2011 finalists & winners > 17+ years > Emergency Power Generator
Emergency Power Generator
St Thomas of Canterbury College
Sam was inspired by the Christchurch earthquakes to develop a solution to a pressing problem - the sudden loss of electricity would render people unable to charge their cellphones for essential communication during a disaster. Sam was inspired to use the same solution to help people in developing countries, and has achieved the beginnings of this, with one unit already in Tanzania.
The Lion Advance Emergency Power Generator operates on a temperature difference. The unit uses the difference in temperature between 'steam' from boiling water and a separate pot of cold water to generate electricity through the use of thermoelectrics. A heat-pump moves heat energy from one place to another, the emergency power generator generates electricity from the movement of heat energy between the hot and cold water. To put it simply, The Lion is a miniature heat pump in reverse. The Lion can be placed on a pot of boiling water while food is being cooked or water is being boiled for sterilization or a hot drink. Therefore it has the ability to use heat energy that would usually be wasted.
My product that I have developed has met all its targeted requirements and is well on the way to being the success I had hoped it would be. I have sold a number of units at Mitre Ten Mega in Hornby, Christchurch, along with receiving a large number of orders including a large order from a national organisation - the Public Services Association [PSA].
The best part about developing this project was testing and trialing many different prototypes, finding the perfect design, preparing it for production, and then seeing that design being accepted by the market. It's a lot harder to design a product for manufacture rather than a one-off prototype and I immensely enjoyed the challenge.
In my spare time I like to explore new and innovative technological possiblilities. My primary interest is converting energy from the environment into something that can be used. I also have a great interest in transportation and engines.