Some of the Biggest Challenges Facing Engineering Today

Some of the Biggest Challenges Facing Engineering Today

August 29, 2018

Some of the Biggest Challenges Facing Engineering Today

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Every aspect of the world currently is technologically advanced, everything can be merely accomplished by switching on an electronic device. Astronomically, we have reached the planet Venus. Everything can be virtually done over the internet of things. Through today’s technology, knowledge can spread.

Imagine tracking the minuscule movements through a remote-controlled satellite? Even precious human lives have been made possible through genetic engineering. Everything has been engineered to enhance human lives by making it more comfortable and easier.

The exciting engineering industry is about solving global problems and saving the world. However, engineering, like so many other fields has some serious challenges to overcome. Perhaps before engineering the world, it is better to come up with a list of what their challenges are so that nothing gets unheeded.

Some of the world’s best engineering minds have stepped out of their laboratories to lay clear the today’s greatest challenges. Among them, the most challenging include:

  • Implications on the Ecosystem

The ecosystem refers to all the communities of living organisms and non-living things found in a specific space, their habitats and their interactions that provide to us humans and all other living organisms’ essentials of a good life, survival and quality of life. One of the biggest challenge facing engineering projects is their impact on the ecosystem.

Many engineering projects in the past have been developed at the expense of nature. For instance, a large chunk of the power used in our daily operations comes from burning fossils that have devastating greenhouse implications. Such effects threaten our home, the planet earth. For instance, a certain noticeable trend has been reclaiming land or building on riparian land, this have an effect on the organisms living in the water.

For that reason, engineers have the biggest challenge of developing clean energy through cutting edge technology and cost reduction at the same time ensuring the safety of living things.

  • The Existence of the Human Race


EcosystemPerhaps nuclear energy is one of the greatest engineering discoveries to date. However, it has the capacity to eliminate the entire human race merely by a few tons of uranium loaded shells. As such, engineering has the equally the greatest challenge of curbing the proliferation of deadly technologies that threaten human race. For instance, the world could not tolerate a nuclear, or rather a chemical weapon in a civil war zone like Syria.

  • Sustainable Development

Sustainability is turning out to be a critical challenge for pretty much everyone, and for engineers, it is a major one too. Engineers are charged with inventing particular technology that utilizes resources efficiently without compromising the future need. Depletion of resources through substandard technologies must be decimated for the future generation to find life more comfortable.

Some engineers have tried solving the sustainability problem by constructing green buildings.

  • Elimination of Disease

Despite this head lying squarely in the docket of medical scientists, genetics and bio-medical engineering equally have major responsibilities in saving human lives. The heading does not disregard the big strides that have been achieved so far in most engineering field.

However, we are still unable to cure simple viral infections or a common acidity problem, and that is clearly a challenge. It is possible that a combination of efforts from biomedical and genetic engineering and medical science can go a long way in providing solutions to health challenges that have bothered us across centuries.

  • Access to Everyone


Science, especially engineering has grown leaps and bounds and yet not everyone is realizing the benefits. For example, a child raised in a slum or a rather a poor environment may not be able to access the internet because of the high cost associated with the service. Similarly, people living in remote areas in Africa are unable to reap the benefits of medical advancements and are still dying of trivial, or rather diseases that are simple to cure. Making such advancements and solution affordable and accessible to everyone is the work of engineers.

The list is indeed unending even though it is shortening every day. Nonetheless, engineering will become a human accomplishment if it helps us overcome the above global challenges among others including:

  • Managing nitrogen cycle
  • Providing access to clean water
  • Restoring and enhancing urban infrastructure
  • Reverse-engineering of the brain
  • Overcoming cyber-battles
  • Enhancing virtual reality
  • Solving over population and pollution

"Meeting these challenges would be game changing," said Charles M. Vest, president of the NAE. "Success with any of them could dramatically improve life for everyone."

There is need for skilled engineers more than ever today. Technology develop rapidly, some things we never thought possible are possible these days with the main discussion being AI (Artificial Intelligence) and Machine Learning.

The need for skilled engineers has never been more pressing as it is today. As technology grows, so is the human population and their needs especially in the developing and underdeveloped countries. Solving most of these global problems lies at the hands of the engineers.

Written by Kui Anne

Last modified on Wednesday, 29 August 2018 16:33

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