It’s often mentioned that breakthroughs should not be scheduled. I’m here to tell you that this is 20th century thinking. The statement assumes the word “breakthrough” is unambiguously defined. This website post questions that assumption and offers a step-by-step help guide achieving a breakthrough. My focus is on batteries, but with some tweaks, you could adapt this for other areas also.
I want to begin by proclaiming that over the last century there was a feeling that a breakthrough was thought to be when, by way of example, you discover a brand new material for li ion battery pack containing, say, higher energy or maybe safer or anything. Those varieties of breakthroughs then go through the traditional rigmarole of publications, licensing, technology transfer, peer appreciation, awards, products and the other boring stuff that takes twenty years to acquire settled. In age of Twitter, Facebook, Uber, and, Snapchat, these kinds of time frame is for the folks unwilling to search to new methods for achieving breakthroughs. If you fit in with this “old” club, Make sure you proceed. The following information will likely be of no use to you personally.
But exactly what is a breakthrough anyway? So far as I realize there is absolutely no body that proclaims something a breakthrough (a Pope for science?). And it is there really this being an eureka moment? Even if you have one, it will likely be annually before you reproduce the experiment and obtain each of the approaches to location to prove it. And if the breakthrough is supposed to be considered a product, it may need you 10 more years to scale it making it.
But imagine if there are a reputable publication that truly called something a breakthrough. After which this is validated and verified by other publications saying the same? That is apparently consistent with the scientific method, does it not?
So, for the purpose of advancing, let us define a breakthrough as just that: It really is proclaimed consequently by multiple publication. Also to allow us to advance, publications will likely be broadly considered a peer reviewed journal article, or even a newspaper, or a blog, or even a tweet etc. i.e., provided that the term breakthrough and your work show on the net somewhere, you happen to be golden. The following information will allow you to arrive there.
Step One: Before beginning the research, try not to browse the literature. The peer-reviewed literature is filled with things which have been tried before. In the event you read them carefully, then what you will be doing will never be new. Consider this mantra (courtesy of NBC when they were promoting reruns from the 90s): “If you haven’t seen it before, its a new comer to you”.
Step Two: As you may start the research, understand that facts just get in the manner. The literature is full of facts (hence Step 1). In 1492 everyone thought the world was flat; until Columbus took for the seas.1 Then we all think it is round, until Tom Friedman proved it was flat. Before The Matrix arrived, we thought gravity was forever binding us for the earth. Breakthroughs happen when these laws are broken and it also takes a bold person to look where no person went before. To paraphrase Marsellus Wallace from Pulp Fiction, you may feel a small sting once in a while when it appears as if you will be violating faraday’s law. These are the facts f*ing along. f* facts.
Step 3: As you now have done your due diligence and ignored everything, it really is a chance to focus. Try to work with a newly-discovered material, or atleast one that has been forgotten for some time. It is an important step. Just as much as it is possible to go after Steps 1 and 2, the better studied the fabric, the harder it really is to convince yourself you are violating all the well-known laws as you are charting a fresh path as an alternative to screwing up. It’s so much easier to imagine this if it’s a whole new material. Graphene is nice (less battery power material, but bear in mind Step Two). So might be fullerenes (granted they can be old, but it feels like it is time to revisit them). Graphite, alternatively, could possibly be bad; except if you plan to utilize it inside a new way; in which case it might be good. Lithium metal is usually good; but if you decide to go this route you should get religion on Steps 1 and two.
Step 4: While you start to get data about the new invention, revisit Step 2. Revisit many times, it, specially when you are feeling down.
Step 5: Time for you to start writing the paper. Always suggest that your invention is better than Li-ion. The best way to get anyone excited is usually to point out that. This could sound hard, however it is not. There are numerous metrics that ought to be satisfied for industrial battery manufacturer, including, energy, power, charge time, cost, life, safety, low temperature and high temperature stability. If you feel that you may have an issue that looks better in almost any one of these simple, you are doing superior to Li-ion. Pricing is the 55dexhpky one if everything else fails. You can always safely say something similar to “our preliminary cost estimates propose that battery will definitely cost below something-small/kWh”. Opposite end of your spectrum is energy, the hardest. In the event you go down this path you actually need Step 6.
Step 6: Always confuse energy with power. It’s completely appropriate to mention “Our pixie dust battery can discharge a factor of 10 faster than Li-ion, therefore EVs according to pixie dust have got a longer driving range comparable to Li-ion EVs” or “our batteries can be charged in 5 minutes, providing more energy than any battery proven to man or aliens. Over a separate note, we simply seem to get one cycle from the battery; we believe this has something connected to aliens”
Step 7: The paper is prepared and it is a chance to submit. Never send the paper to your journal which specializes in publishing papers in batteries. This will likely obtain your paper into the hands of traditional battery-types who remember past history, really know what works and exactly what does not, where you can strong scientific foundation inside the field. Such knowledge is an impediment to the out-of-the-box thinking. Remember Step Two. Always pick a journal that is disconnected from your battery field.
Step 8: Using the paper coming out, it really is time and energy to get prepared for a press release. Do not forget that the press wants to hear that this is a breakthrough. So despite what the peer-reviewed paper proves, be sure to consider it a breakthrough in the press release. Do not forget that Steve Jobs did not have a working iPhone as he announced it around the globe, and stated that they might ship in six months. Should it be good enough for Steve, I’m sure it is actually suitable for yourself. So don’t be shy in telling the press how great 18650 rechargeable battery will likely be. Be sure that you give interviews to numerous publications. Remember our concise explanation of a breakthrough: you need multiple publications to say it is one. So target many outlets.
Step 9: The morning has arrived; the publications are out; and you have spend the better part of the day googling yourself to find out how far the term has spread. Here is the day when you may hear skepticism (some contained throughout the articles among others in emails addressed for your needs). Remember Step 2. Remind yourself the iPhone had many critics (e.g, the proximity sensor will never work. Who would want to surf the web on a phone anyway? Atleast they got the very first problem right!). If it worked out for Steve Jobs, then it could workout for you too.