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We are on the cusp of the next industrial revolution. There is no other way to look around it. It is an exciting time if you are a science enthusiast. Whether you like it or not, this giant step will alter our personal and professional life, just like its predecessor. While it remains to be seen what will unfold in front of us, it is widely expected that this revolution will blur the boundaries between our digital, physical, and biological worlds. In this article, we are going to look at three of the industries that are set to gain the most in the upcoming revolution.
Nanotechnology as you know it is the science of controlling structures at a molecular level and has been one of the most revolutionizing inventions of our times. Most of the devices in this industry have shown vast promise. The devices using nanotechnology have already revolutionized many industries including health, transportation, national security, etc. This is the reason many are calling Nanotechnology the leader of the “next industrial revolution”.
Nanotechnology deals with the ability to create materials from a microscopic or molecular level. This has unlimited potential. Almost every industry, auto, airplane, chemicals, medicals, cosmetics, plastic, the computer, drugs, chips, etc, and much more will benefit from such an invention. This is one of the reasons why experts are expecting nanotechnology to reach $70.7 Billion by 2026. Nanotechnology will open up potential new roads for manufacturing, healthcare, chemical plants, agriculture, pharmaceuticals, electronics, etc. The MNC’s around the world have already realized this potential of the industry and have already invested heavily into nanotechnology research. IBM, Samsung, Lucent Technologies, Siemens, and Hewlett-Packard are just some of them.
The future looks bright for Nanotechnology. It is still expanding. Every day, scientists and engineers around the globe are working hard to make material at the nanoscale and each of these inventions is changing our life for the better. For example, at this rate, we can soon expect to have access to cheap and lightweight solar plastic. Such an invention will make solar energy accessible to the wider public. Scientists have also found that nanoparticles can clean toxic chemicals and air-borne and the potential of that doesn’t need any explanation. Nowadays, experts are focusing on using nanomaterials for space exploration.|
So, at least on paper, things are looking good for Nanotechnology and unless something dramatic happens, expect Nanotechnology to grow rapidly in the coming years.
Genomics is the study of the DNA sequences of an organism. But don’t mistake Genomics with genetics. Genetics is focused on the traits that one organism passes to its offspring but genomics involves computation and analysis of data generated by the study of genes, functions, and their evolution. This is another industry that is in its infancy. We have only managed to publish the first complete human genome in 2003. That is how new this is. But this hasn’t stopped Genomics from affecting daily life. Here is how Genomics is going to influence our lives.
Let’s start with COVID 19, the pandemic that has paused life on earth for the last two years is the prime example of how useful Genomics can be. Tracking the disease and its origin would have been unimaginable a few years ago, but with Genomics, we were able to pinpoint it.
The diagnostic power has helped us better understand genetically inherited diseases. Nowadays, we can simply edit a somatic cell and protect the individual from certain conditions.
The application of Genomics is not limited to Medicine. The growing population, threat of pests, diseases to crops, climate change are other areas where we can use Genomics to assist us. The big data gathered during the genomics research will ensure food security. The latest researches in the field are giving insights into how we can improve crops by targeting diversity and help make them resilient to pests and adverse climatic conditions. In Colombia, scientists have already found a way to help cocoa growers tackle soils that are rich in heavy metal pollutants. Experiments are being conducted on the grasses that are used to feed cattle to see how altering protein content could help cos belch less.
With potential like that, it is no surprise that experts are predicting Genomics to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15.35% from 2021 to 2028.
Yes, the stuff only sci-fi fans could dream about a few years ago is now coming true. After decades of disappointment, the industry has started to once again pick up the pace thanks to better technology, competition from private sectors, and falling costs. For decades, the cost has kept the space mining industry at bay. It never made any sense. But thanks to the commercial development in the industry, experts now believe that we are on the cusp of mining the moon, asteroids, and others.
The big step towards this was taken last year when NASA contracted four companies to extract small amounts of lunar regolith by 2024. If anything, this was the flag off to commercial space mining. What this means is still the question? Does this mean the end of the mining industry on earth? Or are we about to unlock the key to cost-effective space traveling? It remained to be seen.
We all know there are thousands of planets, moons, and asteroids with humongous quantities of valuable materials that are scarce on earth, and that is the potential we are looking at. But in reality, it also raises a lot of questions. Space is an area that belongs to no country. So who is going to govern the trade and regulate it is still to be seen. The property rights and resource allocations are still a question that we don’t have the answer to.
But, we can all agree on one thing. The need for these valuable materials on earth is very real. And to have them available in vast quantities is going to help us advance technologically and financially.
The next Industrial Revolution is going to be an exciting one. While Genomics, Space Mining, and nanotechnology are going to have their say in it, don’t be tricked that there are the only ones. AI, Robotics, Fintech, Data analysis, etc will all have their say.
All we can say as an ending note is, “Exciting times are coming and the possibilities are endless.”