More Built environment articles

Met Office supercomputer: the future of weather forecasting

16 February 2015

Will the new Met Office supercomputer, up and running later this year, improve the accuracy of weather forecasting in Britain's fickle climatic conditions?

Venus Project: future societies blueprint, 20 years on

12 February 2015

If you want to make the world a more sustainable place look no further than the Venus Project, a technology-based Utopia that for two decades has been proposing a radical overhaul to the way we think about the future. Does today’s technology take the dream any closer to reality?

Airport of the future in Mexico

19 January 2015

Mexico needs a new international airport. Its designers have come up with a radical approach.

Russell Ure: home automation entrepreneur

19 January 2015

When he discovered that there was no home automation and security system on the market to suit his requirements, systems engineer, entrepreneur and outspoken commentator Russell Ure set out to design one for himself.

Disaster relief: humanitarian architecture for post-disaster shelter

19 January 2015

In the field of humanitarian architecture, post-disaster provision is more than just supplying shelter. It's about involving communities in places of uncertainty and rapid change, delivering the best rebuilds that incorporate future risk mitigation in the design.

Halley VI: coming in from the cold

19 January 2015

British research station Halley VI has now been in operation on the icy wastelands of Antarctica for a year. Climate scientist and explorer Felicity Aston reports on how things have progressed in one of the loneliest and coldest buildings in the world.

Classic Projects: Washington Monument

15 December 2014

DATE: 1848, 1854-77, completed 1884

DESIGNER: Robert Mills

COST: $1,187,710 ($28.4m now)

Coming clean – the future of sewage

15 December 2014

Breakthroughs in modern sewage-treatment technologies are creating economies of scale and environmental benefits. We talk to Professor Mark van Loosdrecht, whose brainchild 'Nereda' is helping sewage to clean up its act.

Photo essay: LED lighting catches the eye

15 December 2014

LEDs are not just for Christmas.

Detriot: Decline and fall of the Motor City

15 December 2014

In the mid-20th century, Detroit was an icon of the motor industry and the backbone of America's blue-collar aspirations. Today, the legendary manufacturing plants lie in ruins and the city is a shadow of its former self. How did the empire fall?

La Confluence in Lyon - Europe’s biggest urban development project

13 October 2014

Whereas Paris is known as ‘The City of Light’, Lyon – France’s third largest metropolis – is pushing ahead with a city centre regeneration project whose futuristic sustainable architecture can be best described as ‘Factory of Light’.

The rise and rise of the smart city

15 September 2014

In December 2013 the UK government launched the Smart Cities Forum in a bid to lead the global race to develop a more sustainable future for Britain's urban areas. How is it getting on so far?

Take it to the Panamax: the megaproject to build a second interoceanic canal

15 September 2014

Can a rival interoceanic waterway to the Panama Canal help transform Nicaragua from one of Latin America's poorest nations into a major hub of global commerce?

In-premises Wi-Fi: will it be wireless all the way?

15 September 2014

The provisioning of enterprise workplace networked communications is changing: forward-looking organisations are starting to remove all the plug-in cable connections for desktop PCs and telephones, and migrating their enterprise users onto mobile computing devices that rely entirely on wireless connectivity.

Interview: Tristram Carfrae, Arup, on smarter construction and holistic design

19 August 2014

As the world’s population increasingly flocks towards urban centres, smarter construction methods and more efficient cities are essential. E&T caught up with Tristram Carfrae, deputy chairman of Arup, to find out about the importance of a holistic view of the built environment.

China bulldozes mountains to make way for cities

11 August 2014

China's campaign to bulldoze mountains and create land for new cities is ambitious, even admirable, but now the world is worried.


11 August 2014

Vertigo-inducing images from one of the world's most densely populated areas.

How are the big cities approaching rapid urbanisation?

11 August 2014

Cities all over the world are experiencing extremely fast rates of urbanisation as rural populations flock to them for work. Shanghai, New Delhi, Mexico City and Mumbai are growing the fastest, so how are they coping and what can they learn from established cities?

Dam floods and ponds

11 August 2014

From long-awaited flood defences in Oxfordshire to Hampstead’s famous swimming ponds, we plunge into the choppy waters surrounding flood risk and what is being done about it.

Venice Flood Barrier: MOSE project keeps the sea at bay

11 August 2014

Despite allegations of corruption, delays and overspending, the construction of the Venice Flood Barrier has an end in sight.

WW1: First World War archaeology - finding engineering relics

16 June 2014

From "archaeologists in the trenches" to modern-day enthusiasts of the rich engineering heritage, First World War archaeology keeps uncovering more and more hidden secrets.

Solar power hot on the heels of fossil fuels, says IET award winner

28 May 2014

Acclaimed photovoltaics engineer and winner of the IET’s AF Harvey Prize, Australian Professor Stuart Wenham visited London recently to introduce his ground-breaking research and discuss his vision of the future solar-powered world. 

World Cup 2014 security: from Hillsborough to Rio de Janeiro

19 May 2014

Just weeks before the start of the football World Cup, deadly clashes have broken out in the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro and organisers complain of security shortfalls. Will 2014's biggest sporting event be safe?

Analysis: understanding the Big Beacon picture

09 May 2014

Virgin Atlantic’s recent announcement that it would install Apple’s iBeacon technology around Heathrow airport is the start of something much bigger.

Smart meters: too little, too late?

14 April 2014

Will smart meters be enough to help us keep the lights on and unlock energy savings in our homes?

Climate change: engineering a solution

14 April 2014

Following the spring floods in the south-west of England, in a rare interview, leading climatologist Professor Mark Maslin discusses the role of the engineer in the fight against global warming.

Intelligent grids, renewable energy and smart appliances: keeping the lights on

14 April 2014

Intelligent grids, unstable inputs of renewable energy and smart appliances. Are these the tools that we will use to help avoid future blackouts and keep the lights on?

Where now for the LED domestic market?

14 April 2014

The lighting industry got its fingers burnt trying to persuade householders to replace incandescent bulbs. Can the transition to LED lighting be smoother?

Modelling and simulation innovation: just do the math

14 March 2014

Modelling and simulation tools are increasingly using powerful maths and physics computations to engineer a wider range of products faster and more accurately.

Analysis: Network operators seek novel solutions to weather threats

10 March 2014

Unprecedented levels of wind and rain have led to failures in the UK’s power and transport networks, raising questions about the nation’s critical national infrastructure, as Edd Gent reports.

Mars - what would it take to live there?

10 March 2014

As global interest in Mars exploration gains momentum, researchers are simulating what life would be like on the Red Planet. One such simulation has just taken place in the USA.

Modular building - the answer to a changing marketplace?

10 March 2014

In a world where buildings must be cheaper, quicker, cleaner and more environmentally friendly than ever, developers are looking to other industries to build our future housing.

Mission-critical location-based services

14 February 2014

Location-based services on mobile devices used to be the preserve of app-happy shoppers and geo-social networking. Now, their usefulness is being explored for more serious – even mission critical – situations.

Display technology: coming to a screen near you

13 February 2014

Digital signage and display screen technologies are getting closer together – and are now integral to helping us find our way in the world.

Brazil 2014: The last-minute World Cup

10 February 2014

Stadiums and other key engineering projects needed for a smooth Brazilian World Cup will be ready just in time - literally.

Quinone-based batteries for better energy storage

10 February 2014

The intermittent nature of renewable energy sources renders their energy output difficult to store, but researchers believe they have the solution: the low-cost flow battery.

The architecture industry takes a cue from manufacturing

10 February 2014

With the concept of 'legacy' now the number one priority in designing and building cities of the future, could architects learn from the manufacturing industry?

Sochi 2014 - infrastructure award and environmental disaster

10 February 2014

As all eyes have turned to a worryingly snow-sparse Sochi as it readies itself for the 2014 Winter Olympic Games. Many environmental organisations are questioning whether Russia has delivered on its green Games and'lasting'legacy promises.

Dilemmas of Russia's £30bn winter Olympics

10 February 2014

The Sochi Olympic Games combines genuine technological achievements with persisting old myths, unprecedented costs and the heaviest ever security.

Technological singularity and transhumanism - new world for old

20 January 2014

Will technology provide a perfect future for the ascent of man? Or is it wishful thinking by techno-pundits who want to believe human progress is all toward a utopian state of existence?

Utopian living in Europe and North America

20 January 2014

People across the world are implementing their visions of utopia. From a spiritual 'magic garden' in Scotland, to the world's largest underground temple in the Italian Alps, these 'intentional communities' rest on some highly unusual technological inventions.

Pre-Constructivism and its relevance today

20 January 2014

The utopian ideals of the Constructivist Soviet artists had considerable influence on later science and technology.

Ram pump for the 21st century

16 December 2013

Invented in the late 18th century, the green credentials of a fuel-free pump are helping sustain a 21st century revival in its use.

Heritage under threat - Kirkaldy's Machine

16 December 2013

Every time a site of historical importance changes hands the new owners pore over the deeds and ask themselves why the previous incumbents felt it so important to preserve that pile of junk in the basement. Kirkaldy's Machine, the foundation to the modern system of materials testing, is currently under such scrutiny. Should it be saved? And could you help to save it?

Global roadmap to curb damaging effects of building roads

11 November 2013

A soon to be revealed global map for road building could show planners how to help rather than harm the environment.

Healthcare identity assurance - warding off fraud

15 October 2013

The healthcare industry is under attack, with imposters, fraudsters and cyber-criminals pretending to be people they are not to acquire personal patient data. But the ID theft clampdown has begun.

Whatever happened to Broadband over Power Line?

15 October 2013

It looked like a meeting of technologies that promised much in principle, but the marriage of high-speed data and mains electricity supply has proved to be a challenge too far for the engineers hoping to channel broadband over power lines.

Agricultural technology to feed the world

14 October 2013

With a growing population demanding more food, and an agricultural community constrained by lack of land and water while battling demands for greater sustainability, the challenge of feeding the world is falling at the feet of engineers.

Crimea - the first modern war

14 October 2013

From mass-produced cutlery and stoves to telegraphs and photography, the technological innovations of the Crimean War stretched far beyond the battlefield.

The irrigation project that gave the US a new sea

14 October 2013

Engineers who wanted to bring water to a Californian desert didn't bank on creating a new sea.

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