From the shores of Lake Geneva to the peak of the Alps, Swiss inventors are pushing the envelope with remarkable feats of engineering, technology, science and, of course, chocolate!. MegaWorld: Switzerland delves into the latest Swiss projects that are revolutionizing transportation, engineering and construction. Hosted by Kevin Brauch (da Vinci: Unlocking the Genius, Thirsty Traveller), this one-hour special reveals cutting-edge advancements on land, sea and sky, from the largest underground construction project in the world to defence mechanisms for glacial melting and even an aerial daredevil who soars above the Alps.
Meet inventor Frank Rinderknecht who has been designing cutting-edge concept cars for over 30 years, including a hydrofoil car that can fly above the surface of the water, a two-seater car that expands to accommodate more passengers and a car that senses a driver’s mood and state of mind.
Discover why the Swiss are the world’s leading experts in the art of chocolate creation with a behind-the-scenes look inside the Frey Chocolate Factory. Follow the process of making chocolate from the bean roasters and sifters to the moulding line where the chocolate is shaped and packaged. Then, watch as tasters put their expert palettes to the test.
World’s Greatest Science Experiment
The CERN facility in Switzerland is the largest particle physics laboratory in the world. This is where physicists are figuring out the building blocks of the universe by recreating the conditions when it was just a billionth-of-a-second old. They are doing this with a Large Hadron Collider (LHC) that stretches over a 27-kilometre radius. Scientists are preparing to study the collision of hydrogen beam particles travelling at the speed of light. Find out what they hope to discover and how it may radically change our understanding of the world around us.
Yves Rossy is a former air force and commercial pilot turned aerial daredevil who is pushing the boundaries of aviation. Fly alongside Rossy as he soars through the clouds at 200 kilometres per hour on homemade wings powered by four jet engines. Then step inside his workshop as he prepares for his next death-defying flight.
Underground Construction Project
Join Brauch as he descends 800 metres below the Alps to the world’s largest underground construction project. In order to alleviate traffic congestion up top, engineers are building a railway tunnel through the Alps that will ultimately accommodate high speed trains capable of traveling up to 250 kilometres per hour between Zurich and Milan. Engineers are blasting their way through the mountains with a powerful array of heavy machinery including giant jackhammers and mega-sized tunnel boring machines.
The Swiss are on the frontlines of global warming and are developing innovative ways of managing the effects of melting glaciers. Follow Brauch up to the peak of one of Switzerland’s spectacular ski resorts where giant blankets are being used to preserve its rapidly receding snowline. Then, travel to the factory where these blankets are made. Next, find out how high-tech fences are protecting highways and roads from potentially deadly rock falls that are the result of melting permafrost.
The Science Behind Fireworks
Every year on Lake Geneva, hundreds of thousands of spectators are treated to an incredible display of fireworks. Catherine Walder takes viewers behind the scenes as she prepares for the show. Watch as firing systems are connected to various “bombs” then towed out on barges to the middle of the lake. The show is divided into two distinct acts, one Italian and one Swiss. Witness each team prepare for the show and find out how weather and water conditions can affect the timing and final presentation of the fireworks. Will this show go off without a hitch?