Since the end of the Cold War, California’s defense complex has scurried to beat swords into plowshares-and now bombers into bridges. With $6 million from the Federal Highway Administration, engineers at the University of California at San Diego (UCSD) plan to erect a 150-meter bridge out of advanced composite materials of the type originally designed for the B-2 bomber. The four-lane span, to arc over Interstate 5 near campus, will be the longest bridge ever built from composite materials, says Gilbert Hegemier, a project leader at UCSD. The 3-year project will also serve, he hopes, as the “technical driver for what we think is a new industry.” Polymeric matrix composites, made by impregnating fabrics woven from high-strength carbon threads with an epoxy such as vinyl ester, have a stiffness-to-weight ratio 10 times that of the steel used in construction. That means easier-to-handle materials that could push the limit on long-span bridges and allow speedy erection of buildings.
Geoffrey Hinton tells us why he’s now scared of the tech he helped build
“I have suddenly switched my views on whether these things are going to be more intelligent than us.”
ChatGPT is going to change education, not destroy it
The narrative around cheating students doesn’t tell the whole story. Meet the teachers who think generative AI could actually make learning better.
Meet the people who use Notion to plan their whole lives
The workplace tool’s appeal extends far beyond organizing work projects. Many users find it’s just as useful for managing their free time.
Learning to code isn’t enough
Historically, learn-to-code efforts have provided opportunities for the few, but new efforts are aiming to be inclusive.
Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review
Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.