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The week ahead

Tonight Glass houses: Glass dominates London's skyline, and glazing technology is being pushed forward ceaselessly. But is it a risky and dangerous cladding material, asks presenter and architect Maxwell Hutchinson.8.00pm, BBC2

12 December File on 4: Following the failure of nuclear submarine HMS Tireless' primary cooling system presenter Julian O'Halloran investigates whether the Royal Navy has an adequate strategy for decommissioning the UK's floating nuclear legacy.8.00pm, Radio 4

14 December The material world: Supercritical fluids, such as supercritical carbon dioxide, have extraordinary solvent properties but are only just being appraised as a serious alternative to chemical solvents. Already gaining a stronghold in the food industry, presenter Quentin Cooper looks at supercritical fluids' possible future applications.4.30pm, Radio 4

14 December Traditional timber frame construction: One day course in timber framing, including demonstrations.Weald & Downland Museum, Singleton, Chichester, West Sussex.Details,

17 December Scrapheap challenge: A chance to discover whether British resourcefulness or American project management skills yield the greater advantage. The transatlantic teams have to design and build machines capable of squashing a car flat. 6.30pm, Channel 4

19 December Accident black spot - weather: Averaging over 10 accidents a year, the A616 at Langsett in the Pennines has one of the worst safety records in the UK. The majority of smashes are put down to poor weather conditions. Engineers are looking for a solution to the problem.8.30pm, Channel 4

20 December Tomorrow's world - space special: A look at developments in space exploration and towards colonisation that will be seen over the course of this century. The programme visits the international space station, now under construction, and discovers how advances in nutrition are making habitation of zero gravity environments more palatable. 7.00pm, BBC1

Until 10 February 2020 vision - renewable energy: Exhibition looking at ways in which buildings and structures can generate their own power. On show are photovoltaics, windpower, solar thermal, biomass and ground source heat pumps. Case studies are to hand to demonstrate that energetic selfsuffiency is viable.Building Centre, Store Street, London WC1 Details (020) 7637 1022

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