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Engineering

Engineering is the discipline of design and construction of mechanical devices, equipment, structures and public works systems. Topics include aircraft technologies, buildings, bridges, robotics and heavy machinery.

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10 Construction Projects That Broke the Bank

Whether we're trying to save a sinking city or dig a massive tunnel, our appetite for construction knows no bounds. But if designers had known the actual cost of these 10 projects, they might have gone back to the drawing board.

What's a "thinking cap" -- and could it make me a genius?

You've probably been asked to put on your thinking cap before, but have you ever wondered what it looked like or what it does? This thinking cap may not make you smarter, but it could help you tap into previously unexplored abilities.

How Rubber Works

Charles Goodyear was obsessed with this stretchy material, and we are, too. It's weatherproof, shockproof and entertaining, and it's found in more products than you can shoot a rubber band at.

How Timber Works

Log cabins may be a historical footnote and fossil fuels may reign supreme, but forests remain critical natural resources. What does the future hold for Paul Bunyan's favorite industry?

How fMRI Works

What if a scan could not only help diagnose diseases of the brain, but maybe even determine what we're thinking and feeling? A noninvasive fMRI test could do just that.

How Frank Lloyd Wright Worked

Frank Lloyd Wright likely is best known for his architectural stylings and his eye for detail. But there was much more to the man: He liked fast cars, he loved women and he drew inspiration from Japanese art. How did that translate to his architecture?

Bridge Pictures

Bridges are amazing displays of scientific engineering. This collection of pictures highlights some of the most spectacular structures ever created.

How does a robot conduct a symphony?

Robots are great for lots of tasks, but there are some things only a human can do. So how did a robot conduct the Detroit Symphony?

How Prosthetic Limbs Work

Your body is a remarkable piece of biological machinery, and your limbs are no exception. Did you ever wonder how prosthetic limbs are made and how they are controlled? And are scientists developing bionic artificial limbs?

What happens to abandoned mines?

Abandoned mine shafts may look romantic with their clapboarded entrances and rusting pickaxes, but they can be deadly. So who ensures that these dangerous sites are properly closed up? You may find the answer a little unsettling.

How Reverse Osmosis Works

Turning saltwater into tasty, drinkable H20 at desalination plants like this one is probably the biggest selling point of reverse osmosis, but let's back up a minute. What's osmosis, and why -- and how -- is reversing it useful to us?

The 10 Heaviest Buildings Ever Moved

Hefting a sofa up a flight of stairs can take a lot of logistics. So what does moving thousand-ton buildings across cities -- or even oceans -- entail?

How Steam Technology Works

Steam technology powered the Industrial Revolution, transformed the global shipping industry and revolutionized modern warfare. But how do steam engines actually harness the power of steam?

Why are lobsters being used in new X-ray technologies?

Lobsters have one of the animal world's most unique vision systems. Researchers hope to apply that system to scanners that will make steel walls transparent.

What if we covered a city in a giant glass dome?

Domed cities would provide the same temperature year-round, no rain or snow, and the ability to go outside without worrying about a sunburn. Have they been tried before, and what about the people who enjoy their seasons?

What if the Hoover Dam Broke?

The Hoover Dam holds back 10 trillion gallons of water. That's enough to cover the state of Connecticut 10 feet deep. How much damage would be done if the dam broke?

What if I wanted to build a Great Pyramid today?

If you wanted to build a Great Pyramid in today's market, you would need to take into consideration a lot of factors. How much labor would you need? What about materials? And how much would it cost you?

What if the Alaska Pipeline blew up?

The Alaska Pipeline carries oil from wells in the far north of Alaska down to the the port in Valdez, Alaska. If that pipeline blew up, what would happen to all that oil, and how much damage would it do?

How Plastics Work

Plastics can be shaped or molded into any form, and they're everywhere -- in your car, computer, toys and even bubble gum. But because they don't degrade, they cause big problems when it's time to throw them out.

How Pleo Works

A new robot is on the market that celebrates all things dinosaurs. Based on a Camarasaurus, Pleo goes through different stages of life -- hatching, infancy, adulthood -- just as a real dinosaur would.

How Nanowires Work

Welcome to the wonderful and weird world of nanowires. Scientists can adapt this incredibly thin material for a number of uses, whether as a fiber-optic nanowire or to build increasingly smaller microprocessors. They're even used in medical implants.

How Nanotechnology Works

Nanotechnology is so new, no one is really sure what will come of it. Even so, predictions range from the ability to reproduce things like diamonds and food to the world being devoured by self-replicating nanorobots.

Will robots get married?

It may seem like a strange idea, but one British researcher believes that by 2050, robots and humans will be able to marry legally in the United States. What social implications might this strange-sounding phenomenon have?

How Robot Armies Will Work

Robot armies could soon account for up to one third of all vehicles currently in service. Learn about robot armies and robot army development.

How Police Robots Work

Bots with a badge? Police robots are no longer the stuff of sci-fi movies like "RoboCop." Some cities are using robots to patrol beats, although they're more commonly used in dangerous scenarios.

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