Study Shows Commercial Shipping Noise Causes Physical Stress to Whales

February 8, 2012 by  
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Global commercial shipping is a crucial part the world’s transportation infrastructure – ships carry everything from high-tech electronic machinery to basic foodstuffs. Unfortunately, commercial shipping also accounts for more than  3 percent of all annual global emissions . According to a new report released today, global shipping also has another unseen effect – it alters the behaviour of the world’s whale population and affects them physically. A team from the New England Aquarium found that during the reduction in shipping traffic after 9/11 , sound pollution also dropped – and for the first time they were able to study the effect of shipping noise on cetaceans. Read the rest of Study Shows Commercial Shipping Noise Causes Physical Stress to Whales Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: 9/11 whales , commercial shipping emissions , commercial shipping whale effects , commercial shipping whale stress , New England Aquarium whale stress , whale hormones stress , whale stress shipping

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Study Shows Commercial Shipping Noise Causes Physical Stress to Whales

5 Trains that make public transport fast, really fast

August 26, 2011 by  
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DATTATREYA MANDAL: High Speed Trains 5 fastest trains that make public transport desirable The modern economy is bound by the threads of communication, and public transportation certainly forms a crucial part of it. Moreover, it is seemingly the only affordable form of ‘ride’ available to the masses, especially in the system of developing countries. On the other hand, public transportation reduces per capita carbon footprints because of its collective nature of functionality. The consumption of less fuel per person naturally means lesser level of carbon emitted in the local environment. So taking both of the serious criteria into consideration, fast modes of public transportation (like trains) are convincingly apt for both the economy and the environment. So, without further ado, let us take a look at the 5 speediest trains (and networks) that can facilitate the public conveniently on a grand scale. 1. California Building 220 MPH High-Speed Train from San Francisco to LA Just imagine a Utopian reverie where trains traveling at a whopping 220 mph (352 kmph) are a part of a mega transportation network that caters to 100 million passengers per year. It may seem like a figment of sci-fi fantasy, but that is exactly what is being boldly envisaged by the California High Speed Rail Authority. Though the plan may take up to 2030 to come to its full capability, the massive network-area will cover Sacramento, the San Francisco Bay Area, the Central Valley, Los Angeles, the Inland Empire, Orange County and San Diego. The California state is already contemplating to pump around $9.95 billion for this arduously ambitious project. 2. Japan’s speedy, fuel efficient and low noise train Always at the forefront of innovative technology, this time the Japanese have conceptualized an Environmentally Friendly Super Express Train (efSET) with a speed of 217 mph (347 kmph). To be built by Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd, this conception will actually be an improved iteration of a previous built. The controls (in high speed) will be efficiently regulated by an advanced electrical system, while the speed itself will be accentuated by a fine streamlined body. Moreover, for optimum passenger comfort, the train will emit much lower noise levels during traveling. 3. China’s new Harmony high-speed train A massive ‘blur’ carrying thousands of passengers with a speed of 415 kmph (260 mph) – now that must be China’s newest high speed bullet train, christened as Harmony. This electric monster will cater to the all important 169 km Shanghai-Hangzhou line, thus ’speedily’ connecting a heavy industrial belt of Eastern China. And in relation to this, the Chinese government has already announced that high speed train service will cover a whopping 8000 miles across the country, by 2012. 4. World’s fastest 310mph maglev bullet train The Japanese are not to be kept behind, as they are planning a grandiose $66 billion project that involves the service of maglev trains (between Tokyo and Nagoya) that can travel at a blistering speed of 310 mph (496 kmph). If the fascinating proposal comes to fruition, then this train will certainly overtake our previous entry by a range of 80 kmph. More importantly, the high ‘flyers’ will certainly look to the ground for their future traveling plans. 5. China’s 300 kph Bullet train Now after highfalutin concepts, let us get back to the present reality. This time the entry is once again from China, as railway authorities there had unveiled a 300 kmph (187.5 mph) high speed bullet train, with 8 carriages and 600 passenger capacity. This train is also considered as one of the lightest in the world, with a total weight of 7 tons and body thickness of paltry 1.5 mm. Coming to passenger comfort, the interior of the public vehicle has bars and even double faced LCD in first-class compartments.

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5 Trains that make public transport fast, really fast

OODA unveils a green design for New Taipei City Museum of Art

August 26, 2011 by  
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Ruchika Pahwa: Taipei City Museum of Art Designed by OODA If you are an avid art lover and appreciator of special architecture, you would have been to several art exhibitions and museums. But, have you ever got to encounter such a huge structure that houses art pieces, as well as stands high within a city, displaying marvelous architecture? If not, here is your chance to witness an art museum that is as amazing as the art itself! OODA, a Portuguese practice, presents one of its outstanding architectural designs in the form of the new Taipei City Museum of Art located in Taipei, Taiwan. While taking part in the ‘new taipei city museum of art international competition’, OODA was given a merit award for their museum design proposal. Picture Gallery OODA New Taipei City Museum Of Art New Taipei City Museum Of Art Designed by OODA The proposal aimed at the development of a building that could act as a landmark for the urban center’s people. It was designed to be an innovative concept and it became! This form has two hypercubes that are molded as a cube with an angle of 90 degree, suspended within a contorted, large volumetric box. There is a lifted, arched exterior that lets visitors pass under it through the centralized elevator core. This entrance plaza offers a spectacular display of fountains and greenery. In the building’s surroundings too, up to 1,250 trees have been planted within the forestation areas. This green approach gives a contrasting view to the carbon footprint the site projects. Galleries in the art museum run along a continuous and perimeter ramp. This ramp is shaped upwards in a spiral manner while going through a shifting interior area that wraps around the art resource center. In order to provide the required privacy to the administrative staff of the museum, its administration section is placed at the building’s highest level. The children’s museum is kept to be placed below grade for easy access. There are running steel elements that are derived from the inner form’s intersection points. Such elements, in an inclined manner, run from the inside form’s one corner to the other, while providing a strong support to the whole outer structure of the museum. A glass facade with double curvature gets developed when the main columns are wrapped with the skin. This complete structure is crafted with an environmentally friendly approach in mind, and therefore, available opportunities are taken advantage of. Such opportunities range from the collection of water and solar panels’ integration to making way for the ventilation of air through atrium spaces and operable windows. So, it is a green step taken to present a beautiful architectural structure with intact hues of precious art forms before the Taipei city’s residents and visitors. Via: Designboom

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OODA unveils a green design for New Taipei City Museum of Art

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