Futuristic Prototype Of The First Soviet Night Vision Goggles

First Soviet night vision goggles appeared in early 1940s during first days of Russia joining World War 2. And those are the first prototypes of those, some were car mount some were portable.

First goggles were installed on GAZ-AA truck. It looked like a binocular with an electronic-optical light convertor. On top of the lorry they had a 250 watt infrared headlamp. Infrared sensors on the binoculars were converting the reflected light into a visible picture. It was powered by set of batteries inside the truck.

Driver could go as fast as 25 kmh (15 mph) in full darkness. His view was limited by 25 meter (82 ft) long distance.

And a portable version worked on similar principles. Every element had straps for body mount installation. It was 10 kg additional weight. He had a same headlight from GAZ-AA truck on his chest and a battery pack on his back.

Those were planned to be used by scouts, secret service agents and saboteurs. Also, looking on this early prototypes we can easily understand why they were called goggles.

h/t: englishrussia


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World’s Largest Plane Fires Up Its Six Engines For The First Time

The world’s biggest plane is a step closer to its first flight.

Named Stratolaunch, the colossal aircraft successfully fired all six of its Pratt and Whitney turbofan engines – each weighing 8,940lbs (4,000kg) – for the first time this week.

The plane is the vision of Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen who wants it to act as a giant air pad in the sky, allowing payloads to reach space faster and at a lower cost than existing technologies. The aircraft is so huge if it sat in the centre of a football field, it would be wide enough for its wings to reach 12.5 feet (3.8 metres) beyond each goalpost.
Instead of a satellite, the Stratolaunch airplane could launch a Dream Chaser spaceship. This could act as a mini-shuttle to reach low Earth orbit destinations and return astronauts or payloads to a runway within 24 hours.

Test flights were expected for 2016 and 2017, but project delays have pushed back the date to sometime in 2019.

More info: Stratolaunch Systems (h/t: dailymail)






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Rare Ferrari Daytona Found After 40 Years In Japanese Barn

Many thought this car didn’t even exist.

Ferrari had, in fact, only ever commissioned one street version of its Daytona with a full aluminum body. Completed in 1969, the car was exported to a Japanese dealership in 1971 and then featured in the January 1972 issue of Car Graphic, a Japanese motoring magazine.

After passing hands several times, it ended up in the barn of its last owner, Makoto Takai, some time around 1980.

The car is in “barn find” condition and is being put up for sale unrestored. The odometer displays just over 22,000 miles. RM Sotheby’s expects the car to fetch up to 1.7 million euros ($2 million), according to the auction catalog.

h/t: cnn
















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Meet Astra-Gnome, The Forgotten Time And Space Car

To the many people who will naturally ask “why build a ‘time and space car’ of such seemingly futuristic nature,” we present some exceedingly logical reasons for this highly exciting project. To qualify these reasons it is significant that while the prototype Astra-Gnome was constructed in a record breaking 4 months, its concept is the result of a continuous program of advanced automotive styling development by the Richard Arbib Company.

The “Time” element in the appearance of the Astra-Gnome in the year 1956 can be termed relative. Its features are timeless as far as basic automotive design improvements are concerned. Everyone has always wanted a smaller car that has plenty of luggage space! The Astra-Gnome provides just this through its unique “integra-luggage” system with distributes suitcases into otherwise wasted space areas.

Everyone has always wanted a full vision top without troubles of a convertible! The Gnome’s bubble canopy, plus air conditioning, gives this open feeling, but with no wind noise and “walk-in” entrance and exit ease. Everyone has always wanted futuristic styling, but in a practical form that is functional – not just different! The Gnome has an “out of this world” look, yet features interchangeable colored aluminum trim panels in place of gaudy paint schemes, functional big car bumpers in place of small car weaknesses, and admirably adapts to unit-body construction.

These, and a host of other features, are here and now in the Astra-Gnome, but it will only be a matter of time until in some form they appear in future production cars. These features are not concerned with high horsepower or competition car performance, because as product stylists we do not believe the primary task of the appearance designer is a mechanical one.

“We believe our job is to create new and exciting shapes, textures and colors in a functional car. In the Gnome a totally new driving sensation akin to flying has resulted from this kind of esthetic exploration. The “Space” element in the Astra-Gnome is almost self-explanatory, for the designer of the “personal” car is dealing with a space problem from the very beginning,” said Richard H. Arbib.

The 6 foot wide Gnome, because it is wider than most cars of its length (13.5 feet), gives abundant interior room and allows for a phenomenal amount of storage and luggage area. By careful workout, a production version of this car can carry no less than 6 pieces of matched integrated luggage, totaling as many cubic feet as found in the average full size sedan’s trunk compartment.

The proportions of the Astra-Gnome do not designate it as a “sports” car nor is its styling European in origin. It was deliberately styled to be appealing in a pert, futuristic manner – not to mimic big car slab-sided trends. It is sculptural and alive in its contours, borrowing heavily from jet aircraft, rocket and space ship forms, yet embodying much of the beautiful tailoring found in ancient steel armor.

Contrary to most cars, the wheels and tires of the Gnome have been de-emphasized. This was done on purpose to achieve a floating special quality and to avoid the ungainly “over-wheeled” look of most small vehicles. Thus, the appearance of the Gnome subtly captures the intangible look of the future with shapes that can be found in astronomy and in all of the aspects of form found in nature around us.

This is the kind of advanced thinking that went into the creation of the Astra-Gnome and that prompted the title “Time and Space Car.” We believe this brief explanation will help you ao appreciate our aims in this fascinating automotive project.

SOURCE: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/dyt/~3/qC3J1I8tJjU/

College Seniors Invent AI Helmet To Help The Visually Impaired See

Two college seniors from south China’s Kunming University of Science and Technology have invented an intelligent device, Eye See, to help with the everyday life of the visually impaired.

Eye See, a helmet, was designed for the visually impaired. The built-in image recognition function helps users read books and magazines, while laser sensors react to obstacles on road.

Wang Xinkai, one of the inventors, said the team is currently developing a smartphone application that can aid the visually impaired to shop in supermarkets via image recognition technology.

h/t: cgtn



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The Super Monster Wolf Is Here To Scare Animals Away From Farmers’ Crops

A wolf-like robot to drive away wild animals that cause damage to agriculture has been introduced on a trial basis in Kisarazu in southwest Chiba Prefecture in Japan.

According to the agricultural cooperative association JA Kisarazu-shi, the robot is almost the same size as an adult wolf. Named Super Monster Wolf, the robot is covered by fur and is baring its fangs.

The robot detects wild animals with an infrared ray sensor when they approach and intimidates them, flashing the red LEDs of its eyes on and off, and blaring 18 types of sounds in rotation, including a wolf’s growl, a human voice and a gunshot. The agricultural cooperative borrowed the robot for free from a Hokkaido company that developed it to keep away bears and deer.

A Kisarazu city government official said there have been no signs of wild animals or birds nearby since Super Monster Wolf was installed on July 11.

The Hokkaido company will start manufacturing the robot to order in September. Each will retail for about ¥200,000 (about $2,200).

h/t: nationalpost





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The Japanese Supercar That Almost Was – The Dome Zero

What do you get when you mix Japan’s burgeoning fortunes as an automaker in the 1970s along with a passel of frustrated racers?

One of the first Japanese supercars, that’s what. The Dome Zero’s road to the 1978 Geneva Motor Show was paved with broken marriages, infrequent bathing schedules, and a nearly impossible deadline. It sounds like an episode of Monster Garage, now that we think about it. The wedgy, Italian-esque body evokes the finest work of the House of Nuccio. Power came from a Datsun inline six, offering a power to weight ratio on par with Porsches of the day.

Dome was a racing shop initially, so the learning curve to road vehicles was a steep climb. The marathon finally finished, the Zero took the stand at the 1978 Geneva Motor Show. Enough of a stir was whipped up that several Japanese toy manufacturers approached Dome about licensing the design. Looking to bring the actual car to market, Dome entered into agreements with the toy manufacturers. The sales of the little cars funded the development of the real deal to the point where Dome built a new HQ in Kyoto.

The Zero progressed nearly to production, but was derailed after over a year of wrangling unsuccessfully with Japan’s Ministry of Transport. Failing to gain approval to homologate the car in Japan, Dome decided to try building the car in the United States and reimporting Zeros into Japan. We’re not sure what finally caused the project to grind to a halt, but a few prototypes with chunky US-spec bumpers are all that remains. Dome went back to racing, and paid homage to this star-crossed road car by naming their first LeMans entry the Dome Zero RL. Thirty years on, all we can do is gaze at the pictures and dream of what might have been.

h/t: autoblog












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Mercedes-Maybach Unveils The Super-Luxury Electric Car Of Tomorrow’s World

The Mercedes-Maybach 6 Cabriolet concept car looks very appropriate parked next to the open sea. Designers clearly looked to watercraft rather than cars for inspiration.

The long two-seater will be on display in at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in California on Sunday, with the crashing surf of the California coastline will be its backdrop.

With its long nose, tapering tail, sparkling blue paint and bright white and wood interior the Mercedes-Maybach 6 Cabriolet looks very much like a road-going sport yacht. The car is intended to show the “ultimate in luxury of the future,” according to Mercedes’ announcement.

The car is electrically powered, according to Mercedes, with a total output of 750 horsepower from four electric motors.

h/t: cnn




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This 3D Printed Coffee Table Shows Art As Seen Under The Microscope

Scientists have long been fascinated with viewing objects under the microscope, and it’s easy to see why. You get a fresh perspective on everyday items that look completely different under the lens. With pretty patterns and vivid colors, there’s a sense of surprise when you get a closer look at images that can’t be seen with the naked eye.

Enter Microcromo, a 3D-printed transformable coffee table that displays microscopic art. Designed by Italian company Art Is Therapy, Microcomo was born out of a combination of passions – photography and a penchant for microscopic images.

Microcromo is multifunctional transforming furniture designed to be at the same time an artistic painting, a smart ambient light and a comfortable table. Designed for sophistication but built for functionality, our product uses microscope photography, chromotherapy and transformation to turn any space into a better place to live.

More info: Art Is Therapy

























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Meet Light Ragaz, A Spectacular 3D Projection Onto Natural Environment

The multimedia event Light Ragaz uses cutting-edge technology to project 3D effects onto the structures and formations of the rocks...

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