Future upcoming technologies:

‘Living concrete’ that can repair itself:

Future upcoming technologies
©Future upcoming technologies

By combining sand, gel, and bacteria, scientists have created what they term living concrete.

According to researchers, this construction material is more ecologically friendly than concrete, which is the second most used substance on Earth after water, and has structural load-bearing capabilities as well as the ability to self-heal.

The University of Colorado Boulder team thinks their study lays the door for the development of future buildings that may “heal their own cracks, suck up dangerous toxins from the air, or even glow on command.”

Energy from Nothing:

The École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne in Switzerland has developed a working prototype of a system that can generate hydrogen fuel from atmospheric water.

The gadget, which was designed to resemble leaves, is constructed of semiconducting materials that capture solar energy and use it to create hydrogen gas from atmospheric water molecules. The gas might then possibly be transformed into liquid fuels for usage.

Internet Access for All:

ⒸInternet Access

How else would you read sciencefocus.com? Despite the fact that we seem to be unable to function without the internet, only around half of humanity is currently online. There are various causes for this, including societal and economic ones, but for some people, a lack of a connection makes the internet inaccessible.

While Facebook abandoned plans to accomplish the same using drones, Google is steadily working to find a solution by utilising helium balloons to beam the internet to inaccessible locations, which means startups like Hiber are stealing a march. By deploying their own network of shoebox-sized microsatellites into low Earth orbit, they have adopted a new strategy. These satellites wake up a modem linked into your computer or other device as they fly over and transfer your data.

Organisations like The British Antarctic Survey already employ its satellites, which orbit the Earth 16 times a day, to deliver internet connectivity to the furthest reaches

3-D Printed Eye Tissue:

Utilising stem cells and 3D bioprinting, researchers at the National Eye Institute in the US have created retinal tissue. With the new method, researchers may be able to better understand illnesses and ailments that impair people’s eyesight, such age-related macular degeneration (AMD), and create therapies for them.

By printing patient-derived stem cells into a gel and letting them develop over many weeks, the researchers produced tissue that can be found in the outer blood-retina barrier, which is the region where AMD is known to begin. They are experimenting with adding other cell types to the tissue in order to better represent the human eye and are now using it to examine the course of AMD.

Batteries for Automobiles that Charge Quickly:

ⒸBatteries Automobiles chargering

Fast-charging of electric vehicles is seen as key to their take-up, so motorists can stop at a service station and fully charge their car in the time it takes to get a coffee and use the toilet – taking no longer than a conventional break.

But rapid charging of lithium-ion batteries can degrade the batteries, researchers at Penn State University in the US say. This is because the flow of lithium particles known as ions from one electrode to another to charge the unit and hold the energy ready for use does not happen smoothly with rapid charging at lower temperatures.

However, scientists have discovered that lithium spikes and heat damage may be avoided if the batteries could heat to 60°C for just 10 minutes before swiftly cooling back down to room temperature.

Their self-heating battery uses a thin nickel foil to generate an electrical circuit that heats up in less than 30 seconds, warming the interior of the battery. The cooling system built inside the automobile would be used to do the quick cooling that would be required when the battery is charged.

They were able to fully charge an electrical car in 10 minutes, according to their study, which was published in the journal Joule.

silicon-based Artificial Neurons:

Ⓒsilicon-based Artificial Neurons

In order to duplicate and replicate the electrical characteristics of the neurons in our nervous system, scientists have discovered a means to put artificial neurons onto silicon chips.

“Until now, neurons have been like black boxes, but we have managed to open the black box and peer inside,” said Professor Alain Nogaret from the University of Bath, who oversaw the experiment.

Because it offers a reliable approach to accurately replicate the electrical characteristics of genuine neurons, “our study is paradigm-changing.

However, considering that our neurons only require 140 nanowatts of electricity, it is broader than that. This is one billionth the power needed by a microprocessor, which was previously employed in earlier attempts to create synthetic neurons.

Due of how little power it uses, researchers believe that their work can one day be included into medical implants to treat diseases like heart failure and Alzheimer’s.

Pill for Men:

Within ten years, testosterone supplements—either alone (doubling natural levels inhibits sperm production) or in combination with other hormones—will likely be one of the most effective methods of contraception for males. Some medications have performed equally well in clinical studies as the female pill. Delivery (which frequently involves implants or routine injections) and adverse effects are the key challenges. Men who choose not to have children may pay a price in the form of mood swings, weight gain, or acne. Will they take it in?

Cyborgs:

ⒸCyborgs

20 YEARS FROM NOW – In many respects, we are already cyborgs: cochlear implants restore hearing, contact lenses correct short-sightedness, prosthetic limbs let athletes keep up with or even surpass their naturally-bodied opponents, and exoskeletons allow paralysed people to walk once more.

The next issue appears to be using robotic limbs and senses in the same intuitive ways that we use our own.

The current area of interest for companies like Facebook, Elon Musk, and US defence research backers DARPA is brain-computer interfaces. Patients have already used electrodes implanted in the brain to control prosthetic limbs in other laboratory investigations. Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh even linked a paraplegic man’s sensory brain to a robotic hand, enabling him to feel the touch of the hand. We would enter superhuman, bionic territory if we combined the strength, lightness, and durability of today’s prosthetic materials with analogous brain control techniques.

Sensory enhancement will follow soon. Implants that give blind people their eyesight back have been created by Dr. Robert Greenberg of the US business Second Sight. The company’s Orion retinal prosthesis transmits visual information to the wearer’s brain directly via externally placed video cameras.

The Argus II, which transferred camera output to optical nerves near the eye, was tested by almost 250 people before Orion. Orion will transmit impulses to the visual cortex at the back of the skull and completely bypass the injured eye.

Instead than enhancing normal vision, Greenberg argues, “We are restoring relatively primitive but useful vision to blind patients.” The Argus II eyesight of today resembles a hazy black-and-white television. Although “colour and higher resolution are in the future,” Orion should be an upgrade.

Greenberg is confident that we will someday be able to restore sight to better-than-normal levels even while he is realistic about the existing limitations. There is no physical reason why we can’t develop a high-resolution interface in the future, but there are significant engineering difficulties, he claims.

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