Austria, Environment
Intelligence in the abyss
Intelligence in the abyss Would you dive into a body of water populated by about 150 robots? That’s what could happen if you were to fall off a “gondola” in the Venice lagoon, where scientists from an initiative of seven European research institutes, are giving birth to the world’s largest population of autonomous robots .
Robots in distress in the Venetian Lagoon
Robots in distress in the Venetian Lagoon Can mathematics be expressed poetically through computational technologies? Visual artists Vicky Isley and Paul Smith believe it can be and are collaborating with the Artificial Life Lab of the University of Graz, in Austria, on the Subcultron project (Submarine Cultures Perform Long-Term Exploration of Unconventional Environmental Niches).
The cost of blackouts in Europe
The cost of blackouts in Europe In January 2005, a severe storm swept across Northern Europe, from Ireland to Russia. More than 500,000 homes were left without power, with Denmark and Southern Sweden being particularly hard-hit.
Resilient seeds - Nurturing the future of agriculture
Resilient seeds - Nurturing the future of agriculture For the first time in its history, the Global Seed Vault on the Svalbard Islands, Norway, has authorised a withdrawal. It was requested in 2015 by Syria, a country where the war is endangering the local agricultural seed collections.
The sun is shining… Let’s prepare for severe weather!
The sun is shining… Let’s prepare for severe weather! As well as being a time for celebration, winter in Europe is a time for serious weather. Blizzards, flash floods, hurricanes, heavy snow fall can cause chaos, major disruption, economic loss, and endanger lives.
Forecasting pollen in the atmosphere
Forecasting pollen in the atmosphere Runny nose, watery eyes and cough; these are the symptoms associated with respiratory allergies. About 20% to 30% of Europeans suffer from some type of respiratory allergy , according to the European Federation of Allergy and Airway Diseases Patients Associations .
When urban waste become bioplastics
When urban waste become bioplastics Each year, the European Union produces three billion tonnes of waste. This equates to six tonnes of solid waste for every EU citizen, according to Eurostat. A major challenge is findings ways to reduce and reuse a large amount of such waste .
Champions of Waste Reduction
Champions of Waste Reduction Other regions in Europe are motivated by success stories like this one, and are now supported by a team of experts from ECOPOL to implement their new policies.
Marco Borga: Flash floods predictions, subject to models’ limitations
Marco Borga: Flash floods predictions, subject to models’ limitations Flash floods are very localised weather events. They are mostly triggered by heavy rainfall. Typically, over a period of less than 12 hours. They occur very infrequently at any one place.
Revamping nanotubes
Revamping nanotubes Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are set to become an important material for the future. That’s because they are light, robust, and highly conductive, both electrically and thermally whilst still being chemically stable.
Waste models as green crystal balls
Waste models as green crystal balls By 2030, two planets might not be sufficient to sustain human activities. Estimates suggest that we are currently using resources equivalent of 1.5 planets . And the trend is going upwards.
The big picture is the greener picture
The big picture is the greener picture The building sector has become much greener. To get such credentials it has adopted methods borrowed from other industries, such as life cycle analysis ( LCA ), which looks at the environmental impact of a building at every stage from its creation to its decommissioning.
Mitigating our carbon footprint
Mitigating our carbon footprint Scientists keep producing increasingly complex modelling tools to evaluate urgently needed mitigating strategies of our carbon footprint .  However, it is policy makers who have to decide on measures to curb our CO2 emissions.
A new detection system reveals terrorist attacks on water supply networks
A new detection system reveals terrorist attacks on water supply networks In the 21st century several countries have suffered great losses after terrorist attacks. Although the risk of bioterrorist attacks or accidental contamination of our water supply network is low, the consequences could be fatal.
Mobile Detection System for Contaminated Water
Mobile Detection System for Contaminated Water The technology uses several nano-biological sensors to monitor the presence of several bioterrorism agents in drinking water.