sanergy

Smartplanet interviews Sanergy co-founder Nathan Cooke

Check out this in-depth interview of Sanergy co-founder Nathan Cooke in Smartplanet. Sanergy, which recently won NCIIA's first Sustainable Practice Impact Award, is focused on providing hygienic, accessible, affordable sanitation for everyone in Nairobi's urban slums. In the interview, Cooke talks about innovative toilets, design in underserved communities and how students in New England can help farmers in Ethiopia.

Sanergy wins NCIIA's inaugural Sustainable Practice Impact Award

Congratulations to Sanergy, winner of NCIIA's first Sustainable Practice Impact Award, given last week at our annual conference. Sanergy is focused on providing hygienic, accessible, affordable sanitation for everyone in Nairobi's urban slums. Read Sanergy's blog post thanking NCIIA and the Lemelson Foundation for the award. We wish them the best in the future!

Sanergy making good progress

The Sanergy team from MIT continues to reach toward their goal of providing hygienic, accessible, affordable sanitation for everyone in Nairobi's urban slums. In the last month, they have:

    •    Sold 103 Fresh Life Toilets and franchised to 50 entrepreneurs
    •    Created 122 jobs
    •    Removed 170 metric tons of waste from the community
    •    Served 1,000,000 paying customers with hygienic sanitation
 

Reaching these numbers relies heavily on their Fresh Life Operators successfully running Fresh Life Toilets. Mercyline Atieno (pictured above) is one of their newest Fresh Life Operators. Mercyline runs a vegetable stand and rents out stalls in the Viwandani section of Mukuru slum. When they spoke to her about why she wanted to open a Fresh Life Toilet, she told them how she wanted to give her children--particularly her girls--choices that she did not have due to limited education. She plans to use the income from the operation of the toilet for school fees. Mercyline's toilet is now up and running, and she has joined their FLO advisory council to represent her section of Mukuru.

Check out this Voice of America spotlight on Sanergy.

NCIIA teams win $200K at MassChallenge!

Great news! The three NCIIA teams in the MassChallenge 2011 finals have won  $200,000! The winners were announced last night (Oct. 24). Read the article at Bostinnovation.

About the teams:

Sanergy, 2010 Sustainable Vision grantee from MIT
Sanergy makes it profitable to provide sanitation services in urban slums. This team has designed, constructed and implemented a pilot modular low-cost sanitation facility customized for the residents of two slums in Nairobi, Kenya. Two low-cost technologies are the centerpiece: a prefabricated ferro-cement toilet and a bicycle-powered exhaustion pump for pit latrines. These technologies are combined with a micro-franchised network of sanitation centers, low-cost waste collection infrastructure, and a centralized processing facility that converts waste into biogas, electricity, and fertilizer that is sold commercially.

SmarterShade (Lono LLC), 2007 E-Team from the University of Notre Dame
SmarterShade makes it possible to electronically darken a window with the flip of a switch. Using a remote control, the customer can adjust the level of tinting from clear to opaque. SolarShade itself is a lightweight, semi-rigid sheet of plastic made from offset planes of polarized material. The sheet can be manufactured to fit into any existing window track or frame, right over the window itself. The team has since incorporated as Lono LLC.

Therapeutic Systems, 2007 E-Team from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Therapeutic System’s Vayu vest is a portable sensory solution for children with autism, so they can participate in life more fully. Deep Pressure Touch Stimulation (DPTS) is a method of treating people with mental illness that involves applying firm pressure to the chest, much like the feeling of a hug. DPTS is most often applied passively, using simple weighted vests and toys. This E-Team is developing a DPTS system with more user control: the inflatable Vayu system can be inserted into any off-the-shelf vest and can safely apply a range of pressure, helping people cope with their anxiety.

Last year, two NCIIA E-Teams, Sproxil and OsmoPure, made the final, with OsmoPure winning $100,000!

Three NCIIA teams in running for MassChallenge $1 million

Three NCIIA grantee teams are finalists at MassChallenge 2011, and will compete with 23 other teams for a share of $1 million. The teams are:

Sanergy, 2010 Sustainable Vision grantee from MIT
Sanergy makes it profitable to provide sanitation services in urban slums. This team has designed, constructed and implemented a pilot modular low-cost sanitation facility customized for the residents of two slums in Nairobi, Kenya. Two low-cost technologies are the centerpiece: a prefabricated ferro-cement toilet and a bicycle-powered exhaustion pump for pit latrines. These technologies are combined with a micro-franchised network of sanitation centers, low-cost waste collection infrastructure, and a centralized processing facility that converts waste into biogas, electricity, and fertilizer that is sold commercially.

SmarterShade (Lono LLC), 2007 E-Team from the University of Notre Dame
SmarterShade makes it possible to electronically darken a window with the flip of a switch. Using a remote control, the customer can adjust the level of tinting from clear to opaque. SolarShade itself is a lightweight, semi-rigid sheet of plastic made from offset planes of polarized material. The sheet can be manufactured to fit into any existing window track or frame, right over the window itself. The team has since incorporated as Lono LLC.

Therapeutic Systems, 2007 E-Team from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Therapeutic System’s Vayu vest is a portable sensory solution for children with autism, so they can participate in life more fully. Deep Pressure Touch Stimulation (DPTS) is a method of treating people with mental illness that involves applying firm pressure to the chest, much like the feeling of a hug. DPTS is most often applied passively, using simple weighted vests and toys. This E-Team is developing a DPTS system with more user control: the inflatable Vayu system can be inserted into any off-the-shelf vest and can safely apply a range of pressure, helping people cope with their anxiety.

MassChallenge seeks to identify and accelerate high potential new busnesses from around the US. Last year, two NCIIA E-Teams, Sproxil and OsmoPure, made the final, with OsmoPure winning $100,000! 

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