Archive for December, 2006

The World’s Longest Bridge

Thursday, December 21st, 2006
Akashi-Kaikyo BridgeAkashi-Kaikyo Bridge

Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge
Modern Marvels takes a look at the incredible effort the Japanese made to build the Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge, currently the longest single-span suspension bridge in the world.

Christmas Tech

Thursday, December 21st, 2006
ChristmasChristmas
ChristmasChristmas

Christmas
Christmas is observed by nearly one-third of the world’s population and probably more if you count the non-Christians who incorporate the more secular traditions into their winter season. Every year, revelers go all out with trees, ornaments, lights, window displays and Christmas treats. Technological advancements have made them cheaper, easier and safer.

Panama Canal

Wednesday, December 20th, 2006
Panama CanalPanama Canal

Panama Canal
Construction of the Panama Canal.

Grand Coulee Dam

Wednesday, December 20th, 2006
Grand Coulee DamGrand Coulee Dam

Grand Coulee Dam
One of the world’s largest concrete dams and largest concrete structures lies on the Columbia River in the State of Washington. Built in 1931, the Grand Coulee Dam is also one of the largest hydroelectric power plants. We’ll explore this technological wonder.

Firefighting!: Extreme Conditions

Wednesday, December 20th, 2006
Smoke JumpersSmoke Jumpers

Smoke Jumpers
Any fire raging out of control is a hazard, but when compounded with obstacles of extreme conditions, such as an oil-well blowout or acres of forest ablaze, firefighters face new elements of danger. Meet a WWII London firefighter, “Hell Fighters” who squelch oil-well infernos, and smoke jumpers who parachute into forest fires.

More Earthmovers

Wednesday, December 20th, 2006

Dump Trucks
Join us for a second look at the big earth-moving machines used to tackle the most challenging jobs on, under, and off Earth! We’ll ride on specialized behemoth dump trucks, delve below sea level to view dredging equipment, and leave the planet altogether to explore earthmoving equipment in space.

Statue of Liberty

Wednesday, December 20th, 2006
Statue of LibertyStatue of Liberty
Statue of LibertyStatue of Liberty

Statue of Liberty
It started as an idea at a French dinner party and became the symbol of the free world. The story of France’s gift to the U.S. reveals a 20-year struggle to design and build the world’s largest monument–using paper-thin copper sheets.

Empire State Building

Wednesday, December 20th, 2006
Empire State BuildingEmpire State Building
Empire State BuildingEmpire State Building

Empire State Building
The Empire State building rose to become the world’s tallest man-made structure at a time when dreams were in short supply. Planned during the 1920s, construction was almost grounded by the Depression until the “Cathedral of Dreams” came to symbolize the indomitable American spirit.

“Two stories a day” became the mission. Up went the rivets, the steel and the fearless men. In just two years the miracle of engineering was finished, justifying a nation’s belief in itself. Here is the colorful story of this beloved building, including the innovations it inspired, and its enduring popularity today. From the first plans to the final rivet, explore the incredible story of the EMPIRE STATE BUILDING.

Stealth Technology

Wednesday, December 20th, 2006
F-117 Stealth FighterF-117 Stealth Fighter

F-117 Stealth Fighter
The Pentagon denied its existence until the President blew the cover. One of the most expensive projects in military history, it was attacked as an extravagant waste. But the billions of dollars and long years of development paid off during the Gulf War. Night after night, F-117 Stealth Fighters performed their deadly missions undetected by Iraq’s multi-billion dollar radar system.

Modern Marvels takes to the skies with the most advanced planes ever built. Learn how the radical design and cutting-edge technology of the F-117 and its larger cousin, the B-2 Bomber, allow these planes to avoid detection by even the most sophisticated radar systems. In exclusive interviews, Air Force officials and company executives recall the long struggle to perfect an “invisible” airplane, and combat pilots reveal what it is like to pilot the most effective strike aircraft ever built.

Space Shuttle

Wednesday, December 20th, 2006
Space ShuttleSpace Shuttle
Space ShuttleSpace Shuttle

Space Shuttle
For generations, scientists and science-fiction writers alike dreamed of a reusable “space plane” a durable, maneuverable ship that would make trips to the heavens commonplace.

Now, Modern Marvels takes a look at how a team from NASA made that dream real by developing the most extraordinary machine in history the revolutionary Space Shuttle.

This comprehensive program tells the complete story of the Shuttle, from its conception in the 1950s to its triumphant launch in 1981. Expert interviews, computer simulations and spectacular footage from its missions offer an insider’s view of its successes and failures, including the devastating Challenger disaster that nearly grounded the Shuttle program forever. Finally, NASA officials offer an exclusive peek at the next generation Space Shuttle, the futuristic X-33.