From Smart Clothing to Quantum Computing: These 8 Futuristic Technologies Will Transform Industries in 2023

Technologies will change the world

In spite of the dangers and permacrisis in the world, there are a number of breakthrough new technologies that are working to improve it. Ten of these are on the World Economic Forum’s list for 2023 — from deep biology, which can look into the cells, to flexible batteries, which can be bent, twisted, and stretched.

These technologies must be disruptive, attractive to investors and researchers, and expected to reach substantial scale within five years in order to make it to this coveted list.

Technologies has the potential to disrupt industries, grow economies, improve lives, and save the planet if designed, scaled, and deployed responsibly, said Jeremy Jurgens, Managing Director of the World Economic Forum.

Many of these winners have been picked by the WEF in the past — for example, CRISPR-Cas9, which was featured in 2015, won the Nobel Prize five years later. According to Jurgens, it is now used in harsh growing conditions around the world to create insect- and drought-resistant crops.

AI-driven molecular design made its way onto the list of 2018 after messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) vaccines earned their place in the 2017 report. They became the technology underpinning the majority of Covid-19 vaccines protecting lives worldwide. The first AI-discovered drugs have entered clinical trials after Deepmind’s AlphaFold predicted the structure of 200 million proteins.

Here are this year’s top technologies:

Batteries that bend, twist, and stretch

With rollable computer screens and smart clothing, the world is going flex. And the systems that power them should be the same. In the near future, rigid batteries will become obsolete due to flexible batteries, made of lightweight materials that can be bent, twisted, and stretched easily.

The report states that wearable devices, flexible electronics, and bendable displays require power sources that match their agility.

From 2022-2027, the global flexible battery market is forecast to grow by $240.47 million, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 22.79%, according to a WEF study. Companies such as LG Chem, Samsung SDI, Apple, Nokia are actively developing and commercializing flexible battery technology.

Artificial intelligence as a sparring partner to conventional thinking

In addition to what ChatGPT does, imagine an algorithm that can draw the image that a human holds in his mind? That’s one example of the boundless potential of generative AI.

In order to build lightweight spaceflight instruments, NASA engineers are turning to this technologies However, this technology needs to build something else, trust.

In order to gain public trust in generative AI, professional and ethical standards should be established. WEF says AI bias should be mitigated through training data that includes “outlier” data and novel societal conventions, as well as copyright attribution.

Generative AI can demonstrate the boundaries of knowledge and challenge conventional thinking with the right controls.

The future of sustainable aviation fuel: Moving up and facing challenges

Cars, bikes, and more road-bound cousins of aeroplanes are going green at a rapid rate. However, it would cost an enormous amount to make the aviation industry green.

By 2040, sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) will account for 13-15% of the global jet fuel demand, up from 1% today.

In order to achieve such a scale, 300-400 new SAF plants will need to be built, and airlines, manufacturers, and fuel companies are working around the clock to ensure this happens,” the report says, adding that raw material availability and collection, as well as sustainable green hydrogen production, remain major challenges.

A virus carrying ‘genetic scissors’ is called a designer phage

Viruses can be engineered to benefit humans. Phages – viruses that selectively infect specific types of bacteria – are the key to this engineering.

During infection, phages inject genetic information into bacteria. Using genetic scissors, these phages can execute a set of instructions – changing the functions of a bacteria. As well as becoming a therapeutic molecule, it can also become sensitive to certain drugs.

According to the WEF, phages are also used as feed supplements to boost livestock growth, treat plant diseases, and eliminate dangerous bacteria in food supply chains.

In order to combat antibiotic-resistant bacteria, Locus Biosciences and Eligo Biosciences are using this approach.

Enhancing connections in the metaverse for mental health

We believe the conditions are ripe for metaverse-enabled mental health treatment as a result of Covid-19, which has pushed the mental health crisis to an all-time high.

Many players have already started working on it using gamification and other methods that can reduce the stigma associated with mental health, according to the report.

Neurotechnologies can provide feedback in tune with a user’s emotional state. For example, Neurable headsets use electrodes to measure emotion and adjust music accordingly.

WEF adds that the metaverse will eventually connect to therapeutic neurotechnologies, such as direct brain stimulation to treat depression.

Sensors for wearable plants: The next frontier

Plants have traditionally been monitored by soil testing and visual inspections, both of which are expensive and time-consuming. With technological advancements, crop health has been monitored using low-resolution satellite data, which has evolved into drones and tractors equipped with sensors.

These sensors can be attached to crop plants to continuously monitor temperature, humidity, moisture, and nutrient levels,” the report says.

In order to measure changes in electrical resistance in a plant, Growvera and Phytech have developed micro-sized needle sensors, but challenges remain in terms of expense and specialized knowledge may be required to read the data. In order to make informed decisions, farmers need data analytics tools that can help them ‘read it’.

Evolutionary secrets revealed by spatial omics technologies

In this age of spatial omics, we may be able to see how biological processes work in a way that has never been possible before.

Researchers have identified a set of neurons that help paralysed mice walk sooner in a spatial omics study of samples from people who died from Covid-19.

We believe it needs to be democratized. It had a market value of $232.6 million in 2021 and an estimated revenue of $587.2 million in 2030.

In 2020, academic and translational research centers accounted for 89% of the market, but the pharmaceutical and biotech industries are rapidly expanding.

The future of neural electronics is flexible and biocompatible

It is already being used for patients with epilepsy, and to create prosthetic limbs that are connected to the nervous system, through brain-machine interfaces (BMIs).

However, current implants are made of hard materials like chips, which can cause significant discomfort for humans. Because they cannot bend or adapt to brain movements, these circuits “drift” in position, resulting in decreasing accuracy over time. However, researchers have developed soft and flexible biocompatible materials for these circuits.

A variety of conditions can be studied with it, including dementia and autism, as well as cardiac pacemakers. However, it can eventually lead to true human-AI interaction technologies – but since the brain’s data is sensitive, ethical and privacy guidelines must be established.

Optimism for sustainable computing

Searching on Google, sending emails, or using any form of artificial intelligence connects us to data centres, which consume about 1% of global electricity.

Stockholm uses heat from data centers to heat homes. There is no single “green data” magic bullet, but strides will be made in the coming decade toward net-zero energy data centres. The first step is to use cooling systems to dissipate heat.

By analysing and optimising energy use in real time, AI can provide a solution to the heat it generates. By reducing energy consumption by up to 40% at Google’s data centres, DeepMind has demonstrated the potential of AI-powered energy management.

In order to enable cloud computing infrastructure to be powered by methane gas that would otherwise have been released directly into the atmosphere, Crusoe Energy installs its modular data centres at sites where methane flaring occurs.

WEF says there is reason to be optimistic about the years to come given the wave of innovation and investment in this field.

Access to healthcare facilitated by AI technologies

Governments and academic teams have been using AI and ML models since the pandemic to improve access to patient care.

For example, India has a widely dispersed population of over 1.4 billion and has embraced an AI-based approach to enhance medical outreach.

With requisite privacy safeguards in place, the Indian government has enabled physicians to engage remote communities.

Patient compliance and national security concerns remain obstacles to this system, however. “Moreover, any system that curates personal data about a vast population must operate within the bounds of a carefully crafted legal and ethical framework,” WEF states.

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Editorial Director
I'm Shruti Mishra, Editorial Director @Newsblare Media, growing up in the bustling city of New Delhi, I was always fascinated by the power of words. This love for words and storytelling led me to pursue a career in journalism. In this position, I oversee the editorial team and plan out content strategies for our digital news platform. I am constantly seeking new ways to engage readers with thought-provoking and impactful stories.

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