|An Independent in 2000|
|Science & Technology|
Technology has advanced much more rapidly in some areas thanks to Charles Malcolm Edwards's contributions to the fields of Aerospace, Mechanical, and Propulsion Engineering before going into politics in the early 90s. Due to his success as an engineer and as a businessman, many innovations have occurred since the late 80s that would have taken much longer to be invented in OTL.
Pulse Detonation Jet Engine
While the basics of PDEs have been around since the V-1 "Buzz Bomb" during World War II, it was Charles Malcolm Edwards's breakthrough design that ultimately made the engine a reality. Capable of flying at low speeds like a traditional Turbofan engine, and then moving into Hypersonic speeds with ease, this power-plant has become the standard of Military and Commercial aircraft propulsion. Requiring almost no fuel once it reaches hypersonic speeds, it has made non-stop travel the norm of all airlines, and has made Single Stage to Orbit space craft possible by as early as 2003 when Burt Rutan's SpaceShipOne won the $10 million dollar Xprize. The engine has been applied to some of the most famous commercial aircraft such as the Boeing 777 Sonic Cruiser, as well as their newly built 787 Star-liner, the first large scale commercial space-plane. The military has also applied this technology to the F-15SE Super Eagle, the F-18E Super Hornet, the B-2 Spirit, and the revolutionary V-22 Osprey, the first VTOL used by the US military to not use a traditional helicopter configuration. NASA most famously used the design on the Orion Space Shuttle, the first reusable spacecraft capable of making a flight to the Moon.
Series Hybrid Technology
Introduced in 2003 by General Motors, the first production Series Hybrid car was the 2004 Chevy Impala. The technology has become the standard of all cars made in the US to keep up with the milage standards of the US Energy Independence and Security Act and the American Energy Independence Act. The technology was first introduced as early as 1969 when GM introduced its XP-883 plug-in hybrid concept car, though it never really became a practical technology until the mid 90s with the introduction of lighter materials and advanced batteries. Currently the most popular Hybrid in the world today is the 2005 Ford Jolt, a small roadster that has become the favorite car for Hot-Rodders and new drivers alike.
While the superconductor has always been a relatively common technology in industry, it was never made a practical battery technology until 1998, when Panasonic revealed its joint Project with Phillips on a practical superconductor. The battery made fast charges with large amounts of energy practical and it was one of the key technologies behind the development of hybrid cars in the early 2000s. Currently the technology is being applied to cell phone battery technology, in an attempt to make Lithium Ion cells more efficient. LG has stated that they expect to have a Superconductor powered cell phone on the market as early as 2010.
Adult Stem Cell Therapy
With the signing of the US Universal Healthcare Act, Adult Stem Cell research say a large infusion of research grants. The technology had been a mere concept during the late 90s, but on October 21st, 2005 the first Stem Cell therapy entered the US healthcare system. The first techniques made it possible to re-grow any organ in a lab from just a small sample, and by 2007 most of the world's organ related illnesses have come to an end in the first world, and the average lifespan of an American is estimated to be 98 years old. Currently this technology is being applied towards Cancer and Alzheimer's treatments, along with cheaper cures for HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and other diseases that still plague the developing world today.
Electronically Fired Weapons
First employed by the US military, EFW technology was first developed by the Australian start-up Metal Storm Ltd. The company won a contract with Colt Defense and Browning Arms Company to develop the XM-8 Standard Infantry Rifle for the US military. The technology has since been applied to every gun in the US arsenal, and is being applied to next generation ship to ship weapons systems. The largest EFW weapon in use today is the XM2001 Crusader's 155 mm howitzer.
Introduced at the start of the War on Terror, thermobaric explosives are quickly becoming the standard explosive for missiles, bombs, and grenades in most major powers for their higher yield than conventional weapons other than nuclear bombs. The largest Thermobaric Bomb to date is the Russian "Father of All Bombs." The US is currently leaning more towards kinetic energy weapons. Despite their destructave power, they are much safer than nuclear weapons.
Hydroponics saw a boom in 1998 when then Mayor Charles Malcolm Edwards commissioned the construction of the world's first Vertical Farm in Seattle as part of the Emerald City Project. Since then Vertical farms have been built in almost every major city around the world, as they provide a central source of high quality, locally grown produce for the city's inhabitants, bringing the cost of the food down significantly, the first of which was completed in Seattle in 2006, shortly followed by one in Tokyo later that year. The second advantage is that the farm has a completely controlled climate that allows any type of food to be grown, and makes the production of Gene-Mod Food or Vat Grown food far more common. Currently the US has the largest number of vertical farms with the largest in Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, Houston, and Boston, but China is expected to overtake the US in as little as five years, with India closely following. The world's largest Vertical Farm is currently being constructed in Shanghai; it set to be is 400 meters high.
Thin Film Solar Cells
With the signing of the US Energy Independence and Security Act, the funds from the tax on automakers and energy companies who failed to meet the new efficiency standards were redirect at "Green Technologies." Thin film solar received considerably more funds than any other technology, and in 2005 the first Thin film solar cell manufacturing plant opened in San Francisco, CA. Thin film solar cells now blanket the rooves of over 98 million Americans, and the numbers are growing every day. This technology was given its largest fund with the American Energy Independence Act, which has created federal incentives for private homes and major companies to buy green.
Having been a concept of science fiction for decades, the first bionic limb replacement was commissioned by the US military in 2003. The contract was ultimately won by master inventor Dean Kaman, the brilliant inventor behind the segway. His "Luke Arm," was introduced to wounded veterans in 2007, and is being marketed to civilians as well. The arm has been such a success that several soldiers have returned to active duty, though this is only the case with single amputees, those with bionic legs are unable to return to service in the field with current technology.
Magnetic Levitation Railways
First employed by the Germans and the Japanese with their bullet trains, MagLev Rails are becoming increasingly common around the world today. The largest rail of its kind is the New Transcontinental Rail which runs from New York to San Francisco, and the Polar Rail which runs from Panama City to Barrow, Alaska. These are currently in use by the United States. These will all be trumped when the Global Highway is completed, which will also include a global rail line.
Voice Recognition Software
Brought on as a Microsoft side project, Voice Recognition Software has recently made a boom in the personal electronics markets. The first voice recognition system to be widely marketed beyond a cliche novelty, was Microsoft Speak, in 2006. The technology was later adopted in one form or another by every major hardware company. The most popular device with this technology today is the Apple iPhone G3, built in response to the widely popular Blackberry storm.
Dectection Security is the most advance of all security systems in the world. The company was formed since security increased in the US, in which its role was to support Charle's new security plan. The system helps tracks down weapons, illegal drugs, illegal aliens, and illegal items bought to the US. The system was also supported by business corportations worldwide, who use some of their technological achievements to bring ideas for the system. It also "tags" people using computers and cameras in order to catch criminals in the US. With the system able to catch anything illegal, few people can get away with their crimes.
Scientists in the US have studied nanotechnology for several purposes. During the Malcom Administration, scientists made their first invention from nanotechnology as medicine for a whole range of diseases with nearly no side effects. Nanotechnology is also used to make new building materials tough as diamonds to last long and repair rarely needed for centuries; they are also extremly light but are defintley strong; that way, buildings can be built higher and bigger than other ones. Naotechnology also helped scientists to create a wide range of inventions in medicine, computers, machines, building materials, and so much more.
Seeing the potential power biotechnology can have a positive effect on people's lives, scientists began to study them. Scientists used a method called genetic engineering to increase the yields of crops from crop failure. They take a gene from a plant that has an achievement to a plant that doesn't so that way it will be able to have to increase its production. Several crops in the United States were genetically altered to increase yields, so that US can sell more foodstuffs worldwide and send a portion to the poor underdeveloped nations. Scientists also made several discoveries from the same technology to make new medicines.
Super Powered Computers
Super Powered Computers were built to make achievements in world technology. These computers are able to run on little energy and ranged from all sizes and included more smaller microchips that can store more information by over 10 times as much and include those that help drive away computer viruses. Computers include HQ sound and screens and include multiple features and even mini-computers that come with them. These computers, however, are affordable by 95% of American families, in which most of the world considers them luxuries for the very rich.