Friday, July 8, 2011

Platypus mystery solved

The world's first platypus twin puggles born in captivity are shown at Taronga Zoo in Sydney in 2003. The task of laying bare the platypus genome of 2.2 billion base pairs spread across 18,500 genes has taken several years, but will do far more than satisfy the curiosity of just biologists, say the researchers.

Arguably the oddest beast in Nature's menagerie, the platypus looks as if were assembled from spare parts left over after the animal kingdom was otherwise complete.

PlatypusNow scientists know why. According to a study released Wednesday, the egg-laying critter is a genetic potpourri -- part bird, part reptile and part lactating mammal.

The task of laying bare the platypus genome of 2.2 billion base pairs spread across 18,500 genes has taken several years, but will do far more than satisfy the curiosity of just biologists, say the researchers.

"The platypus genome is extremely important, because it is the missing link in our understanding of how we and other mammals first evolved," explained Oxford University's Chris Ponting, one of the study's architects.

"This is our ticket back in time to when all mammals laid eggs while suckling their young on milk."

Native to eastern Australia and Tasmania, the semi-aquatic platypus is thought to have split off from a common ancestor shared with humans approximately 170 million years ago.

The creature is so strange that when the first stuffed specimens arrived in Europe at the end of the 18th century, biologists believed they were looking at a taxidermist's hoax, a composite stitched together from the body of a beaver and the snout of a giant duck.

But the peculiar mix of body features are clearly reflected in the animal's DNA, the study found.

The platypus is classified as a mammal because it produces milk and is covered in coat of thick fur, once prized by hunters.

Lacking teats, the female nurses pups through the skin covering its abdomen.

But there are reptile-like attributes too: females lay eggs, and males can stab aggressors with a snake-like venom that flows from a spur tucked under its hind feet.

The bird-like qualities implied by its Latin name, Ornithorhynchus anatinus, include webbed feet, a flat bill similar to a duck's, and the gene sequences that determine sex. Whereas humans have two sex chromosomes, platypuses have 10, the study showed.

"It is much more of a melange than anyone expected," commented Ewan Birney, who led the genome analysis at the European Bioinformatics Institute in Cambridge.

The animal also possesses a feature unique to monotremes -- an order including a handful of egg-laying mammals -- called electroreception.

With their eyes, ears and nostrils closed, platypuses rely on sensitive electrosensory receptors tucked inside their bills to track prey underwater, detecting electrical fields generated by muscular contraction.

"By comparing the platypus genome to other mammalian genomes, we'll be able to study genes that have been conserved throughout evolution," said senior author Richard Wilson, a researcher at Washington University.

In captivity, platypuses have lived up to 17 years of age.

In the wild, they feed on worms, insect larvae, shrimps and crayfish, eating up to 20 percent of their body weight every day.

Males grow to a length of 50 centimetres (20 inches) and weigh about two kilos (4.5 pounds), with females about 20 percent shorter and lighter.

The genome sequenced for the study belongs to a female specimen from New South Wales nicknamed Glennie

9 Most Amazing Overlooked Mysteries in History

9. Lost City of Heike

Lost City of Heike 
In the late 2nd century AD, the Greek writer Pausanias wrote an account of how (4-500 years earlier?) in one night a powerful earthquake destroyed the great city of Helike, with a Tsunami washing away what remained of the once-flourishing metropolis. The city, capital of the Achaean League, was a worship centre devoted to the ancient god Poseidon, god of the sea. There was no trace of the legendary society mentioned outside of the ancient Greek writings until 1861, when an archeologist found some loot thought to have come from Helike - a bronze coin with the unmistakable head of Poseidon. In 2001, a pair of archeologists managed to locate the ruins of Helike beneath the mud and gravel of the coast, and are currently trying to peice together the rise and sudden fall of what has been called the “real” Atlantis.

8. The Bog Bodies

The Bog Bodies 
This mystery may even be a problem for those legendary investigators from CSI and the like! The bog bodies are hundreds of ancient corpses found buried around the northern bogs and wetlands of Northern Europe. These bodies are remarkably well preserved, some dating back 2,000 years. Many of these bodies have tell-tale signs of torture and other medieval “fun”, which have made some researchers postulating that these unfortunate victims were the result of ritual sacrifices.

7. Fall of the Minoans

Fall of the Minoans 
The Minoans are best known for the legend of Theseus and the Minotaur, but it is in fact the demise of this once-great civilisation that is more interesting. While many historians concentrate on the fall of the Roman Empire, the fall of the Minoans, who resided on the island of Crete, is an equal, if not greater mystery. Three and a half thousand years ago the island was shaken by a huge volcanic eruption on the neighbouring Thera Island. Archeologists unearthed tablets which have shown that the Minoans carried on for another 50 years after the eruption, before finally folding. Theories of what finally ended them have ranged from volcanic ash covering the island and devastating harvests to the weakened society eventually getting taken over by invading Greeks

6. The Carnac Stones

The Carnac Stones 
Everyone has heard of Stonehenge, but few know the Carnac Stones. These are 3,000 megalithic stones arranged in perfect lines over a distance of 12 kilometers on the coast of Brittany in the North-West of France. Mythology surrounding the stones says that each stone is a soldier in a Roman legion that Merlin the Wizard turned in to stone. Scientific attempts at an explanation suggests that the stones are most likely an elaborate earthquake detector. The identity of the Neolithic people who built them is unknown.

5. Who Was Robin Hood ?

The historical search for the legendary thief Robin Hood has turned up masses of possible names. One candidate includes the Yorkshire fugitive Robert Hod, also known as Hobbehod or Robert Hood of Wakefield..

The large number of suspects is complicated further as the name Robin Hood became a common term for an outlaw. As literature began to add new characters to the tale such as Prince John and Richard the Lionheart the trail became more obscure. To this day no one knows who this criminal really was.

4. The Lost Roman Legion

The Lost Roman Legion 
After the Parthians defeated underachieving Roman General Crassus’ army, legend has it that a small band of the POWs wandered through the desert and were eventually rounded up by the Han military 17 years later.

First century Chinese historian Ban Gu wrote an account of a confrontation with a strange army of about a hundred men fighting in a “fish-scale formation” unique to Roman forces.

An Oxford historian who compared ancient records claims that the lost roman legion founded a small town near the Gobi desert named Liqian, which in Chinese translates to Rome. DNA tests are being conducted to answer that claim and hopefully explain some of the residents’ green eyes, blonde hair, and fondness of bullfighting.

3. The Voynich Manuscript

The Voynich Manuscript 
The Voynich Manuscript is a medieval document written in an unknown script and in an unknown language. For over one hundred years people have tried to break the code to no avail. The overall impression given by the surviving leaves of the manuscript suggests that it was meant to serve as a pharmacopoeia or to address topics in medieval or early modern medicine. However, the puzzling details of illustrations have fueled many theories about the book’s origins, the contents of its text, and the purpose for which it was intended. The document contains illustrations that suggest the book is in six parts: Herbal, Astronomical, Biological, Cosmological, Pharmaceutical, and recipes.

2. The Tarim Mummies

The Tarim Mummies 
An amazing discovery of 2,000 year old mummies in the Tarim basin of Western China occurred in the early 90s. But more amazing than the discovery itself was the astonishing fact that the mummies were blond haired and long nosed.

In 1993, Victor Mayer a college professor collected DNA from the mummies and his tests verified that the bodies were all of European genetic stock.

Ancient Chinese texts from as early as the first millennium BC do mention groups of far-east dwelling caucasian people referred to as the Bai, Yeuzhi, and Tocharians. None, though, fully reveal how or why these people ended up there.

1. Disappearance of the Indus Valley Civilization

Disappearance of the Indus Valley Civilization 
The ancient Indus Valley people, India’s oldest known civilization had a culture that stretched from Western India to Afghanistan and a populace of over 5 million. le—India’s oldest known civilization— were an impressive and apparently sanitary bronze-age bunch.

The scale of their baffling and abrupt collapse rivals that of the great Mayan decline. They were a hygienically advanced culture with a highly sophisticated sewage drainage system, and immaculately constructed baths.

There is to date no archaeological evidence of armies, slaves, conflicts, or other aspects of ancient societies. No one knows where this civilization went.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Top 10 Best Cities to live in 2011

If you plan to a new country this year, I suggest you to pick one country in this list. This is the list of top 10 best cities to live in 2011. The countries are indexed base on mercer score, live expectancy, purchasing power and GDP.

1. Sydney, Australia

sydneyaustralia Top 10 Best Cities to live in 2011

Sydney sits on the first chart of Top 10 Best Cities to live in 2011. The total population of the city is around 4,504,469, life expectancy is 80.73 years and it has Mercer Score 106.3. The city is recorded to be the 2nd richest city in the world base on Purchasing power per capita and the GDP of Australia is $494.6 billion last year. Sydney has nice climate and it has loads tourist objects.

2. Bern, Switzerland

Bern Top 10 Best Cities to live in 2011

Bern Houses 123,466 people plus modern infrastructure, transportation system, and facilities. The life expectancy in the city is 80.3 years and the GDP of the Switzerland was $491.4 billion last year. The economy is stable and that can make your live will be extended here.

3. Frankfurt, Germany

bestplaces frankfurt germany Top 10 Best Cities to live in 2011

Frankfurt is a house for 672,000 people, sky scraper buildings, wealthy bankers, international universities and students. Mercer score of Frankfurt is 107.0 and live expectancy staying in the city is 79.26 years. Last year, GDP of German reached $3.673 trillion. With all those prosperities, it seems you would not have any reason to die young in one of the most prosperous city in the world.

4. Munich, Germany

munich Top 10 Best Cities to live in 2011

Munich has mercer Score 107.0 and it is covered by continental climate from the Alps. Munich is known as one of the favorite destination of expatriate and migration since 1990s. The average life expectancy of the city is 79.1 years. In the city, you will find modern structure, top class education facilities, international level health services and many more.

5. Dusseldorf, Germany

Dusseldorf Germany Top 10 Best Cities to live in 2011

Dusseldorf has Mercer score 107.2 and it is famous for the financial services, fashion industries and trade fairs. The population of the city is 586,217 and they are served by modern health care programs and stable political condition. If you move to this city, I think you can live for 70 years and more.
          5 other cities that are listed in best cities to live in 2011 are Vancouver, Canada, Auckland, New Zealand, Geneva, Switzerland, Zurich, Switzerland and Vienna, Austria. Vancouver has Mercer Score 107.4 and live expectancy 81.16 years, Auckland has Mercer score of 107.4 and live expectancy 80.24 years, Geneva has Mercer score 107.9, Zurich has Mercer score of 108.0 and life expectancy 80.74 years,and last Vienna has the highest Mercer score at 108.6 and live expectancy 79.5 years.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Top 11 Most Unique Roads in The World

Here’s the list of  top 11 most unique roads in the world. A road is an identifiable thoroughfare, route, way or path between two places which may or may not be available for use by public. If there is no road, it make us can not go to anywhere we want. There are many types of road in the world, such is below:

11. Youngas Road la Paz, Bolivia

Youngas road is known as “road of death”, and is a 61- (38 mi) or 69-km (43 mi) road, 56 km (35 mi) northeast of La Paz in the Yungas region of Bolivia.

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Youngas Road

10. Capulin Vulcano road, New Mexico

Capulin Volcano National Monument is located in Northeastern New Mexico. It rises steeply from the surrounding grassland plains to an elevation of 8,182 feet above sea level. The irregular rim of the crater is about a mile in circumference and the crater about 400 feet deep. Capulin Volcano is one of the outstanding landmarks located in the northeast corner of New Mexico, where the rolling grasslands meet the foothills of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains.

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Capulin Volcano

9. Trollstigen Rauma, Norway

Trollstigen is a mountain road in Rauma, Norway, part of Norwegian National Road 63 connecting Åndalsnes in Rauma and Valldal in Norddal. Overlooks the road with its bends and the Stigfossen waterfall. Stigfossen is a beautiful waterfall which falls 320 meters down the mountain side.

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Trollstigen Road

8.The high Five Interchange, Dallas, Texas

The High Five Interchange is a five-level freeway interchange, and  is the first five-level stack interchange in Dallas. In 2006, American Public Association choose the interchange as one of “Public Works Projects of the Year.”

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High Five Interchange

7. Lombard street, San Francisco

Lombard street is an east-west street in San Francisco, California. It is famous for having a steep, one-block section that consists of tight hairpin turns.

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Lombard Street

6. The Cherohala Skyway Robbinsville, N.C., US

This road is connect the two states, North Carolina and Tennessee, with a range of elevation from 270 m – 1620 m, Cherohala Skyway offers a unique view of American mountains.

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Cherohala Skyway

5. Highway 1, Iceland

Highway 1 is a main road  in Iceland  that runs around the island and connects all habitable parts of the country. The total length of the road is 1,339  (832 mi).

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Highway Iceland

4. The Atlanterhavsvien Møre og Romsdal, Norway

Atlanterhavsvien is the part of Norwegian national road 64 (Rv 64) that connects the island of Averøy  to Vevang, Eide, on the mainland; by extension, the road connects the cities of Kristiansund  and MoldeThe 8.3 km (5 mile) long road is built on several small islands and skerries, and is spanned by eight bridges and several landfills.

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3. Passo dello Stelvio Lombardy, Italy

The Passo dello Stelvio is located in Italy, at 2757 m (9045 feet) is the highest paved mountain pass in the Eastern Alps, and the second highest in the Alps, slightly below the Col de l’Iseran (2770 m, 9088 feet).The original road was built in 1820-25 by the Austrian Empire to connect the former Austrian province of Lombardia with the rest of Austria, covering a climb of 1871 m.

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Passo Dello Stelvio

2. Hana highway Maui, Hawaii

H?na Highway is the name given to the 68-mile (109 km) long stretch of Hawaii State Highways 36 and 360 which connect the population center of Kahului with the town of H?na  in east MauiAlthough H?na is only about 52 miles (84 km) from Kahului, a typical trip to H?na takes about three hours, as the road is very winding and narrow and passes over 59 bridges, 46 of which are only one-lane bridges, requiring oncoming traffic to yield and occasionally causing brief traffic jams if two vehicles meet head-on.

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Hana Highway Hawaii

1. Guoliang Tunnel Hunan, China

It took the time about five years to finish the 1,200-meter-long tunnel (a little less than a mile) which is about 5 meters high (15 ft) and 4 meters (12 ft) wide. with views of either side stone cliff, and also few of tunnel through the Taihang Mountains, are secured through the street who is going to be an unforgettable experience.

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Guoliang Tunnel

Top 10 Coolest Laptop In The World

Here are the list of  top 10 coolest laptop that ever in the world. A laptop is a personal computer design for mobile use, small and light enough to sit on the person’s lap while in use. Most laptops are designed in the flip form factor to protect the screen and the keyboard when closed. Nowadays, everyone has a laptop as their personal computer. The advantage having a laptop that it easy to bring everywhere. Here are the list of the coolest laptop below.

10. The million dollars laptop

Luvaglio is a creator of luxury goods who are domiciled in the UK has created the first laptop with millions dollar coast. Complete details about the specifications of the laptop has not been released at this time, but had been known that he put 17″ for wide LED screen which special designed anti-reflective glare coating for a clear and bright picture. There are 128GB Solid State Disk and a slot loading Blue-Ray drive. There is an integrated cleaning screen device and a very rare colored diamonds which functions as the power button when it’s placed into a laptop, and also as security identification acts.

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Million Dollar Laptop

9. Orkin’s Rolltop

Certainly Orkin’s rolltop will be one of item in the list of ‘must-haves’ of gadget lovers. Even if it is just a concept at the point of issuance. This “Notebook” comes with a flexible LED screen that also handles multitouch for those infatuated with the iPhone. When it fully opened, this notebook will be a 17″ flatscreen. But It also can be folded into 13″ tablets if required. Do not know if this notebook will be powered wireless feature or not.

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Orkins Rolltop

8.Datamancer’s Steampunk laptop

It maybe looks like a Victorian music box but is actually inside Hewlett-Packard ZT1000 that given a carved wooden frame is able to operate Windows XP and Ubuntu Linux. It provide features intricate clockworks under glass screen, engraved brass accents, claw feet, an antique copper keyboard and mouse, bearing arms, and adapted with the network card. The machines can be light by using antique key way to build a custom-ratcheting, and made from old clock parts.

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Datamancer Steampunk

7. Thinkpad Reserve Edition

When the IMB submits all of their laptop division to Lenovo, there are many fear that the Thinkpad design classic will lose direction, but with the design of the increase to most people will be impressed by this laptop concept.

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Thinkpad Reserve Edition

6.Girly laptop

Several girls wants an extra attention not only from men but also of gadgets and even a laptop that looks cool, like HP’s concept was created specifically for women. In every one of the design by Nikita Buyanov has a set itself specific to a special pampering and acknowledges that a girl has a lot of desire stylish, they looks classy, stylish, trendy and even provide additional productivity to your personality. Unfortunately, it still has not really produced. But if enough would show interest, maybe next year will be provides a different view of feminine models made just for women.

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Girly Laptop

5.Ergonomic Dual screen Split keyboard Notebook

The extraordinary goods results of this laptop is not just that the keyboard is ‘split’ to provide more space for computer users to customize their hands, but it has a second LCD hidden underneath, a fantastic idea. The second screen works with the first screen – giving the user features “drag and send” to open windows or programs. It can independently act as a stylus – based input for recording, sketching, and other things that users are able to do to write into the interface. It makes EDSSKN tremendous is not only benefit to the writers and word processors, but also for the artists and designers.

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Ergonomic Laptop

4.Fujitsu’s DJ Laptop

Fujitsu ‘s DJ’s laptop, as it is called, has a 20-inch LCD screen easily folded closed key to activate the function of turntables, which can be accessed via touch-sensitive screen on the outside. The laptop lets you browse all of your favorite tracks are the same as vinyl-turntable.

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Fujitsu DJ Laptop

3. Canova’s Dual Screen Laptop

Dual Touch Screen Laptops from Canova is a very creative for notebook design. The features notebook is dual display with touch-sensitive screens, sketch pad, music score, graph paper, electronic pen and a special hardware for smooth functioning. Unfortunately, It is only sold in Italy and Australia.

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Canova Dual Screen

2.Type-N01 Emergency Laptop

NEC has been teamed up with Takara to create a laptop that mad scientist-approved machine, which is where all the token stickers, labels, and even wallpapers that make this device very similar to that seen in the laboratory of Duke Nukem movie. The notebook is a G-type L LaVielaptop, 15.4-inch screen. Flanking in the side is an indispensable key is “Emergency Button”, which is going to shutdown the engine when the unexpected intrusion. It is launched in 2006, made only 300 units and very confidential.

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Emergency Laptop

1.2015 Compenion Laptop

Felix Schmidberger designed a laptop for 2015 with OLED touch screen. Computer itself has a OLED touch-screen, where you can directly operate them. It is very similar to the UMPC or PDA. The entire screen is a slider, because it can be moved forward to open the second OLED touch-screen below, where you can have a keyboard or controls work, similar with two monitors setup.

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Compenion Laptop

There are many advantages in using laptop, as one of the advantages is that laptop can easy to bring everywhere we want to go. Besides that, laptop is an easier tool in technology that can easy the user in many things of necessary.

Top 10 Biggest Rockets that Ever Created in the World

Here are the list of the biggest rockets that ever created in the world. A rocket is an aircraft, missile, spacecraft, or other vehicle which obtains thirst from a rocket engine. Rocket engines work by action and reaction. Chemical rocket are the most common type of rocket and they typically create their exhaust by the combustion of rocket propellant. However, careful design, testing, construction and use minimizes risks. Here are the biggest rockets that ever created by man in the world.

10. Saturn V Rocket

Saturn V rocket is the biggest rocket in the world and most powerful ever built in human history. This is a rocket that allows for humans to land on the Moon. Saturn V height of nearly 363 feet tall 40 floor building.

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Saturn V

9. N1 Rocket

N1 is a fairly powerful rocket and missile developed by the soviet largest to send people to the Moon. But all these rockets have been destroyed during their test flights. N1 length is about 344.5 meters.

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N 1

8. Ares-1 Rocket

Ares-1 is another rocket designed the U.S. that is currently under construction. After retiring from the shuttle, Ares will be the transport humans to leave space and even to the Moon again. Ares-1 has 310 feet long and powered by a single solid rocket engines during takeoff.

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7. Delta IV Rocket

Delta IV rocket that is designed by Boeing’s Integrated Defense systems division.  It is designed for the purpose of U.S. military and commercial use. This rocket has a height of 206 meters.

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Delta IV

6. Atlas V Rocket

Atlas V is made in the United States rocket designed to carry heavy loads to be transported into Earth orbit. This rocket has a height of 195 feet and has a total lift of 333 298 kg mass.

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Atlas V

5. Ariane 5 Rocket

Ariane 5 is first flight test that failed in June 1996, with self-destruction during the 37 seconds after launch because of damage to the control software, which is undoubtedly one of the most expensive computer bugs in history. This rocket has a height of 193 feet.

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Ariane 5

4. Space Shuttle Rocket

Now here comes with sophisticated machines are the shuttle. Made in the USA, the Space Shuttle is being used to deliver cargo into orbit with a medium-size and operated by a crew of seven men. Space Shuttle has a 184 foot high.

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Space Shuttle

3. H-IIB rocket

H-IIB rocket with liquid fuel is made in Japan that provides a launching system for the main purpose of launching the H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV) to the International Space Station (ISS). It has a height of 56m.

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2. Falcon 9 Rocket

Falcon 9 is a two-stage can be used to orbit; oil and liquid oxygen rocket-powered launch vehicles manufactured by SpaceX. The rocket is still in development and will be launched in late 2009. This rocket has a height of 178 feet.

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Falcon 9

1. Proton Rocket

The first Proton was launched in 1965 and the launch system is still used in 2009, which makes it one of the most successful proponents of gravity in space history. It has a height of 53m.

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Top 7 Most Unique Energy Alternative to Replace Fuel

Here’s a list of most unique energy alternative to replace fuel. Fuel is any material that can be used to generate energy to produce mechanical work in a controlled manner. It’s also used in the cell of organisms  in a process known as metabolism. The processes used to convert fuel into energy include chemical reaction such as combustion. Here is a list of the most unique energy alternative to replace fuel.

7. Compressed air

Perhaps the most tantalizing of all the alternative fuel is compressed air. That’s all it takes to run a car. It was designed by French engineers and will be available to American drivers in 2010.

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Compressed Air

6. Vegetable oil

Everywhere, people always underestimate about running cars using vegetable oil since this idea was first suggested, and now we’re taking the leap from concept to reality. Volkswagen enthusiasts can now drive with a clean bio-diesel beetle entirely, and they do not have to wait for it.

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Vegetable Oil

5. Hydrogen fuel cells

The prospect of hydrogen-fueled cars have been tantalizing environmentally friendly car drivers for years. While car manufacturers currently grappling with technical challenges, such as how to store hydrogen in vehicles efficiently or how to prevent it from freezing and / or burning, evidence of hydrogen-powered concept car is a model of luxury Mercedes vehicles.

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Hydrogen Fuel Cells

4. Ethanol

Most of us have been using ethanol in vehicles, as federal law requires a certain percentage on gasoline who we buy. But in 2010, Suzuki Motor Company began selling the car completely, 100% ethanol powered.

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3. Water

This Japanese car, also known as Genepax, can travel around 80 kilometers per hour, for an hour, only on one liter of water as its fuel source. These cars use hydrogen electrons from water to generate electricity which, in turn, power the electric motor of the car. Many can not criticize him about water-fueled vehicles, Genepax is the most appropriate answer.

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2. Electrical power

Maybe it’ll look like a car who can only exist in movies, Peugeot of France has two large front wheels can rotate at different speeds and rotate 360 degrees. There is no word on when or whether this car will be available for sale.

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Electrical Power

1. Wood pellets

Cars depicted here actually running using wooden pallets. Which is basically the same thing may be burned in a campfire or wood stove for heat production that creates energy. This is all part of what is known as biomass.

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