While drinking and driving may be hazardous to one's health, drinking the water in France is not. Saur, a water distribution company in France, installed electronic sensors and high-performance monitoring equipment on an aqueduct that supplies the drinking water for Disneyland Paris. The devices measure physico-chemical and biological data upstream of the water offtake and in the water-treatment plant. Escherichia Coli (E. Coli) levels, measured every two hrs, are used as harbingers of pathogens. Because the bacteria acidifies on glucose media, the Disneyland equipment holds 100 ml (3.4 oz) of water in a nutrient-rich cell and automatically measures the variation in pH. From this, it deduces the quantity of bacteria down to one bac-terium in 100 ml. Traditional analysis time is 48 to 72 hrs. The new monitoring equipment provides results within 11 hrs. Marketed by Ysebaert, the system costs $34,000 to $38,000. Phone (312) 222-1237.
In a line of ultra-futuristic projects, DARPA is developing a brain microchip that will help heal the bodies and minds of soldiers. A final product is far off, but preliminary chips are already being tested.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.