Wednesday, 13 October 2010

The emergency catalyst

The Chilean miners plight and rescue is a great example of how an emergency situation, in a smaller but similar way to times of war, can act as a catalyst for technology development, deployment and exploitation. There are many examples of how high technology has been used in the rescue of the Chilean miners, not least the smart belts that each man is wearing during his ascent to the surface, which measures the vital life parameters in the body and transmits that to the medics on the surface.

Innovation is often driven from such emergency situations. In the case of this particular emergency/disaster, it is the deployment and exploitation of technology rather than the development which is most prevalent. However, as with war, it is likely that many of the technologies brought to bear on this context will now be used in other, perhaps less urgent and more day-to-day situations and that is usually a very good thing.

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