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News Picks : Handmade solar lamp created in Uganda

By: Physics Today
28 January 2014
Ars Technica: A man originally from Uganda has launched a startup company, called Masa Energy, to create a solar-powered lamp for people in Africa, where access to electricity is limited. Simon Lule, now living in London, says he was inspired to create the lamp when he visited his grandparents in Uganda. Like 92% of the population there, they use kerosene to light their homes. But, as Lule points out, kerosene is costly, contributes to global black carbon emissions, and poses a health risk. When he tried to buy a solar lamp, he found that current models were too expensive and didn't run long enough. So Lule, who has a degree in digital media, taught himself how to construct his own prototype by studying basic electronics videos on YouTube. Now he is using IndieGogo to seek the capital needed to mass-produce it.


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