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Technology In Tokyo, Inventions And Innovations

Courtesy of WOWSA, Odaiba Marine Park, Tokyo Bay, Japan.

The Japanese hosts at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games held between July 24th and August 9th 2020 will use a number of innovative technologies that will showcase its vision for society, business, athletics, and rehabilitation in many ways.

1. Power
The 2020 Tokyo Olympics organizing committee reports that the stadiums, Athletes’ Village (with 5,650 apartments for 12,000 athletes) and other facilities will be 100% powered with wind and solar energy.

2. Metals for Medals
The gold, silver and bronze Olympic medals will be partly made from old, donated mobile phones. 5,000 medals will be created by extracting the small amounts of gold, silver and copper in discarded phones. Already over 80,000 mobile phones have been donated to support this effort.

3. Recycling
99% of the goods used during the Olympic Games will be reused or recycled.

4. Autonomous Transportation
Driverless taxis will be available for fans and visitors. Passengers will be able to use their smartphones to unlock doors and pay the fares.

5. Solar Highways & Parking Lots
Test roads and parking lots are being laid in Tokyo. Solar panels are laid on city streets and parking lots and then covered in special resin so cars can drive over them. This significantly increases the amount of available solar energy.

6. Language Communications
Robots will be placed at Olympic venues that will help foreign guests with translations to and from the Japanese language.

7. Mobile Assistance
Not only will the robots help with translations for non-Japanese speaking visitors, but some of them will carry bags for disabled people and the elderly.

8. GPS
If the smart transponders are used, viewers at the venue, online and television will be able to track each swimmer’s placing and positioning to within centimeters, as well as track the athletes’ fluctuating heart rates and possibly other biometrics in real-time.

The smart transponders will be enabled with Japan’s new GPS system (i.e., the quasi-zenith satellite system or QZSS). Whereas, the current United States government-run civilian GPS data is provided in degrees of 10 or more meters, Japan’s new system will enable accuracy down to the centimeter for civilian (and Olympic) applications.

9. Facial Recognition
Athletes, coaches, officials, managers, staff, media and administrators will be confirmed through facial recognition technology as a part of Tokyo’s larger security plans at the venues, Athletes’ Village and other facilities. Each authorized individual will be given a smart credential that serves as an official identification card and will contain chips that enable facial an automatic verification of their identity at checkpoints and entrances.

10. Fake Tickets
Fences up to 3 meters high with round-the-clock infrared sensors, high-performance surveillance cameras, and anti-forgery devices will prevent misuse of fake tickets.

Disabled people and Paralympic athletes from around the world will be given the opportunity to use KAATSU, a Japanese rehabilitaiton modality that has led to remarkable mobility improvements for paraplegics and quadriplegics.

12. Swimmers’ Biometric Data
Although it has not been announced, smart transponders used by the marathon swimmers could capture their pulse rate during the 10 km race Odaiba Marine Park.

This data can be automatically uploaded to the cloud and then reported in near real-time on television, computers and smartphones. This would allow fans and coaches to know the different pulse rates (in heart beats per minute) of the marathon swimmers as they race through the six-loop 10 km course.

The 10 km marathon swim will be held in Odaiba Marine Park, a very flat-water venue with warm water (over 25°C) and no expected winds and high humidity and air temperatures while 5,000 seated guests watch from the onshore. There will be certain designated standing room areas along the rectangular course.

The actual Olympic 10 km marathon swim course can be seen between 5:10 – 5:20 in the video above.

For more information on the 2020 Tokyo Games, visit here.

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