Young Peruvian innovator says India is potential giant; His Clay pot, plants light up homes in remote areas of Peru

By: |
July 19, 2020 5:06 PM

Peru has already benefited by hundreds of families with this technology that lighting their homes and charging up to two mobile phones while purifying the polluted air in their home and also in Colombia in the Pastos region.

The clay of three types manages to condition the artificial habitat of the microorganisms and they develop normally and produce energy.The clay of three types manages to condition the artificial habitat of the microorganisms and they develop normally and produce energy. (Photo Credit : Hernán Asto Cabezas )

A 31 year old inventor, researcher and entrepreneur from Peru is making waves with his latest innovation. Alinti, a clay container which unites biology and solar energy to purify air, also helped his won accolades from UNDP, besides a host of other awards.

Hernán Asto Cabezas, from Huanta district in Peru who has actively volunteered in Technology Sector is also the winner of many international awards in Innovation and Technology and appeared in national and international media. He recently spoke to Financial Express Online’s Huma Siddiqui about his unique discovery, his thoughts on reaching out to the bottom of the pyramid and more.

Tell us a little more about your new technology that promises light to people?

Alinti, is the one of its kind in the world that achieves to unite biology and solar energy in a clay container while purifying the air. This technology works with five species of electrogenic microorganisms, a tuberous root phytoremediator plant, clay of three types of minerals and at least one solar panel.

Three things make it unique:

The clay of three types manages to condition the artificial habitat of the microorganisms and they develop normally and produce energy.

The evaporative cooling of the clay can reduce the overheating of the solar panels to a temperature of 10 ° in order to increase the energy efficiency. The paradox of this solar system is that the greater the overheating of the solar panels, the lower the energy efficiency and Alinti solves this problem.

Alinti plants are Phytore mediators, they absorb toxic substances such as benzene, ammonia, formaldehyde, xylene and CO2, in a degree of 36 per cent to 45 per cent of micro-particles per one meter of cubic area.

How long can the power be used?

Actually this technology is used for lighting for up to 12 hours and charging up to two cell phones. For this technology, we have patent application in Peru and Colombia and a positive publication of the PCT International patent, and also work is in progress for filing license patents in Brazil, Nepal, and the Philippines and I would like to get to India.

We also have the new, improved, sophisticated version for environmentally conscious people who are eco friendly so they can charge their cell phones, and also for public lighting poles that will be installed in parks and streets in Peru and Colombia. Our vision is connectivity, while air remains pollution free.

How was the idea born?

Even though we live in the golden age of Technology, millions of children on the planet continue doing their homework lighting candles, kerosene lamps, and breathing toxic substances from smoke and damaging their health.

Until I was 14 years old, I did not have electricity at home, I did my homework from school with lighting candles and breathing toxic substances from smoke and many times I had respiratory problems, that’s when I wondered, why there is not technology, for students like us in the field that solve these two problems, the lack of electricity and clean the air?

This is how ALINTI was born. In my region there is a lot of clay and a lot of vegetation. From the school stage, thanks to the advice of my teachers, I made my research trying to provide an ecological solution. I decide to investigate thoroughly plants. For this reason, I looked for ways to find solutions to many problems, such as curing headaches, and curing bone pain from the cold.

So my first investigation was to produce vegetable fibers from milkweeds, it was a very fine fiber, some specialists considered it to be finer than the vicuña fiber. Thanks to the study of this plant, I had got several national recognitions, while in school.

I want to highlight and tell you this, since all my success as an inventor started, after researching and reading a lot of literature and science, I found out that plants by the process called photosynthesis eliminate exudates from the roots and that these, together with microorganisms from the soil, decompose, releasing electrons (electricity). And how the mixture of different clays got different results.

Years ago, doing my homework with candles and breathing toxic substances from smoke, I disarmed batteries thinking of making my own battery, and now I found a way to acquire electricity. It was fascinating, wonderful! I had discovered a biological form in the production of the current. I did my tests in the Laboratory and over the years, Alinti was born. Thanks to a host of biologists, electronic experts, chemists and economists, I work with.

How do you plan to reach out to remote areas of Peru?

Peru has already benefited by hundreds of families with this technology that lighting their homes and charging up to two mobile phones while purifying the polluted air in their home and also in Colombia in the Pastos region.

And now, I am about to launch the new, improved and sophisticated version of Alinti for eco-friendly people and with a profit that help communities without electricity. I also work incessantly in knocking on the doors of the regional governments, municipalities and NGOs in my country in order to bring to more than 3 million Peruvians who do not have electricity. I am also working with Lima’s municipality for public lighting in parks.

Was the project, cost intensive?

Yes, the first expenses I bore personally. Initially I knocked many doors of my country institutions in order to find funds for my research, and like almost all, if you don’t have a functional prototype, you are out. At that time I only received rejections. It was very frustrating, and that made me finance my research myself. I continued working as a painter, plumber, electrician and bricklayer. I tried as much as possible to put into practice what I had learned at university and the remuneration was invested in more materials and more tests in laboratories. My personal expenses were more than $ 30,000. But I got lucky. I won many international awards and many funds to develop the technology and be was able to industrialise it.

I got, $ 40 thousand from History Channel, $100 thousand for technical and scientific validation by the Esan University (Peru) and the Polytechnic University of Madrid (Spain),
$ 40 thousand in land for the laboratories in charge of the AMAGI Corporation, $1000 dollars from the Inter-American Association of Intellectual Property (Asipi).

Presently I am waiting for a $ 100,000 non-refundable state fund for the commercial launch. That will help a lot. Actually the cost of the product is $ 97 per Unit. We are trying to produce in bulk in an effort to reduce the cost and make it more accessible to the public.

And green technology is the need of the hour. So this one is a game-changer, of sorts?

The technology is disruptive; it works with plants, clays, organic grounds, graphite, PET plastic. They are not harmful materials to ecology. However, the battery, solar panels and electronic parts have certain processes that are not ecological, but we are constantly working to make it more environmentally friendly.

Any plans of bringing Alinti Technology to India?

I haven’t travelled yet. However, I want to be there. I know that it is a very potential giant. It has millions of people and Alinti Technology would work very well there. India is the potential market for any startup and I am looking for a company that wants to manufacture the technology there and can make history by impacting the quality of life for many people who need it.

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