Air New Zealand developing bunk bed-style sleeping pod for economy flyers

Skynest is a full-length sleeping pod for economy flyers

Air New Zealand has filed a patent application for the Skynest sleeping pod, which would allow economy passengers to stretch out and during long-haul flights.

One pod contains a total of six beds, arranged into two bunks with three levels each. The beds themselves are 200 centimetres long, 58 centimetres wide and are completely flat.

Skynest was developed over three years of research and development in anticipation of the airline’s longest flight, which will launch this October between Auckland and New York and can take up to 17 hours and 40 minutes.

As of yet, the design has not been signed off by regulators and will not be appearing in aircrafts for at least another couple of years. Air New Zealand said that it will assess the pod’s viability depending on the popularity of the Auckland-New York flight.

If put into operation, the pods would be set up in the section between cabins where the bar cart and toilets are usually located, right up against the middle row of seats.

They would come complete with a pillow, sheet, blanket and earplugs, as well as a privacy curtain, giving it the feeling of a capsule hotel. Some other possible features being explored by the airline include reading lights, USB outlets and individual ventilation.

Crucially, passengers would only be able to book a space in the Skynest for a portion of the flight.

“We see a future flying experience where an economy-class customer on long-haul flights would be able to book the Economy Skynest in addition to their Economy seat, get some quality rest and arrive at their destination ready to go,” Nikki Goodman, Air New Zealand’s general manager of customer experience, explained.

Skynest is a full-length sleeping pod for economy flyers

Timed sessions in the pods would be purchased in-flight, with attendants changing over the bedding for each new user.

Due to New Zealand’s remote location, the airline has also experimented with other innovations to help make its unavoidable, long-haul flights more tolerable.

Some machines are already equipped with the Economy Skycouch, in which extendable attachments turn a row of three seats into a space only slightly smaller than a single mattress.

This isn’t the first time the idea of installing in-flight sleeping pods has been floated. Airbus announced in 2018 that it was working on a concept together with Zodiac Aerospace, that would see a plane’s cargo decks kitted out with bunk beds and meeting rooms.

Meanwhile London studio PearsonLloyd created an aeroplane seating concept that, with only a few small modifications, is able to maximise space for economy passengers.

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The Bentley Centanne concept encases the riders with a panoramic all-glass top

Almost like a convertible, but with an all-glass top, the Bentley Centanne literally captures the feeling of driving under the stars. The bespoke ‘grand tourer’ concept comes with a design that flows from start to end in the iconic powerful olive green, and with a panoramic glass top that cascades from the windshield all the way to the rear of the vehicle in a spectacular fashion. The front grill features an embossed 8, doing a hat-tip to the Le Mans 8. The coupe seats two at the front, but also features a loveseat at the rear of the vehicle so they can enjoy the view without leaving the car. The glass at the rear opens up into two (quite like the wings on a ladybird), to allow access to the back in a way that transforms the car into less of a vehicle and more of interactive space for riders to socialize in.

Designed as a carriage for the core Bentley audience, the car caters to the people who crave luxury on wheels. Its rear seating fundamentally changes the relationship between car and rider by transforming the interiors into less of a cabin and more of a social space.

Designer: Joseph Robinson

Pairing Krug Champagne with the Music of Chloe Flower in Palm Beach

Within the home of Amy and John Phelan, an overflow of sensory stimulation

In April 2015, we toured Berlin with two Oxford neuroscientists on a flavorful journey to understand how sound influences the way we taste. Krug Champagne spearheaded the initiative—and our experience forever shifted the way we perceive the relationship between senses. Almost five year later, and thousands of miles away, we returned to the program—now in the form of a dinner and performance series, entitled Krug Encounter, in and around the art-filled Palm Beach home of John and Amy Phelan (founders of Aspen ArtCrush). Within view of the Intracoastal Waterway, composer/classical pianist and 2019 GRAMMY Awards performer Chloe Flower—as well as special guest, classic-fusion violinist Ezinma—paired music with four Krug Champagnes and the delicious fare of Eau Palm Beach’s chef Neall Bailey.

Flower drew upon emotional associations to pair sound with Champagne. This was epitomized with the entry offering, Krug’s Clos Du Mesnil 2004—one of our personal favorite Champagnes and produced from a single grape, from a single year on an elegant plot of historic land. Flower played Chopin’s “Nocturne in E Minor, OP 72 No. 1.” “The left hand, with its buoyancy, really builds the perfect tension over the right melodic, melancholy line. It just provides the perfect emotional experience,” she says, regarding the pairing.

To accompany Krug 2004, Flower performed her original composition, coproduced by Babyface and Tommy Brown, “Get What U Get.” She selected it as she considers 2004 to be one of the most important years of her life and a period of experimentation, the results of which translated into this track. To pair with Krug Rosé, Flower—joined by Ezinma—tapped into the artist’s most symphonic song—one weaving historic sonic structures with an undeniably contemporary vivacity. In mirroring the attributes of the liquid, Flower’s emotional impact intensified. In conclusion, along with Krug’s Grande Cuvée 160 Ème Édition, the duo performed a rousing rendition of Billie Eilish’s “Bad Guy.” Once again, sound harmonized with other attributes of the celebration—and moments were made. It’s more than recognizing a good playlist at a party. It’s an alignment of notes that blossom beyond the sum of their parts.

Though this experience was invitation only, Krug’s team hopes to bring some version of it to interested consumers. Of course, the underlying sensory stimulation—luxuriant bubbles, delectable foods and thoughtful performances—are a draw unto themselves; but there are honest learnings, too. And, in their exploration of the world of sound, Krug’s embarked upon a quest one won’t find at any other Champagne house.

Images courtesy of Krug / John Thompson

The INVISI is the ballpoint pen in its purest form

Invisi is perhaps the purest form a pen can assume, according to designer and stationery-enthusiast Raft Wong. Its no-nonsense design is minimal yet striking, with a basic cylindrical form crafted from solid brass and an equally simplistic ball-socket stand to match.

Fashioned out of machined brass billets, and designed to even retain the brushed texture achieved by the moving drill-bit, the Invisi is all about creating something visually impactful and desirable without the design details. The pen comes with a threaded cap and fits a wide variety of ballpoint and rollerball refills. It sits cleanly in its stand (with or without the cap), which can easily be positioned to angle the pen in any direction. The stand’s heavy brass construction makes it an ideal paperweight too. The Invisi Pen does away with any sort of detail, even leaving out the pocket-clip in order to retain its pure design. It does, however, come with a threaded socket at its very base that lets you screw in a separate carabiner clip, letting you easily carry the pen around by suspending it on your bag or your person. Simple yet striking, no?

Designer: Raft Wong (Rcube Design Studio)

NASA’s Philippe Starck-Designed Private Space Homes

“My vision is to create a comfortable egg, friendly, where walls are so soft and in harmony with the movements of the human body in zero gravity,” enterprising designer Philippe Starck says of his latest commission: private accommodation on the International Space Station (ISS) for commercial tourists. NASA partnered with Axiom Space on the project, who then tapped Starck. The project should be complete by 2024—and populated by private citizens who participate in training at Axiom’s Houston facility. After, “Trips will last roughly 10 days, with eight of them spent aboard the ISS,” according to Architectural Digest, where you can read more.

Chicano Batman: Color my life

The first single off the band’s forthcoming studio album, Invisible People (out 1 May), Chicano Batman’s “Color my life” lulls listeners with a hazy groove and toys with Tropicaliá influences, as well as funk and soul. A bassline sets the pace and synths, drums, guitar, and other tones chime in as the song bops along. “Are you a lucid dream? / That’s what it seems / I’m not really sure if it’s real,” Bardo Martinez, the lead vocalist, sings—setting the tone for the track and the psychedelic visual treatment. The band sets off on a North American tour on 8 April in Santa Fe.

Briston Maroney: The Garden

The latest from Nashville’s Briston Maroney, “The Garden” moves along with earnest wisdom and an eager hook. It falls within the young artist’s Miracle single series, and follows up his recent—and acclaimed—Indiana EP. Producer John Congelton worked with Maroney on the track, marking the first collaboration with the singer/songwriter/guitarist.

Zaha Hadid Architects' Miami skyscraper photographed by Hufton + Crow

One Thousand Museum by Zaha Hadid Architects New Images by Hufton and Crow

London photography studio Hufton + Crow has revealed new photographs of downtown Miami’s One Thousand Museum tower by Zaha Hadid Architects.

One Thousand Museum by Zaha Hadid Architects New Images by Hufton and Crow

The residential skyscraper, which completed last year, stands on Miami’s Biscayne Bay. It is one of the last projects designed by British-Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid, before she died in 2016 in the Florida city.

Nick Hufton and Al Crow, co-founders of Hufton + Crow, captured the 62-storey project from the waterfront, a nearby park, and at its busy street entrance, as well as taking interior shots.

One Thousand Museum by Zaha Hadid Architects New Images by Hufton and Crow

The images show the skyscraper’s meandering facade, which is made from 1,000 pieces of lightweight glass-fibre-reinforced concrete.

The reinforced-concrete elements frame numerous windows and terraces, while the building’s bulbous base has perforated walls that conceal a parking garage.

“Reading from top to bottom as one continuous frame, columns at its base fan out as the tower rises to meet at the corners, forming a rigid tube highly resistant to Miami’s demanding wind loads; its curved supports creating hurricane-resistant diagonal bracketing,” said Zaha Hadid Architects.

One Thousand Museum by Zaha Hadid Architects New Images by Hufton and Crow

The project, called One Thousand Museum, is 709 feet high (216 metres) and is flanked by other similarly tall buildings.

In total there are eighty-three residences within the condo tower. There are four townhouse-style properties, 70 half-floor apartments, eight duplex penthouses and one penthouse.

One Thousand Museum by Zaha Hadid Architects New Images by Hufton and Crow

An upper level of the skyscraper contains an indoor swimming pool with a textured-white, arched ceiling that Hufton + Crow reveals.

A smaller outdoor pool and garden are built on top of the parking garage, and elevated above the lobby.

One Thousand Museum by Zaha Hadid Architects New Images by Hufton and Crow

One Thousand Museum takes its name from Museum Park, which is located across the street on Biscayne Boulevard.

“The 30-acre (12-hectare) park was redeveloped in 2013 as one of downtown Miami’s primary public spaces and includes the city’s new art and science museums,” Zaha Hadid Architects said.

One Thousand Museum by Zaha Hadid Architects New Images by Hufton and Crow

Miami’s Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM) relocated to the park in 2013, and was designed by Swiss firm Herzog & de Meuron.

Zaha Hadid unveiled the design for One Thousand Museum in 2013, and it draws similarities to Hadid’s building 520 West 28th in New York City which also has curvilinear details.

One Thousand Museum by Zaha Hadid Architects New Images by Hufton and Crow

Hufton + Crow has captured other projects by Zaha Hadid Architects including the honeycomb-like oil research centre in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Other architecture projects captured by the British photography studio are Bangkok’s pixelated MahaNakhon tower by Ole Scheerer, a bridge in Italy by Richard Meier, and MAD’s Huangshan Mountain Village near Taiping Lake in China.

Photography is by Hufton + Crow.

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Super-Storm Early Warnings From Four Extreme Weather-Tracking Satellites

In both 2016 and 2018, Lockheed Martin launched one next-generation weather tracking satellite—known as GOES, or Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites—capable of detecting almost every bolt of lightning in the Western Hemisphere. Two more of these 6,000-pound satellites will be launched in 2021 and 2024. With all four in place, they’ll be able to monitor electrical activity in the atmosphere—and the data they amass will help to power NASA and NOAA’s weather forecasting models. The information provided by the $10.8 billion fleet could then enhance our understanding of and preparation for super-storms. Read more at Wired, where you can see photographer Christopher Payne’s exclusive imagery.

This DIY Ball Bearing Racetrack is a better desktop toy than a Newton’s Cradle

The orb drop ii is the philosophical child of a Hot Wheels toy set and a Pinball arcade game. Designed to be something that kids can build themselves, the orb drop ii involves an intricate looped 3D track and multiple chrome orbs that follow the routine of running up and down them in a singular file.

There’s something enriching and therapeutic about the orb drop ii. The entire kit comes pre-fabricated with laser-cut MDF sheets and plastic rails that can be put together right out of the box. Running on a motor, the orb drop ii creates a looped rollercoaster racetrack for its 6 ball-bearings. A stepper motor and a 9-cam mechanism lifts the ball bearings to the very top of the track once they reach the bottom, creating a physical representation of a ‘soothing GIF’, while a clever track-stepper allows the ball-bearings to alternate between the two racetracks that come with the orb drop ii’s build.

Overall, the toy measures a little over a cubic foot, making it a wonderful addition either to a kid’s playspace, or even a workplace desktop. Engaging, meditative, and anxiety-busting, watching the ball-bearings follow the same path over and over again in a loop is almost as calming as repetitive breathing exercises. For kids, it’s as fun as watching cars zoom down self-made racetracks. It engages a child’s curiosity, and moreover, develops an appreciation for physics and mechanical automata at an early age, exposing them to many unique areas like Hands-On Construction, Tools, Mechanical Fasteners, Materials (wood, plastic, metal), Dynamics, Kinetic Energy, Gearing, Electricity, Cam Motion, Gravity, and much more!

Designer: Rian Suiter

Click Here to Buy Now: $99. Hurry, Only 7/200 left!

Orb Drop II | A Marble Run Track that you Build Yourself

The Orb Drop II is a DIY mechanical toy kit with a unique composite design that creates a rewarding hands-on experience and promotes STEM-related thinking.

Orb Drop II features a center stair-stepper lift mechanism driven by a series of 9 cams. These cams are located on a single shaft which is propelled by a gear connected to an electric motor. An alternating switch is positioned at the top of the track in order to supply orbs to two separate drops. The first drop is the shorter of the two and has a 60 degree drop into a loop de loop (3” loop compared to 2” loop on original Orb Drop). The second drop is longer and contains a sequence of small drops and inclines whiling banking around 13 curves. The orbs from both drops finish at the bottom of the stair-stepper to make their way back up to the top.

The overall design of the Orb Drop II is similar to the original but also has several improvements. Orb Drop II does not use any guard rails as the track width has been increased to better contain the orb as it reaches higher speeds. Another noticeable improvement is how we utilize the rail supports more efficiently and simplified their attachment method. This reduces complexity and helps make assembly more user friendly.

Orb Drop II creates a great building and learning experience for its users. All who assemble an Orb Drop II will be exposed to many unique areas: Hands-On Construction, Tools, Mechanical Fasteners, Materials (wood, plastic, metal), Dynamics, Kinetic Energy, Gearing, Electricity, Cam Motion, Gravity, and more…

Click Here to Buy Now: $99. Hurry, Only 7/200 left!