Blog of Urs Riggenbach

Concentrator Ready at Staten Island Makerspace

Posted Monday 26 January 2015 by Urs Riggenbach.

Lorin has finished building one of’s solar cookers in record time!

Have a look at his video introducing some of the people at the Staten Island MakerSpace.

The north east United States is expecting a big snowstorm in the next few days but as soon as the sun shines again we’ll be bringing you footage from New York’s most powerful solar cooker!

Les Vagabonds de l’Énergie on Samsø Island

Posted Wednesday 21 January 2015 by Urs Riggenbach.

Yesterday Arnaud Crétot from France joined us in Finland. Arnaud is a thermal engineer with keen interest in the global renewable energy transition, and before getting involved in, he traveled the world as part of Les Vagabonds de l’Énergie, a project documenting energy inventions, technology and infrastructure across the globe.

Here is a teaser from their documentary featuring an interview with Søren Hermansen of Samsø, the island that is producing more energy than its inhabitants consume. Mr. Hermansen of the Energy Academy played a key role in the islands energy transition.

The rest of the footage comes from Arnaud’s travels in Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden and Norway.

Last part of the Vagabonds project was India where we met. After that they were supposed to go to Japan but the Fukushima-Daiichi catastrophe happened a few days before the scheduled flight.

Arnaud Crétot Joins Us from France

Posted Wednesday 21 January 2015 by Urs Riggenbach.

We are very excited to have Arnaud Crétot from France over with us in Finland. Now, for the first time, the team is all in one place (Well, except Lorin, who’s in NYC building another machine...). Arnaud is our thermal engineer and scientific director. You can find out more about him on the About section. at Staten Island MakerSpace, NYC

Posted Monday 19 January 2015 by Urs Riggenbach.

Progress update from Lorin Symington’s quest to build a solar concentrator in NYC. Lorin is working with the Staten Island MakerSpace in NYC.

First Days in Haiti

Posted Wednesday 17 December 2014 by Urs Riggenbach.

Lorin Symington has reached Haiti safely after long hours of travel. He is now working with Haiti Communitere to install a solar oven in Port-au-Prince. We are all looking forward to the pictures of their first solar lunch!

Cooking Solar in... Finland?!

Posted Wednesday 10 December 2014 by Urs Riggenbach.

"You’re a solar company, and you’re based in Finland?!"

­­­We get to hear this one a lot!

This video right here should pose a big "why not!", as it shows how easily we can harness the power of the sun even in Nordic countries like Finland.

There are a few other reasons, but the fact is, if our solar concentratos work even under these harsh conditions, we can make them work everywhere.

Partner Spotlight: BioSampo FREES

Posted Tuesday 6 May 2014 by Urs Riggenbach.

Currently we’re building a training program specific to Solar Fire Technologies with our partner KSAO BioSampo as well as integrate the technology into existing renewable energy training programs.

In Finnish mythology, the "Sampo" is a legendary magical object — perhaps a world tree, astrolab or something else entirely — that everyone is looking for and brings good fortune to the one who finds it. Renewable Energy is the Sampo of modern times and we’re excited to continue the search with the BioSampo team.

Shaping Education for a Sustainable, Renewable Future

With KSAO BioSampo we gained an innovative ally for spreading renewable energy access in the developing world. Their FREES programme aims to teach practical knowledge on renewable energies and train educators in kickstarting the green economy in the global south.

Currently, the BioSampo campus features a wide variety of sustainable technologies including PV, wind, biogas generation, biofuel distilling and esterification, and pyrolysis for charcoal and electricity generation. GoSol is to install solar thermal capacity on their campus, and provide support during the development of their curriculum.

Today, education in bio-energy and environmental technology is received only on an academic level, and there is a lack of practical know-how and realization. The BioSampo Training and Research Centre aims to change that. At GoSol we believe that solar thermal technology plays a key role in enabling renewable energy access. We are excited about the collaboration with BioSampo and FREES, their Finnish Renewable Energy Export School programme.
Contact us for any questions on this training program.

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