ROBOTICS AND AI 

Over the coming years, robotics and AI will impact industry, commerce, and education. Furthermore, healthcare and transport will see changes. Interesting trends, strategies and business models for start-ups, too.

TRENDS AND MARKET DEVELOPMENTS

According to ResearchAndMarkets, the global robotics market is expected to grow. It will go from USD 81.45 billion in 2021 to USD 210.34 billion by 2028. This corresponds to a CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) of 14.6 per cent during the forecast period.

At MarketsandMarkets, the global AI market is forecast to grow from USD 39.9 billion in 2019. Then, we will see numbers up to USD 733.7 billion by 2027. This corresponds to a CAGR of 42.2 per cent during the forecast period.

The increasing demand for automation or contactless solutions due to COVID-19 is apparent. Also, the growth of e-commerce is a significant factor. They are driving the development of the robotics and AI market.

STRATEGIES AND BUSINESS MODELS

Collaborative robots, known as cobots, will lead to growth for start-ups. Cobots are designed to work alongside humans. They can be utilised across many industries, from manufacturing to healthcare.

“Edge computing also offers opportunities for start-ups. Data is not processed in the cloud but is closer to the source, which increases speed and reduces latency.

Startups focusing on AI-powered software solutions for healthcare or finance will likely succeed.

Another strategy for startups is to develop AI-powered hardware. Such as sensors or cameras, to be integrated into existing systems.

CONTENT AREAS

Explainable AI (XAI) is increasingly attractive to organisations and regulators. They seek to understand how AI systems make decisions. Startups focusing on developing XAI solutions will likely experience a lot of demand.

Natural language processing (NLP) is another area of opportunity. For example, companies want to drive developments in chatbots and virtual assistants. So that they can interact with customers more humanely.

Computer vision is also expected to be a significant growth area. Efforts are being made to develop systems that can analyse and interpret visual data.

FOREMAN

Rodney Brooks, co-founder of iRobot and Rethink Robotics, is a thought leader. He is currently the Panasonic Professor of Robotics at MIT.

Andrew Ng, co-founder of Coursera and former Chief Scientist at Baidu, is a leading expert in AI. He is the founder and CEO of Landing AI.

Kai-Fu Lee is the former President of Google China and author of “AI Superpowers”. He is a leading voice on the impact of AI on society and the economy.

CONCLUSION

The robotics and AI market is expected to grow in the coming years. It will be driven by increasing demand for automation, contactless solutions and e-commerce. Startups will focus on collaborative robots and edge computing. Moreover, AI-powered software and hardware solutions or industry applications will likely be successful. Growth areas will be explainable AI, natural language processing, and computer vision. Thought leaders such as Rodney Brooks, Andrew Ng, and Kai-Fu Lee are leading forces. They are shaping the future of robotics and AI.

ECOLOGICAL FOOTPRINT

Robots and artificial intelligence (AI) have the potential to better the ecological footprint.

RECYCLING: ROBOTS

Such robots are used in recycling plants. They sort and process waste more efficiently and accurately than human employees. AMP Robotics, for example, has developed a robot that uses computer vision. It also uses machine learning to sort recyclables at 80 picks per minute with 99 per cent accuracy. Robots can also be used to automate dismantling e-waste components for reuse.

CLEANING THE OCEANS

Robots and artificial intelligence can be used to remove plastic waste from oceans. For example, the “Ocean Cleanup” project has developed a passive system. It uses a floating boom to collect plastic waste. An escort ship is responsible for the collection. AI algorithms are used to predict the movement of plastic waste. Furthermore, AI optimises the collection process.

MAINTENANCE WORK

Robots can be used for maintenance work in various areas. From industrial plants to public infrastructure. Drones equipped with sensors and cameras can, for example, inspect bridges. Also, they can observe pipelines and buildings for signs of wear and damage. Robots will clean and maintain solar panels. Moreover, wind turbines and other renewable energy installations can profit.

PRODUCTION AND AUTOMATION

Robots and artificial intelligence in manufacturing can help reduce energy consumption. We can lower waste and carbon emissions. By automating repetitive tasks and optimising production processes, robots help companies produce goods. Last but not least, it will lead to a more environmentally friendly way.

VISION OF AUTONOMOUS TRANSPORT

Autonomous vehicles such as self-driving cars, buses and trains could reduce traffic congestion. We are improving fuel efficiency and reducing carbon emissions. Autonomous aircraft and drones could also be used for freight transport.

The future of robotics and artificial intelligence is yet to be foreseeable. Nevertheless, further advances in machine learning and sensor technology can be expected. Robots and AI systems will become more versatile, adaptable and capable. They are performing various complex tasks.  

The future of robotic soldiers and how they will be deployed is still being determined. Yet, future military robots will likely be smaller, lighter, and more manoeuvrable. Such robots could also have advanced sensors, weapon systems and communication technologies. The use of autonomous weapons in warfare is subject to ethical concerns. Therefore, it is an unresolved topic of ongoing debate.

WATER SYSTEMS AND REFORESTATION

AI and robotics can improve water systems and promote reforestation in various ways.

WATER TREATMENT AND MANAGEMENT

AI and robotics can help optimise water treatment processes. Monitor water quality and manage water resources more efficiently. Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, use AI to recognise water contamination. This enables faster response times and a reduction in the risk of disease. Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University have developed a robotic system monitoring relevant infrastructure. As pipes and valves. This can reduce or eliminate leaks and corresponding water wastage.

AGRICULTURAL WATER MANAGEMENT

AI and robotics can also help to optimise water consumption in agriculture. It is a much-discussed and critical topic globally. For example, University of Southern California researchers have developed an AI-supported system. It uses satellite data to monitor the water consumption of plants. They are predicting future water requirements. This enables farmers to make more informed irrigation decisions. In addition, robotic systems can automate irrigation processes. They are reducing water wastage and improving crop yields.

REFORESTATION

Robotics can also play an essential role in reforestation. For example, researchers at Cambridge University have developed a planting robot. With a planting robot, trees can be planted ten times faster than with human hands. Large-scale reforestation measures could be carried out more quickly. Robotic systems can also be used to check and maintain forests. Invasive pest species could be detected and eliminated. The health of the trees would also be constantly monitored. So, illegal logging would be prevented.

CUTTING-EDGE RESEARCH AND PIONEERS

Many researchers and forward thinkers are working on AI. Trying to use robotics applications for water systems and reforestation.

NOTABLE PERSONALITIES:

Dr Steven Chu, Nobel Laureate, advocates using AI in water treatment.

Dr Carla Gomes, a computer scientist at Cornell University, protects water using AI.  

Dr Claire Jolly, a researcher (OECD), investigates the potential impact of AI. I also learned how robotics affects water management and reforestation.

Dr Paolo D'Arco, (CNR) researcher, developed robotic systems for maintaining forests.

CHALLENGES AND LIMITATIONS

AI and robotics have considerable potential to improve water systems and promote reforestation. Besides, there are challenges and limitations to consider. For example, AI and robotic systems can be expensive to develop and deploy. It may require high technical expertise to operate and maintain. Ethical and social considerations must also be taken into account. For example, the potential impact on jobs. As well as the need to ensure that such technologies are used responsibly and moderately.

Overall, AI and robotics can improve water systems and promote reforestation significantly. But, the challenges and limitations of these technologies should be considered. Close cooperation with and within the various stakeholders is essential. This is a prerequisite for the safe, effective, and responsible use of AI and robotics in this area.


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