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7 High Tech Advancements That Will Help Humanity
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7 High Tech Advancements That Will Help Humanity

The Earth is dying, and people are largely responsible. If we want to continue living on Earth, we need to change t...

7 High Tech Advancements That Will Help Humanity

The Earth is dying, and people are largely responsible. If we want to continue living on Earth, we need to change the way we do things.

Here are 7 technological advancements the world needs to do just that.

 

1. Desalination Brine Utilization

Water covers approximately 71% of the Earth’s surface, yet nearly 1.1 billion people don’t have access to clean H2O. We can desalinate salt water, sure, but what to do with the brine? That’s the problem: we can’t put it back or we’ll kill the sea-tizens.

Fortunately, scientists are working out a way to use desalination brine to mine stuff we can still use, such as lithium, magnesium, uranium, sodium, calcium, and potassium. Pretty soon the water will flow.

 

2. Clean Energy Storage

We’re always talking about clean and renewable energy from the wind and sun, but because these types of energy can’t be stored, they also can’t be used to replace the big bad fossil fuels. That may change soon with grid-scale electricity storage technologies.

 

 

These will convert clean energy into a storable form, i.e. methane through CO2 methanation, via hydrogen electrolysis and graphene supercapacitors. A mouthful, I know. However, to use wind or sun for our daily needs, we need weather we can count on. Done!

 

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3. Predictable Weather

That sounds like a bad joke, but technology that will accurately forecast the weather is already available—at least for wind. The National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) has developed software using very fast computers to accurately predict wind strength at any given time. This makes the wind more predictable, and therefore more practical as a source of renewable, emission-free energy.

 

 

4. Unmanned Drones

What about feeding the hungry? There’s innovation brewing in that sector as well. Farmers are now using relatively low-cost unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) with cameras, previously restricted to military use, to detect potential problems with crops, and/or to find ways to increase yields while decreasing labor.

 

 

5. Carbon Fiber Cars

Lighter cars consume less fuel, which is why scientists and engineers have been looking into making cars lighter, but still safe for passengers. There has been some success with carbon fiber, but it was too expensive to produce for commercial use.

 

 

Now, however, nanotechnology has made it cheaper to create carbon fiber materials for use on a vehicle which is also recyclable. Safe, cost-effective, and environmentally friendly: a triple whammy. Or we could go for…

 

6. Hydrogen Powered Cars

Cars that emit water as a by-product are certainly not new, but now they’re here! The Hyundai Tucson Fuel Cell is the first. It uses liquid hydrogen that mixes with oxygen in the air to trigger a reaction that produces electricity.

 

 

Unlike other electric cars that need to be charged for hours, this car needs only to replenish its liquid hydrogen supply from a refueling station, and then it’s good to go. The cars are available for lease in California for $499 monthly, and more will be produced by Toyota and Honda in 2015.

 

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7. Mushroom Packaging

Landfills are full of plastic packaging that will take a long time to degrade, causing an environmental nightmare. It turns out that we can now get rid of the plastic by using fungus. More specifically, there is a way to re-engineer mycelium mats, the vegetative part of fungus.

 

These mushroom machinations can be used as biodegradable packaging material. They’re quick and easy to produce, they’re safe after sterilization, and they can be manipulated to take on any size or shape necessary.

 

Did I miss anything? What technologies have you seen that could save the future? Let me know in the comments.

 

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