The Magnificent Evolution of Polar Icebreakers

Modern icebreakers are the most marvelous of civilian ships. They are huge, they are strong, they are powerful, and their history is amazing. Without them, there would be no safe waterways for other ships in the icy waters around the poles of the Earth. Here is a spectacular look into their evolution, from steamers… » 2/18/15 8:00pm 2/18/15 8:00pm

The R&D Machines That Push Your Smartphone 'Til it Breaks

Ever wondered what machinery smartphone firms use to test out those shiny handsets they keep shifting by the truckload? I have. Well, they spend a full six months of the phone's now-year-long pre-release life just checking if they're fit for purpose, so that's got to be some pretty interesting, exhaustive probing and… » 2/10/15 8:00am 2/10/15 8:00am

All the World's Cows on Treadmills Could Power Six Percent of Earth

When roaming open pastures, cattle can walk up to eight hours a day while grazing but they can't always get as much exercise when confined to a barnyard. One enterprising farmer, however, has invented an ingenious means of getting his herd mooving—and generate a bit of free electricity on the side. » 1/16/15 11:40am 1/16/15 11:40am

Say Hello to China's New 11-Barrel Hypersonic Missile Killer

The future of naval warfare will likely include lasers, auto-cannons, and hypersonic missiles launched from the other side of the horizon. But while it may not have a defense against frickin' lasers, China's newly unveiled Type 1130 close-in weapon system can make short work of inbound warheads travelling at four… » 1/15/15 11:40am 1/15/15 11:40am

GE's "Point and Shoot" Microscope Snaps Spectacular Cellular Shots

The microscopic worlds contained within a droplet of water are just as fascinating—and just as inaccessible to humans—as the farthest reaches of space. But the universe of the very small is now a little closer thanks to a highly-automated, cell counting microscope-camera hybrid from GE. » 1/14/15 11:40am 1/14/15 11:40am

The Golden Gate Bridge Gets the Massive Median Mover It Needed

After a marathon weekend installation, the Golden Gate Bridge has finally gotten the $3o million movable median barrier system that it so desperately needs. These are the oversized mechanical zipper pulls that will be in charge of changing lanes (quite literally) twice a day to keep traffic flowing smoothly. » 1/12/15 11:40am 1/12/15 11:40am

The Stratoliner Was the First Plane to Fly Above the Storm

In the early days of commercial air travel, planes were limited to just 14,000 feet in order to protect their passengers from the the dangers of thin, high altitude flying. But in 1938, Boeing changed the face of commercial air travel with the model 307 Stratoliner, the first commercial airplane to offer a pressurized… » 1/05/15 11:48am 1/05/15 11:48am

Researchers Use GPS to Track Antarctica's Ice Migration in Real Time

Antarctica's melting ice sheets have been a major contributor to global sea level increases over the last decade, and the losses are expected to accelerate over the next two centuries. But researchers attempting to study the rate at which these sheets move and melt have been hamstrung by conventional monitoring… » 12/31/14 2:00pm 12/31/14 2:00pm

In-Air Fueling Turns the V-22 Osprey Into One Badass Mama Bird

After a bit of a shaky start to its career, the V-22 Osprey is finally coming into its own. Following news that the Marine Corps could be properly arming the tilt-rotor aircraft in the near future, the USMC has announced that it's also considering a modular aerial refueling system for the V-22. » 12/29/14 3:29pm 12/29/14 3:29pm