When to Take Your Suit in for a Cleaning, According to the Experts The Best Netflix Food Documentaries to Savor Right Now How to Get Rid of Cigar Breath, Smell, and Smoke Editors’ Recommendations Rum 101: An Introduction to the Different Types of Rum and How They’re Made A Guide to Bodywork: Massage, Acupuncture, Chiropractic, and More Right smack in the middle of Portland’s Hawthorne District, at the foothills of a dormant volcano, there is a portal. It won’t take you to some exotic place in the far reaches of outer space, but where you’ll go is just as cool. Step into one, and within an hour you can reach the deepest recesses of your own mind. I’m talking, of course, about sensory deprivation floats.If you’ve heard of sensory deprivation before, chances are you don’t recall it being a good thing. That’s partially true. Hit up Wikipedia and you’ll see that sensory deprivation is sometimes used as a form of torture, but doing it in a spa in Portland is entirely different than doing it in a cell in Guantanamo. Isolation floats are actually quite therapeutic. Think of it like LSD: when done in moderation it can be a fun, spiritual, mind-opening experience, but too much of it at once can fry your melon. Willingly step into a flotation chamber like the ones they have at Float On in Portland, and the experience isn’t torturous at all. In fact it’s just the opposite – floating is widely regarded as a healing and rejuvenating experience.Here’s how it works: You lie on your back in a pool of water that’s been loaded with epsom salts. This super salty water makes you incredibly buoyant. As you float there, suspended in the salty water, you’re essentially weightless. Without the need to use any muscles to stabilize yourself, suddenly your body has all these extra resources it can direct back to your brain. Without any external stimuli to analyze and process (it’s pitch black inside the tanks), your brain gets a chance to relax and focus on things like healing and rest.After about 40 minutes into a float, your brain stops producing it’s normal Alpha waves, and begins to pump out Theta waves – lower-frequency waves that generally only occur during deep meditation or just before you fall asleep. This state is where your mind’s most deep-seated programs are – the state where people often experience vivid visualizations, great inspiration, and profound creativity. Float On has even compiled a book to showcase the various pieces of art that people have created after spending time in their tanks. Check out their site to learn more or book an appointment.
Government funding of up to £10 million is being made available to support the development of innovative technologies that have the potential to transform the automotive industry.Funding will be allocated through an open competition run by the Technology Strategy Board (www.innovateuk.org). The Board is seeking proposals for concept projects that are highly innovative and vehicle-centric. The aim is to target disruptive technology and research that challenges current conventions. Support will be given to projects that explore new boundaries or adapt existing novel technologies for deployment into new fields. The projects must be collaborative and business-led. Companies working outside the automotive sector but can bring technical expertise and knowledge to a consortium are particularly welcome. Projects, which are expected to last between 12 and 24 months, are likely to attract grants of between £250,000 and £750,000, with the majority attracting up to 50% public funding.The competition opens on 14 January 2013 and the deadline for registration is 13 February 2013, expressions of interest must be submitted by this date. Applicants will then be invited to submit a full application. A networking event will be held to facilitate consortia-building on 27 November 2012 at the Heritage Motor Centre, Gaydon. For further information about the competition, visit the innovateuk.org website.Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)