“Finally, your dream of solar pants (that don’t look douchey) can come true! MIT researchers have devised solar panels that can be printed directly onto fabric, plastic, or paper, as easily as printing from an inkjet. The result is a flexible, malleable solar panel with enough juice to power … well, okay, barely any juice at all right now. But it’s still in the early stages of development! Besides, once you pair your solar pants with a solar shirt, tie, bag, fedora, and shoes, it’ll start to add up, and you will also look very snappy.
“Scientists have been toying with solar printing technology for a while, but it generally requires high temperatures and pretreated material. The new process can operate at cooler temperatures, and actually prints with a vapor instead of a liquid ink — scientists compare it to manufacturing the inside lining a bag of chips. The printing is done inside a vacuum, and “cooler” temperatures means “less than 250 degrees,” so you’re probably not going to be doing it at home or anything. But it’s miles easier than any approach that’s been tested so far. And the resulting panels, though they are currently only efficient enough to power “a small gadget,” can be folded and crumpled without losing function. Put that in your pipe and … take it out, unfold it, and power a small gadget with it!”
It doesn’t take much imagining to see where this can go – not only clothing to power you’r blinking eye-glass frames – but on building products that are used to sheath buildings! So now every surface of everything we contruct – from sidewalks, roadways and advertising signs, to bus stops, newspaper boxes and flower pots will soon harness micro-electon volts and feed the grid.
Good-bye Exxon, The Pentagon and Ontario Nuclear Power Generation; we didn’t like you very much anyway. ;]
(UPDATE: July 14, 2011 – Stage 11 Summary Video below the fold.) Blaye-les-Mines to Lavaur – 167.5 km
Tour de France 2011 Stage 11 Profile
Tour de Fance 2011 - Stage 11 Map
After a rolling start the racers crossed the Start line at 1:14 PM CET (7:14 AM EST)
Tour de France 2011 Stage 11 - LIVE - 9 47 AM EST
Recap – the race so far
The six escapees now out front left the Peloton early – at 7:31 AM, or 13 km into the race. At the 28km mark – the top of the days first climb, the Category 3, Côte de Tonnac – a 3.6 km climb at 4.9 % the escapees lead was 4:15. Team HTC is pacing the Peloton. In the first hour of the race the lead increased to 4:25 – the average speed of the race in the first hour was 42.6 km/hr.. Then the rain came… . The escapee’s lead began to dwindle at 8:51 EST – down to 3:35.
The 6 escapees:
R. Perez Moreno
The second hour of racing clocked in at an average of 47 km/hour.
At 9:25 EST Garmin-Cervelo moved the front of the Peloton to pace the group. HTC had all 9 riders up front as well.
Near the end of the third hour of racing, three teams are vying to control the race and to place their sprinter at the lead of the Peloton for the end of the race – to win the stage. Team HTC, Omega Pharma-Lotto and Garmin-Cervelo are in long trains.
Ryder Hesjedal is out front right now pacing for Garmin-Cervelo’s Tyler Farrar.
At 10:03 (125.5 km mark) the Peloton had closed the gap to 2:05.
Tour de France 2011 Stage 11 - LIVE - 10 13 AM EST
At 10:21 the Peloton crested the second climb of the day – at the 135.5 km mark, the Category 4, Côte de Puylaurens, a 4.2 km climb at 3.8 % – the gap had been reduced to 1:20.
10:43 AM EST
Tour de France 2011 Stage 11 - LIVE - 10 42 AM EST
Two team trains are pacing the Peloton with-in 10 km to the finish, and 30 seconds behind the escape group – Team HTC and BMC are ‘training’ right beside each other at the head of the massive Peloton
Team HTC leads out!
At 5km to go the gap is just 9 seconds!
The escapees split – Boom out front by 5 seconds. At 1km to go the team sprinters for HTC Pharma-Lotto and Garmin-Cervelo are on his tail – the rest of the escape group has been caught.
Greipel second, Farrar third.
Wow! What a finish. You can’t catch an escapee any closer to the line than that I don’t think. Holy light-speed Bat-Man!
Monday, July 11 is a rest day in the Tour de France 2011 – see you tomorrow for Stage 10
Tour de France 2011 Stage 10 Profile - Aurillac to Carmaux - 158 km
Tour de France 2011 Stage 10 Map - Aurillac to Carmaux - 158 km
Top Three – Stage 9
1. Luis-Leon Sanchez
2. Thomas Voeckler
3. Sandy Casar
Yellow: VOECKLER Thomas TEAM EUROPCAR 38h 35' 11"
Green: GILBERT Philippe OMEGA PHARMA - LOTTO 217 pts
Poka-dot: HOOGERLAND Johnny VACANSOLEIL-DCM 22 pts
White: GESINK Robert RABOBANK CYCLING TEAM 38h 39' 12"
Leading Team: TEAM EUROPCAR 115h 03' 31"
8:02 AM EST
After a rolling start the racers crossed the Start line at 7:38 AM EST (1:38 CET).
Tour de France 2011 Stage 10 7:57 AM EST LIVE (gaps.letour.fr/us.php)
After Sunday’s Stage 9 ‘crash’ (see Versus Summary at FreeWheel Stage 9 post), where a Convoy car, trying to avoid a tree growing unusually close to the edge of the road, swerved into a group of racers, launching one of them into a barbed wire fence and crashing another – the race director reminded the Convoy drivers not to run over the cyclists.
I say get the Team Convoys off the course altogether – they should follow behind the slowest riders. Motorcycles with cameramen are bad enough – but necessary I guess – TV is very important to the funding of the race.
Tour de France 2011 LIVE 8 07 (gaps.letour.fr)
Six escapees have been out front all race long – I guess it’s time to go through the process of opening two windows and typing all their names into the blog post (Note to webmaster at lerour.fr – because the LIVE widget is a ‘Flash Object’ and doesn’t allow copy and paste).
R. Di Gregorio
J. El Fares
Tour de France 2011 LIVE 10:00 AM EST (gaps.letour.fr/us.php)
For those of you who have commented here that cycling is not a realistic urban transportation alternative – the Peloton heading up a Category 3 mountain is doing 56km/h!!! Enabled cycle-ways stretching across the city like the spokes of a wheel could replace half the cars easily – as well as improve our quality of life and the economic efficiency (imho).
“At 102km a crash that will have ramifications on the battle for overall honors in 2011 occurred. Alexandre Vinokourov went off the right side the road on a sweeping left bend and into the forest. He was helped back to the road by two Astana team-mates but his Tour was over. He was one of four men to abandon the race because of the incident and his injuries included a fractured femur and possible broken hip. Omega Pharma-Lotto also lost its leader Jurgen van den Broeck (with spinal injuries), as well as Frederik Willems (fractured collarbone) and Dave Zabriskie quit with a fractured wrist. It prompted a brief respite from racing for the peloton which allowed the escapees to build their lead to over seven minutes.”
Today is the first mountain stage of the Tour de France 2011 – although not the first categorized grade, (there have been 3 category 4′s so far), but this is the real thing. Today’s race includes two category 4, a category 2, and one one category 3 to finish the day.
Tour de France 2011 Stage 8 Profile
Tour de France 2011 Stage 8 Map - Aigurande to Super-Besse Sancy
9:50 AM EST
Today’s stage started with a neutral zone ride, the riders crossed the Start line at 12:26 CET (6:22 AM EST).
The Tour de France LIVE widget commentator says Chris Horner (RadioShack) is yet another victim of yesterdays gully crash, after the race (12 minutes behind the winner), he was diagnosed with a concussion, a broken nose and a hematoma in his right leg – he’s out of the race.
At the 10 km mark of the stage 9 riders lead out in front, there are still out there now with 35 km to go in the race. The escapees are approaching the the big climb of the day the category 2 Col de la Croix Saint-Robert.
Here’s a handy table from letour.fr
Mountain passes & Hills of Stage 8 – Aigurande to Super-Besse Sancy
Km Mark Mountain Length Gradient Difficulty
Km 65.5 Côte d'Évaux-les-Bains 1.7 km climb 6.2 % Category 4
Km 119.5 Côte du Rocher des Trois Tourtes 1.3 km climb 4.6 % Category 4
Km 164.0 Col de la Croix Saint-Robert 6.2 km climb 6.2 % Category 2
Km 189.0 Super-Besse Sancy 1.5 km climb 7.6 % Category 3
The Nine Escapee’s
1. Faria da Costa
5. Van Garderen
7. El Fares
I’m working from the Jones Branch of the Toronto Public Library – they only allow me one, 1 hour booking of a computer per day, I’m saving that for the finish. Right now I’m using 15 minute sessions to Live Blog the race – it is hell on earth – I have to re-sign in to all sites re-open pages, windows and then if I’m not quick and aware at all times – the thing will just shut down and throw all the content I haven’t published yet, into the garbage.
As such the race as it embarked up the Col de la Croix Saint-Robert has completely changed; the nine in the lead are no more and who they were is lost on the internet (Tour de France’s LIVE widget).
There were three leaders up the mountain – now there are four in the lead down the other side:
1. Faria da Costa
3. Van Garderen
There is a chase group of three, 33 seconds behind them:
3. Flecha Giannoni
The Peloton is 1:15 behind the chase group.
10:45 – 10 km to go
10:55 – 5km to go
Faria da Costa has struck out on his own, up the Category 3, Super-Besse Sancy. He has built a 20 second lead up the mountain.
Tiralongo, Riblon, Flechia Giannni, Van Garderen and Gautire are chasing. The Peloton is 1 minute behind.
Team BMC, including Cadel Evans, is pacing the Peloton. Thor Hushovd, wearing the Yellow jersey for Garmin-Cervelo, is marking Evans
11:03 – 100m to go!
Faria da Costa and Vinokourov race for the stage win! Contador and Andy Schleck are right behind them!
Alberto Rui Costa takes it!
1. Alberto Rui Costa
2. Plilippe Gibert
3. Cadel Evans
4. Samuel Sanchez
5. Peter Velits
6. Dries Dvenyns
7. Damiano Cunego
8. Alberto Contador
9. Andy Schelck
10. Frank Schleck
Well that is interesting – after the first mountain stage the the Anti-hero (Contador)) and the Heroes (the Schleck brothers) finish 8, 9, and 10.
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I manage two blogs here at BikingToronto: "@Blog_FreeWheel" and the "Toronto/GTA Bicycle Route Mapping Wiki". The Blog and the Wiki are two sides of a coin - the blog to discuss bicycle routes and the politics of bicycle routes - and the Mapping Wiki to publish bike route maps contributors and I have discovered to help city planners, cycling advocates and road users to choose and advocate for, safe and efficient cycling routes on Toronto's busy and dangerous car-centric infrastructure.