Tuesday, July 28, 2009

How CPG Will Be Affected by 2008 Scientific Discoveries

I just read Discover magazine's top 100 science stories of 2008 and thought it would be interesting to summarize the discoveries that are most likely to impact the CPG industry in the next 5 years.


  • Containers, wraps, connectors:
    • Self-healing rubber – if you break the rubber band, you can put the ends together and they bond back together with their original strength.
    • Nanopaper made of wood pulp ground so fine that it weaves together so tightly it's almost bulletproof.
  • Better, cheaper energy:
    • Microbatteries – viruses covered in metal pack a lot of power into a space the size of a skin cell.
    • New developments in capturing and storing solar energy are making this more cost effective.
    • Wind power could supply 20% of the U.S.'s electrical demand by 2030.
    • New generation of electric cars: Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV) will run 40 miles after being charged off a standard household outlet, and after that a combustion engine powers the onboard battery, overcoming the limitations of even the current generation of hybrids. The 100 mpg Chevy Volt and Toyota Prius PHEVs are slated for 2010 release, as is a fully electric Nissan vehicle.
  • Healthcare:
    • Affordable analysis of your individual DNA to identify your risk for a wide range of ailments so you can take steps to reduce your risk. ($500 to $2500 from companies such as Navigenics, decode, and 23andMe).
    • A drug that strengthens muscles without exercise.
    • Compounds in human saliva that hasten healing of wounds.
    • Memory training techniques that can actually raise your IQ.
  • Harry Potter's Invisibility Cloak?
    • Wonder materials that can deflect light, sound, or water waves away from the cloaked object.


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