For several years people have speculated about the use of small auxiliary electric motors in bicycles - could a motor and battery pack be small and powerful enough to make a difference in a bike race Here's an example of what can be done..
Questions were also raised if the increased density of seats means passengers won't be able to evacuate fast enough after a crash.
The Federal Aviation Administration runs various tests including how fast passengers can evacuate a plane and how fast they can put on a life preserver.
But Cynthia Corbertt, a human factors researcher with the FAA, testified that it conducts those tests using planes with 31 inches between each row of seats. Many passenger jets today have less legroom. For instance, United Airlines has 30 inches of room, known as pitch, on some jets; Spirit Airlines offers 28 inches.
"We just haven't considered other pitches," Corbertt told the Advisory Committee for Aviation Consumer Protection.
Before any new jet is allowed to fly, the manufacturer must prove that everybody can evacuate in 90 seconds with half of the exits blocked.
Carry-on baggage is strewn throughout the cabin, and the test is conducted in night-like conditions. However, the cabin is not filled with smoke, and all of the passengers are physically fit, dressed in athletic clothing and know that an evacuation is coming.
Sasha White is one of the best bespoke bicycle makers in the world. His Vanilla bikes have become collector's items - 15 a year and a backorder list about 500 deep. (it isn't that bad .. customers give up and sometimes die, so the real wait is probably closer to 15 years at this point. You start thinking about how long you will live and how long Sasha will be working.) He also supervises another line that builds 100 bikes a year and has a much shorter waiting list.
I know someone with about $40k spread across four bikes - none intended for racing. One of them is a $600 everyday commuter. He loves design, craftsmanship and perfection and notes this is much less expensive than a sailboat.
Getting infrastructure right takes time with mistakes along the way. Bicycle streets in Northern Europe - particularly the Netherlands.
What is the definition of a bicycle street? (“Fietsstraat” in Dutch, or ‘bicycle boulevard’ as they are mostly called in the US.) Nowadays a bicycle street is considered to be a route in a residential area that is a main route for cycling, but only a minor route for motor traffic. It is essential that cycle traffic is the dominating form of traffic and that the route looks clearly designed for cycling. This makes it immediately clear to drivers of a motor vehicle that they are guest in a space that is not theirs. (CROW recommendation in publication 216) Note, that we are talking about a route rather than a street. The Dutch always construct cycle routes, never individual streets, even if they call those routes ‘street’. Parking motor vehicles in a cycle street is also possible. The word cycle street does not imply that there are no cars. There are, parked and moving, but they are the minority form of transport. That the streets are in a residential area automatically means that the speed limit for motor traffic is 30km/h
The lakes in the Northwest Territories and Nunavut begin to freeze in early November. Once the ice is thick enough to support construction vehicles, crews plow snow off the surface and expose the ice directly to the intense cold, making it even thicker. By early February in most years, they have created a roadbed as wide as an eight-lane freeway, with ice capable of supporting double trailers hauling up to 42 tons. Though there are some land crossings between lakes, 87 percent of the 600 kilometer (400 mile) road is on ice.
The ice sags under a load, and the faster the vehicle, the deeper the depression. This sends out waves under the ice, which bounce back from the shoreline and the shallows. In weak spots, these waves can shatter the ice. To reduce this danger, officials set speed limits for the road based on ice conditions, weather, and weight. A 25 kilometer per hour (15 miles per hour) speed limit is typical for fully loaded trucks, while 60 kmph (35 mph) is permitted for empty trucks going southbound in “express lanes.” Engineers regularly monitor the ice to keep it safe and passable.
A few years ago the Department of Energy introduced its SuperTruck program to spur efficiency improvements in large tractor-trailer trucks.
Improving the efficiency of long-haul tractor-trailers is one of the many ways that the United States can reduce the amount of petroleum we use and the carbon pollution we produce. Commercial trucks, which include Class 8 vehicles, haul as much as 80% of the goods transported in the country. Although they only make up 4% of vehicles on the road, they use about 20% of the fuel consumed.
Increasing these vehicles’ efficiency can also benefit our overall economy. In general, the long-haul truck fleet is quick to adopt technologies that improve fuel efficiency and lower costs for owner-operators. Based on the current price of diesel, these technologies should save truck operators more than $20,000 per year on fuel costs.
Lowering these trucks’ fuel costs reduces the amount companies need to spend on transportation and can allow retailers to charge less for their goods. If all Class 8 trucks in the U.S. were SuperTrucks, the country would consume nearly 300 million fewer barrels of oil and spend nearly $30 billion less on fuel each year.
The plane then took a nosedive for 27 seconds, losing 4,400 feet during that span and causing injuries to 33 of the passengers and crew. The report concludes that the case was a “near-miss” that had “realistic potential for the loss of the aircraft and 198 of our people.”
Although the military pilot was not prohibited from using his camera during the flight — and in fact the photography may have helped him be alert during times of boredom — this incident will soon lead to new rules that prohibit things from being placed between the armrest and joystick.