Friday, August 25, 2023

Landing on the Moon: I am so Proud for My Friends from India!

Chandrayaan-2 mission should give all of India a cause for celebrations.  Just 75 years ago regarded as a third world country, India is now at the very edge of technological achievements. I've spent a ton of time over there teaching developers how to program in various languages and loved it.  The people are fun loving, eager and smile more than most in North America.  So how did we get here?

On September 6, 2019, India achieved a momentous milestone in its space exploration journey by successfully landing the Vikram lander of the Chandrayaan-2 mission on the lunar surface. The achievement placed India among a select group of nations capable of performing soft landings on the Moon, showcasing the country's technological prowess and commitment to space exploration.

Chandrayaan-2 was the Indian Space Research Organisation's (ISRO) second lunar exploration mission, following the success of Chandrayaan-1 in 2008. The mission's primary objective was to further investigate the Moon's south pole region, where water ice was suspected to exist in permanently shadowed craters. The presence of water on the Moon could hold significant implications for future lunar habitation and space exploration.

The Chandrayaan-2 mission was comprised of three main components: the Orbiter, the Vikram lander, and the Pragyan rover. The Orbiter, equipped with advanced scientific instruments, played a crucial role in mapping the lunar surface, studying the exosphere, and analyzing minerals. The Pragyan rover was designed to explore the surface and analyze soil samples.

The most critical phase of the Chandrayaan-2 mission was the descent of the Vikram lander to the Moon's surface. The world watched anxiously as the lander initiated its descent. However, as it approached the lunar surface during the final stages of its journey, communication with the lander was lost. The nation held its breath as ISRO engineers worked tirelessly to re-establish contact. After several tense moments, ISRO confirmed that the Vikram lander had experienced a hard landing, a setback that could have potentially overshadowed the entire mission. Despite the challenges, India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi praised the ISRO team's dedication and encouraged them to persevere in the face of adversity.

The discovery of water molecules on the lunar surface by the Orbiter was one of the mission's major accomplishments. This finding not only bolstered the scientific community's understanding of the Moon's geology and evolution but also opened doors to the possibility of sustainable human exploration on the lunar surface.  Well done India!

India moon landing updates: Chandrayaan-3 makes space history | Space News  | Al Jazeera
A Young Indian Space Enthusiast - courtesy Al Jazeera

India's space program has always been about more than just technological achievements; it's about inspiring future generations to dream big and pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. Chandrayaan-2 exemplified this by sparking the imagination of young minds across the country.

I suspect today, there are armies of young Indian women, men and children all researching how to join the space program.  If I were there, I'd be at the front of the line.

Thursday, August 24, 2023

Harnessing the Power of AI to Combat Climate Change

I have children. To me, our world is facing an urgent crisis in the form of climate change, a phenomenon that poses significant threats to our planet and its inhabitants. My children will be the ones affected which is why I am now exploring ways that computational intelligence can help us better understand and change our habits.   Amid this challenge, a beacon of hope emerges from the realm of technology: Artificial Intelligence (AI). AI, with its unparalleled ability to process vast amounts of data and make intelligent decisions, has the potential to revolutionize our efforts to combat climate change. In this blog post, I will delve into the remarkable impact of AI on climate change and explore how it is being harnessed across various sectors to drive positive environmental change.

These are the proverbial "low hanging fruit" answers which come easily. Of course the devil is in the details.

AI Enhancing Climate Modeling & Prediction

NOTE: Please join me at Fully Charged LIVE in Vancouver, Sep 8-10, 2023.  Travel in a way that does not suck for our planet and be easy on the planet but come and check out over 100 + exhibitors with ways to reduce your own CO2 footprint.

AI has the capability to significantly improve climate modeling and prediction, aiding scientists in understanding complex climate systems and making accurate forecasts. By analyzing historical climate data and considering numerous variables, AI algorithms can uncover hidden patterns and provide insights into the intricate interactions within Earth's ecosystems. These AI-powered climate models can offer more precise projections about future temperature changes, sea level rise, and extreme weather events, enabling governments and organizations to take proactive measures to mitigate potential impacts.

AI to Extend Energy Efficiency and Renewable Resources

AI is a powerful tool for optimizing energy consumption and promoting the transition to renewable resources. Smart grids equipped with AI algorithms can dynamically balance energy supply and demand, reducing waste and carbon emissions. Additionally, AI-driven systems can optimize the operation of wind farms and solar installations, enhancing their efficiency by predicting weather conditions and adjusting energy output accordingly. This not only maximizes energy generation but also minimizes disruptions to the power grid.

Sustainable Agriculture and Deforestation Monitoring

AI's capabilities extend to agriculture, playing a crucial role in ensuring food security while minimizing environmental damage. AI-driven precision agriculture techniques enable farmers to make data-informed decisions about planting, irrigation, and fertilization. This leads to increased crop yields, reduced resource wastage, and decreased use of harmful chemicals. Furthermore, AI-powered satellite imagery and machine learning algorithms can monitor deforestation activities in real-time, aiding in the protection of vital forest ecosystems.

Climate Change Adaptation and Resilience

If you can't fight, join?  Nope!  However, adapting to the changing climate requires innovative strategies, and AI can facilitate these efforts. By analyzing historical climate data and predicting future changes, AI systems can aid urban planners in designing resilient infrastructure that can withstand extreme weather events. Machine learning algorithms can process large datasets to identify areas prone to flooding or other climate-related hazards, guiding the development of effective disaster preparedness plans.

AI for Climate Research and Scientific Discovery

AI accelerates the pace of scientific discovery by processing and analyzing vast datasets that would be nearly impossible for humans to manage manually. Climate researchers can leverage AI to identify new trends, correlations, and potential solutions to climate-related challenges. This collaborative effort between AI and human experts can lead to groundbreaking insights and novel approaches to mitigating climate change.

The conclusions are a big vague, yet do appear to point in a direction worthy of more exploration.  The intersection of AI and climate change presents an unprecedented opportunity to address one of the most pressing issues of our time. From improved climate modeling to sustainable energy solutions and resilient infrastructure, AI's impact on climate change is multifaceted and promising. However, it's essential to recognize that AI is not a panacea; its successful integration requires collaboration between governments, industries, researchers, and communities. As we continue to harness the power of AI, we must ensure that ethical considerations, transparency, and equitable access remain at the forefront of our efforts. By doing so, we can pave the way for a more sustainable and resilient future for generations to come.

Fully Charged LIVE - only 4 Exhibit Spaces left!

 I have been working as a contractor for the 2023 Fully Charged LIVE show in Vancouver September 8-10. We re now down to the last 4 exhibit spaces being left for hire.  The show is shaping up to be an all around epic event.  To get more details, visit

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

CanAm Dual Sport eBike

 As first reported by ADV Pulse, Canadian CanAm has introduced the ultimate Dual Sport E-Motorcycle.

We are soooo excited to hear this news!  Canadian-based Powersports vehicle maker Can-Am is returning to the motorcycle industry with the ‘Origin’ and ‘Pulse’ electric models leading their two-wheeled offerings. This new teaser video that gives a glimpse of the upcoming motorcycles in action.

CanAm always made great prodcuts.  These are expected to be a step beyond.  We hope they will come to exhibit at Fully Charged LIVE in Vancouver, BC Sep 8-10.

Tuesday, August 22, 2023

WOW! Rimac Nevera Shatters Tesla’s Nurburgring Lap Record for Electric Vehicles

 It may be a while before we see more mainstream EV classes in motorsports, but that day is coming very soon.  The most dominant harbinger of this is EVs continuing to shatter records due to the electric vehicles having full torque at any RPM. Literally, any EV will outperform it's Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) counterpart in terms of horsepower to weight.  Note that EVs generally weigh more but given ICEs have had a century of evolution ahead of them, it should not be long before they catch up.  After all, who would not want to have such a sexy vehicle in their garage?

The Rimac Nevera has bested the Tesla Model S Plaid Track Pack record at the Nürburgring by over 20 seconds. With a blistering time of 7:05:298 (7 minutes and 5.298 seconds), it pushes Tesla into second place.  My only hope is that Elon Musk reads this and decides to embark on an EV racing program to reclaim the record.  Motorsports is the ultimate driver of increased performance.

To put this into perspective, it is the 19th fastest lap time record at the speedway -  

We had hoped to have one at the Fully Charged Live show in Vancouver Sep 8-10.  It is a longshot, but we are working on it.

Monday, August 21, 2023

Can new NASA developed batteries make long-haul electric flights possible?

As reported by Euronews:

"New battery technology being developed by NASA could help to revolutionise air travel.

Aviation makes up around 2.4 per cent of global CO2 emissions. For a long time, scientists have been searching for a way to electrify air travel and eliminate these emissions.

But current battery technology only works for some lighter aircraft like drones. It doesn’t supply enough power or range for passenger aircraft meaning they are rare and not widely used"

So what is the reality here and how far off is it? Lithium-ion batteries are great for most electric vehicles (EVs) and other micromobility vehicles like eBikes, eScooters and eSkateboards,  but they fail to meet the strict safety standards for aviation.  Lithium Ion batteries are literally so volatile, that the ATA rules state they must be transported in Cargo Aircraft Only (CAO).  They are shipped under the ATA classification UN 3171 and must also be discharged to less than 30% according to UN packing rule 965.  One of the main reason is that Lithium Ion batteries are flammable. 

While there are probably ways to mitigate the safety risks, NASA has been exploring alternatives. NASA’s Solid-state Architecture Batteries for Enhanced Rechargeability and Safety (SABERS) projectis developing solid-state batteries as an alternative to Lithium Ion. These batteries not only meet the power requirements, they also retain their state if impacted, making them ideal for use as aircraft power sources.

eAviation is still in its' infancy. It was less than 3 years ago when Harbour Air made the world's first commercial aircraft flight using all electric power. WIth NASA as a backer however, it is likely to accelerate the transition to clean aircraft operation.  Note that this is a metric which must be carefully calculated as upstream CO2 emissions need to be factored in to the equation. In other words, it makes no sense to make an electric aircraft if the battery packs take more GHGs to produce than the aircraft emits over its' lifetime.

NASAs' prototype sulphur selenium battery developed by the project produces 500 watt-hours of energy per kilogram of battery. That is double the energy density of a standard lithium-ion battery.

To learn more, come by Fully Charged LIVE at the Vancouver Convention Centre September 8-10, 2023 and find me. I love to talk about this stuff.

The future is so bright, I may have to wear shades!