Solar Power Going the Distance! Literally.

Solar powered cars are something of the past, old news, been there done that. Shocking, I know. But I bet you’ve never thought about a solar powered airplane! Nope, I can’t say that I have either. In fact, when researching the new/old technology behind blimp ships and space shuttles capturing asteroids, one overlooks the thought of solar energy powering any of these vessels.

YES! They did it! The brilliant among us created solar powered fliers, and without any of us demanding it either! But then again who would want to fly Air Japan on solar energy and find themselves stuck in overcast for 12 hours, that’d be a big uh oh. Lets not “fly” ahead of ourselves just yet.

Solar Impulse has created just that miracle plane we are talking about. The Solar Impulse HB-S1A has a wingspan of 208 ft. and weighs only 3,500 lbs, not all too heavy because of its carbon fiber structure, and most of the weight comes from the solar panels. It was able to attain an altitude of 30,300 feet and stayed aloft for a record 26 hours, 10 minutes, and 19 seconds at an average flying speed of 43 mph. In fact, the plane continued to fly throughout the night on energy stored in the day.

This HB-S1A vessel was actually a prototype and in 2015 Solar Impulse plans to launch Solar Impulse HB-S1B which is expected to circumnavigate the Earth. I think the coolest thing about this newer model is that it will incorporate nanotechnology to help with battery storage. I am always excited about prospective new technology and its uses!

Can you imagine the implications of an airplane that flies on solar power? The cost reduction in substituting jet fuel for something easily attained on a clear day? How about just the thought of solar power being so effectively researched and put into use that our government will be forced to use it as an alternative source of power?! On a bad note, those poor birds; they don’t even stand a chance with more things in the air…  At least we can say that we got all the needed Vitamin D for the day when taking one of these bad boys out for a spin! Move over solar salamanders! Your’re yesterdays news.

Cheers!

 

Research:

Solar Impulse – HB-S1A

Solar Impulse – HB-S1B

Time: Solar Powered Plane flies around US

Wondergressive: Blimps

Wondergressive: Capture an Asteroid

Wondergressive: Fly Away Home

Wondergressive: The Drones are Coming

Wondergressive: Vitamin D Deficiency

Wondergressive: Solar Salamander

The Drones Are Coming!

drones

bbc.co.uk

Whether its government raids of domestic properties or the attentive nature of big brother while you surf the internet, the government is slowly gaining ground on its way to a 1984 scenario. As if worrying about someone monitoring our torrents wasn’t enough, we now have to worry about military grade drones being used by police officers in the US to keep us in line. It is true that new conveniences and technological upgrades always come with new battlegrounds and new frontiers, but I wonder if we may be crossing the line that affords us our freedoms.

With compelling arguments from Police such that drones would help reduce cost and help make fighting crime more efficient, drones sound like a good idea.

In this time of austerity, we are always looking for sensible and cost-effective methods to improve public safety,

said Capt. Tom Madigan of the Alameda County Sheriff’s Department,

We are not looking at military-grade Predator drones. They are not armed.

YET.

These TOYS, as some law enforcers are calling them, are slowly being introduced into society with the idea that drones are the future and that people can make a successful career out of piloting a drone. Call me crazy but when was it ever OK for the government to invade the privacy of its people? Thankfully, we haven’t all stayed silent about this matter, and for the time being the drones are being put down and canceled, but for how long?

Doug Honig, spokesman for ACLU of Washington says:

Drones give law enforcement agencies unprecedented abilities to engage in surveillance and intrude on people’s privacy

Dave Norris, a city councilman in Charlottesville, Va. says:

I don’t mean to sound conspiratorial about it, but these drones are coming, and we need to put some safeguards in place so they are not abused

With the looming threat of overpopulation, is it a question of morality to set these drones afloat that is, for the time being, forcing them to stay grounded? Is this simply one more step towards total control that is part of a New World Order scheme? Or is this simply a cost effective way of handling crimes in a technologically advancing society? Like it or not, THE DRONES ARE COMING!

 

Research:

Wondergressive

NBC News

The New York Times

US News

American Civil Liberties Union

Ted Poe Congressman

Wikipedia

Ars Technica

Youtube