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This Filipino Student Invented Solar Windows Made from Rotten Vegetables

Mapua University's Carvey Maigue is a finalist in the James Dyson Award 2020 for the system.
IMAGE COURTESY DYSON
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Carvey Maigue of Mapua University has been shortlisted for the James Dyson Award 2020 for his system called AuREUS, a device that transforms rotten fruit and vegetables into clean, renewable electricity.

His invention was among 1,800 entries from young inventors and design engineers from 27 countries around the world. The brief was simple: Design something that solves a problem.

Despite the pandemic, students met virtually to come up with solutions to global problems. From all these entries, only 20 were chosen to be potentially crowned as International Winner, Sustainability Winner, or International Runners-Up by the James Dyson Foundation.

Maigue's AuREUS system makes use of crop waste to absorb stray UV light from the sun and converts it to electricity.

The system is used for windows and walls for buildings. AuREUS devices use the same technology derived from the phenomena that creates the Northern lights. High energy particles are absorbed by luminescent particles that re-remit them as visible light.

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Photo by COURTESY DYSON.
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Similar types of particles that are derived from fruit and vegetables were suspended in a resin substrate. When hit by sunlight, the particles absorb and emit visible light along the edges. When this light is captured, it can be converted to electricity.

Each of the 20 finalists was reviewed by James Dyson himself, who will declare the winner. The winner of the international prize will be announced on November 19. 

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"This year has brought massive challenges and if one thing is certain, our top 20 inventors have shown that young minds and unfiltered curiosity need a seat at the table," says Dyson global director of sustainability Tom Crawford. "There is always a need to solve problems and the number and breadth of this year’s entries show that the future of invention is bright."

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Paolo Chua
Paolo Chua is the Associate Style Editor of Esquire Philippines.
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