Kick a ball around for half an hour and generate enough electricity to power a reading lamp for three hours. It sounds like a greenie’s pipe dream but it’s real and both Barrack Obama and Bill Clinton are fans
Two female Harvard graduates recently won the the admiration of Barrack Obama and Bill Clinton. Why? Because their innovative products have married cutting edge technology with the unending enthusiasm of kids for playing with balls and ropes and brought an exciting new meaning to the words: power to the people.
Jessica O. Matthews and Julia Silverman are the founders of Uncharted Play, a company that has developed two products that give kids hours of fun followed by hours of power. It’s a development that could change the way the emerging world faces the challenge of generating power with limited resources.
The products – a soccer ball and a skipping rope – contain devices that self-generate electricity when they’re played with and store it for use later.
It means kids can play with the ball or rope in the afternoon and have the energy on hand to power a light to study by after dark.
The SOCCKET soccer ball comes with a light on a flexible stem that plugs into a socket on the ball itself.
Half an hour of a kick around generates enough power to keep the light on for three hours. This gives kids the ability to see their homework without any mains electricity at all, after having had a kick around with their mates, a win all around.
In the developing world the ability to provide your own off-grid power is a game changer for families in villages with limited resources. Many places right now only have the option to run fossil-fuelled personal generators for domestic power, a situation that only causes further fuel poverty and pollution.
President Obama recently said the ball ‘Turns one of the most popular games in Africa into a source of electricity and progress’. Meanwhile, Ex-President Clinton praised the ‘Off grid solution that brings power and improved quality of life in both learning capacity and working capacity’.
There is also a skipping rope called PULSE that at the moment is only available in a limited run of 100 (at $129 US) to help them advance their research. It generates the electricity in the handles and has an outlet that allows you to power any number of devices from it. Power generation that is literally in your hands.
Find out more at Uncharted Play
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