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INSTAPOWER

Anytime anywhere, you can have light !

Photo of Ahmed Besrour

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Explain your project idea (2,000 characters)

The world is growing very fast like never before , yet over one billion individuals still have no access to electricity which impacts education, communication , financial systems and even healthcare. InstaPower is a company created to solve this issue by offering a device that converts fire into electricity. The target market is central African countries(Chad) which happens to use fire in a daily basis to cook and warm up. The core technology we’re implementing is Stirling engines, we tested the technology by fully implementing a prototype , and the product idea by getting actual preorders. And we already signed partnerships with the NGOs and associations to build a bridge with the product end beneficiary. The main customer is NGOs, but after conducting an in-depth market research it turns out that campers, hobbyists and schools are interested in this product as well. So we started planning to create educational materials and sell this product unassembled as a KIT to schools and students We tackle several SDG s at the same time, but mainly SDG 7: affordable and clean energy. Over 1, 2 billion individuals around the world have literally no access to electricity, most of them live in Africa. We are working on our project by establishing partnerships; we basically don’t deliver our product directly to the final customer. Our customer belongs to disadvantaged communities that’s why we work with nonprofit organization who are interested in the field and working or willing to work on energy security and access to electricity. We already have an association «the student Chadian association” who will deliver our first ten products and try them in real life conditions. Even though our market exceeds the 1.2 billion individuals we decided to start from Chad for many reasons; it’s a proximate market, with high potentials in the future, this country has less than 4% access to electricity and we already have partnerships there.

Who are the beneficiaries? (1,000 characters)

As we work on energy sustainability and affordability we provide a product that benefits from a wasted source of energy and we turn it into electricity which many people do not have. We contribute to the energy justice and the economic growth of a quarter of the world’s population.InstaPower turns the power of heat or fire into electricity, by that we are not planning to create the source of fire but we plan to use an existing source and the wasted energy from fire. Our final customer uses fire for daily needs, to cook, to warm and many other use cases, only by putting instapower next to a heat source in generates electricity.The target market is central African countries which happens to use fire in a daily basis to cook and warm up. Our beneficiary are families living in rural areas who suffer from poor access to electricity. We decided to start with the republic of tchad as a pilot.

How is your idea unique? (1,000 characters)

The Chadian state is promoting the renewable energy source. However there is no serious project yet to provide electricity for 95% of the population that still in the dark. For that reason there is no direct competitor today in our target market. Nonetheless, the solar energy technology is considered as a potential competitor. The startups that are developing solar energy system are far from our target market by 2000 kilometres. The main competitive advantage of InstaPower is the mobility of the product and it allows 24 hour usage. Therefore, InstaPower provides electricity anytime and anywhere. By providing electricity to those who do not have it, we allow them to keep connected and maybe one day someone needs to make an emergency call that can save only because they have their phone charged. InstaPower turns the power of heat or fire into electricity, by that we are not planning to create the source of fire but we plan to use an existing source and the wasted energy from fire.

Idea Proposal Stage (choose one)

  • Prototype: I have done some small tests or experiments with prospective users to continue developing the idea.

Tell us more about your organization/company (1 sentence and website URL)

Did you know that ¼ of the world's population are still living in the dark? Well guess what , we created a solution for them once and for all. InstaPower, a portable lightweight device that converts fire and heat sources into Electricity. A solution that would impact education , financial systems, communication of an entire population. Connecting that massive number of people to the modern interconnected world would have a huge impact on the world growth. http://www.instapower.pro/

Expertise in sector

  • 1-2 years

Organization Filing Status

  • No, but we plan to register in the future.

In 3-4 sentences, tell us the inspiration or story that encouraged you to start this project.

Our main inspiration are the stories we hear from our end user, it all started when our friend Nodji from Tchad told us that more than 90% of the population he belongs to literally have no access to electricity, it made us think of all the problems that may come along, from low quality education, disconnectivity from the world and so on.

Please explain how your selected topic areas are influenced, in the local context of your project (1,000 characters).

As for energy sustainability and affordability, it is directly and indirectly influenced by many factors. In the african context, and especially in the most energy impoverished countries, the electricity field is so centralized and most of the time controlled by the government and political parties. Monopoly also played a big role in limiting the energy sector and unabling the competition from the emerging solutions and initiatives especially green ones. Energy technologies is one of the most expensive which made the job difficult for project holders to convince investors. In another way, our energy deployment is ultimately related to climate change, this dilemma that some people seem not to believe in it due to its ambiguity.

Who will work alongside your organization in the project idea? (1,000 characters)

Our main partners are NGOs as an intermediary and we have letters of appreciation from them. We have already travelled, arranged meetings and succeed to make partnerships to go on business with them. Our first partner who introduced us to the market is the chadian student association in Tunisia, they helped us with the market discovery and the market validation, but most of all they helped us identify the need. The main Organizations that were extremely interested and believed in our product are “Global Shapers Community”, “Foundation for Sustainable Development” and “Konrad Adenauer Stiftung“ as well as other companies mainly “Fidias Technologies WattNow” . Because Campers, Hobbyists and students are our tertiary market, we tested our idea product with them and currently we succeed to receive about 30 pre-orders so far on our website.

Please share some of the top strengths identified in the community which your project will serve (500 characters)

The Chadian state is promoting the renewable energy source. However there is no serious project yet to provide electricity for 95% of the population that still in the dark. The solar energy technology is considered as a potential competitor. The startups that are developing solar energy system are far from our target market by 2000 kilometres. The main competitive advantage of InstaPower is the mobility of the product and it allows 24 hour usage.InstaPower provides electricity anytime & anywhere

Geographic Focus

The target market is African countries We decided to start with the republic of Tchad as a pilot.

How many months are required for the project idea? (500 characters)

We already finished the proof of concept phase and we build a fully functioning prototype. Our second version will be even more efficient and more appealing to our customer and will have more advanced use cases. We estimate that by the end of the year, we will have a final perfect version. We will start our mass production by January of 2019. We plan to deliver our first products to our beneficiaries around Mars 2019. In brief we need ten months to implement our project idea.

Did you submit this idea to our 2017 BridgeBuilder Challenge? (Y/N)

  • No

20 comments

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Comment
Spam
Photo of David Svarrer
Team

Ahmed Besrour -

Dear Ahmed / Instapower. We never got started, despite numerous efforts. We are continuing in Nairobi with Majik Water. None of us "Won" in the OpenIDEO competition, however that is not a point !! We shall continue working on this.

You were making some Stirling Engine constructions. Now, please contact us, such that we can discuss how to work together, such that we can create interface between our solar concentrator and your Insta Power, and thereby in your end you can make your system working ALSO with our solar concentrator, and in our end we can make our solar concentrator work ALSO with your Insta Power.

Please contact us at nexus7@rain.yt -

Looking forward to getting started. We are meeting here in Nairobi somewhere towards mid of August 2018.

Sincerely
David Svarrer / Thomas Høyer
Rational Intuitive IVS
Denmark / Kenya

Spam
Photo of Kanika Verma
Team

Q-Are the profits made from selling your technology schools and etc. funneled back into the program? What is your sustainability plan for helping the disadvantaged?
Q-Can you elaborate upon how your device looks and works, Can people use fire they use to cook to generate electricity simultaneously? and how much electricity can instapower generate?
Q- What will be the cost of your product after you begin mass producing it? Will you be providing subsidies?

Spam
Photo of Ahmed Besrour
Team

Hi Kanika Verma , So our business model is designed with a third main part which is the NGO's who works on affordable and clean energy project. Their role is to buy our product from us and to deliver it to the final users for free, or symbolic amount. We planned such a business model cause during our market discovery, we found out that our user are not able to buy our product. And as a social project, yes we plan to funneled back the profits into the program.Here is a link to know more how the product works : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c1129euu7Aw&feature=youtu.be
On mass production, it s gonna cost around 25 $ and it lifespan is more than 5 years.
Thank you for your interraction

Spam
Photo of Gayanjith Premalal
Team

Hi Ahmed Besrour , It's great to see you in the challenge and it's even greater to see you collaborating with Nexus 7 team in order to take your idea to the next level. However, have you considered registering your company anytime soon? I suggest you to read the eligibility criteria again and do what is necessary :) Keep up the good work!

Spam
Photo of Ahmed Besrour
Team

hello Gayanjith Premalal , at this stage we are in discussion with different project and motivated people inside and outside Tunisia. We want to make our collaboration and network as our competitve advantage for such a social impact project. So we are not registred yet, but we plan to do it as soon as possible. We hope that after this challenge, we make a great difference on the issue that we are tackling . #alone we go faster together we go further :))

Spam
Photo of David / Thomas Svarrer / Høyer
Team

Oh, I came to think about that I have not been sufficiently specific:

We would like to know the following:

WHEN applying HEAT to your system, does your system ABSORB the heat (and thereby produce a slight chilling effect) ?

WHICH temperatures does your system work with? I mean: It produces electricity - however, is that generated in the temperature range of 200 Celsius to 400 Celsius or which range?

What is the efficiency of the system you have made?

Feel free to ask us questions too.

For your information - we can - between any latitude between 68 Latitude South to 68 Latitude North, produce any temperature at any effect, up to and above 1,200 Celsius.

We can produce surfaces which are heated, or more constant temperature/energy/heat via Stone Chamber Buffers, storing heat in stone.

Sincerely
Nexus 7 Solar Concentrator 

Spam
Photo of Ahmed Besrour
Team

Dear Nexus Team,

We are sorry for the late response. We were preparing a demonstration video of our prototype. Here is the link to know more about the mechanism: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c1129euu7Aw&feature=youtu.be

This core technology can work with any source of heat on condition that its create a differential of potentiel as shown on the video. So our users can use fire source at night and solar concentrator during the day, and this is an important competitive advantage of Instapower. Actually our prototype work with embiant air and this kind of gaz don't need a high Celsius degrees to be functional. So we plan to work with another type of Gaz for the next prototype for more efficiency of our product, but it still work with low celsius degrees. (less than 200)

Our vision in the team is about collaborative work and sharing ideas. So we are open for future collaboration if we have the same vision of resolving the problem of lack of electricity in the world.

We appreciate your feedbacks and feel free to ask us more questions.

Sincerely
Instapower Team

Spam
Photo of David / Thomas Svarrer / Høyer
Team

Dear Ahmed Besrour,

Thanks for your response. No problem with the delay. Thanks for sharing your video of your principle, which is - if I am correct - a Stirling Engine.

How far are you with that model? I guess the demonstrated model on the Video is not the same machine you use in reality?

We are already planning to work with producers/manufacturers of Stirling engines.

Our system is working such that if we store the heat in a stone chamber, then we have energy, 24/7 with a machine like yours (provided that it is a Stirling engine).

With your technology being Stirling Engines, its efficiency increases with increased difference between the cold and the warm side. So, if you work the engine with 600 degrees Celsius, it is more than 50% efficient.

Furthermore, if you put the entire machine into a larger chamber with pressurized air, then the efficiency goes further up - this is due to that if you imagine that the pressure inside of the larger chamber is for instance 20 atmosphere, then the resulting pressure from the temperature change from the cold to the warm side, results in 60 atmosphere when heated to 600 degrees, thereby providing much higher power than just operating it at normal ambient air temperature.

Working with another gas is very challenging, unless you encapsulate the entire machine inside of an airtight container / chamber. Even that, is a challenge, as you still need to cool one side and heat another side of it to work.

We have, in Nexus 7, more than a decade of experience with Stirling Engines, we have made some few prototypes, and we have agreed that we will work with someone like yourself, who want to specialize in this, then we will on our side work on the specialty of concentrating and preserving the solar energy.

We are - as we write these lines here - working with a Swedish company called GENIUS, who provides Stirling Engines. There are many others, and we are not working with exclusivity.

If you consider using another gas, then consider Nitrogen which is in plenty in the atmosphere, and which is non-corrosive, non-oxidizing, and - should your machine be leaking, it will not affect the environment in the slightest way - as the atmosphere already has 79% Nitrogen.

In terms of starting, you will either need a starting motor (electrical for instance), a handle, or you need to produce a multi-piston engine, such that the application of heat makes it start automatically.

Well. These are many things in one - from our team we assume that you are already familiar with many of the issues mentioned above - so we are solely mentioning them such that we establish a kind of common framework for conversation.

It is a good project you are doing, Instapower. I am very happy to read that you are already producing energy from your creation. We would be happy to assist you with our humble experience to the best of our capability.

On the cooling side of the entire conundrum of building a Stirling Engine, we know that water pumping is one of the really great utilizations of a Stirling Engine, due to that the Stirling Engine has a piston cycle very useful for combining it with the old style Piston/Valve pump.

Now, if you pump water - this can serve as coolant, on the cold side, and thereby keep the cold side of the Stirling Engine at a much lower temperature than possible if you use air-cooling, oil-cooling or any other cooling.

We would need to have some longer conversations and dialogues to find out how we in the smartest possible way can interface your Instapower with our solar concentrator. I would love to combine it also with pumping water, such that we create a modular solution which can create heat for cooking, power for machines, water for drinking.

We are already in conversations also with others (outside of the OpenIDEO program) who are producing cooling (fridges) based on heat, and we would be able to use some of the experience from that, to find out how to interface with your machine.

There are many interesting considerations which we would do well in exploring. For instance: When the Stirling Engine runs, it transfers heat from the hot side to the cold side. If we use water to cool the cold side, that water heats up. Depending on how we construct this system, we could use running water to cool the stirling engine, and thereby utilize the heat from the heat storage twice - first level is your machine, to create power. The cooling water is then accumulated for shower. Thereby we will be creating a very efficient use of the heat storage. This would likely be a version 3 or 4 of our prospect upcoming collaboration - and we would likely need some simple computer-control of this, such that we do not need human intervention and pulling and pushing valves left, right and center to make this work.

Nexus 7 works off grid by the way. It produces its own power.

Sincerely
Nexus 7 Solar Concentrator
David & Thomas

Spam
Photo of Intissar Rouabhia
Team

Dear David & Thomas,
We thank you for all these technical information you provided us with, so answering your question, the prototype came in first as a proof of concept to all the theories we discussed and had in mind, we wanted to make sure that we are talking about something real and efficient, the prototype represents 50% of our vision on the final product. Hence we are very open in this phase to any improvement. We would like to know more about solar concentrates you are working on and we will discuss the possibilities of including this technology in our project. You also detailed the use cases of Stirling engines and how to create power from it, we indeed took the principle of Stirling engine and we adapted it to our product combined also with mechanical movements and compression- depression rules. We would like definitely to collaborate in every way possible to develop our project and yours at the same time, we hope in the next few weeks we can arrange a meeting to discuss more on technical and non technical parts, we will be very happy to partner with you fruitfully and to come up with great outcome.
Here is our mail : attachkila.ost2018@gmail.com.

Looking forward to our positive collaboration in the future.

Best.
InstaPower team.

Spam
Photo of David / Thomas Svarrer / Høyer
Team

Dear Intissar Rouabhia,

Such a pleasure receiving your email. Yes, yes and yes, we shall indeed work together.

I propose that we work in such a way so that we aim for creating an INTERFACE between our two projects, in such a way so that none of us are locked to the other, while, when you find other energy sources, you can then much easier apply those, and we on our side, when we find other energy-consumers, these too can easier join us.

With INTERFACE I mean - that we define a point of connection which is plug-and-play, such that you can setup your system in the way you want, and then by applying this interface, we can provide energy to your system. And - when now there is no sun, or there is no heat from the stone storage, then your system easily and effortlessly (and later even maybe automagically) swaps to other sources.

We have designed our entire Nexus 7 in a modular way such that we can interface with even other, 3rd party reflectors, we can even control these - we can adapt to other sensors and other actuators - and we are even making provision for interfacing with 3rd party machines such as yours, such that we for instance will be able to receive sensor signals from your machine and thereby make sure that we can maintain a particular temperature on your machine - and when we can foresee that within a measurable time frame into the future - being it 5 minutes, 30 minutes or 2 days from now - then we can advise your users that the energy storage will go below the minimum temperature and thereby provide your users with a signal so that they can switch over to another source (ie. combustibles).

We are very happy to announce that we will be meeting with the Majik Water CEO tomorrow in Nairobi - it has just been confirmed - and we would love to meet with your team too, whether physically or via Skype.

We would then want to record the meeting, and make the recording available for all OpenIDEO projects for inspiration.

I share your views and we are very happy and eager to see what we can do, together, on a hands on note.

The Majik Water team are going to introduce us (Nexus 7) to a community called "Gearbox" who are known as a workshop where one can hire professional machinery such as laser cutters, 3D printers, lathe machines, etc. etc. - and thereby produce prototypes much easier. Now I do not know where you are located, but this is a tremendous opportunity to get very advanced things done, in very short time, with hands on, action, and enabling trying out in reality for small means.

Thanks InstaPower for connecting up. Let us hear from you what are your thoughts and how you would like us to collaborate.

You wrote that you would like to hear more about our project, please feel warmly welcome to ask questions on our project page, and we shall be happy to elaborate. Do not feel shy asking any questions you may have.

Sincerely
David / Thomas
Rational Intuitive IVS (Denmark, Kenya)
Nexus 7 Solar Concentrator

Spam
Photo of David / Thomas Svarrer / Høyer
Team

This is an interesting product. However, we would indeed need to know some facts about your current prototype.

WHAT is the principle of technology behind the product? Is it the usual Peltier element, or the slightly newer Fuel Cell, or is it the Thermo Photo Voltaic Cell (which came out a few years ago)?

I understand that the fuel cell in one of your setups is using FUEL to heat it up. Now, we are creating high accuracy solar concentrators, and seeing your picture of your product, we can see that we indeed could create an ultra small solar spot pointing to your gadget - however - we would indeed need to know how the energy is generated, such that we can design a solar concentrator version which would work with your system.

We are going out to almost 2 billion people, via a very unique marketing method which we describe in our project Nexus 7 Solar Concentrator which is also published on this OpenIDEO competition.

We would like to get involved with your system and bring your system with us, together with other of the projects from the IDEO competition, and thereby make co-marketing on our trip around the needy.

THOSE who need our solar concentrator would likely also want to use your system, and vice versa.

I therefore would like to know if you feel like collaborating, such that when we go out with our system to other countries, we take your product with us?

SIncerely
David / Thomas
Nexus 7 Solar Concentrator 

Spam
Photo of Johannes Cornelis van Nieuwkerk
Team

Dear Abukakar,

Great concept/product how much does it approximately cost..... could not find this info at the website either....

Further.... are you aware of https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/david-toledo/the-powerpot-x-most-reliable-10-watt-portable-gene/description this project was not completely the same but it has similarity, (however, it seems as if they meanwhile discontinued their production).

Hans

Spam
Photo of Mirna
Team

Dear Mr Johannes,

We appreciate so much your constructive feedback!
Our product Instapower costs 25 $ for building and packaging and we sell it for 40 $.
Thank you for sending us the link of this competitor as well.
Although Instapower and powerpot turn heat into electricity, there is a difference between them.
Actually Instapower works with a different concept which is a Stirling engine and not a thermoelectric component. Also, it is affordable compared to powerpot which is expensive.
And the most important point that our product is adapted to our customers lifestyle who use fire on their daily basis. You can use it based on only fire nd not water nd fire to generate the same amount of power.
Don't hesitate to contact us for any further details.

Best regards,
Mirna

Spam
Photo of Johannes Cornelis van Nieuwkerk
Team

Dear Mirna,

I am not only an Openideo participant (www.openideo2017.refival.org) who is trying to find solutions for migration and demographics, but also an international business developer specialized on innovation (www.equiptor.com).

Powerpot does not seem to be a competitor to you (not only because of cost or technology (and besides that they do not list the product any longer)) because your target group is indeed currently very different.

Having said so, I would also have a look at the target group Powerpot focused on: the camping/backpacker segment is (also) huge worldwide and has the money to spend which could fund further product development and scaling for you; making the product as affordable as possible for your primary target group.

For the backpacker/camping group the product must be as light and as small as possible and must be easy to connect to any camping stove (or placed in/near a wood fire). With almost everyone carrying a phone and extra power packs nowadays, I think/guess there will be substantial demand for such a product if available.

Success!

Hans

Spam
Photo of abubakar Mbarak
Team

hello Mirna 
what is the life span of your device, for 40$ i believe it is cost effective if it will have a longer life span.
also let me know when production is ready and you have started supplying, i am interested in purchasing quite a number and distributing it in my home country.

Spam
Photo of Ahmed Besrour
Team

To be honest about the life span, as we are in the early stage of prototyping, we didn't start yet the tests of the components and the experiences about the life span. But our technical guy estimate it between 6 to 10 years

Spam
Photo of abubakar Mbarak
Team

Hello Ahmed,
this is wonderful, a lot houses all over Kenya do not have access to electricity reducing their productivity at night and discouraging students to study at night, I believe this device will close this gap and solve this problem.
i would like to know more about this device and how it works, is it available for purchase and let’s say we wanted to implement that product here in Kenya, how can we get in touch.
do you have a video maybe showing how it works?
https://challenges.openideo.com/challenge/bridgebuilder2/ideas/lumiere
You can have a look at this team harnessing steam from cooking pots to generate electricity, maybe you guys could exchange ideas and work together.

Spam
Photo of abubakar Mbarak
Team

Assalam aleikum Ahmed Besrour 
Amazing brother, please keep in touch and when you have a working prototype keep me updated.
i would also like to know how much energy it can store and supply and the capacity of the device
i would love to see how it works and if we can source the product to Kenya and apply that technology here.
here is my email adress we can talk further (abubakarmbarak99@gmail.com)
Thank you, all the best in the challenge.

Spam
Photo of Asel Zoe
Team

Dear Ahmed,

All my work us related and depends on energy, the battery has to be full always. So id this work and will be charging instantly I wish your project goes to the realization asap. The only think I would add that your beneficiary area is much wider and it could be very person who like me need batteries and laptops be always awake. The wider beneficiary would make your project more commercially interesting I think.

Good luck and check my project Cultural Atlaz - Fantastic Faces of Open Minded Humanity
- please share your feed back> Its interesting you are from very different area.
Thanks

Spam
Photo of Intissar Rouabhia
Team

Dear Asel,
Thank you for your feed back, We are indeed moving fast toward the realization of our project in the best capacities. As for the beneficiary we said that our total addressable market exceeds the 1.2 billion individuals around the world and as an extension to this market we aim to sell it to hikers and travelers. The product is basically accessible to everyone but thanks to your feedback we will consider doing further market research and explore new markets.
BEST