Born in Zagreb, Croatia, 37 years ago, Dr. Marin Soljačić is a physicist and electrical engineer recently brought to the attention of tech geeks around the globe for successfully accomplishing wireless non-radiative energy transfer.
On the trail of Tesla, who demonstrated wireless energy transmission as early as in 1893 at the World’s Columbian exposition in Chicago, Dr. Soljačić, founder of WiTricity, managed to transfer power at a distance of 2 metres and thus reach new heights in technology such as the invention of wireless-free mobile or laptop chargers to be commercially reproduced in the years to follow. The benefits? Tesla was on to it almost a century ago stating that “The economic transmission of power without wires is of all-surpassing importance to man. By its means he will gain complete mastery of the air, the sea and the desert. It will enable him to dispense with the necessity of mining, pumping, transporting and burning fuel, and so do away with innumerable causes of sinful waste.”
Soljačić got his BSc in physics and electrical engineering in 1996. He continued his studies at Princeton University and obtained a PhD in physics to eventually become a professor at MIT University where he currently works and teaches full-time.
Apart from transferring energy with no tangled up wires lying around, Dr. Soljačić also focuses on researching and experimenting with photonics crystals, probably leading to the future commercialisation of photonic computers which could perform operations 10 or more times faster than a conventional electronic computer.
When asked what he imagines the future to be like in 50 years time, Dr. Soljačić confirms what some of us fear, and others dream of, “…I believe that the advancements in technology will tremendously increase in the next 50 years, even when compared to what we invented and discovered in the past 50 years. For example, I believe there is a great chance that computers, or robots, will be capable of carrying out all human activities as good, or even better, than currently people do. It is to be expected that such progress will change society forever.”
Also, Dr. Soljačić addresses the issue of many scientists leaving their home countries to work abroad where research is heavily supported by certain governments such as the US, though underlining that even where the stars and stripes flag, ” there is the need to move where the most renowned research centres are, like the Boston area or California.”
So, watch out for this one as he seems to have a lot more stuff to pop out of his closet in the near future.
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