As the year begins to wind down, we normally begin to look back at what we have done as a people this year. With that in mind we have begun looking through the newest technologies that have made the news this year. Some of them might be big and flashy, others might seem to go unnoticed. But those small ones can sometimes have the biggest impact on mankind in the long term.
Also since there are still two months left in the year we might still get even more impressive technology to arrive on our doorsteps this year. Below are our picks for the top 10 breakthrough technologies of the year.
1) Reusable rockets – This year we have had rockets that can land themselves upright and be ready to reuse easily.
2) 2D Materials – We go from rather large rockets to something rather small. Namely material that is a single atom thick. While this may not be new in and of itself, the breakthrough here is the cost leading to new uses.
3) Precise Gene Editing for Plants – This year scientist have developed a new method to edit plant’s genes, without having to use foreign DNA. So while these plants have their genes edited, they don’t quite fall under our definition of GMO.
4) Self Driving Cars – We have already mention them in 10 World-Changing Ideas. Cars started featuring cameras that would watch out for obstacles and slow the car to avoid them. However this year cars have been introduced that will totally drive themselves.
5) Genetically Engineered Immunity Cells – It might sound like science fiction, but we have developed immunity cells that will hunt down and destroy cancer cells. They are still being tested and might be a great new tool.
6) Perovskite Solar Cells – Solar cells made from silicone are old fashion, these new ones can be added to nearly anything and are both cheaper and more efficient.
7) Over the Air Power – Tesla tried for wireless power, but now we are working on tapping wifi as a power source for small computers. No power cord or battery needed.
8) Robots Teaching Robots – A project is aiming to teach a robot a job, have that robot upload it’s knowledge to the cloud and let another robot elsewhere download it and preform the job.
9) Better Batteries – Even if you don’t have wireless charging, this year green energy is getting better batteries to power mini-grids.
10) Optogenetics Breakthroughs – This is a process using light to record activity in the brain, and breakthroughs are letting mankind delve deeper into the brain.
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