At present the tallest skyscraper on the planet is the Burj Khalifa in Dubai which stands at just over half a mile tall (and that's over twice the height of the Empire State building). But skyscrapers of the future could rise as high as three miles, and be self-cleaning. Oh yeah, and clean the surrounding smog too.
At least, this is one of the ideas released by Arconic, an engineering and cutting edge manufacturing company whose recent campaign The Jetsons took inspiration from the 1962 cartoon but set in in the year 2062. For it Arconic and various futurists imagined the future of air travel, cars, space exploration, and cityscapes.
For the cityscape they came up with the three-mile high skyscraper which uses technologies in development or on the market. These include 3D printing which could help buildings become more freeform in design and be more resilient to strong winds and differing climates.
Another material is the company's EcoClean surfacing which uses sunlight, oxygen, and water to not only clean the building but the air around it too.
“The functional coating provides aesthetics, it provides maintenance benefits, and it also provides a benefit to the surrounding environment by reducing the content of pollutants around it,” Sherri McCleary, a materials scientist at Arconic, told Business Insider.
The coating has chemicals that when mixed with light and water vapour create what's called free radicals, which drain pollutants from the air, break them down and which, along with dirt and grime, the building then sheds like a dead skin.
Along with this self-cleaning surface they could also feature a new motorized window called Bloomframe. These windows turn usually static buildings into changing forms, where a window can transform into a glass balcony.
Imagining standing on that at three miles up? It will certainly make for a stunning, if intimidating, view.
The world of The Jetsons gets a scientific makeover in this video below. Arconic has reimagined the year 2062, through the eyes of leading futurists, our engineers, and filmmaker Justin Lin.