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The top innovation news and articles, from around the web dealing with numbers in the headline or content.

You Too Can Own an Office Chair Made Out of an Ejector Seat

img {display:none;} {display:none;} .gallery-overview.native .gallery-thumbnail a > img {display:none;} div {display:none;} {margin: 20px 0}; ]]> MotoArt MotoArt MotoArt MotoArt MotoArt MotoArt You won’t find bar stools made from ejector seats or coffee tables from J-57 jet engines at Ikea. But if you can get to MotoArt’s 20,000-square-foot showroom near Los Angeles International Airport, the company will sell you vintage aircraft mods that redefine “statement furniture.” MotoArt scavengers trek the world, raiding piles of downed plane parts. Industry insiders tip them off to the exact locations, from Alaska to Thailand, not to mention airplane boneyards in the Mojave Desert and Grissom Air Reserve Base in central Indiana. They go plane to plane, stripping parts. ... Read More »

This Car Draws Your Portrait Based on Your Driving Style

Your car is an extension of your personality. But what about your driving style? Lexus teamed up with an artist, a multimedia agency, and a collector to create a real-time portrait of the driver based on their acceleration, braking, steering, and speed. And the results are spectacularly surreal. A Lexus IS 300h hybrid sends data from its myriad computers to custom software created by the Belgian firm Happiness Brussels. That software — with a pre-installed photo of the driver, art collector Walter Vanhaerent — renders his photo in the style of Spanish multimedia artist Sergio Abliac. If Vanhaerent drives conservatively, using the Lexus’ hybrid-electric drivetrain, calming blues and greens subtly render his portrait. With his foot on the floor, the ... Read More »

Putting EV Batteries in Bodywork Is Brilliant — If You Don’t Crash

Weight is the enemy of efficiency. And when it comes to electric vehicles, nothing is heavier than battery packs. To spread out some of the tonnage, Volvo has concocted a way of baking super capacitors between sheets of carbon fiber to make bodywork into batteries. Great idea, assuming you don’t crash. For the better part of four years, Volvo and an assortment of European companies took part in an EU-funded project to combine nano-structured batteries and super capacitors into a light, ecofriendly package for storing energy. Super capacitors can charge and discharge energy quicker than the lithium-ion batteries currently used by automakers, while storing more juice in a smaller form. Depending on the application, you can get anywhere between 10 ... Read More »

You Could Soon Be Riding Utah’s Gloriously Wireless Electric Bus

Photo: USU Researchers at Utah State University have successfully developed and tested an electric bus that charges wirelessly through induction. Now a Utah-based startup has plans to roll it out to transit fleets across the country. Designed by Utah State University’s Wireless Power Transfer Team and the Utah Science Technology and Research Initiative’s Advanced Transportation Institute, the battery-powered bus recharges every time it drives over a charge plate. Conveniently, those charge plates can safely be placed underneath bus stops. The frequent top-offs mean that electric buses can run on lighter, cheaper batteries, with no wires or downtime required. We first told you about the prototype electric bus last year. The technology is now being commercialized by Wireless Advanced Vehicle Electrification ... Read More »

Orbital Sciences’ Spacecraft Returns to Earth as Blazing Ball of Trash

Cynus leaves the International Space Station carrying more than a ton of trash, which will burn as the capsule enters the atmosphere. Photo: NASA Orbital Sciences’ Cygnus spacecraft ends its mission today with a blazing reentry over the Pacific Ocean east of New Zealand, carrying more than a ton of trash from the International Space Station. Astronauts aboard the space station loaded the unmanned Cygnus with 2,850 pounds of refuse before using the station’s robotic arm to push it 10 meters away from the station and cut it loose. The successful departure was the final stage of a demonstration flight meant to show NASA that Orbital has the right stuff to carry cargo into space. Cygnus launched on top of ... Read More »

Pathway Absorbs Sunlight to Produce Gorgeous Glow at Night

LEDs and motion sensors might be the efficient future of street lighting, but what about pedestrian walkways, bicycle lanes, and low-traffic roads in rural areas? Pro-Teq has a solution in the form of its glowing Starpath surface treatment, and not only will it reduce energy bills and lower carbon footprints, it also looks amazing. The Surrey, U.K.-based company has developed a new kind of coating that absorbs the sun’s UV rays during the daytime and then releases the energy at night, with the microscopic particles glowing to light the way. The treatment can be applied to nearly any hard surface — from concrete to wood — and doesn’t require the existing pathway to be removed. Pro-Teq performed its first field ... Read More »

Elon Musk Calls Hydrogen Fuel Cell Cars ‘Bullsh*t’

There’s an old joke about hydrogen power: It’s the fuel of the future, and always will be. Elon Musk doesn’t just agree, he called out hydrogen fuel cell vehicles as “bullshit,” claiming they’re more of a marketing ploy for automakers than a long-term solution. The comment from Musk came during a speech to employees and enthusiasts at a new Tesla service center in Germany. The electric automaker’s co-founder and CEO was onstage espousing the virtues of the Model S when he went off on a tangent about EV naysayers: “And then they’ll say certain technologies like fuel cell … oh god … fuel cell is so bullshit. Except in a rocket.” Musk goes on to state that even given the ... Read More »

Get an Incredible View of Earth From 19 Miles Up — For a Cool $75K

Image: World View It’s not space. It’s more like a high-altitude vacation. A new Arizona company is joining the outer edges of the tourism industry to find passengers who want to see a dark sky and the curvature of the Earth, all without boarding a sub-orbital rocket and paying the insane entry price. “Seeing the Earth hanging in the ink-black void of space will help people realize our connection to our home planet and to the universe around us,” World View CEO Jane Poynter said in a statement today. “It is also our goal to open up a whole new realm for exercising human curiosity, scientific research and education.” Like the Spain-based zero2infinity, World View is planning rides in a ... Read More »

How to Turn a $25K Ducati Superbike Into a 195 HP Off-Roader

Photo: Taylor Ramsauer It takes a special flavor of nutty to take a $25,000 superbike and convert it from a track-focused speed machine into a knobby-tired off-roader. MotoCorsa is exactly that kind of nuts. The Portland-based Ducati dealer has taken the all-conquering 1199 Panigale S — the superbike of the moment — and transformed it into something that’s able to tackle the trails. If just. “We do an annual off-road trip with a few friends, down in Southeastern Oregon, out in the middle of nowhere,” MotoCorsa’s general manager Arun Sharma told RideApart. “I had a set of Continental TKC80s to put on it, when one of my friends comes in and says, ‘You know what you should do? Put those ... Read More »

The Chevy Volt Gets Apple’s Siri Eyes Free System

Photo: General Motors The slow rollout of Siri Eyes Free has begun to infiltrate the Chevrolet line-up, with Apple’s virtual assistant making its way into the Volt plug-in hybrid. The inclusion of Siri Eyes Free on the Volt joins several other Chevy products for the 2014 model year, including the Camaro, Cruze, Equinox, and Malibu, all of which come equipped with GM’s latest version of its lightweight MyLink infotainment system. With an iPhone paired over Bluetooth, drivers can use voice commands to play songs, call contacts, send and receive iMessages or texts, and have their upcoming appointments read to them over the car’s stereo. GM has been at the forefront of integrating Siri Eyes Free into its products, beginning with ... Read More »

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