Posted by: crudbasher | May 1, 2012

Material Science May Advance More Than Computers In The Next 10 Years

I feel like a lot of people don’t understand what a remarkable time we are living in. When the steam engine was invented, it took many years for it to become widely adopted. These days an invention can spread around the world in months or, in the case of ideas, in hours.

The speed of innovation is speeding up in a lot of ways and it is starting to enter fields that were previously slow moving. I spend a lot of time on this blog talking about computers but I also have my eye on material science too. Why you ask?

It used to be you had several choices of materials to make things out of. Steel, wood, glass, fabrics, etc… These were the building blocks of the 20th century. After World War 2, you can add plastic. Plastic was one of the first man made materials and it changed the world. We then got Kevlar, and a whole bunch of other ones. We are now about to see a whole new generation of promising materials come to market. What has enabled this accelleration of the creative process is of course computers. We can now start to simulate materials down to a molecular level. This allows us to try out variations of materials much faster and cheaper.

These new materials will start to change our world. Here’s one way. This is a video of Dr. Michio Kaku talking about how Moore’s law will run out of steam in about 10 years. He’s right to a certain extent. If we stay with purely silicon based computing substrates then yes, we will hit the laws of physics.

This is where the new generation of materials will come into play. Many of the problems we currently have in the world with energy, poverty and food production will be greatly reduced by the new materials.

Here’s a fascinating video about a type of these new materials called MetaMaterials.

Once you couple these new materials with 3d printing, people will be able to create amazing devices and technologies at home. Awesome!

    • MIT researchers have created a thin film of bismuth-antimony that allows electrons to “travel like a beam of light” — hundreds of times faster than in conventional silicon chips.
    • Researchers at Technical University in Germany and Aix-Marseille University in France created silicine by condensing silicon vapor onto a silver plate to form a single layer of atoms, New Scientist reports. The new material may lead to smaller, cheaper electronic devices than graphene because it can be integrated more easily into silicon chip production lines.

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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