When we think about the future of kitchen renovations and technology, robot chefs are not the only thing in mind. Perhaps kitchen appliances that speak and respond to voice commands, or islands that transform into a dining room table with a fully cooked meal. We’d start with robotic kitchen cleaners that magically go into action at the end of the meal.
Earlier, we looked at futuristic kitchen tech available today. Now let's look at some of the kitchen renovation innovations just around the corner!
Coming soon from GE are the bacteria-detecting faucet and dishes made with 3-D printers. Here's a preview of some of the amazing innovations coming soon to a kitchen near you.
Image: Vir Vikram Singh - Picasa
Appliances and Smart Technology
Kitchen appliance manufacturers are sponsoring projects to envision the kitchen renovations of the future, and to begin creating appliances and technologies for them. GE has the GE Home 2025 Challenge, and Electrolux has their Design Lab where students design devices for home innovations.
Electrolux Compact Kitchen
Image: Electrolux Design Lab
In the future, homeowners may be able to purchase an entire Smart Kitchen as part of their kitchen renovations. The Smart kitchen communicates with the grocery store for delivery of needed items, among other things. All appliances in the kitchen talk to each other and to the owner's Smart devices.
Dishwasher of the Future
Biology in the Kitchen
Electrolux Design Lab 2010 students created a prototype of the BioRobot Refrigerator. This fridge cools a biopolymer gel through luminescence. Food items are suspended in the odorless, non-sticky substance that keeps each cool at the optimal temperature. With no need of doors or compartments, the BioRobot is about ¼ the size of today’s refrigerator. Moreover, a gooey green gel-fridge just sounds - and looks - awesome.
Electrolux Bio Robot Refrigerator
Designers seem to think the main problem with toasters is they take up too much counter space. The future Halo! Super-Flexible Toaster is a sheet of heating element that blankets the bread, toasting it and then rolling up for storage later.
Janne Palovuori of Finland, working through the Electrolux Design Lab, created a flat mat that acts as a kitchen scale and more. Nutrima is charged by bending it back and forth before using it. It analyzes and measures nutritional information, toxins and freshness in the food sat upon it. Remind us never to set the ice cream there!
Image: Electrolux Design Lab
Magic Kitchen - CES 2013
At the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show (CES), multiple companies teamed together to create the Magic Kitchen. The future of kitchen renovations will be a high-tech voice and motion-activated kitchen. The kitchen will be able to recognize a person when they walk in the room, project their preferred morning paper onto the table, and start their desired morning beverage warming.
Magic Kitchen might use gesture-controlled commands for hands-free appliance use through technology similar to the Wii sensor bar. Someone standing near the sink could gesture to answer the phone and change the temperature on the stove at the same time.
Kitchen technology in the future will include improved ergonomics and increased universal design. Wall units and cabinet elements will be height-adjustable and independent from each other to fit each user. Kitchen renovations will include eCoupled inducers inside countertops to power blenders, food processors, or Smart pans. Individual food containers for in-container cooking without wires or outlets might heat directly on the eCoupled counter.
Smaller Spaces Still Deserve Big Design
More people living in increasingly smaller spaces drive much of kitchen innovation. The future promises more of the same. Ultra-small living spaces will increase the need for integrated and wall-mounted mini kitchens.
Mini Integrated Kitchen
The version below, created by Ermi van Oers from The Netherlands via the Electrolux Design Lab, shows the 2D SmartKitchen. In this design, users merely move food from one machine to the other and the SmartKitchen does the rest of the work. Pretty slick.
2D Smart Kitchen
Image: Electrolux Design Lab
Sustainability and the Microbial Home
Sustainability and energy savings will continue to be prime concerns. We are already seeing kitchen renovations that incorporate green design. Clive van Heerden, Senior Director of Design-Led Innovation at Philips Design believes biological processes will power future kitchens with less energy and pollution.
Modern Rounded Kitchen
The Microbial Home design, below, is a proposed integrated cyclical ecosystem. Each function’s output becomes the input for the next function. The home becomes a biological machine to filter, process and reuse sewage, wastewater, garbage and trash.
The central hub is a movable kitchen island with chopping surface, vegetable waste grinder, gas cooking range, and various elements that display system resources. It contains a methane digester that converts bathroom solid waste plus vegetable trimmings from the kitchen into methane gas. The gas powers the range and gas-mantle lights in the kitchen.
Cultures of bacteria that live on organic waste materials produce the methane. Various configurations of methane digester technology has been used for centuries, but this would be the first integrated home digester system.
Microbial HomeWhat future tech do you want to see in the kitchen?
While we are not sure about poo-powered cooking, we are hopeful for the future of humanity in the kitchen thanks to innovations. We definitely want to see the microwave oven from "The Fifth Element" that takes food flakes and turns them into a full chicken dinner in seconds.Chicken Dinner
Sources:FastCoexist and PC Mag