The March Of Technology

Discussion in 'New Science' started by rynner2, Jan 24, 2009.

  1. rynner2

    rynner2 Great Old One

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    More retro-technology examined:
    Secret of how Roman concrete survived tidal battering for 2,000 years revealed
    Sarah Knapton, Science Editor
    3 July 2017 • 6:00pm

    It is a mystery that continues to baffle modern engineers. Why do 2,000-year-old Roman piers survive to this day, yet modern concrete seawalls embedded with steel crumble within decades?
    Even Pliny the Elder, writing in Naturalis Historia in 79AD, noted that concrete structures in ancient harbours, ‘become a single stone mass, impregnable to the waves, and every day stronger,’ despite being constantly battered by seawater.

    Now scientists in the US think they have found the answer, and it could finally lead to modern sea defences which withstand time and tide.
    They discovered that when saltwater mixes with the volcanic ash and lime used by Roman builders, it leads to the growth of interlocking minerals, which bring a virtually impenetrable cohesion to concrete.

    "We're looking at a system that's contrary to everything one would want in cement-based concrete," said Prof Marie Jackson, a geology and geophysics research professor at the University of Utah who led the study.
    "We're looking at a system that thrives in open chemical exchange with seawater."

    Roman engineers made concrete by mixing volcanic ash with lime and seawater to make a mortar, and then added chunks of volcanic rock. The combination of ash, water, and lime produces what is called a pozzolanic reaction, named after the city of Pozzuoli in the Bay of Naples, triggering the formation of crystals in the gaps of the mixture as it sets.

    etc...

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/...survived-tidal-battering-2000-years-revealed/
     
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  2. INT21

    INT21 Justified & Ancient

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    I don't know the Swedish for 'Vorsprung Durch Teknich' but it probably applies to Volvo's announcement that they are switching to all electric and hybrid cars in two years.

    And Hanoi to ban motorcycles by 2030.

    It's all change folks. will be interesting to see what happens to the cost of electricity in various parts of the world when all this kicks in.
    Also some countries already have power supply problems as it is.

    Question.

    A tower block has, say 100 families. Each has a car.

    How do they recharge the batteries ?

    INT21
     
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  3. Mythopoeika

    Mythopoeika I am a meat popsicle

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    They don't.
    The whole idea of a complete switch-over to electric cars is just not going to work.
    This could be 'bye-bye Volvo' as well.
     
  4. Coal

    Coal Polymath Renaissance Man

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    A million electric cars is very roughly a whole power station's output.
     
  5. Mythopoeika

    Mythopoeika I am a meat popsicle

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    Yes. And we're not building power stations very fast. Also, forget solar panels - not enough output to run a charger. Also...don't work at night.
     
  6. jimv1

    jimv1 Analogue Boy

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    Where they park them. Provision for charging should now be a consideration in town planning.
     
  7. rynner2

    rynner2 Great Old One

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    Seems to me that a lot of the new electric cars are actually hybrids. They don't need charging points because they charge themselves. (I've probably posted links on this elsewhere, but there's no point me checking because it ain't FORTEAN, is it? and the Mods will descend on me from a great height. :()

    I remember when it was all green fields around here, but now it's just wall to wall rules and regulations... :twisted:
     
  8. INT21

    INT21 Justified & Ancient

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    Rynner2,

    ..Seems to me that a lot of the new electric cars are actually hybrids...

    The Toyota Prius is a hybrid.

    The Nissan Leaf, And the Tesla cars, are all electric.

    Due to the restricted range problem, hybrids may be the better bet.

    Interestingly, Tesla have a much better range than Nissan. But they use a much better, and probably more expensive. battery that uses a different technology.

    It seems like France is also getting in on the act. All electric or hybrid by 2040.

    And so the fossil fuel engine is entering the first phase of it's decline.

    Pretty much as the steam engine did.

    And this means that we will see some interesting moves on the stock markets as the fuel stations and refineries begin to shut down. In fact the whole oil industry will change dramatically.

    INT21
     
  9. Swifty

    Swifty The Great Glass Elevator

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    A castle 3D printed onto a pencil's tip .. very impressive and completely useless in equal measures, my favourite kind of science .. Robert Ripley from beyond the grave just when we need him.

     
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  10. Mythopoeika

    Mythopoeika I am a meat popsicle

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    That is a stunning demonstration of the capabilities of that technique. It shows how good the surface quality can get with 3D printing.
     
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  11. INT21

    INT21 Justified & Ancient

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    Jimv1,

    ...Where they park them. Provision for charging should now be a consideration in town planning...

    These cars are going to be introduced into the world we live in, not some future world there the architecture etc is planned around them.

    as we don't all live in houses with private driveways, how do you propose the charging would be done ?

    There is also the problem of supply.

    At the moment the supply to many domestic properties id limited to 60 Amp.That would mean that, at the very most your house could draw down 60*240 = 14.4 KWatt.

    That is for everything.

    A street full of electric cars would mean that the supply, probably including a lot of the cables and the substations, would have to be upgraded. Not a cheap operation.

    And high rise residents ?

    Your thoughts.

    INT21
     
  12. Mythopoeika

    Mythopoeika I am a meat popsicle

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    Another problem would be the price of electricity.
    Increase demand and price goes up. The really big problem is being locked in to one provider.
    At least people can quickly shop around for a good price for petrol and diesel.
    Finding another electricity supplier and then switching over can't be done so quickly.
    Expect higher cost of everything.
     
  13. rynner2

    rynner2 Great Old One

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    But not if the electric cars are Hybrids...
     
  14. Mythopoeika

    Mythopoeika I am a meat popsicle

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    It looks like the car manufacturers are bypassing the hybrid cars and going straight over to electric-only.
    Somebody hasn't thought this through.
     
  15. INT21

    INT21 Justified & Ancient

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    ...
    It looks like the car manufacturers are bypassing the hybrid cars and going straight over to electric-only.
    Somebody hasn't thought this through..
    .

    Not so. Volvo is doing both, Also the upcoming French proposal will allow both Electric and hybrid.

    I for see a huge problem with roads full of cars with flat batteries that didn't make it to the charger.

    Hybrids are probably safer in that respect.

    Another problem, how do you put out an electric car fire ? You can't go spraying water on a damaged Lithium battery.

    INT21
     
  16. INT21

    INT21 Justified & Ancient

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    And another problem is going to be loss of tax revenue to the government.

    All that nice tax money from the petrol/Diesel will slowly go away.

    So what will go up to replace it ?

    and the internal combustion engine manufacturing and repair industry will fade away.

    The price of copper and Lithium will rise.

    Arab oil Sheiks will be found crying in their beer (non alcoholic, of course).

    INT21
     
  17. Mythopoeika

    Mythopoeika I am a meat popsicle

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    Increased tax on electricity, batteries and road tax.

    Another problem will be less work for garages. Electric cars should be a LOT more reliable than petrol/diesel cars.
     
  18. INT21

    INT21 Justified & Ancient

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    Mythopoeika,

    Should be more reliable. But I fear that the control systems will let them down. Even with today's high tech Diesels and Petrol cars the weak link seems to be in the electronics. I won't buy any car with a computerised engine management system.

    Another thing will be fake batteries. Even now there is a huge problem with fake Lithium batteries. The 18650 ones used in many appliances, Vap cigs, powerbanks etc even lap tops. There is a whole industry supplying these at reduced prices yet when tested they turn out to often have a much lower capacity than what is written on the label.
    I can see this problem spreading to the replacement of car Lithium batteries; and they will be much more expensive.

    Back yard 'battery bodgers' will spring up who cobble a battery together from part damaged ones. Possibly increasing the number of fires.

    INT21
     
  19. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    Watt can we do about it?
     
  20. rynner2

    rynner2 Great Old One

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    Faraday or three there may be problems, but they'll be sorted.

    The real wonder is that engines which relied on frequent internal explosions of hydrocarbon vapours should have taken over the world as they have!
     
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  21. rynner2

    rynner2 Great Old One

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    Cornwall lithium to power electric cars world revolution
    By Oli_Vergnault | Posted: July 11, 2017
    Volvo electric cars video: 2m 16s.

    Cornwall could be on the verge of a precious metal revolution as the car industry shifts from petrol and diesel to electric engines.

    The claim comes as the market for the wonder metal lithium, dubbed 'white petroleum,' is on the rise.
    Experts believe the precious metal, which is used in batteries, could replace fossil fuels in cars.
    Private company Cornish Lithium, founded by Camborne School of Mines graduate Jeremy Wrathall, has just announced it is to begin prospecting for the valuable metal.

    The firm said an area amounting to a tenth of the size of Cornwall and centred between Camborne and Truro is at the centre of the exploration project to exploit the new wealth underground.
    Lithium, which is vital for rechargeable batteries in just about every device from phones to cars, could be extracted from the granite beneath Cornwall's landscape - making the duchy Europe's only source of the valuable material.

    Steve Double, Conservative MP for St Austell and Newquay, said the news that some car makers have announced they will be switching their production from petrol and diesel engines to electric engines could herald a new mining golden age in Cornwall.

    He said: "There will be a surge in battery production to cope with the demand from electric car sales and that's where the Cornish come in.
    "There is the prospect that if there are sufficient volumes of lithium then extraction could begin in earnest. It would mean many new, well-paid, high-skilled jobs and a further boost to our local economy."

    It comes as Volvo said that from 2019 all cars it sells will be battery powered or hybrid.

    etc...

    http://www.cornwalllive.com/cornwal...d-revolution/story-30433971-detail/story.html
     
  22. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    I hope there are enough di-lithium crystals to power the Starships at the new Spaceport.
     
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  23. Vardoger

    Vardoger Skeptical by nature

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    Researchers create a 'battery-free' mobile phone

    Karissa Bell
    Mashable Tech•8 July 2017

    [​IMG]
    View photos
    Your future phone may never need to be charged.

    That's the exciting implication of new research out of the University of Washington, where researchers have created a mobile phone prototype that doesn't require a battery to operate.

    The prototype itself is made of simple materials: capacitive touch buttons, a circuit board, and other "off the shelf" components. More impressive is that the team of scientists were able to create a custom base station to transmit the signal with such a small amount of power.



    https://uk.news.yahoo.com/researchers-create-apos-battery-free-192313805.html
     
  24. Mythopoeika

    Mythopoeika I am a meat popsicle

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    Ambient power from signals...hmmm. That has been done before, IIRC, and it creates a loading on the transmission system. That means that the phone broadcasters might have to increase the power.

    Increased power might have environmental effects, although that would have to be proved.
     
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  25. Coal

    Coal Polymath Renaissance Man

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    Inverse square law...

    You'd have to send a lot of power and at what distance does that power level need to reach? What is safe at 5 miles might be dodgy at 4. As a harvesting technique for keeping a battery topped up, it might be useful, especially if you can you harvest broadband electromagnetic waves, charge-pump a cap and then dump the cap. periodically to small switched mode power IC.

    Isn't it really just Tesla's free energy machine for the 21st century tho?

    My gut feeling is that the power levels you need to transmit the carrier at to actually power a phone would be dangerous in some way. The grass would be black around the cell towers...
     
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  26. Mythopoeika

    Mythopoeika I am a meat popsicle

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    Yep. Also, that little solar panel isn't going to do much, especially if the phone is kept in a pocket.
     
  27. Coal

    Coal Polymath Renaissance Man

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    More to the point, it's not free power, it's just moving the generation around and losing power in the conversion process. And if it's so good, why do you need the photo-cell at all?
     
  28. eburacum

    eburacum Papo-furado

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    I'm sure there are ways to make induction power feasible. If you have innumerable on-demand induction loops embedded in the environment that only activate when a receiver is nearby, the amount of wasted power could be reduced to a minimum. These induction loops could be programmed to activate when they receive a signal from the customer's device, allowing the process to be costed and billed to the consumer. In a few decades I'd expect commercial induction loops will be just about everywhere, in the urban and domestic environments at least.
     
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  29. Coal

    Coal Polymath Renaissance Man

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    I'm not convinced myself. The loops themselves are not loss-less and AC to DC conversion will struggle to break 90% efficiency I'd have thought. I think it's a niche technology for the forseeable.
     
  30. rynner2

    rynner2 Great Old One

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    Electric Mini to be built in Oxford
    1 hour ago
    A fully electric version of the Mini will be built at the Cowley plant in Oxford, BMW has said.
    The carmaker said the model would go into production in 2019, with Oxford the main "production location" for the Mini three-door model.

    However, the electric motor will be built in Germany before being shipped to Cowley for assembly.
    BMW said it had "neither sought nor received" any reassurances from the UK on post-Brexit trading arrangements.

    etc...

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-40718892
     

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