AI News: Autonomous Sailboats and Water Infrastructure Robots

Artificial intelligence and robotics is changing our world and our economy. From autonomous sailboats to water infrastructure, AI will add an enormous amount of economic growth over the next 12 years.

| Updated:

A new discussion paper from McKinsey Global Institute suggests that artificial intelligence (AI) will produce significant economic growth over the next 12 years.

In summary, it predicts that AI will:

  • create an additional $13 trillion in global economic activity by 2030, or 1.2 percent additional growth each year.
  • boost employment by 10%, while reducing jobs in repetitive, non-digital activities.
  • result in a marked difference in growth between AI leaders and laggards. Those that adopt AI and stimulate digital education will gain the most, with an additional 20 to 25 percent boost in economic benefits.

Autonomous Sailboats

In a sign of how AI is changing the economy, a robotic sailboat just made history.

The SB Met, an autonomous sailing boat built by Norway’s Offshore Sensing AS, just sailed across the Atlantic Ocean. It was the first to win the Microtransat Challenge, an autonomous vessel competition that has been held each year since 2010.

Water Infrastructure Robots

It also looks like AI is getting to work on upgrading the world’s infrastructure. With fresh water becoming increasingly scarce, it makes sense to improve the pipelines carrying this precious commodity.

About 20% of the world’s fresh water supply is lost due to leaking pipes.

A PhD candidate at the Massachussetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has designed a robot that will swim through municipal infrastructure and identify leaks.

The robots, named Daisy and Lighthouse, will detect small holes within a meter. Current technology will only detect large holes within 30 meters.