Released by the Institute for Globally Transformative Technologies (LIGTT) at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, United States, on 14 January, studied the most-essential ‘breakthrough technologies’ and the problems around them.
Breakthrough technologies are defined as those that are radically different from those that already exist, according to the report. And to be useful for development they must also be cheap, require little infrastructure and only need basic technical skills to operate.
This report is a treasure trove of potential areas of investigation. Humanitarian problems which just need a little more development to eradicate the problem. Genius! Some areas are out of my remit and expertise but there are several are very interesting!
Some of areas which interest me:
- New long-lasting chemical mosquito repellents delivered in novel ways.
- An integrated, easy to operate, affordable, and solar-powered suite of medical devices specifically for maternal, child and primary care in low resource settings.
- Low cost systems for precision application of fertilizers and water.
- Low cost (under $50) solar-powered irrigation pumps.
- ‘Smart’ electronic textbooks which dynamically adapt content for different skill levels, languages and other user specific needs.
- Affordable (under $50) smartphones that support full-fledged Internet services, and need limited electricity to charge.
Last but not least and by far my favourite (messing!)
- A low cost alternative to liquid nitrogen for preserving animal semen.