science
The Reason Trains Have Angled Wheels Is Incredibly Clever

The next time a subway car or commuter train rolls into the station, try to sneak a quick peek at its large metal wheels. You’ll notice that instead of being perfect cylinders, they’re actually angled. It’s a deliberate and clever design choice that allows your train to roll around corners without flying off the tracks. Read More >>

science
Drones Built Like Squishy Bugs Won’t Break When They Crash

Like death and taxes, drone crashes are basically inevitable. Even experienced pilots aren’t immune to hardware failures or software problems. But instead of building drones stronger, or wrapping them in awkward safety cages, Swiss researchers have designed a flexible quadcopter that squishes when it crashes, minimising the damage it takes. Read More >>

smartphones
Smartphone Notifications Should Consider Your Mood, Says Study

Engineers looking into better ways to deliver smartphone notifications have established that people's attitudes to notifications change depending on where they are, what they're doing, and how they're feeling – suggesting smartphones should be, well, smarter at delivering the right pings at the right time. Read More >>

science
Your Teeth Are Helping Scientists Build Better Airplanes

You might not think that the teeth in your mouth have much in common with the massive fangs you’ll find in a T-rex skull. But at the microscopic level, the core structure of tooth enamel hasn’t changed much over the ages. So, scientists are once again copying a tried-and-true Mother Nature design to potentially improve the strength and safety of airplanes. Read More >>

vending machines
Clever Teen Turns His Locker Into a Soda Machine

Most high school students struggle to write a passable essay on Catcher in the Rye, but Blake Hawkins has more than earned his high school diploma — and some spending money on the side — by turning an unused locker into a fully-functional soda can vending machine. Read More >>

science
This UV-Light Controlled Adhesive Could Help Ordinary Humans Become Spiderman

In the future, we’re all going to be Spiderman. At least, those of us who can afford super-sticky light-controlled wall-climbing spider boots. Read More >>

medicine
This Human-Powered Paper Centrifuge Is Pure Genius

Inspired by an ancient toy, researchers from Stanford University have developed an ingenious hand-spun paper centrifuge. Incredibly, the device costs just 20 cents (17 pence)—and it can be used to detect malaria in blood in just 15 minutes. Read More >>

animals
Bizarrely Hacked Animals to Star in Warped Nature Exhibition

A rat specially bred in Finland to display a preference for alcohol is one of the stars of a science and nature exhibition that's just got under way in London today, with the Making Nature show wanting to encourage us to see animals as something more than disease spreaders or potential sausages. Read More >>

science
Chernobyl’s Gigantic Radiation Shield Is Now Being Moved Into Place

A giant metal shield designed to contain radioactive waste at Chernobyl’s damaged nuclear reactor is being moved into place. Read More >>

sponsored
5 New Engineering Inventions Set to Change the World

The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) has launched the Start Your Story campaign for young engineers and innovators on their journey to becoming entrepreneurs. Read More >>

dyson
Students Will Earn a Salary at James Dyson’s New Institute of Technology

Sir James Dyson has decided to set up his own educational institute of sorts, the Dyson Institute of Technology, because he’s got engineering skills and he’s not afraid to share them. Read More >>

architecture
How Skyscrapers Are Being Built Higher and Higher

Tall buildings often have tuned mass dampers hidden inside their structures to stabilise them against the wind. Those tuned mass dampers are huge, heavy, and help limit a building’s movement by swaying in the opposite direction of the building. Read More >>

design
The World’s First Transparent Glass Slide Looks Like a Nightmare to Clean

Our perpetually-dropped smartphones have pushed glass manufacturers to create stronger and more durable materials to survive our clumsiness. But if you’re curious just how advanced glass making techniques have gotten, someone has made a 30-foot working glass slide that’s completely transparent. Read More >>

weapons
This Weird Purse is Actually a Gun

Forgotten Weapons sees a lot of odd firearms, from a machine gun that Italian troops would mount to bicycles to Uzis that look like horseshoes. But the Frankenau purse gun takes the cake for pure strangeness. Read More >>

science
New Analysis Confirms Why the Skagit River Bridge Collapsed

In May 2013, a bridge spanning the Skagit River along Interstate 5 in Washington state catastrophically collapsed, after an oversized trailer clipped one of the bridge’s cross beams. A new analysis by engineers at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign confirms the many factors that contributed to the collapse, and offers recommendations for how to prevent similar failures in the future. Read More >>