Smart Cities: Paradise or Punishment?
In the last century, the sweeping architecture of the new cities Brasilia and Canberra was found to be soulless by those required to live there. Come the weekend, Brasilia emptied as those required to work there decamped to the fun of Rio de Janeiro. Nowadays many call the equivalents smart cities because the computer industry is putting sensors everywhere for people control. Makes them happy, right? The antidote is the new IDTechEx report, “Smart City Materials, Systems, Markets 2022-2042”.
The 310-page report explains that it does not have to be that way. Commercially oriented and newly prepared by Ph.D. level IDTechEx analysts worldwide, it identifies gaps in the market, potential partners, lessons from success and failure, business cases.
Raghu Das, chief executive of IDTechEx advises, “The massive new challenges of desertification, rising sea levels, starvation, increasingly violent weather, dysfunctional national governments and the accelerating move to cities can be tackled on a human scale. Priorities need to be entertainment, inclusiveness, safety, zero-emission and affordability from the independence of water, food and energy supply, new faster, inclusive forms of multipurpose transport and appropriate city location and layout.”
Enablers include 100% electrification startling advances in multifunctional smart materials such as metamaterial cooling. Examples include 3D printed graphene concrete in new tunnels under London and solar bodywork of smart shuttles. Renaming a video doorbell as Internet of Things will not change the fate of mankind but a seawall against rising sea levels that is made of the new “everlasting” concrete and makes clean water and considerable electricity just might. Long-life beats recycling any day. Metamaterial reprogrammable intelligent surfaces may be more key to the success of 6G Communications than big data.
Compact food production in cities replaces traditional farming with its problems of manpower, emissions, water pollution, space, cost, security, and transport. Understand the relevance of saline and vertical farming, solar greenhouses, xeriscaping, cultivated cellular meat, and milk. Aquaponics grows vegetables and fish together, agrivoltaics marries electricity and food production and bioswales prevent flooding, clean water, grow food. Biocrete architecture nourishes plants. Food production delightfully integrates into living space.