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The most exciting and far-reaching scientific advance is the dramatic increase in electric-battery density, allowing it to displace gasoline and solving the problems of night electricity, vehicle range, and becalmed windmills. Electric-car range increases about 9 percent per year and has reached a point where one can imagine round-trips that don’t involve a flatbed. But the public was startled in 2011 when a seven-figure prize was claimed from Green Flight Challenge, which had offered it to an aircraft that could fly 200 miles in under two hours with a passenger, using less than a gallon of fuel.
Electric-car range increases about 9 percent per year and has reached a point where one can imagine round-trips that don’t involve a flatbed. But the public was startled in 2011 when a seven-figure prize was claimed from Green Flight Challenge, which had offered it to an aircraft that could fly 200 miles in under two hours with a passenger, using less than a gallon of fuel. Three planes competed—two electric and one hybrid—with only the electric planes finishing within the allotted time. The winner averaged 114 mph on a plug-in electric plane sans a gas engine.
Dedication For Juliet and Miles Contents Cover Title Page Dedication Contents Preface Human Progress Quantified Doing More with Less The “Specialness” of Humanity J. M. 0 High-Tech Stone Age The Dematerialization of Consumption Science Made This Possible The Brain Is a Strange Planet The Abdication of Spacetime The News That Wasn’t There No News Is Astounding News One Hundred Years of Failure Hope Beyond the Higgs Boson An Unexpected, Haunting Signal News About How the Physical World Operates Unpublicized Implications of Hawking Black-Hole Evaporation The Energy of Nothing The Big Bang Cannot Be What We Thought It Was Anomalies Looking Where the Light Isn’t Simplicity The LHC Is Working at Full Energy New Probes of Einstein’s Curved Spacetime—and Beyond?