Tech Trends 2023 that’ll Take the World by Storm: Are You Ready?
Tech trends for 2023 include, among other things, flying taxis and energy fusion reactors
Tech trends that will go viral by 2023.
At the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) in California, the world’s most potent laser flared into life at 1:03am on Monday, December 5 in an experiment that rocked the physics community and beyond. The laser concentrated on a peppercorn-sized fuel capsule, raising temperatures and pressures that triggered the sun’s nuclear fusion reaction. The National Ignition Facility (NIF) had conducted similar tests in the past, but this time the reaction’s energy output exceeded the laser power that was used to initiate it. Although fusion reactors are still a long way from producing electricity that we can use, it was a significant moment for fusion researchers and proves that physics is sound. According to LLNL Director Kim Budil, “We have made the first hesitant steps toward a sustainable energy source that could revolutionize the world.” The potential of a functional fusion reactor is astounding. The fuel requirements would be quite low, it wouldn’t emit any greenhouse gases, and it would produce a very small quantity of the radioactive waste that makes today’s nuclear reactors so undesirable.
The several private firms that one day aspires to construct a commercial fusion reactor will be encouraged by the NIF’s success. In the UK, one private project is anticipating a successful year in 2023. The company First Light Fusion, located not far from Oxford, offers a unique method for producing fusion conditions. The most swiftly moving objects on earth provide clean energy. A small aluminum disc is fired against a target that has been specially created and contains the fusion fuel at speeds of up to 20 km/s. When the target collides during impact, it generates enormous pressure waves that can cause a fusion reaction. First Light announced earlier this year that it has successfully accomplished fusion using this technique, marking a significant landmark for the business.
Work on Machine 4, a much larger reactor that the company expects will likewise overcome the magic barrier in fusion by producing more energy than it took in, will begin in 2023. First Light is competing with dozens of other businesses to develop fusion energy, but its founder is convinced that his business is headed in the right direction. According to Nick Hawker, the creator of First Light Fusion, “I think 2023 will be the year we make a huge strategic shift, from what has been essentially a very sophisticated, important experiment, to making very serious progress towards commercial fusion energy.” Another big fusion-related announcement is expected to be made in the US towards the beginning of 2023. The private business that will receive $50 million (£40 million) in funding to construct a pilot fusion plant will be revealed by the US government. By the beginning of the 2030s, a functional reactor is anticipated.
Imagine a plane with helicopter-like takeoff and landing capabilities, but without the noise, cost, or emissions. That is the goal of companies creating aircraft known as eVTOLs (electric vertical take-off and landing vehicles). Numerous companies throughout the world are wagering there is a demand for these vehicles because they are made for brief trips with a small number of people. As their electric motors are less expensive to operate and maintain than helicopter engines, they contend that eVTOL aircraft can lower the cost of flying. They also claim that their airplanes are noiseless and emission-free. One company aiming to compete in this emerging market is Vertical Aerospace, based in Bristol. It launched its VX4 for the first time this year. It was tied to the ground for the maiden flight and merely hovered for ten minutes. However, the first test flights in 2023 will mark the start of genuine development. From vertical takeoff through forward flight, the aircraft will travel at greater altitudes and greater speeds. The VX4 is expected to receive passenger-carrying certification in 2025.