It required much careful coordination: On cue, at the stroke of 11 a.m. last Friday, more than 1 million schoolchildren across Britain gathered themselves for one minute's worth of simultaneous jumping. And did they produce the hoped-for equivalent of an earthquake measuring 3 on the seismological scale? Alas, no, if early data collection is an accurate gauge. The experiment, meant to - ahem - jump-start Science Year, a government program aimed at turning young people on to technology, caused perhaps 1/100th of a serious temblor, but that's all.
But in Budapest, Hungary, six teenagers are hoping for a Guinness Book of World Records listing after spending 168 hours - a full week - aboard an amusement park Ferris wheel. The ride, which is 90 feet in diameter, made 1,918 revolutions, or the equivalent of 110.15 miles, according to park officials, who organized the attempt as a revenue-enhancing promotion.
North Dakota and Texas are the states with the greatest energy potential from wind power, according to research by the American Wind Energy Association. It ranked states on such factors as wind consistency and speed. While today's windmills are taller, lighter, and more efficient than those built 20 years ago, challenges remain if they're to be profitable. Wind fluctuations can make turbine power less reliable, say engineers, with most windmills producing just a third of their potential when wind is intermittent. States with the greatest energy potential from wind power, according to American Wind Energy Association:
1. North Dakota
4. South Dakota
10. Iowa - Associated Press