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Top 100 Science Trends of 2016

From Elastic Skin Creams to Photo-Realistic 3D Avatars

— January 29, 2017 — Tech
Considering that virtually every technological development in any consumer field can ultimately be traced back to a scientific discovery, it should come as no surprise that the 2016 science trends seem impossibly futuristic. Since at least the Renaissance, science has consistently been at the leading edge of innovation, and our annual innovation conference undoubtedly owes a lot to developments that come from the field.

In line with the cultural zeitgeist, many of the 2016 science trends revolve around the environment. Some companies put research into developing new materials, such as MycoWorks, which created a faux-leather product out of mushroom fibers. Others created new methods for developing energy altogether. The University of Chicago, for example, created a system that uses solar power to transform carbon dioxide into usable energy.

Health is another field that benefited from scientific innovations. WASP Medical's 3D printed corsets are just one example. The inexpensive system, which helps to correct scoliosis, can be tailored to each patient's unique spine through 3D scanning and printing.
4.9
Score
Popularity
Activity
Freshness
100
3D-Printed Digital Sundials
3D-Printed Digital Sundials
The Mojoptix Sundial Doesn't Use Any Electronics Or Moving Parts
<
99
Vibrating Astronaut Footwear
Vibrating Astronaut Footwear
These Space Shoes Help Prevent Astronauts From Suffering Falls
<
98
Sight-Restoring Goggles
Sight-Restoring Goggles
Pixium Vision's System Stimulates the Nervous System to Restore Vision
<
97
Large-Scale 3D Scanners
Large-Scale 3D Scanners
Thor3D's 3D Scanning Technology Captures Medium and Large Objects
<
96
Nonhuman Vocal Algorithms
Nonhuman Vocal Algorithms
The DeepMind AI Can Say Sentences and Play Piano Without a Sound Library
<
95
Radio Wave Phone Charging
Radio Wave Phone Charging
Radient Micro-Tech Uses RF Waves for Truly Wireless Phone Charging
<
94
Passenger-Transporting Truck Concepts
Passenger-Transporting Truck Concepts
The 'SymbiotUX' is Designed to Interact with Other Vehicles
<
93
Cooling Plastic Clothing
Cooling Plastic Clothing
Stanford's New Textiles Cool Wearers Down as Much as 4 Degrees Celsius
<
92
Stealth Fighter Aircraft
Stealth Fighter Aircraft
The Japanese X-2 Aircraft Has a Range Of Nearly 3,000 Kilometers
<
91
Full-Body Medical Scanners
Full-Body Medical Scanners
SMARTTECH's Medical Scanner is Designed to Digitize the Human Body
<
90
Sustainable Energy-Generating Fabrics
Sustainable Energy-Generating Fabrics
This Fabric Turns Solar and Wind Energy into Electricity
<
89
Plant-Specific Probiotics
Plant-Specific Probiotics
This Company Increasing Crop Yields with Probiotics for Plants
<
88
Hydrogen Fuel Cell Aircraft
Hydrogen Fuel Cell Aircraft
The HY4 Aircraft Offers Revolutionary Four-Seater Electric Flight
<
87
Health-Tracking Headphones
Health-Tracking Headphones
This Device Supplies Its Wearer with Informative Health Updates
<
86
Digitally Generated Fractal Art
Digitally Generated Fractal Art
Joseph Pollack Writes Code to Create His Artwork
<
85
Tremor-Dampening Gloves
Tremor-Dampening Gloves
The 'GyroGlove' is a Wearable Device That Reduces Hand Tremors
<
84
Humongous Agricultural Drones
Humongous Agricultural Drones
The eBee Fixed-Wing Drone Helps Map Agricultural Territories
<
83
Printed Robot Salamanders
Printed Robot Salamanders
Thsi 3D-Printed Animal Replicates the Movements of an Amphibian
<
82
Weight Loss Eyeglasses
Weight Loss Eyeglasses
These 3D-Printed Glasses Monitor Use of the Chewing Muscles
<
81
Vision-Perfecting Lenses
Vision-Perfecting Lenses
Ocumetics' Bionic Lens Improves 20/20 Vision Three Times Over
<
80
High-Tech Duct Tape
High-Tech Duct Tape
These Researchers Have Designed Tape Embedded with Electrical Circuits
<
79
Floating Solar Panels
Floating Solar Panels
The Heliofloat System Allows Solar Panels to Withstand Heavy Seas
<
78
Planted Wireless Speakers
Planted Wireless Speakers
The 'Nalo' Speaker Forces Listeners to Connect with the Environment
<
77
Self-Propelling Cargo Boats
Self-Propelling Cargo Boats
The 'Roboat' Program Will Put Autonomous Boats in Amsterdam's Canals
<
76
Inexpensive 3D-Printed Braces
Inexpensive 3D-Printed Braces
This College Student Used a 3D Printer to Make Custom Braces
<
75
Directional Compass Implants
Directional Compass Implants
The Cyborg Nest 'North Sense' Implant Device Connects Users to Naure
<
74
Printed Biomimicry Dresses
Printed Biomimicry Dresses
threeASFOUR Unveiled Two Printed Fashion Designs at NYFW
<
73
Futuristic Gasoline Engines
Futuristic Gasoline Engines
The New Jaguar Ingenium Engine Offers Next-Generation Power
<
72
CO2-Converting Solar Cells
CO2-Converting Solar Cells
This New Solar Energy Technique Turns CO2 into Usable Energy
<
71
DIY Security Cameras
DIY Security Cameras
This Microsoft Project Lets You Build Your Own Security Camera
<
70
Chemically Grown Fighter Jets
Chemically Grown Fighter Jets
BAE Systems' Fighter Jets Will Be Grown in Chemical Vats
<
69
Artificial Memory Implants
Artificial Memory Implants
'Neurofeedback' Allows False Memories to Be Added to the Brain
<
68
Autonomous Agricultural Helicopters
Autonomous Agricultural Helicopters
This Unmanned Helicopter is Designed For Crop-Dusting Work
<
67
Martian Desert Colonies
Martian Desert Colonies
Prototypes for the 3D-Printed Mars Colony Will Be Tested in the Mojave
<
66
Solar Cell-Embedded Roads
Solar Cell-Embedded Roads
'Solmove' is Designing a Flexible Glass Carpet Filled with Solar Cells
<
65
Seismic Hotel Designs
Seismic Hotel Designs
This Hotel Dislocates During Tremors to Prevent Harm from Earthquakes
<
64
3D Bio-Printers
3D Bio-Printers
This Innovative Printer Can Make Full-Sized Body Parts
<
63
Eco-Friendly Building Materials
Eco-Friendly Building Materials
This Company is Making Eco-Friendly Cement Out of Burnt Clay
<
62
DIY Internet Device Kits
DIY Internet Device Kits
The Electron Board Lets You Create Original Internet Devices At Home
<
61
Fire-Powered Smartphone Chargers
Fire-Powered Smartphone Chargers
JikoPower Uses Fire Power to Charge the Smartphones of Kenyans
<
60
Gigantic Nomadic Farms
Gigantic Nomadic Farms
The Desertscraper Revitalizes Arid Desert as It Rolls Across It
<
59
Non-Stick Shampoo Bottles
Non-Stick Shampoo Bottles
This Plastic Coating Will Save Money and Prevent Waste
<
58
Traffic-Sensing Billboards
Traffic-Sensing Billboards
INRIX Billboards are Able to Change Ads Based on Traffic Speed
<
57
Elastic Skin Creams
Elastic Skin Creams
Second Skin is a Synthetic Material Designed to Protect and Tighten Skin
<
56
3D-Printed Generators
3D-Printed Generators
This DIY Hand Crank Generator Can Generate 30 Watts of Power
<
55
Bespoke Bodily Devices
Bespoke Bodily Devices
This Orthosis is Designed For Paresis' Patients Rehabilitation
<
54
Grip-Boosting Gloves
Grip-Boosting Gloves
This Robotic Glove Uses Sensors and Actuators to Increase Gripping Strength
<
53
Battery-Free Computers
Battery-Free Computers
Wireless Identification and Sensing Platform Sucks Power Out of Thin Air
<
52
Solar Vineyard Chapels
Solar Vineyard Chapels
This Vinyard Design Project Explores the Alchemy of Wine and Architecture
<
51
Jet Lag-Eliminating Airplanes
Jet Lag-Eliminating Airplanes
The A350 XWB Jet Can Change Time Zones Without Causing Jet Lag
<
50
Responsive Diabetes Wristbands
Responsive Diabetes Wristbands
This Graphene Bracelet is a Corrective Blood Sugar Monitor
<
49
Futuristic Biometric Bras
Futuristic Biometric Bras
The Biometric Bra from OmSignal Will Debut at CES 2016 in Vegas
<
48
Diabetic Shoe Sensors
Diabetic Shoe Sensors
This Smart Shoe Sole Can Help Reduce the Risk of Diabetes Complications
<
47
Camera-Controlled Contacts
Camera-Controlled Contacts
Samsung is Aiming to Offer Smart Contact Lenses with VR Capabilities
<
46
Gecko-Inspired Robots
Gecko-Inspired Robots
This Climbing Robot Was Developed At Stanford University
<
45
Garment-Sewing Robots
Garment-Sewing Robots
Sewbo Inc. Developed a Process That Lets Robots Sew T-Shirts
<
44
Plastic-Eating Bacteria
Plastic-Eating Bacteria
A New Bacterium Could Break Down PET Plastic to Eliminate Waste
<
43
Energy-Producing Tiles
Energy-Producing Tiles
These New Floor Tiles from Pavegen Convert Kinetic Energy to Electricity
<
42
Strong Bendable Concrete
Strong Bendable Concrete
ConFlexPave is a New Material from Nanyang Technological University
<
41
Real-Time Weather Visualizations
Real-Time Weather Visualizations
'Ventusky' Gives a Beautiful Interpretation of Global Weather
<
40
Amphibious Underwater Drones
Amphibious Underwater Drones
The CRACUNS Drone Can Float Up From Underwater and Take To the Sky
<
39
Tattoo Database Technology
Tattoo Database Technology
The FBI is Working to Accumulate Tattoos for Semiotic Research
<
38
Satellite-Tracking Pavilions
Satellite-Tracking Pavilions
The Orbit Pavilion Structure Uses Satellite Tracking Data From NASA
<
37
Germ-Magnifying Faucets
Germ-Magnifying Faucets
The 'Clean Clear' Faucet Packs a Digital Microscope into the Concept
<
36
Anti-Wrinkle Skin Patches
Anti-Wrinkle Skin Patches
Innoture's 3D-Printed Radara Micro Needle Patches Address Anti-Aging
<
35
Ultra-Fast 3D Printers
Ultra-Fast 3D Printers
This Device Can Produce 3D-Printed Objects in Mere Minutes
<
34
Deep Sea VR Simulators
Deep Sea VR Simulators
The Amphibian SCUBA Diving Simulator Lets Users Explore Underwater Worlds
<
33
Photo-Realistic 3D Avatars
Photo-Realistic 3D Avatars
Metapixel's Image Capturing System Creates Incredibly Lifelike Avatars
<
32
Solar-Powered Outerwear
Solar-Powered Outerwear
This Solar-Powered Fabric Keep Consumers Warm Without the Extra Layers
<
31
Sun-Filtering Tents
Sun-Filtering Tents
This Dermatological Sun Shade Blocks Out Harmful Rays
<
30
Futuristic Science Museums
Futuristic Science Museums
The Museum of Tomorrow Has Opened in Rio De Janeiro
<
29
Food Waste Fertilizers
Food Waste Fertilizers
This Startup is Turning Food Waste into an Odorless Fertilizer
<
28
Solar-Powered Water Devices
Solar-Powered Water Devices
WaterDrop is Capable of Producing Water in the Desert
<
27
Kombucha-Based Textiles
Kombucha-Based Textiles
This Cruelty-Free Alternative to Leather is Made with Plant-Based Fibers
<
26
Reclaimed Tire Mosquito Traps
Reclaimed Tire Mosquito Traps
The Ovillanta Traps Are Made Out Of Discarded Automobile Tires
<
25
Corporeal Product Design Systems
Corporeal Product Design Systems
The 'Digital Hand' Uses a Kinect to Create Furniture and Objects
<
24
Kinetic Energy Harvesting Shoes
Kinetic Energy Harvesting Shoes
InStep NanoPower Footwear Technology Transforms Steps into Energy
<
23
Bacteria-Powered Lighting
Bacteria-Powered Lighting
Glowee Uses Bioluminescent Bacteria as a Sustainable Source of Light
<
22
Typhoon-Strength Wind Turbines
Typhoon-Strength Wind Turbines
Atsushi Shimizu's Wind Turbine Can Withstand Gale Force Winds
<
21
Hydrogen Supercar Concepts
Hydrogen Supercar Concepts
The H2 Speed is the World's First High-Performance Hydrogen-Powered Car
<
20
Hypersonic Space Planes
Hypersonic Space Planes
This Chinese Design Will Take Off from a Runway and Enter Earth's Orbit
<
19
Folding Virtual Reality Glasses
Folding Virtual Reality Glasses
The Homido Mini Glasses Make Smart Eyewear Compact
<
18
Exoskeleton Leg Supports
Exoskeleton Leg Supports
The Archelis Offers Leg Support for Surgeons During Procedures
<
17
Wearable Robotic Exoskeletons
Wearable Robotic Exoskeletons
Hyundai's New Iron Man Suit Helps Wearer's Lift Heavy Objects
<
16
Micro-Detailed 3D Printers
Micro-Detailed 3D Printers
This New 3D Printer Can Handle Extremely High-Resolution Printing Tasks
<
15
Helicopter-Inspired Flying Cars
Helicopter-Inspired Flying Cars
'Lilium' Creates Electric Plane Vessels for Personal Use
<
14
Rollable Cement Alternatives
Rollable Cement Alternatives
This Alternative to Cement is Twice as Strong and Easier to Transport
<
13
Practical Interactive Periodic Tables
Practical Interactive Periodic Tables
Keith Enevoldsen's Table Shows How the Elements Get Used
<
12
Electric Open-Top Submersibles
Electric Open-Top Submersibles
Ortega's MK1C Can Take Occupants Underwater Despite an Open Top
<
11
Ultrasonic Clothes Dryers
Ultrasonic Clothes Dryers
This Ultrasonic Dryer Uses Vibrations to Dry Clothing Instead of Heat
<
10
Miniature Wind Turbines
Miniature Wind Turbines
The Micro Wind Turbine Offers Unbeatable Portability and Efficiency
<
9
3D-Printed Body Braces
3D-Printed Body Braces
WASP Medical's Printed Corsets Support Patients with Scoliosis
<
8
Fungal Leather Products
Fungal Leather Products
The "Leather" Products from MycoWorks are Made from Mushroom Plant Waste
<
7
3D Fashion Projects
3D Fashion Projects
This Project Will Create Streamlined Processes For Crafting 3D-Printed Fashion
<
6
Printed 3D Hologram Cards
Printed 3D Hologram Cards
Lumii Technology Lets Users Create 3D Holograms with Consumer Printers
<
5
Self-Powered Trolleybus Gardens
Self-Powered Trolleybus Gardens
This Piezoelectric Architecture Merges Design & Sustainability
<
4
Cancer-Detection Apps
Cancer-Detection Apps
The Dermofit App Assists Early Stage Skin Cancer Detection Efforts
<
3
Optical Open-Source Telescopes
Optical Open-Source Telescopes
This Tracking Telescope Was Made Using a Raspberry Pi Computer
<
2
Luxurious Weightless Chairs
Luxurious Weightless Chairs
The Elysium Chair was Developed by a Bioengineering Professor
<
1
Self-Building Concrete Blocks
Self-Building Concrete Blocks
The Block ARMO System Consists of Specially Shaped Concrete Blocks
<