The Correct Way to Carry a Christmas Tree on One’s Car

It’s that time of the year with the snowflakes falling and the air ripe with the scent of cinnamon and cookies. You guessed it — it’s the Christmas season. And we all know how difficult it is to transport a Christmas tree. No matter how much one straps or ties it, it always ends up falling at least once.

The Reports

The ACTA claimed that while prices for fake trees may be higher than anticipated due to shipping challenges, prices for genuine trees have increased as a result of harsh weather occurrences across the U.S. With the prices going up, people will already have to worry about increasing their Christmas budget from last year. We’re sure that on top of that, they don’t want to worry about the additional cost of fixing their car. A study by AAA found that nearly one in five customers who purchase a genuine Christmas tree experienced tree loss while trying to transport it home.

Tips to Safely Export Your Trees

One of the simplest methods for moving a Christmas tree is to secure it to the roof rack with the trunk facing the front of the car. In case one’s car doesn’t have roof rails, they can run the tie-down straps or ropes through the door rather than the windows. If their car is big enough and they don’t mind sweeping up pine needles, they may even put the tree inside. It is advantageous to have the trunk securely fastened, whether it’s on the roof or in the rear seats of the car. One should keep in mind that while using the roof, secure the tree to the vehicle in three places: the front, middle, and back. Avoid utilizing the nylon rope that many tree lots provide, and try to avoid the interstate or driving at high speeds.

NASA-Influenced Cell-Signal Booster Is to Hit the Market Next Year

Wonder gadgets actually are ruling the century. And when it comes to mundane necessities like a phone or a laptop, the importance gets skyrocketed. A cell-signal booster tested by Sandia National laboratories, got a recent boost in news headlines due to its high functionality. The lab confirmed that this lightweight portable device, named ORC Tech (Optical Radio Communications Technology), can increase the phone reception network by 20%. Licensed its technology from the NASA Johnson Space Center, ORC Tech device is influenced by the collapsible and portable wireless NASA tool, which the astronauts use to improve communications in space.

The Initiative

ORC Tech LLC is a New Mexico-based startup, which took the help of Sandia lab this summer, to test different prototypes for its device through the New Mexico Small Business Assistance Program. This program allows the national laboratory to provide needed technical support to small businesses. With the test results in hand, now the ORC Tech is ready to manufacture the first batch of the signal-boosting device up to 300 numbers. According to founder member of the New Mexico Startup Factory John Chavez, the company is going to market the device next year with a soft launch of a small batch of 200-300 units.

The Device

The Sandia lab engineers tested different prototypes of the device over the summer. They used different types of geometric designs, fabric, and conductive thread to decide the best possible combination for augmenting cell signals. The research finally showed that a circular design, with an inner and outer radius made by two rings of conductive thread, can boost the reception by nearly 15 decibels. As the project’s lead engineer Stephen Neidigk explains, the boosting is equivalent to almost two extra signal bars on a cell phone. If a third ring is added, even better performance can be achieved. The collaborative work of ORC Tech and Sandia is most likely to continue next year for further improvement of the device’s design.