Modern Marvels

Season 12 Episode 10

Desert Tech

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Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Feb 23, 2005 on The History Channel
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Desert Tech
AIRED:
It's hot, dry, deadly, and hard to ignore with close to 40% of Earth classified as desert. But in this scorching hour, the desert turns from barren wasteland into an environment rich with hope. In the Middle East, desalination of seawater now fills water needs. Americans have created booming desert communities like Las Vegas, where the Hoover Dam produces hydroelectric power and manmade Lake Mead supplies water. Native Americans farmed the desert on a small scale, but 20th-century technology begot greater opportunity. Once desolate areas of California and Mexico now grow agriculture due to irrigation, and the desert's abundant sunshine allows solar-energy and wind-power production. And in the future, desert technology may enable colonization of planets like Mars. We also take a look at how refrigeration and air conditioning have made life in desert communities tolerable, and examine the latest in survival gear and equipment.moreless
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    • TRIVIA (4)

    • QUOTES (1)

      • Narrator: Sweltering heat, icy cold, hardly a drop of water. The death trap they call the desert. Yet with man's ingenuity he's not only survived, but thrived here. The complexity of irrigation systems, the comfort of air conditioning, the promise of solar energy. From ancient times to the present and beyond, man has transformed barren wasteland to worlds of wonder. Now, Desert Tech, on Modern Marvels.

    • NOTES (1)

      • Commentators:

        Alan Simmons
        Chairman, of Anthropology, University of Nevada, Las Vegas

        John Meunier
        Professor of Architecture, Arizona State University

        Charles Redman
        Director, Institute of Sustainability, ASU

        John Keys
        Commissioner, US Bureau of Reclamation

        John Crittenden, PhD
        Department of Civil Engineering, ASU

        Todd Bostwick, PhD
        City Archaeologist, Phoenix

        John Ryan
        VP, Goettl Air Conditioning

        Roger Tomalty
        Special Projects Coordinator, Arcosanti

        Paolo Soleri
        Arcosanti Founder/Designer

        Donny DeBruno
        Recreation Specialist, REI

        Dr Heather Roberts
        Dermatologist

        Sgt. Doug Hubbard
        San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department

        Mike Presley
        Deputy Sheriff, San Bernardino County

        Mike Cadwell
        Deputy Sheriff, San Bernardino County

        Ed Fox
        Vice President, APS

        Dr. Peter Johnson
        Manager of Tech Development, APS

        Eric Baumgartner
        Robotics Engineer, NASA/JPL

    • ALLUSIONS (0)

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