A Congressional Research Service report questions the Navy's rush to develop a new class of frigate. The report focuses on capabilities and suggests the new vessel may not fill in existing gaps or, alternatively, might duplicate capabilities the service already has.
A vast sandbar left in the San Jacinto River by Hurricane Harvey will be addressed as part of a major flood control project in the Houston area. Efforts to restore 2 miles of the river to their pre-Harvey condition should indicate to the state the need for more comprehensive sediment and sand control planning, writes the Houston Chronicle editorial board.
Nonpoint source water pollution is the top challenge to water quality in Nevada, and now the state has $1 million in federal money to address the problem. State, local and tribal governments are being invited to apply for funds if they can produce a nonfederal match of at least 50%.
A small but treasured beach in Alameda, Calif., is now overrun by invasive plant species but is due for help. A state measure allocates $450,000 for restoration of the beach's dunes and reducing the invasive species' influence to allow other vegetation to grow.
Municipalities in Massachusetts and New Hampshire will be paying a high price for a new stormwater permit mandated by the Environmental Protection Agency. Costs will stem from the requirement that communities take steps beyond those already in place to protect water sources from runoff.
Restrictions on storing water in additional areas south of Florida's Lake Okeechobee may be lifted under a state of emergency declared over toxic green algae blooms caused by water discharge from the lake. Gov. Rick Scott has also ordered more water testing and called for a grant program to help local governments pay for cleanup services.
Two lakes near the coast in Australia illustrate divergent results from different management arrangements. Lake Illawarra has its own authority but lags in actual management as concerns over its health grow, while Lake Macquarie is thriving under management that has been in place and functioning for more than a decade.
A study in Taiwan dispenses with the usual isotropic assumption for soil hydraulic conductivity in research into the effects of rainfall on slope stability. Examining hydraulic conductivity anisotropy on rainfall infiltration and slope safety at three slope locations, the study concludes that when vertical hydraulic conductivity is constant, horizontal hydraulic conductivity increases, indicating that anisotropy should be weighed as a significant factor gauging slope stability under rainfall.
A robot bricklayer developed by Construction Robotics of Victor, N.Y., can lay as many bricks in an hour as a human laborer can do in a day and can be calibrated for most jobs in just a few minutes. However, the SAM100 -- which features a motorized carriage guided along a scaffold -- prefers long, straight walls.
UK design student Archie O'Brien took just a year to pull together 45 3D-printed components with slight modifications to create an underwater jetpack. The CUDA device can propel swimmers at 8 mph, operating a bit like a jet ski but with a different design that incorporates a 3D-printed, carbon fiber-reinforced impeller.