Material Marvels

Material Marvels: Hamburg’s reflection

At the western point of Hamburg’s HafenCity, Germany, stands Europe’s largest inner-city development, Elbphilharmonie, which is set to become a centre for culture and social life, as Ellis Davies reports.

Material Marvels: Tame the river

In the 1930s, during a time of global depression, the Hoover Dam project brings work to the western American states and valuable lessons for future dam engineering. Ines Nastali reports.

Material marvels: The birth of the Shinkansen

The Shinkansen, or bullet train as it is affectionately known, redefined rail transport. Making its debut in the 1960s, it presaged a new era of high-speed travel, transforming not just its host country Japan, but also the wider region and the world. Gary Peters reports.

Material Marvels: The Crystal Palace

There are only a few pillars left of what was South London’s Crystal Palace – a glass building that burned down in 1936. Anna Ploszajski writes.

Material Marvels: Synthetic rubber and the artificial heart

James Perkins investigates the surprising connection between yoga pants and artificial hearts.