Science: Slide-Rule Dreams

Engineers are probably more grandiose in their dreams than most major poets or opium smokers. Since that ambitious and ill-fated building project, the Tower of Babel, they have thought up endless projects to improve the universe, and an astonishing number of them have become reality, from the pyramids to Grand Coulee Dam. From those that have not yet come true, popular-science Writer Willy Ley has compiled a new book, Engineers' Dreams (Viking; $3.50). In it, he tells some of the projects modern engineers might accomplish—if they could get rid of political, social and economic "ifs."

The Tunnel. Ley leads off with the...

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