Here’s a piece of good news that is worth the share.
Carvey Ehren Maigue of Mapua University has been named as the winner of the very first global sustainability prize at the James Dyson Award. Maigue invented a new technology system, which converts UV light into renewable energy from sustainable materials. Aptly called AuREUS, this system technology is not just a typical UV converter, but it is made from waste crops as a substrate and can be easily integrated into materials that we often see and use, like walls, windows, cars, boats, airplanes, and fabrics.
Sir James Dyson, himself, announced the winner praising the 27 -year old’s invention in support of the ever-changing situation of our climate and environment, “AuREUS is impressive in the way it makes sustainable use of waste crops, but I’m particularly impressed by Carvey’s resolve and determination. Having failed to make the national stage of the Award in 2018, he stuck at it and further developed his idea – this will be a very important character trait as he embarks on the long road to commercialization. I wish him every success because, as a farmer, I have always been concerned about covering fertile, food-producing, agricultural land in photovoltaic cells. Carvey’s invention demonstrates a convincing way to create clean energy on existing structures, like windows, within cities.”
AuREUS System Technology is an answer to the intermittency of many renewable energy sources like solar power which can only be generated in very specific environmental conditions. Solar panels mostly capture and convert visible light into renewable energy and must be facing the sun to do so. Current solar farms are only built horizontally, never vertically, and often placed on prime arable farmland, meaning the land can’t be used to grow crops. Yet, there are thousands of windows and other surfaces that could be repurposed.
The Philippines is a victim of severe weather disruption and Farmers can lose much of their produce as a result. Rather than leaving the crops to rot, Maigue made use of these agents by integrating them as a UV absorbent compound for his substrate. After testing nearly 80 different types of local crops, Maigue found nine that show high potential for long-term use. The substrate, when applied to materials, is durable, translucent, and can be molded into different shapes.
In an interview, Maigue revealed that he has been staying in College for over 10 years due to his family’s financial circumstances. He also added that he first submitted his idea to the James Dyson Award in 2018 but did not progress to the Awarding stages of the competition. Then, his technology could only be applied to windows and used a chemical compound as the key ingredient in the substrate. 2 years on, with further R&D into applications and using upcycled waste crops, Carvey’s invention is the James Dyson Award’s first-ever Sustainability Award winner. His persistence to improve his idea and learn from setbacks mirrors James Dyson’s ethos on failure – a key component to the design process fostered at Dyson.
“Winning the James Dyson Award is both a beginning and an end. It marked the end of years of doubting whether my idea would find global relevance. It marks the beginning of the journey of finally bringing AuREUS to the world. I want to create a better form of renewable energy that uses the world’s natural resources, is close to people’s lives, forging achievable paths and rallying towards a sustainable and regenerative future.”
With Maigue’s readily integrable technology, sustainable and inclusive creation, it is right about the time that Filipino’s must seat at the forefront of the sustainability arena to contribute and make the world a much better place to live in.
AuReus was among the 1800 inventions submitted from 27 countries all around the world. The Dyson Sustainability Award comes with a cash award of 30,000 pounds, or P1.9 million.
Get to know more about the invention by playing the video after the jump.
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