With cutting-edge critical technology being touted as the world’s power symbol, India figures in the top 5 positions in 29 such technologies out of the 44. In the specific domains of defence, space, robotics and transportation, India ranks third in aero engines including hypersonics, & fourth in the realm of drones, swarming & collaborative robots, reported Robotics India.

But China dominates the skyline in the strides made in scientific & research breakthroughs in critical technology by topping the list in 37 out of 44 critical technologies, followed by the US which tops in just seven areas.

The Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) Report says: “Our research reveals that China has built the foundations to position itself as the world’s leading science & technology superpower, by establishing a sometimes stunning lead in high-impact research across the majority of critical & emerging technology domains.”

In the field of military & allied technologies, China leads the world in advanced aircraft engines (including hypersonics), drones, swarming, collaborative robots, autonomous systems operation technology & advanced robotics, while the US led in small satellites & space launch systems.

“Unchecked, this could shift not just technological development & control, but global power & influence to an authoritarian state where the development, testing, & application of emerging, critical & military technologies isn’t open & transparent, & where it can’t be scrutinised by independent civil society & media,” the report added.

In August 2021, China took the US, & the world by surprise, when it flew a hypersonic missile around the world in low-orbit space before hitting its predestined target.

Besides aero engines & hypersonics, the other critical technology areas where India is placed third included coatings, advanced explosives & energetic materials, critical minerals extraction & processing, distributed ledgers, advanced data analytics, machine learning, protective cybersecurity technologies, advanced integrated circuit design & fabrication, natural language processing (including speech & text recognition & analysis), supercapacitors, photovoltaics, biological manufacturing & photonic sensors.