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Editorial - Eng. Indika W.

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trends 2017


At the dawn of a new year, we engineers are curious to know what big things are going to happen in the Industry- especially in the field of our own specialization. Based on these predictions businesses and individuals need to invest right amount of money, resources and time that make organizational and individual performance better and useful for the society we live.


While I was reading through the predictions for my field of IT and communications, I found that heavy focus is placed on big data analysis and Artificial Intelligence (AI). Organizations and governments are investing heavily to digitalize the systems, while using Artificial intelligence. Intrinsically this mean less and less manual work and some of the labor will be redundant. Further in 2017, trend will be shifting to Edge computing from the Cloud Computing. With the technologies like 5G an IOT (Internet of Things) more and more devices are connected and data is collected in the field. Hence processing will be required near to the devices not at the central servers as we do now.


The Energy industry will focus on how to make solar energy economical. Though the Fossil fuels (oil, natural gas, coal) are still be dominating the energy markets, increasingly the solar energy systems will become better alternative. Current solar cells are not very efficient in terms of converting solar energy to electricity. Further challenges are there for energy storage systems. It is expected that new materials and technologies will be developed soon.


What will happen in transportation? Cities around the world are developing integrated transportation systems. These include rail, bus, pedestrian, car, bicycles and parking slots. The urban infrastructure will be increasingly environment friendly. Providing clean water for all citizens is still a dream for most of the countries, hence large investments in these areas are expected .Heavy focus will be given to water recycling, rain water harvesting, cheaper techniques for desalination and storm water management.


As Sri Lankan Engineers we shall be fully aware of these trends in future. We need to lead in embracing these technologies, include them in our organizational business plans and effectively execute these projects. The IESL can facilitate discussions, educate the public and train our engineers in new technologies through CPD programs. Our Universities and other research and development organizations shall strive hard to innovate in these future potential areas.


Eng. Indika Walpitage

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