Big IdeasSMART MATERIALS

SMART TECHSMART MATERIALS

Industries are being rapidly transformed by products made of incredibly light, yet strong materials. Ever-faster semiconductors. Solar-powered turbines. Devices talking to each other. Microchips transmitting bytes via laser, performing 100 times faster than today’s devices, triggering a complete redesign of the computer. Materials that are connected to the internet and each other. 


Advanced circuitry will make devices faster with less power, unleashing new applications. Stronger, thinner alloys mean that tomorrow’s cars and planes will go faster and farther on much less energy. The convergence of information technology and advanced manufacturing means that the smallest motors, instruments and circuitry will talk to each other and to the Internet. New advanced circuitry will allow devices to be connected, deployed and guided remotely, transforming the fields of biotech, semiconductors, aerospace and defense. New materials will create smaller, lighter and more fuel efficient vehicles, planes, turbines and machines.


Many of these products are designed and engineered in Arizona. Scientists in our state are designing and testing materials to withstand temperatures five times hotter than the surface of the sun, ensuring aircrafts carrying people and cargo can withstand bolts of lightning that strike more than eight million times a day. Arizona innovators are developing advanced materials from the atomic level on up and connecting them to the internet. Even the notorious “urban heat island” effect will be addressed. In the future, Arizona’s roads may be covered by asphalt made of permeable materials that reflect heat instead of trapping it. Building walls covered in virtually invisible photovoltaic cells will cool interiors with solar energy. These new materials will help urban areas and cities reduce rising temperatures while enabling rural regions to gain access to electricity without relying on fossil fuels.