artist concept of a space elevator.

Google’s Lexus RX 450h Self-Driving Car

Google's Lexus RX 450h Self-Driving Car

Artist concept of a space elevator.

Ballon-based Broadband Transmitters

Ballon-based Broadband Transmitters

Google Loon launch event of June 16, 2013 was a test of the use of high-altitude balloons to bring internet access to undeveloped parts of the world. The initiative never progressed beyond the experimental stage.

Just How Large is Google?

Just How Large is Google?

On 16th August 2013 between 23:52 and 23:57 BST the mighty Google went down. The real time analytics company, GoSquared Engineering reported a 40% drop in global pageviews per minute during the Google instance. The drop was followed by a spike afterwards as users got cought-up.

google download
Credit: GoSquared Engineering

NASA Puts Alternative Jet Fuels Put to the Test

Environmental News

NASA Puts Alternative Jet Fuels Put to the Test

NASA and 11 other research groups are testing two non-petroleum-based jet fuels in the pursuit of alternative fuels that can power commercial jets and address rising oil costs.

Read the article at NASA Puts Alternative Jet Fuels Put to the Test (NASA).

Creating Biofuel with Algae

Environmental News

Creating Biofuel with Algae

University of Nevada, Reno has a demonstration project that turns algae into biofuel. It is being done to show that the process is economical.

Read the article at Nevada conducts algae-to-biofuel research project (UNR).

Los Alamos observatory fingers cosmic ray ‘hot spots’


Los Alamos observatory fingers cosmic ray ‘hot spots’

Milagro Observatory unveils something never before seen from Earth

“A Laboratory cosmic-ray observatory has seen for the first time two distinct hot spots that appear to be bombarding Earth with an excess of cosmic rays. The research calls into question nearly a century of understanding about galactic magnetic fields near our solar system….

Cosmic Ray ‘hot spots’
John Pretz

Read the full story at Los Alamos National Laboratory.