Students for a Smarter Planet ..leaders with conscience
3D Technology

Bikes made from bamboo are becoming the latest rage.

HERObike does it a little differently -  featuring a composite frame that adds bamboo, balsa wood and 3-D printed parts to the mix.

blog ebike

Using 3-D printing technology, the sides are joined to one another (and to the rest if the bike) using a series of 3D-printed spacers.  Together, those side panels and spacers form the frame.

Once completed, the bike will utilize a SRAM E-matic rear hub motor and rack-mounted battery.  Sounds like a sweet ride, but it doesn’t come cheap.  The price is expected to be around $2,500-$3,000 USD.

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Ever think about the machines behind the machines?  I really hadn’t given it much thought myself – until I stumbled on this particular announcement about a machine that performs laser deposition welding and precision milling.  What’s so great about it?

“By combining both, additive manufacturing via powder nozzle and the traditional cutting method in one machine, totally new applications and geometries are possible. Especially large workpieces with high stock removal volumes are now possible to be machined in an economical way.”

Read more on the actual product specs here:  LASERTEC 65 3D

Having made its debut at IMTS (International Manufacturing Technology Show) 2014, the new machine by DMG Mori was pulled straight off the line from its Davis California plant – machines, the company says, that are “made in the USA for the USA.”  Read the pre-announcement about the product at American Machinist.

DMG Mori

Part 3-D printer, part machine tool, the Lasertec 65 3D can produce parts in steel, nickel and cobalt alloys, brass or titanium.  (Photo Credit:


And, it you’re not convinced that this is a way cool technology – watch the video on Gizmodo!

If this stuff fascinates you, check out job opps at DMG Mori by clicking here:  DMG Mori logo

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April 3rd, 2015

Population growth and over-reliance on resources that have ‘given us all they’ve got’ has caused overcrowding and problems the world over that have created shortages of many kinds – lack of materials, poor nutrition, healthcare & medicine being unavailable – you name it!  Here is a story concerning the Asian sector of the globe about the need for better methods that will serve to help people and the environment!

Asian countries urged


to plan for sustainable




Urbanization drives Asia’s position as an economic powerhouse, but for this growth to be sustainable, careful planning is being urged to create more resilient cities that are not only resource-efficient, but also promote quality of life.”


Shell brought around 300 leading thinkers together for its 2015 Powering Progress Together Asia forum in Manila, Philippines, on February 26 to discuss how each sector of society can help cities become more resilient and liveable in the face of rapid urbanisation and resource pressures.  Click the pic to visit the site and learn about the forum!

Crowded street

Here are a couple of sites for the companies mentioned in the article posted on that you should visit if you are interested in getting involved with Smarter Planet Planning for better urban life around the world:

Xyntéo: “Xyntéo’s mission is to reinvent growth.”

The Manila Observatory: “At the turn of the 21st century, the Observatory finds itself at the nexus of global concerns for environment and development.”

Shell Corporation: “At Shell, we use human ingenuity, innovation and technology to unlock the energy our customers need to power their lives in the years ahead, while aiming to limit our impact on the environment.”

Is there work that you’re doing along these lines?  Will you propose the next great system or technology that pushes urbanization to the new levels needed to keep our planet humming along?  There’s much to do – be a part of it!

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April 2nd, 2015

Wow, I can’t keep up with all of the advances in technology these days.

Take a look at one of the interesting new technologies described here by the Embodied Interaction website:

PrintScreen is an enabling technology for digital fabrication of customized flexible displays using thin-film electroluminescence (TFEL). It enables inexpensive and rapid fabrication of highly customized displays in low volume, in a simple lab environment, print shop or even at home.

The applications for this technology are endless – take a look:

YouTube Preview Image

Would this technology enhance a project you are developing?

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From (which has some awesome blogging going on by Tracy Staedter, and others) is this mention of using alternative fuel help future plane travelers take to the skies in a more eco-friendly way…

Staedter says “Oscar Viñals is at it again. From the designer who brought us Sky Whale, comes the AWWA·QG Progress Eagle concept plane, which has six hydrogen fuel cell engines, rear wind generators for electrical power and quantum solar cells to harvest sunlight. The sweeping curves reduce drag and produce 75 percent less noise than current planes. Viñals thinks the plane could be airborne by 2030. We can only hope.”

Get the details on Progress Eagle here (including really cool renderings): Envisioning the Eco-Jet


Progress Eagle

The 2014 Sky Whale by Viñals is a story that you should catch up on as well:  The future of sustainable air travel: A chat with designer Oscar Viñals

and take a look at the drawings laid out by Yanko: Sky Whale

Check out other Yanko concepts by visiting their website – there’s so much to look at!!!  Yanko logo


With so much of our time being spent to make ‘friends’ around the globe through virtual meetings, wouldn’t it be cool to hop aboard one of these jets and say hello to that individual “IN PERSON”?  Are you dreaming up your own method of transportation? What forms of renewable energy can you use to power your vehicle(s)?  Maybe your next tweet should be to an aeronautical engineer to enlist their help…you could be flying high!


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