Panchabuta has opined earlier that innovative solutions need to be developed in clean energy in the offgrid and micro-grid applications for electricity and cleaner safer fuels, where these solutions address what is called the “energy poverty” which we believe is more “energy availability” as applicable to India.
Such solutions not only have an economic impact on rural India but also far-reaching social impacts as can be seen by the early success of the solar lantern companies with traditional distribution models. These solutions can also be adapted to numerous countries in South Asia and Africa.
Students from Harvard Business School competed in the 15th annual HBS Business Plan Contest, which provided contest awards of over $150,000 in cash and in-kind services to the winners and runners-up. The event included both a business venture track and a social venture track in which participants competed according to a release.
Ubiquitious Energy was one of the three runners-up in the business venture track of the Harvard Business School Business Plan Contest. The company distributes electricity to “off-grid” communities around the world by means of low-cost solar panels (a new product called “sol sheets”) that are easy to use and that can be interconnected over time.
The technique was developed at MIT, and is extraordinarily versatile, flexible, disposible and low cost.
According to reports, the company’s first product is SolSheets – paper solar panels that can charge a phone in 3-6 hours and which is completely disposable. The company is already in talks with Nokia for a pilot in Kenya.
The team members are second-year student Bart Howe, along with Miles Barr, Erdin Beshimov, Jutta Friedrichs, and Nathan Trujillo. Assistant Professor Ramana Nanda served as their faculty advisor.
India provides a tremendous opportunity to a company like Ubiquitious Energy and it will be interesting to see how they approach the market.