“Make up for lost face time,” says it all about the value of this week’s Independent Show in Orlando. This clever tag line points to the importance of in-person interaction. The Independent Show is always a good one for learning about the innovation and local service provided by ACA Connects and NCTC members and the social aspects are always outstanding.
Electric Boring Is a Potential Leapfrog for Underground Utilities #
Like successful urban planning projects, middle-mile boring could become more of a mixed-use space if Earthgrid’s vision proves commercially successful. Air and electricity are the ingredients Earthgrid uses in its plasma spewing robot that blasts through up to 1km of rock per day to create a 2.5 wide meter wide tunnel; all without the need to dispose of drilling chemicals.
Like a laser cutting a custom shape, Earthgrid’s tunnels are shotcrete-reinforced and circular on top for maximum load bearing while flat on the bottom. This design accommodates the simultaneous transit of people, vehicles, data, liquids, and gases. In a brief conversation, Earthgrid founder Troy Helming alluded to how one robotic start-up company will be using its technology to create a last-mile package delivery network.
By boring below existing utilities, this public benefit company envisions a network of underground tunnels in urban, suburban, and rural areas. They have both a service model where they tunnel for others, as well as a utility model (they are already certified by Public Utility Commissions in 13 states) where they serve as a common tunnel carrier for multiple uses.
Stay tuned as this could have a huge impact on many fields, including the built environment, energy, transportation, and telecommunications.
With a vision to rebuild Trenton, Vanessa Solivan is a pioneer in a Trenton program that has a double goal of reducing blight while providing a path to home ownership. Solivan is the force behind the Solivan New Beginnings Homeownership Program. She is serving as the general contractor to turn an uninhabitable structure into a home for her and her family.
Mayor Reed Gusciora provides additional detail about the program that Vanessa Solivan is using to improve Trenton one house at a time. Gusciora also discusses Trenton MOVES and its potential to help Trentonians get to where they need to be; whether that is school, the grocery store, Church, or city parks.
- RT @thomascoughlin CNSV (which Viodi is a member) is the Platinum sponsor for the 2022 IEEE GHTC and bringing the IEEE MOVE truck to Northern California. Check out Tom’s video here (YouTube).
- Speaking of tunnels, @TomBamonte reports that larger capacity vehicles and autonomous operation is planned for the LVCC Loop (see this Viodi video for more on that underground people transport system).
- #FBF to 2005 when 2.5G was the only way to turn a houseboat vacation into a #WFW (Work From Water) experience. It was obvious even then that a @SpaceX’s Starlink to the boat-type service could have value.
There is nothing like in-person face time. In a sense, that’s what ITNAmerica does with its volunteer driver’s network. Although the mission is to help seniors and others get to where they need to be when they need to be in a dignified way, one of the major benefits is the reduction in social isolation.
In this interview, filmed at the 5th Annual Princeton SmartDrivingCars Summit, ITNAmerica founder, Katherine Freund, reveals their new effort to make it easy for community groups to solicit volunteer drivers. This is a great opportunity to strengthen communities nationwide at a grassroots level.
This should be of interest to any NCTC member, as it complements the service they already provide to their communities. If you see me at this week’s Independent Show and want a connection with Katherine, let me know.