Tech News Review Week 25-31 August 2020, by Stelios Iordanis

Quantum computing

Study enables predicting computational power of early quantum computers

https://phys.org/news/2020-08-enables-power-early-quantum.html

Researchers on a path to build powerful and practical quantum computer

https://phys.org/news/2020-08-path-powerful-quantum.html

Cosmic rays may soon stymie quantum computing

https://phys.org/news/2020-08-cosmic-rays-stymie-quantum.html

Quantum computing progress is evident every month and it increases the likelihood of success in launching a supercomputer based on a quantum computing architecture in the near future despite never-ending obstacles like cosmic radiation; human ingenuity has already with multiple alternatives even for this serious technical issue.

 

 

Energy

Hydrogen vehicles might soon become the global norm | EurekAlert! Science News

https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2020-08/uoc-hvm082120.php#.X0SvTANloac.wordpress

Hydrogen vehicles becoming commonplace has started to become more realistic again due to material science breakthroughs.

 

New Zealand Is About to Test Long-Range Wireless Power Transmission

New Zealand Is About to Test Long-Range Wireless Power Transmission

The company claims that Wireless systems using Emrod technology can transmit any amount of power current wired solutions transmit, at a fraction of the cost for underwater cables, for instance.

 

Apple’s low-carbon aluminum is a climate game changer | Grist

Apple’s low-carbon aluminum is a climate game changer

If adopted by Iceland’s three aluminum smelters — which use geothermal and hydropower — the technology has the potential to slash app. one-third of the country’s total emissions.

 

Fusion Power Breakthrough: New Method for Eliminating Damaging Heat Bursts in Toroidal Tokamaks

Fusion Power Breakthrough: New Method for Eliminating Damaging Heat Bursts in Toroidal Tokamaks

The endeavor for a fusion reactor is showing promising progress at least rendering the vision more feasible than ever.

 

 

Biohacking

https://www.engadget.com/elon-musk-unveils-v-2-of-the-neuralink-brainmachine-interface-surgery-bot-231559145.html

There is a lot of controversy regarding this project by Elon Musk, which already creates irrational expectations for many people dreaming of a medical miracle for their medical condition.

Reliability of a neuralink even after 10 years from now for human use is a significant concern, therefore it is planned to be tersted only for very serious diseases for the first decade or even more.

 

 

AI

Exoplanet Validation with Machine Learning: 50 new validated Kepler planets | Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society | Oxford Academic

https://academic.oup.com/mnras/advance-article-abstract/doi/10.1093/mnras/staa2498/5894933?redirectedFrom=fulltext

Scientific research could be accelerated millions or even trillions of times by leveraging machine learning algorithms, software and hardware.

 

Brain-inspired electronic system could vastly reduce AI’s carbon footprint | EurekAlert! Science News

https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2020-08/ucl-bes082720.php

Energy efficiency of modern machine learning is problematic; energy costs for the state of the art AI models are completely unacceptable, but with this new envisaged computing system, efficiency could increase at least 1,000 times.

 

Eight Nvidia A100 Next Generation Tensor Chips for 5 Petaflops at $200,000 – NextBigFuture.com

https://www.nextbigfuture.com/2020/08/eight-nvidia-a100-next-generation-tensor-chips-for-5-petaflops-at-200000.html

Very few companies can afford to conduct R&D for such hardware, thus oligopolistic pricing dynamics emerge for ML hardware that are even worse than general-purpose CPU hardware.

 

Can AI Solve the Rare Earths Problem? Chinese and U.S. Researchers Think So – Defense One

https://www.defenseone.com/technology/2020/08/can-ai-solve-rare-earths-problem-chinese-and-us-researchers-think-so/168057/

The implications of such research are important in terms of the future strategy of the two superpowers, given that finding new combinations of elements that could meet future needs for rare earth resources reduces US dependence on extremely scarce Chinese raw materials.

 

 

Space

Scientists Saw Space Debris During the Day for the First Time

https://futurism.com/the-byte/scientists-space-debris-during-day

Thanks to powerful new lasers, engineers will be able to track all that floating junk during the daytime which is essential as the severity of the problem is constantly increasing.

 

JAXA and Toyota Named Their Rover and Hope to Build Sustained Lunar Societies With It

https://interestingengineering.com/jaxa-and-toyota-named-their-rover-and-hope-to-build-sustained-lunar-societies-with-it?

Human presence on the Moon should not be a priority, however, hundreds of small autonomous unmanned autonomous vehicles should have been already sent by now for moon exploration.

 

 

Biotech

Bacteria-Laced Mosquitoes Limit Spread of Dengue | The Scientist Magazine®

https://www.the-scientist.com/news-opinion/bacteria-laced-mosquitoes-limit-spread-of-dengue-67892

The rates of dengue dropped by 77 percent over two years, without resorting to controversial GMO measures.

 

Breakthrough in Artificial Photosynthesis Lets Scientists Store The Sun’s Energy as Fuel

https://www.sciencealert.com/new-artificial-photosynthesis-device-creates-energy-from-co2-water-and-sunlight

Solar fuels could one day become competitive and efficient if scientists invent the right catalysts for various kinds of solar fuels.

 

Low-cost, fly footpad-like adhesive structure capable of repeated attachment/detachment | EurekAlert! Science News

https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2020-08/nifm-lff082620.php

This adhesive structure, capable of repeated attachment and detachment, could lead to exciting new robotic applications, as a bundle of fibers with a 9 cm2  cross-sectional can support a person weighing 60 kg.