Views of the Future
Perspectives on what's to come around the state.
“Climate change, including more-extreme rains and future droughts that scientists say could be worse than any in the 20th century, will prompt some needed changes: We’ll see a vast expansion of water storage — using both restored wetlands and man-made structures to protect Floridians from floodwaters and pollution and to conserve water for dry times. We’ll also do a better job of recycling water, from rainfall to wastewater, while phasing out the use of potable water to irrigate lawns. Also needed: A debate about whether large commercial water consumers such as farmers and mining operations should pay something for the groundwater they pump from the Floridan Aquifer.”
— Cynthia Barnett, journalist, author of “Mirage,” “Blue Revolution” and “Rain,” Gainesville
Constellations of Satellites
“We’ve moved from an era where we were launching eight to 12 on average to 23 last year. This year, we should do somewhere in the 30s. The 45th Space Wing is planning on 48 launches per year by 2020. Elon Musk is going to 50 launches by himself. Blue Origin will start launching two years from now. They could be launching one or two a week. If you add United Launch Alliance and Virgin Galactic, by the year 2030 you’re going to be looking at between 100 and 200 launches a year.
“We have perhaps 1,700 satellites today and another 450 that are inert or dead in the sky. We’re dealing with a company here called OneWeb that wants to put 800 satellites up in a constellation. They intend to replace that five years later with 2,500 satellites. That’s one company with constellations of satellites providing global connectivity to the world. There are 26 constellations we track. That kind of connectivity is going to enable a new kind of trade and economic well-being. I see Florida as not only significantly benefiting from that but also being able to provide the economic framework for global trade here on Earth.
“There are going to be destinations for tourists or research platforms. You’ll see a significant amount of low Earth orbit or even lunar activities conducted by commercial entities.”
— Frank DiBello, president, CEO, Space Florida, Cape Canaveral
Print Me a Car
“We’re moving into this virtual area where we’ll be able to do everything on computers in terms of creating the product, testing the product and manufacturing the product. We’ll just print it. I promised the Navy in 2075 they can print their aircraft carriers. Directionally, that’s where we’re going. We’re going to see, especially on the Florida Space Coast, this integrating of engineering and manufacturing.”
— Michael Grieves, “Digital Twin” pioneer, executive director, Florida Institute of Technology’s Center for Advanced Manufacturing and Innovative Design, Melbourne
MEDICINE / RESEARCH
“First, investigators are developing novel biological markers of disease that promote early diagnosis and provide targets for therapy. Second, researchers are developing programs to raise awareness of dementia to enable early detection of disease symptoms and drive patients towards appropriate therapies. Third, researchers across the globe are working to develop and test new medications with over 150 compounds currently in clinical trials. The convergence of these approaches will drive our success.”
— James Galvin, professor, integrated medical science, associate dean, clinical research, Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton
“Our discovery in identifying (a particular) bacteria found in (some) milk and beef as a trigger for Crohn’s disease and rheumatoid arthritis will help to advance treatment with more effective and lower-cost medications. In the next few years, our translational research discoveries and scientific advancements in Crohn’s disease and rheumatoid arthritis may offer new molecular testing and better, personalized treatment for millions of patients suffering from these diseases.”
— Saleh Naser, infectious disease researcher, professor, UCF College of Medicine, Orlando
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