Future Tech: Plus a fire-breathing drone & how to 'beam' wireless energy.
Firefighters in Dubai demonstrate water-pressure propulsion
From PC Mag:
Trucks and hydrants are ideal for extinguishing fires on dry land. But how do you snuff out a burning ship or beach-front resort?
The Dubai Civil Defence (DCD) over the weekend unwrapped new technology that helps firefighters rise to the occasion — literally.
In a video…firemen heroically ride across the harbor, Baywatch-style on jet skis, toward a bridge where a car is made to look like it's on fire.
There, rescuers are fitted with a jetpack, then lifted into the air via intense water pressure from the attached Sea-Doo. Dressed in full uniform and carrying a hose, the firefighter hovers near the overpass, dousing the smoking truck with seawater as cars cruise past.
This drone shoots fire, but it's working for us
What happens when your power lines get all kinds of trash hanging from them and it’s not safe to send up a human? In Xiangyang, China, you send in the drones. Specifically, the drones that shoot fire.
Just in case you were worried that the robot uprising was delayed, fear no more. It appears to be right on time, as these fire-spewing drones are sent to burn off trash that gets stuck on high-voltage wires.
The drones are being used by an electric power maintenance company in China to get rid of plastic bags and other debris that get caught in places that are hard to reach with a human in a cherrypicker.
Researchers 'beam' power…with metamaterials
Wireless power transmission has been a dream since the days of Nikola Tesla, but Intellectual Ventures is adding a twist to make it so, and make it profitable.
The twist is a little something called metamaterials, a technology that has already spawned several spin-outs from the Bellevue-based company. Russell Hannigan, senior director of business development for Intellectual Ventures’ Invention Science Fund, says a decision on how to commercialize the technology is just “a few months away.”
Right now, the company is working with a proof-of-concept setup that beams about 8 watts’ worth of microwaves across a lab space to light up an array of LED lights. But researchers expect to scale up the system to power devices at distances of 160 feet (50 meters) or more.
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