Dark Star Orchestra wrapped up their fall tour earlier this month in Milwaukee, and have a second leg of dates ahead of them to close 2017. Today, the Grateful Dead-inspired ensemble announce a winter tour that will keep them on the road for most of the month of February. The winter tour will kick off February 8 in Seattle followed immediately by a pair in Portland, February 9-10. Catch DSO in Eugene and Ashland, OR before they make for the Golden State in Paradise on Valentine’s Day. They’ll return to San Francisco for a duo on February 16-17, then head over to their annual stop in Lake Tahoe on February 18. A SO-CAL and Vegas swing will wrap everything up when they take on Anaheim, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles before coming to a close in San Diego on February 24.The band is preparing to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the first-ever DSO show 11/11/97 when they show up in Albany, NY at the Palace Theater for what is expected to be a very special night. The remaining fall tour will bring the band throughout the Northeast while heading to NJ and Philadelphia for a four-show NYE run. 2018’s first performances are beachside in Runaway Bay, Jamaica within the Jam in the Sand VI Festival featuring four nights of Dark Star Orchestra along with three sets by DSO friends Hot Tuna, and three foot-stomping sets by the Rumpke Mountain Boys, all within the all-inclusive Jewel Paradise Cove Resort.Complete tour dates and ticketing information can be found here.Dark Star Orchestra 2017-2018 Dates11.10.17 Montclair, NJ – Wellmont Theatre11.11.17 Albany, NY – Palace Theatre20th Anniversary Performance!11.12.17 Peekskill, NY – Paramount Hudson Valley11.14.17 Northampton, MA – Calvin Theatre11.16.17 Portland, ME – State Theatre11.17.17 New Haven, CT – College Street Music Hall11.18.17 Worcester, MA – The Palladium11.19.17 Ithaca, NY – The State Theatre11.21.17 Concord, NH – Chubb Theatre11.22.17 Jim Thorpe, PA – Penn’s Peak11.24.17 Huntington, NY – The Paramount11.25.17 Huntington, NY – The Paramount11.29.17 Richmond, VA – The National11.30.17 Richmond, VA – The National12.01.17 Norfolk, VA – The NorVA12.02.17 Washington, DC – The Anthem12.28.17 Montclair, NJ – Wellmont Theater12.29.17 Philadelphia, PA – Electric Factory12.30.17 Philadelphia, PA – Electric Factory12.31.17 Philadelphia, PA – Electric FactoryJam In The Sand – 1.18 – 21.18 Runaway Bay, Jamaica, Jewel Paradise Cove Resort2.08.18 Seattle, WA – The Showbox2.09.18 Portland, OR – Roseland Theater2.10.18 Portland, OR – Roseland Theater2.12.18 Eugene, OR – McDonald Theatre2.13.18 Ashland, OR – Historic Ashland Armory2.14.18 Paradise, CA – Paradise Performing Arts Center2.16.18 San Francisco, CA – The Warfield2.17.18 San Francisco, CA – The Warfield2.18.18 Lake Tahoe, NV – Harrah’s South Shore Room2.21.18 Anaheim, CA – House Of Blues2.22.18 Las Vegas, NV – Brooklyn Bowl Vegas2.23.18 Beverly Hills, CA – The Saban Theatre2.24.18 San Diego, CA – House Of Blues[photo by Benjamin Adams]
A California company that makes unmanned drone aircraft for the U.S. military has unveiled a tiny flying drone that looks like a hummingbird. The airborne spy is part of a new kind of military technology that also has civilian uses. Several years in development, the so-called nano-hummingbird is a smaller and more maneuverable version of drones now used by the U.S. military in Iraq and Afghanistan. It looks like a real hummingbird with quickly flapping wings, and just like the real bird, can hover in mid-air and fly backwards. The company that created it, AeroVironment, develops and tests drones outside Los Angeles. They give observers an eye in the sky, and spot objects and track people on the ground. The tiny bird-like drone has a camera and transmitter and a wingspan of just 17 centimeters. It is operated remotely and flies by moving its wings, says project manager Matthew Keennon. “It’s being manipulated and controlled to allow the forward and backward flight, the rotation and also the side-to-side flight. And all that’s happening by just changing the curvature and the shape and different aspects of the wing movement at a very high speed,” noted Keennon. The tiny drone is still experimental. The challenge and the funding came from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, which asked for an airborne vehicle that would mimic something in nature. Project manager Keennon says the challenge was huge and the work has been exciting. “Because every time we made an improvement, got better, we were just so amazed,” added Keennon. While the company is developing some of the world’s smallest drones, it is also testing one of the largest. Called Global Observer, this unmanned craft is thin and sleek but has a wingspan almost equal to a Boeing 747. It is powered by liquid hydrogen and can hover in the stratosphere, says AeroViroment’s Steven Gitlin. “And it’s designed to fly for up to seven days at a time at about 20,000 meters altitude and carry a payload that either helps somebody see what they want to see or relays communication from one point to another,” explained Gitlin. The company spokesman says airborne drones are used for military surveillance, but also have civilian uses. “Applications like first response, search and rescue, law enforcement, border security, even facility security and event security – anywhere a bird’s-eye view in the sky in real time can help somebody do their job more effectively and more safely is a potential application for this technology,” added Gitlin. And the new nano-hummingbird will go places that larger drones cannot. AeroVironment engineers say the device will still be in development for the next few years, and may not reach the market in its present form. But they say the technology developed for the device will be used in future products. By Dialogo March 11, 2011
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