Science and the City

Laurie @Forbes

So, this happened yesterday….. http://www.forbes.com/sites/lauriewinkless/#363dc3f31929 In the true spirit of self-promotion (yes, I’m shameless, but sometimes you have to be your own champion), I pitched myself to Alex Knapp, Forbes Science Editor, via Twitter. After a few emails, he invited me to become a contributor – EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE! ...


January Blues? Life, the Universe and The Book

I don’t know about you, but I tend to leap into every new year with wild abandon, charged with purpose, packed with ideas, and fuelled by ALL OF THE CALORIES I ingested over Christmas. Taken this morning 🙂 Unfortunately, January 2016 brought with it a hideous viral cold chesty thing that made me cough for two weeks. I didn’t even have the energy...


Preface...

Lovely followers, I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. I’ve just gotten back from Ireland, where I ate, drank and was very merry. And for the first time in 18 months, I didn’t switch on my laptop in three whole days. Not-writing feels weird, but no doubt once my editor’s had the chance to read through the first draft, I’ll be once...


Science and the City - an update!

** UPDATED 18th December: I’VE SUBMITTED THE FIRST DRAFT! Merry Christmas peeps 🙂 ** Lovely blog readers, For too long, you have waited for a proper update on the book – forgive me. You see, since checking out from the real world of work at the end of August, I have been chained to my desk, but I’ve been entirely focused on finishing the...


Inkjet printing of solar cells

This is another one of my stories for Materials Today. It originally appeared here. I enjoyed this paper immensely, especially as I’m currently working on a whole chapter on electricity for The Book – solar cells feature there too 🙂 — A new paper from the inventor of the dye sensitized solar cell suggests that inkjet printing may be the key...


Life, the universe and The Book (an update)

First of all (and I feel like I’ve been saying this a lot lately), sorry for the radio silence, lovely followers, and thanks for your patience. Things in Laurie-land have been hectic of late… crap excuse I know, but hopefully you won’t mind too much… especially when you see the epic update on life, the universe and The Book below. Be...


Rolling, rolling, rolling: harvesting friction from car tyres

** This post originally appeared here on 15th June, and was the #1 most-read story for the month – woohoo 🙂 ** A potential way to harvest some of the ‘lost’ frictional energy from rolling car tyres has been proposed by a group of US and Chinese researchers The triboelectric effect is a type of contact electrification that occurs as a result of...


Imaging the tunnels….

“Rail tunnel inspection is still carried out by stick – it’s basically Victorian” Not quite the response you expect to get when you ask a leading scientist about the current state-of-the-art in all things tunnelling. But Dr Nick McCormick, Principal Research Scientist at the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) wasn’t joking. Here is an actual stick used...


Composites heal using polymer ‘muscle’

This article appeared on Materials Today a few weeks back (yes, I am a disaster) A new generation of composite materials that can be ‘healed on demand’ may be one step closer thanks to work from US-based researchers Even the toughest polymer composites are susceptible to damage, shortening their lifetime and limiting their use in a wide range of...


We’re jammin’: How humans can teach computers to deal with traffic

It’s happened to all of us. You’re stuck in horrible city-centre traffic jam. Everyone in the car is cranky. And the traffic light only seems to turn green for a millisecond. Edging forward slowly, you wonder, “Surely it can’t be that hard to manage traffic flow?” Well, think again. As with many things that we take for granted in our cities, the reality...