about this project
My partner and I live in Cape Town, South Africa. We met in an online forum and discovered that not only do we have a very similar outlook on life, the environment and renewable energy, but we are both at a point in our lives, where we want to make a career change to something more meaningful that would enable us to leave a positive legacy to our children and the rest of humanity. Then we discovered that we were born on exactly the same day and our wives bear the same name! We were blown away! Once we began discussing how we might start a new business and change the world (one life at a time), we realised that we had both been investigating the same technology for years. That technology centres around the use of focussed solar energy to drive a Stirling motor to provide electricity - the basic concept. But then he introduced me to a holistic system that would do that and so much more...
I have attached a link that goes into more detail but just briefly:
- The system is modular and in its complete form, has a greenhouse with optimised conditions for horticulture - here the user can grow vegetables for food or to sell.
- Inside the greenhouse we use fresnel lenses to heat vegetable oil in a closed system.
- The vegetable oil is stored in a thermal tank and can keep its heat for up to 3 days, thus acting as thermal storage when sunlight is at a low.
- It’s also used to heat the air that drives the Stirling motor, to produce 3kw of electrical power.
- It’s also used to provide heat for cooking or other purposes.
The technology is not new, but the combination of technologies is unique. It was developed in Germany and a pilot project was built and tested in Tamera, Portugal.
WE ALREADY OWN THE RIGHTS TO MANUFACTURE AND DISTRIBUTE THE SYSTEM IN SOUTHERN AFRICA.
What we need to do is to build a pilot system here in South Africa, which we can use for demonstration purposes in marketing the product and for that we need funding. We are going to employ a two-pronged marketing strategy, namely we want to target NGO’s that provide power to the poor in remote, rural areas of Southern Africa and secondly the private sector in areas beyond the reach of the grid and/or where people wish to go “off the grid”.
There is plenty of research confirming that the lack of access to electricity is one of the major factors preventing millions of poor people from escaping the poverty in which they live. As for the private sector – here in Africa there are thousands of farmers who are too far from the grid to access it and still require power; plus there is a growing trend among even urbanites to want to go “off the grid”. We want to capitalise on these.
To summarise, we want the business to be commercially successful but we also want to maintain a strong social conscience by providing poor, destitute people with a means to escape their dire circumstances and gain access to basic amenities.
How much? The million dollar question... We need $125,000 US to build the pilot system, conduct initial testing and do limited marketing. It’s a lot of money, which we don’t have and which we are hoping, against hope, to obtain from somewhere. Let’s see what transpires...
The link to our website is: http://www.technobotics.co.za/page17.html
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